This is a town of sinners, Betty. And Sinners have to die. Your speech at the Jubilee. Riverdale must do better. We must do better. Reminded me of a promise that I'd made to my mother. That this town will do better. We must do better. So I picked up my father's sword, and I continued the work that he and my grandfather started. The purging of sin.
Hal is the editor and co-owner of the local newspaper, which he runs with his wife Alice Cooper, and the father of Betty and Polly Cooper. He holds a fanatical hatred for the Blossom Family, due to a feud that occurred a few generations back. He is also the grandfather of Jason and Polly's twin babies, Juniper and Dagwood but doesn't have a relationship due to his abhor of them leaving to a strained relationship with the rest of his immediate family among other reasons.
Prior to the start of the series, Harold Cooper was born to Louis Cooper and an unnamed mother. He grew up being taught that sinners should be gotten rid of. When he was a child, his father killed the Conway family because Mr. Conway had blackmailed him about Louis' father's secret. Hal was then told to convince Joseph Conway; the only survivor to name someone else as the murderer of his family. He eventually married and later had two daughters, named Betty and Polly, with his high school sweetheart, Alice Cooper. Hal and Betty would often spend time together by working on vehicles.
During his high school years, Alice, who was simply his girlfriend at the time became pregnant. Hal pushed her to have an abortion, as he believed it was the best option considering that she was not ready to be a mother. Alice refused an abortion and instead gave the baby up for adoption once he was born.
Hal also owns the local newspaper, The Register, alongside his wife. Due to his family's history with the Blossom family, he harbors a deep hatred for members of the Blossom family.
Hal stood alongside Alice, as the local authorities brought Penelope, Cliff and Cheryl Blossom up to the shore of Sweetwater River, just after the mysterious drowning of Jason Blossom. The following week, he returned to the shore with his wife and daughter, they were forced to stand by as Jason's body was brought to land.
Before leaving their home, Hal and Alice told Betty that it would be a long night for them. Alice corrected him as there'll be a lot of long nights due to Jason Blossom's murder. Hal found his wife's tone to be a little unsettling, as it almost sounded like joy. However, Alice was unconcerned with his opinion.
Hal and Alice attended the first annual Taste of Riverdale, in celebration for the upcoming 75th anniversary of their town. Once there, Hal was forced to assist in breaking up a violent altercation between his wife and Penelope Blossom.
Hal and Alice knocked on the door of the Andrews house, he first apologized to Fred Andrews for coming unannounced, but it's been a rough couple months for them. Before Hal could finish his sentence, Alice cut him off, she insisted that Archie and Betty stop spending time together. The relationship is toxic, on both sides, and their recent behavior reflects that, or so Alice claimed.
While Alice was off at a women and journalism spa retreat, Hal took the opportunity to work on his car, however, that was halted as Betty entered the garage, wanting to talk about Polly. Hal explained that Jason and Polly had a fight, he was unsure what the fight was about, but Polly was devastated afterward. He came home from work one day and heard the water running in the bathroom, so he knocked on the door, asking Polly if she was okay, but she didn't reply. Hal then kicked the door down to find Polly attempting to commit suicide, this is why she was sent away. After a heartbreaking talk with Betty, Hal proceeded to watch old home movies of Polly that night, while drinking his sorrow away.
Hal later attended Jason Blossom's Memorial, where he had a run-in with Cliff Blossom, they had a brief exchange of words in what looked like a heated conversation from Betty's view, and went their separate ways.
Coopers vs Blossoms
Once home, Betty confronted him with the news that Polly was engaged to Jason, however, Hal was already aware of this, it goes back to what he and Clifford were arguing about, which was their families, the Blossom clan came extremely close to destroying his family. Cheryl's great-grandfather murdered his grandfather over money. They were business partners in selling and trading maple, but one day, Cheryl's great-grandfather decided that he no longer wanted to share the profits, so he murdered Hal's grandfather. The Blossoms stole their livelihood, he'd die before he allows them to steal his daughter too, Jason made her sick, so she's not returning home until she's no longer sick. He warned Betty to stay out of it. By the end of it all, Betty had come to the conclusion that Hal was the culprit that broke into Sheriff Keller's house and stole the evidence regarding Jason Blossom's death.
