Riverdale season 4 episode 7 review: Thanksgiving in Riverdale

Riverdale -- "Chapter Sixty-Four: The Ice Storm" -- Image Number: RVD407b_0039.jpg -- Pictured (L-R): KJ Apa as Archie and Molly Ringwald as Mary Andrews -- Photo: Dean Buscher/The CW-- © 2019 The CW Network, LLC All Rights Reserved.
Riverdale -- "Chapter Sixty-Four: The Ice Storm" -- Image Number: RVD407b_0039.jpg -- Pictured (L-R): KJ Apa as Archie and Molly Ringwald as Mary Andrews -- Photo: Dean Buscher/The CW-- © 2019 The CW Network, LLC All Rights Reserved. /

This week’s Riverdale finds a grieving Archie trying to fill his dad’s shoes as a big ice storm hits Riverdale on Thanksgiving.

Last week’s Riverdale, saw the shocking death of Jughead’s teacher and the reveal of Charles’ true identity.

This week, Archie prepares a Thanksgiving dinner for the kids at El Royale, as FP arrives with the news that the newly elected mayor Hiram Lodge is shutting down the community center:  “I’m not supposed to say this, but I know what I’d do if I was in your place:  screw him.”

Riverdale has promised to dedicate the show to the memory of Luke Perry as it continues, and this episode is a great reminder of that as Archie and Mary navigate their first big holiday without the patriarch and the community around them sees this loss, recognizing just how important Fred was.

Over at Stonewall Prep, Jughead is reeling from a different death when he asks Mr. Dupont if he knows why Mr. Chipping killed himself.

His new substitute teacher responds that Mr. Chipping had a secret problem with alcohol. Jughead isn’t so easily convinced and points out that there was no note and it was very sudden.

Dupont continues to shrug it off, so Jughead gets to the point, asking if Mr. Chipping had asked him about Jughead and his theory about the true writer of the first Baxter Brothers book, but Dupont shuts him down and tells him to leave it alone.

Meanwhile, it seems like it’s not just me that’s sick of Hiram (aside from Hermione and Hermosa–ugh. Also, why didn’t Veronica get an H-name?).

Poor Veronica has to have this monster as her father, who before this stunt, dumped a bloody and beaten Dodger in a carpet in front of the community center.

Veronica shows up at the penthouse, angry that Hiram has shut down the community center and taken away Thanksgiving from a bunch of “underprivileged” kids.

Hiram argues it was nothing personal, just a matter of public safety, so Veronica pulls the tablecloth, with the full Thanksgiving setting, off the table. “So was this.” Yas, Vee!

Over at Thistlehouse, Cheryl, morbid as ever, is excited for the ice storm to arrive so it can hide the dead body of her Uncle Bedford a bit longer. Toni, of course, actually feels guilty.

Aunt Cricket, still suspicious of her missing husband? brother? is staking out the house, though, so Cheryl decides they should scare her off for good.

Back at Stonewall Prep, Betty shows up to get iced in with Jughead and do some good ole’ fashioned sleuthing. Kids these days.

Jughead tells Betty he thinks Dupont got to Chipping before he killed himself. He shows Betty the first real clue he has (our Jughead tends to form his theories mostly on intuition):  Jug has school photos of Dupont and Chipping with a matching tie pin.

Based on his research, the emblem on the pin represents a Stonewall Prep secret society:  Quill & Skull (our first dumb name in a while!). Jughead hypothesizes that Mr. Chipping was blackmailed by the society, which may have led to his suicide.

As it turns out, Jug and Betty aren’t alone at Stonewall. Bret and Donna put on weird rabbit masks as a joke to try to scare Jughead, and before it’s all said and done, they end up playing a drinking game, but the junior detectives have an ulterior motive, of course.

With the ice storm settling in, Alice and FP decide to go to Pop’s for dinner and have a night out without the kids. (Riverdale really needs to get some better date night places.)

Luck would have it that Hiram and Hermione walk in, as well, since their dinner is now on the floor thanks to Veronica. (Is Hermosa left with the scraps?)

Despite FP’s exhaustion and frustration with Hiram, Alice invites them to join. The four of them reminisce and remember Fred. It almost seems genuine and sincere when Hiram suggests they go downstairs to drink to Fred’s memory and FP reluctantly follows.

Meanwhile, Jughead and Betty’s game of “Never Have I Ever” is in full swing and Jughead goes for the jugular–“Never have I ever been in a secret society.” Of course, Bret and Donna don’t cop to it–they’re in a secret society after all.

Betty goes for a refill and snoops in Donna’s room, finding a tie pin that matches the Quill & Skull logo with Mr. Chipping’s initials on the back.

She suggests to Jughead it could be a trophy as they dig themselves deeper into the idea that Mr. Chipping’s suicide is actually a murder that’s been covered up.

Jughead and Betty come back to the game and directly confront Donna and Bret about Chipping. Bret maintains that Chipping jumped out the window, but Donna leaves upset so Betty follows her.

