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About thirty, forty years ago, me and some buddies got hired to dig out a collapsed mine not far off the Lonely Highway. One night, we went to bed. The next morning when we woke up, one of the guys, Ramos was missing. We worked the whole day but Ramos never showed. Until the next morning when Ramos was back, but Raymond was missing. Ramos told us that some Mothmen had taken him up in their ship, and now they had Raymond.[...] But the next morning, Raymond was back. But Arnold was missing. And sure enough, Raymond said the Mothmen had taken him up in their ship.

"Chapter Eighty-Two: Back To School" is the sixth episode of the fifth season of Riverdale and the eighty-second episode of the series overall.[2] It premiered on February 24, 2021.

Synopsis

BULLDOG PRIDEArchie, Betty, Veronica and Jughead prepare for their first day as Riverdale High’s newest teachers. Veronica introduces her husband Chad to the group after he shows up unexpectedly in Riverdale. After realizing they are out of funds, Archie and Toni turn to Cheryl for help restarting the football and cheer teams. Finally, Betty, Kevin and Alice follow a lead after learning that Polly may be in trouble.

Plot

SPOILERS AHEAD


Archie and Jughead prepare for their first day at Riverdale High as teachers. Jughead sits on the living room couch reading Of Mice and Men, a book his students were assigned to read for the summer as Archie heads upstairs to rest.

Weatherbee, Toni, and Kevin arrive for the first day of school

The very next morning, Fangs watches as Kevin gets ready to leave and remarks that Kevin’s back-to-school jitters is adorable, to which Kevin replies that he would be at school already if not for Toni taking excessively long. She exits the bathroom, stating that her outfit is a masterpiece that can’t be rushed before informing Kevin that they’re taking her motorcycle to school. Toni and Kevin arrive at Riverdale High not long after, where they greet Weatherbee in the hallway.

Betty teaches a Shop class

Veronica arrives at Riverdale High, garnering the attention of the male student body. Archie, Betty, and Jughead aren’t far behind, each searching for their classroom, each having been assigned a single subject. Archie is the RROTC instructor, Veronica teaches economics, Betty runs a Shop Class, and Jughead is the literature teacher.

Hiram has come to learn that Riverdale High is still fully functional. Reggie doesn’t see the harm in a single school remaining open when all of Riverdale has been dissolved, though Hiram explains that a school offers hope. And as long as it remains open, there’s a slight chance that the town will grow back around it, which would be bad for their business.

Veronica informs Smithers of her plan to open up a jewelry store

Veronica takes Smithers to the old abandoned Blue Velvet Video store, which she intends to revive as a jewelry store. She believes that she can bring a bit of Manhattan magic to Riverdale, leaving Smithers to question if Chad will be at all involved. Veronica hasn’t decided yet. The permanence of opening a shop might send him spiraling, she fears.

Archie approaches Betty in the teacher’s lounge, who reveals that her own students are terrified of her being that she’s the daughter of the Black Hood. On top of which, Betty can’t stop thinking about Polly, who's still missing. Hoping to distract her, Archie proposes that they sneak off somewhere. However, with Jughead as his roommate and Betty living at home with her mother and the twins, it has inexplicably become harder places for them to hookup than when they were kids. Betty then comes up with an idea.

Jughead interviews Tabitha

While working a shift at Pop’s, Jughead asks to interview Tabitha for his book, claiming that it’s about Riverdale and those who inhabit the small town. Tabitha reveals that she left a six figure CEO job in Chicago to run Pop’s. Tabitha would rather become the CEO of her family’s business as opposed to working for for some random corporation in a big city. She intends to grow Pop’s into a larger franchise. The gas pump she installed out front for the truckers driving the night shift is only the start. A group of Jughead’s students then enter the diner, recognizing him as their teacher.

Archie and Betty hookup in the back of a car inside Betty’s workshop at the school. They are interrupted by the sound of the fire alarm. The couple rush into the hallway to find that a trash can has been set on fire by the Stonewall Stallions. Archie grabs the hose while Betty reaches for the fire extinguisher to subdue to flame.

Archie informs Toni, Weatherbee, and Sheriff Keller about the fire

The following day, Archie informs Toni, Sheriff Keller, and Weatherbee of Stonewall’s attack on Riverdale High. He claims that he was night jogging when he heard the alarm go off. Toni explains that the Stallions work for Hiram. He sponsors them and in return, they do odd jobs for him. Sheriff Keller could try to arrest them, but Hiram would have them out on bail within the hour, as he not only has the DA in his back pocket, but the Stonewall Stallions are the county’s best football team. As much trouble as they cause, they’re the only thing left to root for these days, Weatherbee explains. The Bulldogs and Bulldog pride are things of the past. Archie inquires about the Stallions’ coach, who Toni reveals is Reggie.