Having learned that Betty and Jughead secretly visited Polly at the Sisters of Quiet Mercy, he questioned if Betty had found what she was looking for while she was there. Much to her disappointment, she didn't. However, that didn't stop Hal from being the target of Betty's suspicions. He hated the Blossom family for stealing the Cooper family legacy, as well as Polly being pregnant with Jason's child, which gave Hal motive. Hal did not attend closing night for the Twilight Drive-In, nor was he with Alice, which that led Betty to believe that he was not only the culprit that broke into Sheriff Keller's house, and stole all the case files on Jason's murder, but that he might have been the person who killed him. Hal and Alice accused Betty of sounding just as crazy as Polly, who Hal claimed was depressed and delusional, and her story about running off with Jason, just a fantasy.
Hal, Alice, Betty, and many other residents of Riverdale orchestrated a search party in an effort to find Polly. They began in the Eversgreen Forest, and headed East since that's the direction Polly would have gone in if she wanted to leave town unnoticed. After a run-in with the Blossoms, Alice announced to the town that Polly was pregnant with Jason's child.
The next morning, he and Alice were asked a number of questions by Betty, such as if Polly and the baby would be staying with them at the house. Hal and Alice lied to Betty, they told her that Polly decided to give the child up for adoption as it was the only option, however, Betty already knew that they weren't telling her the truth as she had secretly found Polly the night before.
Appointments & Altercations
Following Polly's baby shower, which he did not attend, Hal, while watching a baseball game, was confronted by Alice, who had learned that Hal made an appointment with a doctor to get Polly an abortion after learning of her pregnancy with Jason Blossom's child, which he kept secret from Alice. In the ensuing argument, Hal insisted that sending Polly to the Sisters of Quiet Mercy wasn't enough because the child belonged to the Blossoms. When Alice demanded that Polly is brought back home, Hal lost his temper and insisted that he will not be raising a child with Blossom blood. Outraged, Alice threw Hal out the Cooper household for neglecting their daughter.
Later, Alice and Betty came to Hal at The Register, where they presented him with a USB flash drive that contained a tell-all exposé of the corruption surrounding the Blossom family. Alice and Betty explained that they want to make the Blossoms to answer for all the harm they had caused, including for taking Polly, who was currently residing at Thornhill. However, Hal refused to publish Alice's article, which would benefit her personal grudges. Having been bitter after getting kicked out of the house by Alice, Hal changed the login password for the Registers' computer, so that Alice could not use it. Hal explained to Alice that he is firing her from the paper as retaliation for being kicked out of the house. Enraged that Hal is holding her back again, Alice destroys his front glass door with a rock. 
Under the wrongful impression given to him by Betty, Hal assumed his presence was requested by Alice for dinner she was hosting for FP and his son, Jughead. Unfortunately for Hal, Alice was completely unaware that he would be attending the dinner up until his unexpected arrival. Reluctantly, Alice offered him a seat. Hal mentioned that he had been hoping at the possibilities of there being vacancies down at the Sunnyside Trailer Park, where FP resided, because he had been sleeping at The Register ever since Alice kicked him out, and it was starting to get a bit cold at night. FP joked that Hal's office was likely more comfortable than the trailer park, but Hal disagreed.
He told them about Alice's redecorating of the office, a reference to her throwing a brick through the front window. With Betty and Jughead attending their Homecoming later that night, FP recalled their Homecoming night, in which Hal and Alice were crowned King and Queen, but it's what took place before the crowning that FP had revealed. He overheard Alice and Hal screaming at each other, he didn't know what they were fighting about, but it sounded serious.
Destroyed Evidence & Parted Bloodlines
After learning that FP Jones was arrested for the murder of Jason Blossom, Hal crept back into his house in the middle of the night to destroy the evidence he had previously stolen from Sheriff Keller's house. Unfortunately, he accidentally woke up Alice and Betty as he was rummaging through the files, leading to an altercation in which Alice pointed a gun at him while under the impression that he was an intruder. After revealing his identity, Hal cleared up the matter. Alice pointed out the unlikelihood of him having broken into the Sheriff's house as FP had already admitted to that, which Hal noted as being strange since he's was the culprit. He explained that he was worried that the investigation would lead back to Polly, and that Sheriff Keller would somehow put together the on-going feud between their family and the Blossoms. Hal then revealed that Betty's great-grandfather wasn't just murdered by a Blossom, he actually was one.
