|“||One week after Riverdale High's absorption of its Southside counterpart, and everything was the same. And nothing was the same. Take Archie Andrews. On the surface, he's getting ready for basketball tryouts, as he does every winter. But underneath, he was churning, his life in chaos after an unexpected visit from the feds. Meanwhile, the town was preparing to honor its founding father, general Augustus Pickens.||”|
WINNING OVER HIRAM LODGE — Amidst preparations for the town's annual Picken's Day festivities, Jughead interviews Toni's grandfather and learns some shocking details about Riverdale’s history. In an attempt to get closer to Hiram, Archie tries out for the Riverdale wrestling team after learning of Hiram's love of the sport. Meanwhile, Betty unearths some dark secrets about her brother Chic, and Veronica and Josie clash as they prepare for their Picken's Day performance.
One week has passed since Riverdale High's absorption of its Southside counterpart, and in this time, everything and nothing is the same. In the school's gymnasium, Archie prepares for basketball tryouts as he does every winter. He plays a full court game with Reggie, Sweet Pea and Fogarty. In this exhibition game, Archie proves to be quite the skilled ball player, making several shots effortlessly. On the outside, Archie appears to be better than ever. But underneath, he is churning, with his life in chaos after an unexpected visit from the F.B.I.
Meanwhile, Kevin, Chuck and everyone else with plans of trying out for the wrestling team goes on a run through Pickens Park as Jughead sits in class, typing away, until being instructed by Mrs. Haggly to turn his attention to Cheryl, who gives an oral history report on General Pickens and her great-great-great-grandpappy Colonel Barnabas B. Blossom. Every year they honor the memory of General Pickens yet few know the truth, that it was Barnabas who bankrolled General Pickens' settlement of, "an Eden along the river of Sweetwater, where maple trees grow taller than the steeples of Europe's grandest cathedrals." Which is why every year Cheryl petitions the mayor's office to rename Pickens Day to "Colonel Barnabas B. Blossom Day" . Unfortunately, her presentation is cut short by the bell, signaling a transition of classes. Though Mrs. Haggly makes sure to remind Jughead that his oral history report is close to being due.
Hiram, Hermione, Veronica, Fred, Mayor McCoy and Sheriff Keller attend a meeting at the Andrews house, where they discuss the students who had been transferred to Riverdale High. While they are fine, their parents are in Mayor McCoy's office everyday to demand that she reopen Southside High. Which is why Hiram, Hermione and Fred had discussed how their new neighborhood could use something positive to focus on. With Mayor McCoy's blessing, they'd like to make Pickens Day a celebratory event. Sponsored by Lodge Industries with Andrews Construction co-sponsoring. Mayor McCoy surmises that they want to make Pickens Day a commercial event for the SoDale, similar to their open house. "Au contraire, madam Mayor", Veronica says. The open house was for investors while Pickens Day would be for North and Southsiders alike. Two halves of a whole coming together. Mayor McCoy worries that trying to distract people with a party would backfire, resulting in violence. While the Serpents have been laying low, they are wild cards and reasons for concern. Having prepared for just that scenario, Hiram, Hermione and Fred had offered to hire the Serpents as security for the event since FP had previously told Fred that they were looking for work. Furthermore, the party would let the Southside know that they haven't been abandoned. The meeting, unfortunately, comes to an abrupt when Archie returns home. He asks to join them after having already eavesdropped on a portion of their discussion from the doorway. But they were just finishing up the meeting. Archie greets Hiram, who excuses himself, completely disregarding Archie as he exits. Archie tries to give Veronica a kiss on her way out, but she declines given that he is sweaty.