Archie warns Reggie

Archie confronts Reggie at Stonewall Prep for the fire set in the halls of Riverdale High. Reggie admits this is true and that they were acting on his orders, though he notes that Archie can’t prove his involvement. Archie punches Reggie and warns him that he’s resurrecting the Bulldogs.

Jughead arrives in class to find a tip jar on his desk, no doubt an attempt to mock his job at Pop’s. He admits that he had to take a second job, as Riverdale High doesn’t pay well. When they ask about his book and the fact that he's supposed to be a big time writer, Jughead diverts the conversation to the book Of Mice and Men that they were supposed to read but didn’t. So instead, Jughead gives the class a pop quiz.

Chad surprises Veronica

While explaining the financial principles of economics, Veronica’s class is interrupted by a surprise arrival from Chad, who offers to wait quietly in the back of the class until she finishes.

Archie proposes resurrecting the Riverdale Bulldog, even offering to raise the money himself. Weatherbee agrees so long as Archie can find the players and fund the team.

Archie joins Betty, Veronica, Toni, and Chad in the teacher's lounge. Having survived the first two days of the school year, Toni proposes they celebrate with Karaoke Tuesday at the Whyte Wyrm. To Veronica’s surprise, Chad agrees to join them.

Toni tells Betty about Polly's hangout

After learning from Kevin that Polly was missing, Toni informs Betty that she’s learned that Polly is known to occasionally hangout at a sketchy truck stop right off the Lonely Highway, where she’d deal for the Ghoulies and hookup with truckers. Sadly, Polly isn’t the only young woman in Riverdale making this type of living. Some of the truckers arrange meetings with these women by posting on "Nedslist."

Cheryl paints a duplicate of Jason's portrait

The foreman of the construction crew working on Thornhill informs Cheryl that his men are considering quitting, as they haven’t been compensated for their work. Cheryl replies that they will get their money in time and a bonus for their patience. Due to the charitable donation to Riverdale High that Toni squeezed from Cheryl, the Blossoms are running low on funds. Cheryl informs Nana Rose that it’s time for "Operation Goldfinch" and instructs her to call Krespy's and have him send an appraiser over whilst she finishes painting a duplicate of Jason's portrait.

Kevin and Betty investigate Polly's disappearance

According to her mom, Polly doesn’t have a laptop, but according to the twins, Polly often uses there’s. Betty has learned that Polly has an account on Nedslist under the alias "PattyCake1276." The last person she contacted was "TruckerBoy69." They arranged to meet up the night she disappeared. Kevin tells Betty to send him a message asking to get together again.

Tabitha tells Jughead about the Old Man Dreyfus

Archie, Betty, Veronica, Chad, Kevin, and Fangs grab a table at the Wyrm while Jughead and Tabitha play a game of darts, during which time she reveals that she has the next subject for his book — Old Man Dreyfus, who lives on and runs a junkyard up the Lonely Highway. He came in today for a plate of pork chops and Tabitha asked if Jughead could interview him, to which he agreed. She then tells Jughead to ask him about the Mothmen.

Toni greets the crowd and welcomes Veronica to the stage. Veronica performs Shallow. Chad joins her mid-performance and they conclude their duo with a kiss. The next day, Veronica and Chad wake up in bed. She confesses that she enjoys having Chad around, and he suggests staying in Riverdale for a few more days.

Britta volunteers to join the Bulldogs

Archie has recruited his RROTC cadets for the Bulldogs, as it’ll simultaneously fulfil their physical education requirements. However, Archie still needs five more students to complete his team and begins searching class to class for volunteers. One of Betty’s workshop kids, Britta, volunteers to join the Bulldogs, though she would be the only girl on the team, to which Archie replies shouldn't be a problem so long as she’s willing to play both sides of the ball.

