‘Riverdale’: Dust Off Your VCR to Recap Season 4

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Jack Rowand/The CW

The seventh and final season of Riverdale is set to premiere on Wednesday, March 29, and with the gang in the 1950s, this will be the biggest situation they will have dealt with after the Black Hood, the Gargoyle King, The Farm, Percival Pickens, and more. To get ready, we are taking a look back at the previous six seasons to catch up on the biggest storylines of the series, so take a refresher on what happened in season 4!

Goodbye, Fred Andrews

Robert Falconer/The CW

The fourth season started off with an emotional tribute to one of Riverdale‘s own, both on and off the screen. Fred Andrews himself, Luke Perry, suffered a stroke and passed away in the middle of filming season 3, and the season 4 premiere centered on Fred dying after a hit-and-run. The episode included an appearance from Perry’s Beverly Hills, 90210 co-star, Shannen Doherty, and it was a tearful episode from start to finish. Perry had an impact on older and newer generations, whether you loved him as Dylan McKay or Fred Andrews, and even now, every once in a while, Riverdale pays tribute to the best dad in town. We miss you, Luke!

Read our full recap of the emotional episode here.

Riverdale vs. Stonewall

Colin Bentley/The CW

Season 4 of Riverdale brought, in a way, something much more sinister than the Black Hood and the Gargoyle King. After Jughead was accepted into a writing program at Stonewall Prep, he butted heads with his fellow Stonies: Bret, Donna, Jonathan, and Joan. Their teacher, Mr. Chipping, suddenly killed himself, but Jughead figured out that it was much bigger than that.

Let’s start with the Baxter Brothers, a beloved fictional book series for crime and mystery lovers. Professor DuPont held a contest to find the next ghostwriter of the book series, passing it down from himself and Chipping. While it was a tough race between Jughead and Bret, Jughead ultimately won. He soon, however, started looking deeper into the books and found out that his own grandfather, Forsythe, was the original author for the Baxter Brothers, and he sold it to DuPont. After being accused of plagiarism, Jughead gives up his turn as a ghostwriter, and the honor goes to Donna. She rebrands it as Tracy True since her grandmother was the original author of those books. DuPont had stolen the ideas of both book series and created it as his own.

And then you have the Quill and Skull, a secret society at Stonewall that Jughead is inducted into, but their mission was as dark as ever and tarnished the school’s reputation. They were also believed into keeping a secret stash of videotapes, both confessionals and some that are not appropriate, for example, Betty and Jughead having sex. Bret was discovered to have hidden away those tapes and is sent straight to jail.

Stonewall also had quite a rivalry with Riverdale High, and Betty and Bret butted heads in more ways than one, be it on the football field (the Stallions were deliberately hurting other players from the opposing team) or in a quiz bowl.

The Death of Jughead

Bettina Strauss/The CW

The Quill and Skull society were given the prompt to write the perfect murder, and soon, they even tried to kill Jughead. “Tried” being the key word. Bret, Donna, Joan, and Jonathan had it perfectly planned: Joan hit Jughead with a rock, and Donna tried to frame Betty, but thanks to the iconic beanie, it cushioned the blow, and he was only knocked unconscious, though with a serious head wound. With the help of Archie, Betty, Veronica, Charles, and later, Alice, F.P., Jellybean, and Mary, the town believed that Jughead Jones was no more.

When the Stonies were figuring things out, Jughead and Betty decided it was time to finally confront them. So, in a true locked room mystery, the two held DuPont and the others in the classroom to go over everything in every little detail. And since it would be too much to recap here, take a look at it in full here.

The Farm and Edgar’s Plans

Jack Rowand/The CW

Continuing The Farm storyline from season 3, Betty and Charles have been furiously working with the FBI to track down Edgar, and his followers as Kevin slowly gets back to his normal life and fixing relationships. Edgar is believed to be hiding out at a hotel, and after trying to send an agent undercover, his cover is blown, and Edgar tells Betty and Charles that it won’t work. He did, however, send one of his followers back, Polly, who has a bomb strapped to her chest. Luckily, they defuse it just in time.