At the Cooper house, with everyone at the breakfast table, Hal begins an intrusive line of questioning, starting with how long Chic planned on staying with them. Alice interjects, saying that he's welcome to stay for as long as he wants. Hal retorts that he is simply trying to plan his life. When Betty brought Chic home, he was bleeding profusely from his arm. Hal wants answers on why Chic was in that condition. Betty tells Chic that he doesn't have to answer her father's questions but he does so regardless. Chic's attacker's name was Marcel. He ran the Hostel, and sometimes, he booked "clients" for them, ranging from nice to even nastier than Marcel. The night Betty showed up, Chic wasn't in the mood to work, but Marcel attempted to convince him otherwise. Chic offers to specify should Hal prefer, along with showing him a decent collection of scars that he had acquired over time. Betty also has scars, crescent marks in her palms, from digging her nails into them. Like Betty, Chic also used to dig his nails into the palms of his hands.
In the garage, Archie speaks with Agent Adams who has printed out an agreement between the two of them, ensuring his father's immunity if and when the US government decided to bring actions against Hiram Lodge before any domestic court of law. Archie can't believe how crazy things have gotten, especially considering that the Lodges were just at his house, planning a party, along with Mayor McCoy and Sheriff Keller. However, when Agent Adams asks who else was in attendance, in order to protect her, Archie intentionally leaves Veronica's name out. Archie wonders what they can do to speed the process up because he wants to get back to his normal life. Agent Adams asks if he has any kind of a direct relationship with Hiram. However, nothing comes to mind, not that it matters since Hiram doesn't even like Archie. Which they need to change. Agent Adams suggests that Archie establishes trust to get Hiram to lower his guard. The sooner Archie gets access to his inner circle, the sooner the F.B.I will have what they need to take him down.
Jughead, Veronica and Kevin gather around Betty in the student lounge to take turns viewing Chic's photo. Much to Veronica's surprise, Chic, who is staying with Betty after she had found him in a Centerville Hostel, is fetching. While Kevin agrees that Chic is indeed a "hottie", he can't help but feel that he has seen Chic before. Jughead asks if he could have possibly ran into him while cruising Fox Forest, though Kevin is unsure. With Chic still acclimating and Betty trying to gain his trust, it is unlikely that they will be meeting him anytime soon. Hearing this, Veronica suggests that Betty bring Chic to Pickens Day so that they could all meet him. Which reminds her to ask around to ensure that everyone was still coming to the celebratory event. Unfortunately, Jughead would not be attending since the Serpents weren't invited. When Veronica insists that they were specifically invited, Jughead retorts that they were hired as security. The damage as they say, had already been done, as far as he is concerned. Jughead then leaves with Toni, whose grandfather Jughead plans to interview for his oral report as he is the oldest living Serpent.
In the hallway with Archie, Veronica asks him what is wrong. He tells her that he is getting the feeling that her father didn't like him. While Veronica initially tries to deny the validity of this claim, she eventually comes to admit that this is true. It isn't necessarily anything that Archie is doing that causes her father not to like him. It is more along the lines of him not speaking Spanish, amongst other things. Archie offers to drop French and take Spanish if that would help. Veronica laughs, amused with the lengths Archie is willing to go in order to impress her father. So she tells him that her father liked wrestling. Back in the day, he was captain of Riverdale High's wrestling team. It changed his life. Now that the season's starting back up, it is as if Veronica and her mother were background extras in the movie Foxcatcher. Lodge Industries essentially bankrolls the team. Hiram was just asking his old coach if he could sit in on tryouts. In that case, Archie decides to take a break from basketball that year to try out for wrestling.
In Toni's grandfather's trailer, Thomas, who is one of the founding members of the Southside Serpents, tells Jughead that the snake and the laws are all based on Uktena tradition. The Uktena, he explains, is a horned serpent and/or a water serpent. Before the founding of Riverdale, all the land belonged to the Uktena. Thomas laughs hysterically when Jughead asks how did the Uktena evolve into the Serpents. The fact is they didn't evolve. They were all slaughtered. When his grandfather was a baby, there was a raid, and it was led by Riverdale's very own General Pickens. The battle lasted all of 12 minutes, but the slaughter was total and savage. General Pickens, whose statue stands proudly in Pickens Park, was responsible for the massacre of men, women and children. Yet the Northside honors him every year in spite of this. When Thomas' grandfather died, they formed the Serpents as a way to keep the family together. Jughead wonders how no one knew of this, though according to Thomas, some are aware. However, as Toni put it, this is a direct result of the whitewashing of history, adding that Jason Blossom wasn't the first person to be murdered in Riverdale.