After the murder, his family severed ties with the Blossoms and their name, eventually taking a new one; Cooper. Hal, Betty, and Polly were all Blossoms by blood, which made Polly and Jason relatives, third cousins to be exact, and this is why he wanted to terminate the pregnancy, as their relationship was technically incest. They began to wonder if Hal would go that far to keep them apart, how far would the Blossoms go, so they rushed over to Thornhill to retrieve Polly. Before taking Polly home, Hal questioned the mental stability of Clifford and Penelope as they were perfectly fine with the incest that had taken place between Jason and Polly.
Just days after the suicide of Clifford Blossom, and the revelation that he was responsible for the murder of his own son, Jason Blossom, the Coopers went back to their regular routine life. Hal had returned home, and they were all acting as if the last few months never happened. They smiled, and talked about the 75th Anniversary Jubilee, pretending to be a perfectly normal family by avoiding any discussions of the secrets and revelations that had flooded the town.
At The Register, he and Alice were handed an article by Betty, pertaining to FP Jones' arrest. He and Alice agreed that while it was the best thing Betty had written, they didn't believe it should be published for a number of reasons. Not only would people think that she was simply doing it for her boyfriend, Jughead, but there was also the concern for her well-being. There were reports of attacks on the south side, law enforcement and residents were gunning for the Serpents, and crime was on the rise. There was a lot of anger flowing through town, and at the moment, it was directed at the Serpents, so Hal and Alice didn't want the rage to turn towards Betty.
A couple days later, he attended the Jubilee with Alice and Polly. The three of them sat in the crowd as Betty got on stage and discussed the town's deepest problems, and how they weren't being addressed.
After hearing that Fred had been shot at Pop's shoppe by an unknown black hooded assailant, Hal, Alice, and Betty rushed over to Riverdale General Hospital, where Fred was undergoing surgery. To no surprise, they are met by Jughead, Veronica, and Hermione. They entered the lobby to find Archie pacing back and forth, covered in his father's blood. As the kids embraced, Hal, Alice, and Hermione checked in with the nursing station. While Archie headed into the hallway to call his mother, and inform her of Fred's shooting, Alice accused the Southside Serpents of potentially being involved, and looked to Jughead for answers. In consideration of everything that was going on, Hal whispered to her that now was not the time.
Once Archie returned from questioning with Sheriff Keller about his father's shooting, Fred's doctor entered the lobby to inform them that they got the bullet out and stopped the internal bleeding. However, Fred wasn't breathing on his own yet, which was quite worrisome. As soon as the doctors get him situated in a room, Archie will be allowed to sit with him. Until then, everyone urged Archie to go home, and get changed.
Hal briefly appeared in one of Fred's dream-like hallucinations following the shooting. He sat alongside Alice in the crowd at Archie and Veronica's Scottish themed wedding.
Fan Mail from the Black Hood
Hal and Alice greeted Betty as she returned home from school that evening. He claimed that the envelope that Betty had brought in earlier that morning from the front porch was "fan mail" from the shooter, who was calling himself the Black Hood. He wanted them to publish his letter claiming responsibility for the shootings of Fred Andrews, Moose Mason, and Midge Klump, as well as the murder of Geraldine Grundy in Greendale. As proof that he is who he says he is and that the letter is from the actual killer, inside the envelope was Fred's missing wallet and Geraldine's glasses.
Hal and Alice then headed down to the Mayor's office, where they turned the evidence over to Mayor McCoy and Sheriff Keller. In the spirit of public safety, Mayor McCoy suggested that they refrain from publishing the letter. However, Hal and Alice felt it was their responsibility to inform the public that there was a killer freely walking about Riverdale, targeting his next victim. Printing such an article would cause town-wide panic, Sheriff Keller said. He requested a media black-out for at least the next twenty-four hours. He'd be taking the letter into evidence, but claimed that he would send them a copy afterwards. However, there was no need for such doing. Hal and Alice had made their own copy just before sending it to the printer for tomorrow's front page.
The next day, Hal and Alice were approached by Polly, who after reading their published article of the Black Hood's letter in the Register, decided that she would be leaving Riverdale for her own safety. She had already made arrangements at the Farm. What Farm, Alice wondered. Polly explained that she was referring to the very same Farm that she and Jason had planned to run off to before he was murdered. Hal suggested that Polly settle down, so that they can talk about what to do next. Polly was worried about her well being, as well as the well being of her unborn babies. With the killer targeting sinners, she was no longer safe in Riverdale considering that she was an unwed mother carrying her cousin's babies. Over Alice's dead body would she allow Polly to run off and give birth at a Farm, though she didn't have much say in the matter as Polly had already made up her mind. She stormed off, with Hal not far behind, hoping to talk some sense into her.