Archie asks Cheryl for money

Having completed his team, Archie will need $20,000 in funding, however, Toni informs him that the little money available within their sports budget is already earmarked for something. Archie asks Toni to ask Cheryl for more more, but Toni doesn’t want to risk it and tells Archie to ask himself. And he does just that, pleading with Cheryl to fund the Bulldogs, even resorting to bringing up Jason and honoring his memory in an attempt to convince Cheryl to help, though this only angers her, as Archie is clearly trying to use her love for her brother to manipulate her into agreeing to fund the team. Cheryl scolds Archie and demands him to leave. Cheryl then asks Nana Rose about the art appraiser, who Nana Rose reveals is a woman named Minerva Marble that will arrive tomorrow.

Betty informs Kevin that TruckerBoy69 responded to her message. He mentioned that he was worried that she was still mad at him and asked if they could meet up again. Betty tells Kevin that they’re going to meet up with him later that night at a truck stop off exit 42.

Jughead interviews Old Man Dreyfus

Jughead arrives at Old Man Dreyfus’, where he comes across a Mothman sculpture made of scrap in the front yard. Dreyfus hands Jughead a sketch book filled with drawings of Mothmen while explaining how he and a group of buddies where hired about 30 or 40 years ago to dig out a collapsed mine not far off the Lonely Highway. One night, they went to bed and the next morning when they woke up, one of the guys, Ramos, was missing. He returned the next morning but then Raymond went missing. Ramos told them that he had been abducted by Mothmen and taken up on their ship. The following day, Raymond was back but Arnold was missing, and Raymond reported that much like Ramos, he was taken up in a ship. Dreyfus claims that these aliens tend to live in the caves off the Lonely Highway. Jughead wonders why he’s never heard of the Mothmen before. Dreyfus informs him that there were some articles from back in the day and says that Jughead should ask around. Jughead asks if he's worried the Mothmen will come back for him. Dreyfus replies that he's hopeful they will.

Betty interrogates TruckerBoy96

Betty and Kevin await the arrival of TruckerBoy96. When he pulls up in a blue rig, Betty joins him and reveals that she is working for the FBI. She and Kevin take him to the old FBI field office with help from Sheriff Keller. Betty interrogates TruckerBoy96, whose real name is John, for answers on Polly’s whereabouts. He admits to meeting Polly, who had scored some Jingle Jangle and reached out to him. They met up at the truck stop and took a drive, but about half a mile down the highway, she jumped out the truck and started running. TruckerBoy96 swears this was the last time he saw Polly. Betty then asks for the specific area of the highway in which he dropped off Polly. Betty then returns home and asks her mom for help with following up a lead on finding Polly.

Toni revives the Vixens

Archie informs Britta and the other Bulldogs that he couldn’t find substantial funding to resurrect the team. Archie then starts to hear cheering in the hallway and follows it Toni and the recently revived River Vixens. Toni reveals that she made the Vixens a priority in the budget a year ago. Archie questions how can there be a cheer team when there isn’t even a sports team for them to cheer for. Toni retorts that the Vixens are a sports team and that they’ll be competing against other cheer squads, something that not even Cheryl managed. Britta then looks to Archie and asks if there’s anyone else who could sponsor the Bulldogs. Meanwhile, Ms. Bell contacts Cheryl, who had instructed Ms. Bell to keep her apprised of the goings on at Riverdale High.

Minerva authenticates Jason's portrait

After learning from Ms. Bell that Toni has revived the Vixens, Cheryl meets with Minerva Marble, the art appraiser. Minerva has come to buy a portrait of Jason that was supposedly painted by an artist who has been chosen for next year’s Venice Biennial. She believes that the portrait is at least worth a quarter of a million dollars. Cheryl asks to keep the photo for one last night so that she may have a proper goodbye. Minerva grants Cheryl’s request and informs her that she’ll be staying at the Five Seasons overnight. Cheryl offers to have her men pick it up and deliver it to her hotel first thing tomorrow morning. Should Cheryl decide to sell any other items in her collection, Minerva tells Cheryl to call. Once Minerva leaves after having authenticated the original, Nana Rose states that they need to swap out the original with the replica Cheryl created. Cheryl then begins to cry and reveals that she got some upsetting news from Riverdale High.

Alice finds Polly's purse

Betty and Alice walk up and down the side road of the highway where Polly was last seen in search of any clues to Polly’s whereabouts. Alice discovers Polly’s purse and other personal items.

Jughead inquires about Archie’s plan to bring back the Bulldogs. Unfortunately, the kids don’t have any equipment and the school doesn’t have any money. Jughead jokingly replies that if Archie promises to never bring up the "epic highs and lows of high school football" again then he’ll ask Tabitha if she’s willing to sponsor the team from Pop’s. Archie is considering asking Veronica but doesn’t know if it would be weird. Jughead tells Archie that weird is relative and encourages him to embrace the weird.