At the Five Seasons hotel, Josie asks Veronica why can't the two of them sing a duet at Pickens Day rather than reviving the Pussycats and searching for new members. Veronica replies that it could be just the two of them, but the Pussycats are a brand that shouldn't sit fallow. Just then, Sierra returns home to the sight of the two of them with audition posters. Whose idea was this, Sierra asks, to which Veronica claims responsibility. Sierra is displeased to hear about their plans to reunite the Pussycats given that Josie is supposed to be focusing on her solo career. Hoping to avoid any further conflict, Veronica suggests that they bill it as a special event, one-night-only. However, Sierra rudely replies that she was talking to Josie. In fact, she'd rather they continue the conversation at a later time, once Veronica is gone.
While sitting in a booth at Pop's that night, Kevin calls Betty to tell her that he finally remembered where he recognized Chic from. As Kevin put it, Chic is a "video gigolo, a webcam boy, a cyber-trick." In learning this, Betty looks over to Chic, who is sitting with their mother, browsing through an old photo album.
A couple days have passed since her meeting at Fred's house, but work is far from finished. Hermione learns from Veronica that Sierra was acting cold towards her the prior night, almost as if Veronica was a bad seed who was out to corrupt Josie. In hearing this, Hermione concludes that Sierra isn't comfortable with how involved in the family business Veronica has recently become. She likely worries that Veronica will tell Josie something that she shouldn't know. Veronica insists that she would never do anything that would compromise what they have planned, which Hermione knows to be true. In fact, should Sierra's coldness towards Veronica persist, Hermione will have a conversation with her.
Archie runs into Hiram during tryouts, and he questions what Archie is doing at wrestling tryouts considering that he was given that impression that basketball was more of Archie's sport. Archie replies that he is branching out. He also tells Hiram that he is in the 175 weight class, but he is trying to get down to 170. Chuck then joins in on the conversation to tell Archie that he should consider himself fortunate that they aren't in the same weight class, otherwise he would've wrecked Archie. Coach Kleats then blows his whistle, calling the team in and asking that they give Hiram "the Ram" Lodge, a round of applause for his support and bankrolling the team. Coach Kleats makes it known that not everyone will make the cut. So he advises them to make each match count. Archie then pairs off for "up and downs" with Kevin who tells him that wrestling is nothing like basketball or football. Archie is aware of this, though he insists that he is fine given that he had gone up against Moose once before in the Oklahoma Drill. Unfortunately, when it comes time to impress Hiram with his skills, Archie falls flat. Hiram and Tom watch from the sideline as Kevin outwrestles Archie back-to-back.
Immediately following tryouts, Kevin went down to the Blue and Gold to tell Betty of his victory over Archie. While Archie may have the "physique of a 1970s porn star", that doesn't mean he can wrestle. Ironically, their discussion of porn stars reminds Betty of what Kevin had told her about Chic and his online activities. Kevin playfully asks if she had gotten lost down a "webcam rabbit hole". Admittedly, Betty is fascinated by this discovery. She brought Chic home to help her mom without knowing who he was, and now to find out he's actually multiple people, performing online. Betty isn't sure how to broach him or if she should even broach him. Before Kevin can respond, Jughead enters to run a story of his past Betty. He volunteers to come back at another time if he is interrupting their conversation, but Kevin leaves instead. Jughead compliments Kevin's new Gossip column, which the readers loved, not to mention that Betty needed to fill the space after Jughead left for Southside High. Jughead then hands Betty his story and tells her that when he interviewed Toni's grandfather for history class, he had some pretty intense things to say about General Pickens. After that, Jughead took it upon himself to do a bit of follow-up research. He discovered that General Pickens was hired by Barnabas B. Blossom to remove the Uktena tribe by force. In doing so, he killed 400 innocent men, women and children. To make matters worse, the last remnants of the tribe, the Serpents, are being squeezed out of existence. Thomas lives in a trailer the size of a broom closet meanwhile Hiram Lodge was planning on honoring General Pickens instead of trying to make amends. Jughead believes this is a story they needed to tell. Betty agrees, asking if he's going to get a quote from Hiram.