With the Black Hood still free to target the residents of Riverdale, Hal and Alice took precautions in order to ensure the safety of their family by installing brand new locks on the door.
The next morning, he and Alice learned that with Betty's help, Polly ran away to the farm. Betty's reasoning for lying to them and helping Polly leave was that Polly was safe from the killer's grasps at the farm, where only they knew she would be. Betty explained that she assisted Polly because she was scared, as was Alice, who was admittedly terrified that every time Betty walked out the door or didn't answer her phone, that something terrible had happened to her. Alice attempted to explain that its the things they do in secrecy that make it so difficult for them to protect Betty and Polly.
Two days had passed since their discussion with Betty, and so Hal and Alice attended the Town Hall meeting, where Mayor McCoy welcomed all to the event in hopes that she could address their concerns and if possible, ease their minds, as she too shared their desire to protect their town and their children. Mayor McCoy and Sheriff Keller then announced the introduction of a town-wide curfew and helpline that residents can call to report any suspicious activity. Alice questioned the legitimacy of the so-called helpline, connecting it to the Red Circle. She was wondering when they were going to address the real problem in Riverdale, which is the south side. This resulted in a heavy debate between her and Fred as the two argued over how best to handle the problem, which only came to an end after Betty and Jughead interrupted the meeting to announce the supposed arrival of the Black Hood.
With the Town Hall meeting brought to an abrupt end, Hal, Alice, Betty, Jughead, Sheriff Keller, and Mayor McCoy reconvened at the Cooper's house, where they hoped to gain a better understand of how Betty and Jughead knew where the Black Hood would strike next. Betty handed them the letter, which was sent to her by the Black Hood, along with the cipher that she had earlier turned over to Alice, revealing that she had withheld evidence from them in an attempt to solve the cipher herself.
Hal was furious with Betty after learning that she published an archived article at the Blue and Gold of Alice's arrest from many years ago, when she was a young member of the Southside Serpents. He couldn't comprehend why Betty would do such a thing. Alice explained that it was revenge, though Betty claimed that it was justice against her and her holier-than-thou attitude.
A couple days later, Hal attended the Lodges' SoDale Gala Opening, where he became reacquainted with an old friend; Hiram Lodge. Just between the two, Hal told Hiram that the article Betty published of Alice's mugshot, took a toll on her, so they both decided it would be best if he covered the event alone.
Much to Hal's surprise, Alice showed up at the event, wearing a red snake print dress and a golden snake-shaped necklace, leaving guests astonished. She breezed past Hal, telling him to shut it, before he could even get out a single word.
Later on in the evening, he stood alongside Alice, as Hiram gave his speech, promising to reinvent Riverdale.
Hal received a call from Sheriff Keller, telling him to come down to the Sheriff Station after he had caught Betty breaking into his house, and rummaging through his home office for proof that the Sheriff was the Black Hood. Hal apologized for Betty's actions as he couldn't image where she could've gotten the idea from. Given that Betty found his research on the case and the black hood that he had confiscated from Archie's locker, the Sheriff wrote it off as Betty being driven by her overactive imagination. Just in case that Betty still suspected him of being involved in the attacks, Sheriff Keller handed her his logbook, which documented his whereabouts for each attack. Fortunately Sheriff Keller had decided not to say anything to Kevin about the incident due to the fact that Betty had been a good friend to him, and that it would break his heart.
Hal briefly appeared in Betty's anxiety induced nightmare along with Alice and Polly. The three of them gathered in the living room by the fire place, as Betty came down the steps. They wished her a Merry Christmas. Moments later, Hal was dead, as were Alice and Polly. In Betty's nightmare, they had been murdered by the Black Hood.
In reality, on the night of Christmas Eve, Hal and Fred were called down to Pop's by Sheriff Keller after Betty and Archie were attacked by the Black Hood. Fortunately, the Sheriff managed to kill the Black Hood before he could escape.
