When we last left Riverdale, nothing had been resolved! Its fifth season premiere doesn’t feel like one because it wasn’t intended be a season premiere. Last season was cut short by three episodes. This was titled “Climax,” but it doesn’t feel like one either. I wouldn’t even be writing this episode up by its lonesome if it weren’t blog tradition to use its popularity to bring attention to a better prematurely cancelled series. It hasn’t worked for Lodge 49 yet, but I’m giving it another go nonetheless. Am I going to need to come back in a fortnight to recap what would’ve been the fourth season finale & then do what would’ve been season five’s premiere the week after? Let me know! SPOILERS for a soap opera that continues to make no damn sense but has much better production values than the daytime variety!
Things randomly kick off with Archie vs. Katy Keen’s beau, KO Kelly! This must’ve been some leftover synergy from when they didn’t know her solo show was one & done. (Neither Katy Keene nor Kate Kane survived 2020. I wish Batwoman had gotten a brand new showrunner to go with the brand new Batwoman.) For some reason this boxing match will determine which will enter the Naval Academy, as if both can’t simply enlist. Archie loses & sulks for the remaining runtime.
Now the nefarious mystery videographer is being called The Auteur. The main suspects are Charles & Jellybean, unless the writers have given up on mysteries having clues. Might as well wager it all on The Auteur being Uncle Frank. Throwing a rave & illicit video screening simultaneously is actually a terrible way for attendees to watch the films.
Senior prom is crammed into the same episode as the simultaneous boxing match & the rave-screening at Blue Velvet Video. That makes the prom feel less momentous than it could’ve been. Cheryl’s plan to have herself & Toni be voted prom queens involves not letting anyone else run. Rich white people undermining democracy isn’t amusing in January 2021! (Apparently it is possible for a joke to have aged poorly before it even aired.) Her court dance that snubs Kevin, whom gets the episode’s best line, is interrupted by another snuff film. Riverdale High dances have terrible security, especially since people died at the last one.
Toni tells Cheryl she doesn’t want to have an inter-family prom din-din because she’s still closeted to hers. While that would add some grounded drama to their relationship, it turns out the real reason Toni’s family disapproves is that the Topazes (who are First Nations) hate the Blossoms. Wouldn’t Toni’s nana have known about her & Cheryl hooking up since they’ve been living together in the lesser Blossom manse for over a year? To avoid alienating her never-before-seen nana, Toni breaks up with Cheryl after prom. This Choni angst is contrived.
Veronica tells sullen Archie she’ll defer college & get him a job as her evil father’s deputy mayor. He rebukes her by explaining he wrote the terrible song she sang for Betty. I agree her plan was daft, but Archibald drops this promshell on Ronnie in the least couth way possible. That boy is just determined to nullify the modicum of goodwill he earned & blow up all his prospects! To avenge his heartbroken daughter, her untrustworthy dad is going to break off the truce with Archie. Seems like this teen can ruin his life all by himself, thanks. Hiram is overcoming his non-specific neurodegenerative disease by punching poorer criminals?
With Varchie & Choni down, it’s only a matter of episodes until they torpedo Bughead too. Then they can slowly mush them all back together once the impending time skip happens. Um, yay?
Elsewhere on The CW, Nancy Druid is gonna solve her Aglaeca problem with the literal & timely magic of sea shanties.
Now that I know what “canned tuna” is on CAOS, it puts the catering for Neil Breen’s oeuvre in a whole new light. Those dastards never reached out to Nick Bakay about reprising Salem Saberhagen as The Endless! He needs to voice Salem when Sabrina Spellman eventually pops up on Riverdale! #JusticeForSalem
Apparently that definitive downer wasn’t the original ending as there were plans for Part 5. Supposedly it’ll continue as an Archie Comic, but Roberto Aguirre -Sacassa still hasn’t finished off the cliffhanger from the CAOS comic he began years ago…
Netflix’s best series based on a comic book about a girl learning witchcraft in a supernatural town is Hilda.
Riverdale’s prom pictures were pedestrian. Luckily I saved a spare Swamp Thing still to riff on! Now I have to justify it by writing about that poor pruned series some more. Almost all the following ends with some variation of #saveSampThing, collected here in one place for your convenience. Also I like how Kevin Durand says “Alec Holland” as if he’s on the verge of choking.
I finally saw the films of The Arcimboldo Adonis. The Return Of Swamp Thing was better than the first movie despite its lack of Ray Wise & Adrienne Barbeau, but both are vastly inferior to the latest TV adaptation.
HBO MAX greenlit a Green Lantern series about Alan Scott (not actually a Green Lantern Corpsman), Guy Gardner, Simon Baz, Jessic Cruz, Sinestro, & Kilowogg. But I wanted Kyle Rayner! (This would’ve been the biggest NYCC news had it actually been announced via that rather than a press release.) John Stewart (Ahmed Best called dibs!) & Hal Jordan are earmarked for the long-delayed film. (Diggle will be returning to the Beeboverse this season.) The announcement is a bit underwhelming since they’d been talking about a GL TV series since at least DC Universe’s inception & it was teased in The CW’s Crisis On Infinite Earths. DC shouldn’t be allowed to make any new series until it finishes Swamp Thing!
Imagine if WB had taken the money it’s frittering away on the Snyder Cut & used it to fund more Swamp Thing! No way filming the last three scripts costs more than $70 million. Just what I wanted in a superhero comic book adaptation: Less color! I can’t wait for the Snyder Cut to be released so the world can objectively agree the Whedon Cut is better.
Now that Green Arrow & The Canaries isn’t moving forward, The CW can use those resources on Swamp Thing season two!
Despite it being a ratings success, The CW is unlikely to greenlight a sophomore Swamp Thing season. While it’d be great to see The Arcimboldo Adonis join Constantine on Legends Of Tomorrow, his solo series needs closure first! Since Katy Keene & CAOS were so short-lived, I can’t believe they’re still trying to stretch Riverdale out with spinoffs instead of continuing the unfinished series with a roadmap. See I tied it all together in the end!