Veronica joins Archie in the music room after learning from Kevin that Archie's tryouts for the wrestling team went terribly. She asks him if he is alright. Other than a bruised ego, he is fine. Luckily, Kevin has agreed to work with him on improving his wrestling skills. Archie has still not given up on impressing her father. But in the case that he isn't a natural-born wrestler, Veronica thought of a way that Archie might curry her father's favor. Though Pickens Day is taking a back seat to his wrestling obsession, he would definitely be there. And Veronica suspects that he'd be tickled to see Archie singing with Josie and herself. She follows the thought up with a kiss.
Chic returns home in a fit of rage after learning that Marcel, his landlord, had thrown away all of his belongings, everything he needed to survive, including his laptop and camera. Betty questions how he could return to the Hostel after what Marcel had done to him. Chic exclaims that his entire life was at the Hostel, though Betty reminds him that their mother had said that he is more than welcome to stay with them for as long as he'd like to. Unlike Betty, Chic doesn't believe that his stay with them is long term. Before heading upstairs, he tells her that if she honestly believes that he would able to permanently live with them, then she is crazier than he thought.
While working in his study, Hiram gets a call from Jughead, who is working on an article about how General Pickens massacred the Uketna tribe and stole all their land that he was building on. Realizing that this could mean trouble, Hiram abruptly ends his call with Jughead.
Betty paces back and forth in her bedroom that night as she contemplates over how best to approach Chic. While doing so, she remembers the old laptop that she has in her dresser and how Chic needed one since Marcel threw his away. With the laptop in hand, she knocks on Chic's bedroom door. But no one answers. So she places the laptop on the floor and begins to walk away. When Chic finally opens the door, Betty tells him that she is sorry that Marcel had sold everything in his possession and she is hoping that the laptop will make up for it.
At the Pembrooke, Hiram enters Veronica's room to find her and Archie rehearsing for their Pickens Day performance. Archie offers to take it to the living room in the case that Hiram is uncomfortable with them being in Veronica's bedroom together. But he assures them that they are fine just as they are. Admittedly, the thought of Archie and Veronica being in her room alone used to upset him deeply. But after seeing Archie's wrestling performance earlier that day, he is less worried. While not everyone can wrestle as it took a certain kind of man, Hiram tells Archie that there is no shame in admitting defeat and accepting the fact that he is better suited to performing with the Pussycats. While Archie may not be a star wrestler yet, he is an incredible musician, who according to Veronica, is even sexier when he sings. Archie thanks Veronica for her support with a kiss. But on second thought, he 's decided against performing with the Pussycats. He prefers to go home and practice some moves that Kevin had showed him. But not before getting reassurance that Hiram will be at the next tryouts.
Despite spoiling their previous breakfast together, Hal has still not grown tired of antagonizing Chic. He asks if Chic knows that he is sitting in Polly's seat. He is not only sitting in her chair, but sleeping in her bed as well. Chic is filling a void and it is the only reason he is staying with them. Though, Chic is surprisingly unbothered by Hal's remarks. Everyone needed something, to his point. Furthermore, he doesn't expect to be staying with them for free. He never had.