Hal and Alice learned from Betty that Polly gave birth to the twins at the Farm. As Hal tried to cope with the news, Alice struggled to hold back her tears. Hal questioned why Polly hadn't informed them of this. Alice surmised that Polly didn't want them to be apart of the babies' lives. Alice then asked Betty if Polly was alright and if the children were healthy. Betty reassured her, stating that Polly is fine and the babies are healthy. Betty revealed that this wasn't all she had to share. After some digging, she found an address for Alice's son and her biological brother, that was given up for adoption many years ago. His name was Charles Smith. With Polly gone, Betty assumed that this would better their lives, but Hal would beg to differ. He scolded Betty for prying into something that had nothing to do with her or Polly. Betty exclaimed that she did it for her mother, though she was clearly upset by the recent revelation, Alice agreed with Hal, deciding then that it was best to end the conversation.
The following evening, as Hal and Alice sat in the living room, reading books, Betty returned home with Chic hanging over her shoulder. She called out to them for help as Chic's arm had been sliced open. Hal, Alice and Betty took Chic to the kitchen, where they grabbed the first aid kit and applied medical care.
Afterward, they laid him down in Polly's room to rest for the night. Hal stood by the doorway as Alice comforted him and explained that they had a lot to talk about.
At the breakfast table with Alice, Betty and Chic, Hal began an intrusive line of questioning, starting with how long Chic planned on staying with them. Alice stated that he was free to stay for as long as he wanted to. Hal claimed that he was simply trying to plan his life. When Betty brought Chic home, he was bleeding profusely from his arm. Hal sought answers on why Chic was in that condition. Betty told Chic that he didn't have to answer her father's questions but he did so regardless. Chic's attacker's name was Marcel. He ran the Hostel, and sometimes, he booked clients for them. The night Betty showed up, Chic wasn't in the mood to work, but Marcel attempted to convince him otherwise. Both Hal and Betty both expressed interest in the type of clients Chic catered to. Chic replied that he had clients ranging from nice to even nastier than Marcel. If Hal preferred, Chic could specify, along with showing him a decent collection of scars that he had acquired over time. Betty also had scars, crescent marks in her palms, from digging her nails in them. Like Betty, Chic once dug his nails into the palms of his hands.
Two days had passed since their last breakfast, though Hal had still not grown tired of antagonizing Chic. He asked if Chic knew that he was sitting in Polly's seat. He was not only sitting in her chair, but sleeping in her bed as well. Chic was filling a void, as far as Hal was concerned and it was the only reason Chic was staying with them. Though, Chic was surprisingly unbothered by Hal's remarks. Everyone needed something, to his point. Furthermore, he didn't expect to be staying with them for free. He never had.
On Pickens Day, Alice had prepared a hearty breakfast for the family in preparation for the celebration at Pickens Park, especially since it would be their first outing as a family. However, Hal would be staying behind as he had a few odd jobs around the house to catch up on.
Despite claiming that he was staying home to catch up on a few odd jobs around the house, Hal confronted Chic at Pickens Day. He asked 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 insisted that he stop snooping through Chic's business and harassing him, though Chic wasn't the only subject of Hal's anger. He even scolded Betty for bringing Chic into their lives and into their home, more specifically, Polly's bedroom. Alice remarked that Polly was no longer apart of their lives and that therefore, it was no longer her room. Hal insisted that Chic had to go and that Alice knew exactly why. Alice reminded Hal that she had thrown him out the house before and that she would not hesitate to do it again. Heading the warning, Hal took off.
Later that night, as Pickens Day was coming to an end, Hal was approached by Penelope as he sat alone, eating a maple snow-cone. She offered to get him a proper dessert since he was in need of company and she had nowhere else to be.
As he stood by the front door while holding a suitcase, Hal gave Alice an ultimatum, either Chic goes or he goes, though Alice wasn't willing to entertain his insane notion. She and Betty tried to explain to Hal that Chic wasn't hurting anyone and that he had found a job at the Bijou. He had even offered to pay them rent. So Alice had no idea what was Hal's beef with him. Hal replied that Chic was a stranger, though Hal wasn't even making an effort to get to know him. However, Hal refused to change his stance on the matter. Before leaving, he told Alice and Betty to call him once Chic was gone. In the meantime, he'd be at a ShareBNB down by the Register.
In the late hours of the night, Hal stopped by the house for toiletries though he made a point to call Betty first to alert her of his arrival as he didn't wish to get into a fight with Alice about Chic who was in his room resting. He entered the house to the strong aroma of bleach. Alice supposedly spilled tomato soup on the rug and she didn't want it to stain. After remarking that it must've been a lot of soup given that the house smelled like a hospital, Hal headed upstairs to get the toiletries he had come for.