Donna tells Betty she got the tie pin from Chipping while they were having an affair. She tried to stop it and he killed himself the next day. Jughead sweetly believes the story, but Betty thinks it’s possible she’s distracting them from the murder and it’s all part of the coverup.

Back at the community center, Archie and Mary decide to host Thanksgiving dinner anyway, murky legal area aside. As they prep, a bunch of creepy randos show up, one of whom is Darla, the shady man’s girlfriend whom we haven’t seen since season two.

Archie is so busy trying to provide a Thanksgiving for the El Royale kids that he hasn’t quite processed it’s his first Thanksgiving without his dad.

He’s trying to deep fry a turkey just like Fred always has when one of Dodger’s former kids alerts him to Darla’s identity. Darla is apparently Dodger’s mom, hungry for vengeance and looking for whoever hurt her son.

Archie politely asks them to leave, saying they don’t want any trouble. But Darla pulls out a gun, looking for whoever hurt Dodger.

There’s a very tense hostage-like situation as Dodger’s family chooses to wait and see if anyone will break and confess to having beat up Dodger when a kid tries to snatch the gun away. (I think the kid is Munroe’s little brother, but wow, they really haven’t done a great job and building out Munroe’s world for us.)

Munroe puts himself between the kid and one of Dodger’s men and Archie jumps up, too, landing himself right in the sights of the gun as Darla gains control.

“Confess, boy,” Darla says, aiming it at Archie’s chest while Mary watches tearfully. At this point, Archie’s been held at gunpoint, like, dozens of times and is pretty unfazed by this. Since the truth doesn’t work, he asks her if giving her what she wants to her will make her let everyone go.

Darla agrees and as he stands to confess to something he didn’t do, the three main kids he’s saved from Dodger stand up and pull a Spartacus, chorusing, “It’s me! I did it! I wear the mask!” It’s a really sweet moment that goes to show how hard Archie has worked to win these kids over.

Unfortunately, Darla isn’t as moved. She threatens Mary, saying she’ll know the pain Darla now feels, but just then, the deep fryer explodes, and Archie slaps the gun out of her hand.

A huge fight breaks out and Veronica stabs a guy’s hand to the table with a meat fork! Like father, like daughter! (Really, this shouldn’t be too shocking for Vee–she lit a guy on fire just a few weeks ago.)

Mary somehow gets the gun and points it at Darla, lawyering her up (she has the right to defend herself) and standing her ground.

Once Darla and co. leave and everyone else catches their breath, Mary turns to the decimated deep fryer and asks, “Who in their right mind tries to deep fry a turkey inside?” It’s another funny and bittersweet reminder of Fred’s absence and Archie’s attempt to fill his shoes.

Back at Pop’s, well, La Bonne Nuit, it doesn’t take long for Hiram and FP to reach a boiling point once Hiram pulls a Hiram and starts intentionally provoking FP. The two brawny men break into fisticuffs, and of course, the Serpent quickly overtakes the mobster, breaking a bottle on the bar and holding it to his neck.

“You put a hit out on my son… You think I forgot about that?” FP growls, and wow, I hadn’t realized until this season just how much I love FP. Skeet Ulrich has taken this character, who was truly despicable in his early alcoholic incarnation, and turned him into a hero.

Back at Thistlehouse, the weakest storyline of this week’s episode, Cheryl invites Aunt Cricket and Cousin Fester (really) to dinner and sets up Nana Blossom to tell a creepy tale about the first Blossom Thanksgiving–which resorted to cannibalism.

Cheryl threatens to leak the story to undo the maple syrup sale as Fester pulls a ring out of his meal — Uncle Bedford’s — to seal the cannibal deal. (Lest we fear, it’s actually lamb.) The aunt still doesn’t believe her and think she’s bluffing.

Cue Toni rolling out the very dead Jason! This corpse finally has a purpose in the plot of this show other than to be exceedingly disturbing, weird and creepy. Horrified, the extended family leaves, and all seems well (aside from that pesky Julian doll).

The next day, at Betty’s urging that something truly weird is going on at Stonewall Prep, Jughead plans to go to the headmaster, but Donna beats him to it.

She’s telling the headmaster everything, confirming that Chipping’s death is driven by a guilty man’s fear of exposure. The case isn’t closed yet though–Betty’s started a new murder wall!

As the episode closes, Archie has gotten rid of Dodger’s family and finally serves the Thanksgiving meal for the kids. (Despite blowing up the deep fryer, the turkey looks perfect.) At Mary’s prompting, Archie says the blessing just like Fred.

Mary says the deep fryer exploding wasn’t just luck, it was Fred watching out for them, so Archie dedicates the community center to him in a touching reminder of what Riverdale and Riverdale are dedicated to.

Riverdale season 4 episode 6 review: The truth about Charles. dark. Next

What did you think of this week’s episode of Riverdale? Sound off in the comments below.