For the second day of tryouts, they are focusing on fundamentals, starting with the fireman's carry. And since it was his signature move back in the day, Coach Kleats had asked Hiram to demonstrate. In doing them the honor, Hiram calls on Archie to be his volunteer. On the mat, he encourages his adversary to come at him before taking him down in one swift move. With Archie tackled to the mat, Hiram explains the simplicity of the fireman's carry. While it is fairly simple to execute, it's also an effective move when your opponent gets cocky by dominating your rival. Demoralizing him is the key if you want to win. While trapped in a headlock and pinned to the mat, Hiram pulls Archie closer to ask if he got the message, that he always wins.
Toni confronts Jughead after he published a Blue and Gold article addressing General Pickens and the massacre of the Uktena tribe. The article reads "General Pickens was a murderer and ripples from his gruesome acts continue to be felt today. Descendants of the victims are still being displaced. So I challenge the Northside, instead of honoring men like General Pickens and Hiram Lodge, hold them accountable. Reparations must be paid to men like Thomas Topaz, who are too old and beaten down to fight back for themselves." Riverdale is a deeply troubled town, and Jughead thought that publishing the article would strong-arm them into owning up to it. Toni cries out that her grandfather isn't a broken down victim nor is he a prop for Jughead's vendetta against the Northside. While she understands that he hated the Northside and that being invited to work the Pickens Day party triggered all the rage about being born on the wrong side of the tracks, the Uktena tribe, as far as Toni is concerned, isn't Jughead's story to tell.
Sierra angrily approaches Josie with Jughead's article. While she can't cancel Pickens Day, she can surely keep Josie from performing at it given that the town is extremely riled up in the wake of this article. She fears the possibility of a riot. Josie assures Sierra that no one is rioting, furthermore, she had promised Veronica that she would perform. Sierra replies that Josie can tell Veronica that the Pussycats aren't hers to order around. Hearing the anger in her voice, Josie wonders why the mere mention of Veronica is triggering her mother all of the sudden. In an effort convince Josie out of performing at Pickens Day, Sierra tells her about the Lodges' way of doing business. And the way they used Veronica to do their business. After learning the truth from her mother, Josie confronts Veronica in the music room at school and tells her that she will no longer be performing. Josie didn't like being manipulated by a Lodge. Whatever their parents had going on, that is between them, and her mother doesn't want her to be a part of it. While her mother may have to do what Veronica's parents want, Josie didn't have to do what Veronica wants.
Cheryl finds her mother visiting General Pickens' statue in Pickens Park, where she is supposedly paying respect and laying red roses at the statue's feet. Cheryl questions the sincerity of her mother's gesture, referring to her as Jackie-O before saying that there weren't any cameras present. Cheryl asks if there is any validity to Jughead's Blue and Gold article that accused her great-great-great grandfather of hiring General Pickens to steal land from the Uktena. Penelope confirms the articles' report by asking Cheryl how did she think their family got started in the maple syrup business, meaning that they were partly responsible for killing hundreds of people. "For what, a bunch of maple trees?" Cheryl asks as a single tear runs down her face. More than just maple syrup, in the killing of hundreds, they gained access to dark, fertile earth and Sweetwater River. Back in those early days, they had a hand in everything. Building the railroads, operating the saloons and, yes, even a brothel. Old ways die hard, it seems, given her mother's recent escapades.
In the locker room, after tryouts, Kevin encourages Archie to keep up the good work as he is undoubtedly improving. Archie thanks him for his assistance. While Kevin is more than happy to help, he is curious about Archie's sudden interest in the sport, asking if Archie is trying to impress Mr. Lodge. Archie explains that it didn't start with trying to impress him. But that changed because it was like there was nothing Archie could do to earn Mr. Lodge's respect. And the more he looked down on Archie, the more Archie wanted to show him that he's wrong.