Veronica tells Chad about her plan

Veronica takes Chad to Blue Velvet and informs him of her plans to reshape the shop into a jewelry store. Veronica reveals that being back in Riverdale and seeing her friends has been good for her soul. Chad warms up to the idea of having a place both in New York and Riverdale and gives Veronica his full support. He then asks Veronica if they’re going to buy a new house or continue to live in the Pembrooke. Veronica replies that she never wants to leave the Pembrooke but admits that the apartment could use a remodel.

Betty and Alice return home with Polly’s belongings and no leads. Betty recalls that they never found Polly’s cellphone, which they could use to trace its last location and hopefully find Polly.

Veronica agrees to fund the Bulldogs

Veronica and Chad work out their schedule and divide their time between Riverdale and New York. Chad reveals to Veronica that her father suggested he move to Riverdale full-time to help him manage the SoDale properties. Veronica reminds Chad that he works in finance, not real estate. Furthermore, she wonders just how long Chad and her father have been talking behind her back. Archie shows up unexpectedly and asks Veronica to fund the Bulldogs, which she happily agrees to. Archie assures Veronica that he’ll pay her back in full. Chad interjects that Archie will pay both him and Veronica back in full, as they have a shared account. Chad recalls that Archie is a vet and remarks that he probably doesn’t like taking handouts. So, he proposes that instead of loaning Archie the money, he renovate their apartment in exchange for them funding the Bulldogs. After Archie leaves, Veronica confronts Chad for his rude behavior towards Archie. Chad replies that he’s been nothing but accommodating to her every whim, from hanging out with her friends to singing karaoke. He did these things because he claims to love Veronica and then apologizes for his attitude towards Archie. Veronica forgives him and suggests going to Pop’s for dinner, however, Chad is disgusted by Pop's food and suggest going to a diner recommended by her father, Mia.

Tabitha offers to help Jughead

Tabitha exits the kitchen to find Jughead working on his Mothmen chronicles. Jughead reveals that all of Old Man Dreyfus’ buddies from the mines are dead of cancer. Jughead admits this could be a coincidence or maybe they were all exposed to the same radiation on the spaceship. Tabitha asks Jughead what comes next. He reveals that he intends to track down the articles previously mentioned by Dreyfus. Tabitha offers to join him, much to Jughead's surprise.

Betty shows up at Archie’s and reveals that Polly is still missing. She came over to see him, as her mother has become insufferable due to Polly's disappearance. Betty kisses Archie and the two head upstairs. Afterward, while lying in bed, Betty gets a message from her friend, Todd, who works at the academy, in regards to Polly’s phone.

Veronica tells Chad that she needs time to herself

Chad awakens the following morning to find that Veronica has packed his belongings. Upon reflection, she has decided that it would be best for them to take some time apart. She needs time to figure out if she’s a Pop’s girl or a Mia’s girl or both. Chad accepts her decision and tells Veronica to call him when she’s ready to talk.

Toni enters her office to find Cheryl in her chair with her feet kicked up on her desk. She’s come to confront Toni for stealing her Vixens and warns Toni that she’s playing a dangerous game.

Archie and Veronica meet with the team

Archie and Veronica meet with the Bulldogs in the locker room. They’ve each been assigned a locker to go along with their cleats, uniform, and pads. He then announces that Veronica will be their sponsor, introducing her as "Veronica Gekko," but she corrects Archie, informing him that she’s now going by her maiden name, Lodge.

Ms. Bell calls Hiram and reveals that Archie and Veronica have resurrected the Bulldogs. Hiram shares this information with Reggie, who suggests they pay Archie a visit.

Betty, Kevin, and Alice find a human hand

Betty informs Alice and Kevin that her friend from the academy traced Polly’s phone to Swedlow Swamp, which runs for acres. So, the three of them head out into the swamp, where they spend hours searching for Polly or any evidence of her being. Alice calls her phone and hears it ringing in the distance. Instead of her phone, they find a human arm sticking out above the dirt.

Jughead alerts Archie that a fire has been set at the front and back door, trapping them inside.

Cast

Starring

Guest Starring

Co-Starring

Soundtrack

  • Bazzi - Mine
  • Riverdale Cast feat. Camila Mendes & Chris Mason - Shallow
  • Causeway - We Were Never Lost

Trivia

Gallery

Promotional Images

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References

Episode Guide

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