He left the house, but he didn't return to the ShareBNB where he claimed that he would be staying. Instead, Hal made a stop at Thistlehouse, where Penelope massaged his shoulders as he told her about Alice and Betty's strange behavior when he stopped by the house. Hal was positive that they were hiding something. Though, Penelope retorted that everyone is always hiding something. She then asked of Chic, who she joked was up in his room, entertaining people.
A couple days later, unbeknownst to him, he was spotted by Cheryl, leaving Thistlehouse, which provoked her to confront him the next time around. After some time spent with Penelope, Hal prepared to leave. Back so soon? Cheryl asked while sitting quietly in the dark as he headed for the front door. She told him that her mother was a harlot, a modern-day Moll Flanders, she added. Hal's actions could destroy his family, and Cheryl didn't want to see that happen for Betty's sake. Which is why she had decided against telling her. But Cheryl suggested that he hurry home to his family before she changed her mind.
Heading Cheryl's warning, the next day, Hal returned home. He was greeted by Chic who told him that neither Betty nor Alice were home at the moment. Nonetheless, Hal pushed his way through the door to remind Chic that it was still his house after all. Betty arrived at the house soon thereafter to find Chic frantically pacing back and forth in the dinning room as Hal accused him of stealing his grandfather's watch and running some kind of scheme. When Betty asked what he was doing home, Hal told her that he had a change of heart and he was feeling that it was time for him to move back in and more importantly, get some answers from Chic, who wouldn't even look Hal in the eyes. Hal began to question everyone's strange behavior as of late. He asked why the house smelled of bleach, what happened to the dinning room rug and where the lamp went. He was certain that something was going on in the house and that it involved Chic, who was possibly turning tricks and pawning their valuables. Betty demanded that Hal get away from Chic and leave the house or else she'd tell Alice about his affair with Penelope Blossom. Maybe the reason he felt like they were hiding things and keeping secrets is because he was. Out of fear that Betty would follow through with her threats, Hal left the house.
It had been a long time coming so Hal decided to sit down with Alice, and ask for a divorce. Alice asked if he was still seeing Penelope Blossom. Which he wasn't. Furthermore, the divorce had little to nothing to do with Penelope. Hal explained that it was about how he worshiped Alice like a goddess for 20 years only for her to side with Chic, a stranger, over him. Betty too. He couldn't believe that they chose Chic. However, Betty claimed that she was on Hal's side in regards to Chic. She too wanted him out of the house. As for selling the Register, he explained that Hiram Lodge offered a fair price, half of which he was willing to give to Alice as long as she was willing to agree to set him free immediately. Little did Alice know, Hal's sudden want for a divorce had something to do with Clifford Blossoms' upcoming will-reading.
The next day, Hal, Betty and Polly arrived at Thistlehouse for the will-reading. Also in attendance was Cheryl, Penelope, Nana Rose and Toni. In the will, Clifford's first declaration was that ownership of Thistlehouse remain with his mother, Nana Rose. With Penelope, Clifford left ownership of Thornhill, which Cheryl had burned to the ground. Any and all remaining assets of Clifford's fortune was to be divided in half. The first half would be distributed equally to anyone in town who could prove with medical authentication that they were of Blossom blood. The will-reading was then interrupted by Alice who came to confront Hal over him asking for a divorce for the sole purpose of cutting her out of the will. This led to a confrontation between Alice and Penelope. After Alice was escorted from the premises, the will reading continued. The second half of Clifford's assets were to go to his true heirs, Cheryl and the now deceased Jason. As Cheryl gave a speech, Clifford's twin brother, Claudius Blossom interrupted the will-reading.
At the Pembrooke Hal interviewed Hermione Lodge for the Register in what was her first time speaking out since her announcement for candidacy as mayor. Hal asked why she chose to run for Mayor of Riverdale. Hermione replied that she hoped to fix the yearly decrease in population and business closings. That is why Lodge Industries had secured a bid for a maximum security prison on the Southside. That meant jobs, economic growth and stability. It'll give Riverdale its future back. After they discussed building the prison on the bones of Southside High, building a new wing for Riverdale High and whether or not Veronica would be running for student council president, Andy Cohen, a family friend, came to give his endorsement of Hermione.