Chic goes into Betty's room to ask her why she had bought him a laptop. Betty tells him that she didn't. The laptop that she gave him is an old computer she had from the Register. He then asks why Betty came back to the Hostel for him. Betty says that he is her brother and her mother was depressed. However, Chic isn't buying her story. He had come to realize that everything's a transaction. No one, not even Betty, is that nice. So, why did she care, Chic asks. He advises her to choose her next words carefully because he'd know if she is lying. Betty admits that she wanted to figure out why she is the way she is. There's a darkness in her that she doesn't understand, which scares her. She thought that if Chic had the same darkness, which she believes that he does, he would be able to help her makes sense of it. Betty reveals that she also knows about the webcamming, which is why she got him the computer. So, if he ever wanted to talk about it or even compare scars, she'd be there for him. However, Chic passes on her offer.
Hiram receives a surprise visit from Archie at the Pembrooke that night. He is wondering why Hiram doesn't like him as he can't think of one thing that would account for the hate he is getting. Hiram tells Archie that his father slept with another man's wife i.e. Hermione. Why shouldn't Hiram assume that Archie has the same weak character. Archie exclaims that he's his own man and that he would never sleep with someone else's wife. Assuming that is true, Hiram still feels as if Archie isn't good enough for Veronica in any respect. He isn't worthy. Hiram doesn't believe that Archie will ever be able to take care of her, but Archie reminds Hiram that he did just that while he was in prison. When she and Hermione moved to Riverdale, Archie was there for Veronica when Hiram couldn't be. As the animosity begins to boil over, Veronica enters the room to the sight of what she calls a juvenile chest-thumping contest. Hiram assures her that all is fine. He claims that he had invited Archie over to plan some one-on-one training. But Veronica isn't buying it since she could see the urge to kill the other in both of their eyes.
At 4:31 in the morning, Hiram calls Archie to tell him to meet him outside in five minutes. In the early hours of the morning, the two of them go on a run around town and of the two, Hiram proves to be the faster runner. Following their run, Hiram and Archie stop to eat at Pop's, where he explains to Archie his love for wrestling. When it's two men on the mat, it doesn't matter who you are or where you come from, or even how strong you are. It's about sheer will and knowing your opponent. Maybe even better than he knows himself. Which is why Archie will never win. Veronica has a lot on her plate at the moment. So Hiram doesn't want her worrying about them. So now they can say that he helped Archie when they went for a jog and broke bread together. Hiram is willing to tolerate Archie until this phase runs its course. Archie wasn't the first boy who had turned Veronica's head. While boyfriends come and go, fathers are forever.
On Pickens Day morning, at the breakfast table, Hermione notices that Veronica is upset. She assumes that it has something to do with the conflict between to Archie and Hiram, but in actuality, it is about Josie. The two of them got into a fight and Josie dropped out of their Pickens Day performance. With Sierra's coldness persisting, Hermione decides to take care of the situation. But Veronica asks that she not. Veronica recalls Hermione previously telling her that their family worked differently from others. So if Josie and Sierra didn't like the way they did business, that is on them. But the show must go on. With that, Veronica devises a plan to solve her dilemma.
Jughead returns to Thomas' trailer with Toni to apologize for his published article from the Blue and Gold that unintentionally painted Thomas as a "broken-down victim." Jughead explains the reason behind his actions. He was angry because the Southside is their home and he is sick of watching it get dismantled piece by piece in front of their eyes. The Northside took their drive-in. Then they took their school. Nonetheless, he shouldn't have used Thomas' story or what happened to the Uktena against the Northside. Jughead knows that he has no right and for that, he is sorry. However, whatever his reasons were, Jughead had opened an old wound by publishing that article, and something had to be done to heal it. Toni asks Thomas if he has something in mind. And as it would turn out, he does.