Edgar has some demands for the FBI that include a bus, some water, and passports, and Betty delivers it all, but she is soon taken hostage. Now with her mom, she finds out that Edgar is planning on putting all of the Farmies on a bus and driving them off a cliff … with Betty and Alice at the front. Edgar, meanwhile, is building his own rocket ship so he can flee.

Betty and Alice escape and take over the place. Betty helps the Farmies escape, and before Edgar can ascend in his rocket, Alice shoots him, and he finally dies. The story of The Farm is over.

The Videotape Voyeur

Jack Rowand/The CW

The big bad this season was more creepy rather than scary, but the vibes were still the same. Going old school, videotapes were being sent to residents, and it was just hours upon hours of footage of their houses (can we talk about how everyone still has VCRs when it’s 2019?) and no one knew where it came from.

The tapes turned into recreations of tragedies, like Clifford shooting Jason, Midge Klump getting murdered during the production of Carrie, the Black Hood, and even Jughead getting hit with a rock. Again, they wound up at doorsteps, but that’s not even the worst of it: The real versions found their way to a backroom at Blue Velvet Video.

Principal Honey ended up getting sent a tape of hours just inside the school, and he used it to cancel prom. However, after going through all of the footage and finding an image of Honey in a reflection, as well as realizing that the public doesn’t know the Voyeur has moved to recreations, it’s found out that he made the video so prom would be called off.

To end the season, Betty and Jughead are sent to a cabin in the woods after Jellybean finds yet another videotape. They find a screen and projector, as well as a VCR with a videotape on top. When they play it, it’s a perfect recreation of one of Jughead’s stories, with a slightly different ending.

What Else Happened

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  • After finding a guy on a dating app, Kevin gets himself into an unusual situation that involves getting tickled for money. He ropes in Fangs, and soon, Reggie, Toni, the Bulldogs, and the Vixens are in on it and start their own business, which is soon shut down by Principal Honey.
  • Thanks to seeing Jason at The Farm, Cheryl ended up taking the corpse and keeping it in the basement chapel at Thistlehouse. She would read to him, keep him company, and forbid anyone from going into the chapel. Toni finds out and supports her, unlike Uncle Claudius. She soon believed that Jason and their unborn triplet, Julian, were haunting Thistlehouse (though it ended up just being Penelope playing mind tricks). Cheryl decided that it was time to let go of Jason and gave him a proper memorial at Sweetwater River with Toni and the Core Four since they were there the day she nearly drowned.
  • With Weatherby away due to The Farm, Riverdale High gets a new principal: Mr. Honey. He isn’t so loved by students, as he quickly turns into enemy #1. There would be no yearbook or prom if he stuck around, but he really just wanted what was best. The gang finally gets rid of him after pulling some pranks, and it’s back to somewhat normalcy for the remainder of the school year.
  • Archie reopens the El Royale as a community center and gym and promises to stay open late for the kids that don’t have places to go after school. Archie soon becomes enemies with Dodger, a local gang member, and his crew and his family create trouble for Archie and the center.

Stay tuned to our recap of season 5! In the meantime, watch all six seasons of Riverdale now on Netflix before season 7 premieres on Wednesday, March 29 at 9 p.m. EST on The CW! Check out the rest of our Riverdale coverage here.

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By Megan
Megan has been passionate about writing since she was little and has been passionate about all things pop culture and nerdy since almost as long. Joining Nerds and Beyond in 2019, she also graduated from the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh in 2020 with a Bachelor of Arts in Multimedia Journalism. Megan is constantly binge-watching shows and finding new things to obsess over. 9-1-1 and Marvel currently reign as the top obsessions. You can find her on Twitter @marvels911s if you ever want to discuss some certain firefighters.
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