After getting a call from Betty that Alice was feeling lonely and abandoned, Hal arrived at the house with flowers for her and Alice. However, Alice was allergic to peonies. Hal told her that he'd really like to come back home. If they do this, there can't be anymore secrets, which meant Alice had something to tell Hal in regards to Chic. She revealed that Chic wasn't his son. Which he always suspected though he didn't care. He only wanted to come home. Their secrets can't hurt them anymore and they can be together again.
Hal later attended the play in support of Alice and Betty.
The town gathers for Midge's funeral to pay respect. Cheryl sings a song in Midge's honor. She and the rest of the River Vixens are dressed in all-black cheerleader uniform. Midge's death has seemingly taken a great toll on Riverdale, Mrs. Klump and Moose especially. Hal stands alongside Alice and Betty as the service commences.
Later that day, Sheriff Keller arrives at the Cooper house to question Chic as he has been talking to everyone who was at Riverdale High School the night of the musical. A couple people claim they saw Chic backstage just before the show. Hal tells the Sheriff that Chic no longer lives with them, but that they can bring him down to the station tomorrow. Sheriff agrees and then leaves. Once he is gone, Alice wonders why Hal threw Chic under the bus. Hal questions what Alice is worried that Chic will say. Betty interjects that Alice is just overprotective of Chic.
After learning that Chic is an impostor and that he is tied up in the basement, Hal blows up. He demands to know what they were doing. Alice begs him to calm down, but with a psychopath in their basement, Hal is irate. When Hal decides that it's better to let the police deal with Chic, Alice says that they can't because she would go to jail as well. She reveals that Chic killed a man in the house and that she helped him cover it up by disposing of the body. Alice lies to Hal and tells him that Betty had no involvement in the cover up. It was only her and Chic. When Betty tries to speak up, Alice tells her not to say another word and to go to her room.
Afterward, Hal supposedly left the house in search of Betty after she exited through the basement with Chic.
The Man Behind the Hood?
While sitting at the breakfast table, Hal notices that Betty is troubled and asks if there is something on her mind. Betty claims that she had been thinking and had come to the conclusion that Chic was a test. Everything that he did to them and brought on them was a test. Betty believes that they're stronger after surviving it. Alice remarks that this supposed strength remains to be seen, but Betty is positive that they are stronger. Furthermore, they'll survive whatever comes next.
The next day, at the Cooper house, Betty explains that given the fact that Hal has been so busy at the Register, she proposes that Alice join him. She is already moderating the debate. Betty sees no reason why she shouldn't report on it as well. Alice likes the sound of this. As does Hal. Betty even offers to help with proofing and layout after school. Hal couldn't be happier to have them both back the the Register.
At the Register, Alice and Hal head out for dinner while Betty hangs back to finish up her work.
Later, at the dinner table, Betty reveals to Hal and Alice that when the Black Hood was first killing people, he was also calling her, asking her to do things as they were alike. He offered to help get rid of Chic. So Betty delivered Chic to the Black Hood. If Chic's dead, that makes her accomplice to a murder, and Betty's okay with that. There's always been this darkness inside of her. She thought Chic could help her understand it, but really it was the Black Hood who did. She says all this to potentially bait Hal, who she suspects of being the Black Hood. Alice is left speechless. Hal holds Betty's had and tells her about his own darkness. When he was away from Betty and Alice, it felt like he was drowning it it. This is why they need each other.
The night of the Mayoral debate has arrived. Hal calls Betty to tell her that he and Alice are about to head to the debate. When he offers to pick her up or wait for her, Betty says that she'll meet him there. At the debate, Hal sits not that far behind Betty. As Fred and Hermione discuss restoring safety to the town, the Black Hood is spotted on the balcony with a rifle. He begins shooting. Hal and Betty are separated, though they manage to find each other in all the chaos.
Afterwards, Hal comes downstairs as he prepares to meet Alice at the Register. However, Betty confronts him before he does. She doesn't know what she saw at the town hall, if that was really even the Black Hood, but she and Cheryl went to his room at the ShareBnB that he was still paying for. When they broke in, they found the book that the Black Hood used for his cipher all those months ago. She wonders why Hal has it. Hal had no idea that the Black Hood used that book. All he knew was it was Betty's favorite. She checked it out of the library practically every weekend. He found a copy online and was saving it for Betty's birthday. Hal then realizes that Betty suspected him of being the Black Hood. He assures Betty that the book was merely a present. They then share a hug.