While warming up for tryouts that morning, Archie receives a surprise visit from Veronica, who had been invited by her father to watch Archie's final day of tryouts. Hiram lied to Veronica by telling her that he and Archie had a good talk, which she was pleased to hear following their tension-filled stand-off from the night before. Not that he needed it, Veronica wishes Archie good luck on his match before joining her father in the stands. Archie is first up on the mat, his opponent is Chuck, who is both in a higher weight class and more experienced than Archie. Archie and Chuck go back and forth on the mat for some time. But ultimately, Archie manages to gain the upper hand and pull the victory over Chuck, which certainly came as a surprise to Hiram, who watches from the stands with Veronica. As Archie gets the win, Veronica jumps to her feet with excitement. Applauding him.
Alice prepares a hearty breakfast for the family in preparation for the celebration at Pickens Park, especially since it will be their first outing as a family. However, Hal will be staying behind as he has a few odd jobs around the house to catch up on. Which is fine with Alice, who refuses to beg him to come.
In Pickens Park, Hermione greets Sierra and Josie as they arrive at the Pickens Day celebration. She is surprised to see that they made it and sorry to hear that Josie won't be performing with Veronica. Sierra explains that she had forbade Josie from performing following the publishing of Jughead's article because of the possible dangers she could face.
Hiram approaches Archie and shakes his hand in the park after his surprise victory over Clayton. As Hiram tries to pull away, Archie grasps his hand tightly, asking if they are done with the back and forth. In response, Hiram invites Archie over to the Pembrooke so that they can talk about a few things.
Despite claiming that he was staying home to catch up on a few odd jobs around the house, Hal confronts Chic at Pickens Day. He wants to know if Alice knew what kind of person they had welcomed into their home, in the room next to Betty's no less. While they were gone, Hal gained access to Chic's computer. In doing so, he discovered what Chic had been doing online with his "clients". Betty insists that he stop snooping through Chic's business and harassing him, though Chic isn't the only subject of Hal's anger. He even scolds Betty for bringing Chic into their lives and into their home, more specifically, Polly's bedroom. Alice remarks that Polly is no longer apart of their lives and that therefore, it is no longer her room. Hal tells Alice that Chic has to go and that she knows exactly why. Alice reminds Hal that she had thrown him out the house before and that she will not hesitate to do it again. Heading the warning, Hal takes off, unbeknownst to him that Penelope watched the entire confrontation unfold.
Fred gets on stage to welcome everyone in attendance. On behalf of Lodge Industries and Andrews Construction, they are thrilled to kick the party off with what he describes as being a new twist on an old favorite. In doing that, he introduces "Veronica and the Pussycats" i.e. Veronica, Valerie and Melody. Everyone in town watches as the Pussycats perform on stage, with some being more enthusiastic than others. Unfortunately, their performance is interrupted by the Serpents, who march into the park as a protest with duct-tape covering their mouths and signs that read 'honor this land', 'defend this land' and 'sacred land'. Surprisingly, Cheryl joins in on the protest, standing just behind Jughead and Thomas. With Sweet Pea and Fogarty at her side, Toni, who is seemingly leading the protest, stand in front of the stage to announce that they represented the dead and the silenced. Pickens Day was a lie. General Pickens slaughtered the Uktena tribe, Toni's grandfather's family. And the land in which they were standing on, would soon give way to a new Southside, which was stolen from them. While the Serpents couldn't bring them back, they could at the very least honor them. Hoping to defuse the protest and prevent any kind of riot, Hiram gets on stage to applaud the Serpents for standing up for justice, as well as the honor and legacy of the Uktena, who contribute to the rich tapestry that is Riverdale, that is the Southside and that will be SoDale.
As Pickens Day is coming to an end, Penelope approaches Hal as he sits alone, eating a maple snow-cone. She offers to get him a proper dessert since he is in need of company and she had nowhere else to be.
Later that night, Chic enters Betty's room to confess that the first night he was there, he came into her room while she was sleeping. He kept waking up that night, trying to understand why Betty would go all the way back to the Hostel just for him, who she didn't even know. Chic believes that he has figured out why she came back. She was alone there, at the house. Chic sits next to Betty on her bed, agreeing to share with her his personal life, starting with why he webcams. One of the reasons is to make money. The other reason is to escape, to pretend to be someone else. It is a way of getting away from the darkness within himself. Betty looks at her scarred palms, asking if he can show her how to escape from the darkness inside of herself. With the stroke of a few keys, Chic's dark educating of Betty begins.
As planned, Hiram and Archie talk business in his study at the Pembrooke. Starting with a clean slate, they discuss Archie's future plans. In five years, he sees himself in college with some kind of athletic scholarship. Hiram assumes it is to study music, but Archie explains that being a musician is his former self. He is now considering studying business. Maybe one day he'd even be able to buy back Andrews Construction. As long as Archie's dating Veronica, Hiram is going to demand the best from him and that requires learning from the best. So he asks how Archie would like to start his business tutelage under his shepherding, like an internship. Before Archie can respond, he gets a call from Agent Adams, though he does not answer. Archie then directs his attention back to Hiram to accept his offer.
Jughead sits in a booth at Pop's late that night, adding another entry to his novel as Pickens Day had officially come to an end. In this entry, he describes how a horrifying act of desecration would be committed. Sure enough, the next morning, Sheriff Keller, Mayor McCoy, Hiram and Hermione gather in Pickens Park after being alerted to the desecration of General Pickens' statue. Its head has been removed and red paint covers the statue to simulate blood. Since Hiram and Hermione are calling the shots, Sierra asks how they would like it to be handled. Hiram demands that the investigation for the missing head be handled swiftly and with extreme prejudice given that the most likely suspects are the Serpents.
- Joywave - Content
- Riverdale Cast feat. Camila Mendes - I'll Try
- Riverdale Cast feat. Camila Mendes - Union of the Snake
- Scene: Veronica rehearses in the music room until Josie storms in to call off their scheduled performance.
- The Ray-Ons - Baby Be Good
- Kav - Man With No Shadow
- Scene: Archie stretches before the last day of tryouts when Veronica stops by to wish him good luck and to see him in action.
- Jaden Smith - Watch Me
- Scene: Archie and Chuck face off in a wrestling match as Veronica and Hiram watch from the stands.
- Traditional - When Johnny Comes Marching Home
- Scene: Pickens Day festival celebration begins.
- Riverdale Cast feat. Camila Mendes, Hayley Law, and Asha Bromfield- Union of the Snake
- The episode title comes from one of two possible films. The first being Eugene Gump's 1974 independent film of the same name. And the second film being Robert Siegel's 2008 American sports drama film of the same name.
- Archie Comics characters Mrs. Haggly (Ms. Haggly in the comics) and Coach Kleats make their first appearance in this episode, joining Geraldine Grundy, Joseph Svenson, Coach Clayton, and Ms. Burble as teachers from Riverdale High in the comics with a Riverdale counterpart.
- Barnabus Blossom, Cheryl's great-great-great-grandfather mentioned during her history presentation during Mrs. Haggly's lesson, shares his name with Barnabus Blossom House located in Fall River, Massachusetts. Fall River was the birthplace of Lizzie Borden, a woman who was tried and acquitted for murdering with an ax her father and stepmother in 1892.
- Talking with Archie Andrews, Agent Adams refers to him as "playing in the band with [his] pals 'n' gals." Archie's Pals 'n' Gals was the name of a comic series published by Archie Comics for many years.
- The comic panel that was added in the studio draft cover for the episode is taken from the Archie story 'A Winner Never Quits... A Quitter Never Wins!' that was published in Archie at Riverdale High #15 (March,1974)
- ↑ Final Adjusted TV Ratings for Wednesday 24th January 2018
- ↑ Season 2 Episode Title - Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (@WriterRAS) - Twitter
- ↑ Riverdale - Episode 2.11 - The Wrestler - Press Release