Hal later gets a call from Betty. He asks if everything is okay. Betty tells him that they need to finish the conversation they started earlier. He asks if she should come home, but Betty wants to meet where it all began, with her speech at town hall. She wants it to just be between the two of them, just like it's supposed to be.
Hal is suspected of being the Black Hood by Betty. Her suspicions are confirmed when the Black Hood attacks Cheryl at Thistlehouse. Cheryl wounds the Black Hood when she shoots him in the shoulder with an arrow. Not long after that, according to FP, Hal checks into the hospital, bleeding profusely. However, by the time Betty arrives, Hal is gone, but Dr. Masters, is dead. His throat is slit. The Black Hood then calls Betty and tells her to come home or else her mother will die.
Hal enters the living room, pleased to see that Betty made it home. Alice explains that Hal came up with an idea to watch home movies. She figured she would indulge him given that they're practically on lock-down due to the riot. Hal grabs the projector and plays for Alice and Betty old home videos of himself as a child, being disciplined by his mother. On the video, Hal's mother tells him that his father did something very noble in massacring the Conway family as they were sinners, thus the revelation that Hal's father was the Riverdale Reaper. Hal states that sinners have to die. He was then ordered by his mother to convince Joseph Conway to accuse someone other than his father of being the killer. While his father may have allowed Joseph to get away, Hal will do better, his mother says on the recording.
When the video ends, Hal tells Alice to take out her tape-recorder as he wishes to share his story. He reveals that Great-Grandpappy Cooper wasn't murdered by his brother. Instead, he was the killer. He killed Great-Grandpappy Blossom and then took on the Cooper name to create a new identity for himself. The Conways discovered this secret. Mr. Conway blackmailed Hal's father. So he killed them for being sinners. As for Joseph Conway, the sole survivor, Hal did what was asked of him by convincing Joseph to accuse an innocent man. He goes onto tell Betty and Alice about his darkness. The same darkness that runs in the Cooper family, which now lives in Betty. Hal approaches Betty and demands that she say who he is. "You're the Black Hood", Betty says as her eyes fill with tears. Hal is responsible for shooting Fred Andrews as well as killing Geraldine Grundy the Sugarman, Midge, and Dr. Masters. But the shooting at the Mayoral debate was not Hal's doing.
Hal explains to Betty and Alice that he became the Black Hood because Riverdale is a town of sinners and sinners have to die. Hal recalls Betty speech at the 75th Anniversary Jubilee, where she says that the town must do better. It reminded him of a promise he made to his mother, that Riverdale would do better. So Hal picked up his father's sword, so to speak and continued the work that he and Hal's grandfather started. The purging of sin. Betty asks why Hal wanted this discussion recorded. Hal replies that he wanted everyone to understand what happened when they find them. It would seem that Hal plans on killing Betty and Alice, along with himself.
Alice taunts Hal. She always knew he was a mama's boy. She claims that he can't do anything for himself. Betty advises her mother against antagonizes him, but she continues to do so nonetheless, pointing out that Hal can't do anything right. Not even be a serial killer. She calls Hal out for being a sinner and questions what Fred could've possibly done that would call for his death. Hal explains that Fred was an adulterer. However, given that Hal had an affair with Penelope Blossom, Alice tells Hal to kill himself. Or maybe Hal should kill her, Alice states. She informs him that she slept with FP, who in every way that Hal's not, is a real man. With Hal distracted, Betty grabs a shovel from the fireplace and hits him over the head with it as he chokes Alice.
Hal is unconscious long enough for Betty and Alice to call Tom Keller, who arrives soon thereafter. He places Hal in handcuffs and puts him into the squad car.
Hal is brought into the interrogation room as Archie stands on the other side of the one-way mirror with Sheriff Minetta to identify him as the Black Hood. Later, Hal is visited by Betty while in lock-up. Betty told herself that she wasn't going to see him again, but Hal never doubted for a moment that she would come as she's the only one who understands him because they are alike. Hal did unspeakable, horrible things. Betty's not like that or like Hal, leaving him to wonder why she even came by. Betty came to say goodbye and also to say no more darkness and no more evil. For him, it's over. Hal no longer has any power over her. However, Hal is certain that Betty will be back.
Editor's Note: The events that transpire in Chapter Thirty-Nine: The Midnight Club take place during a flashback set in the 90's of Alice, FP, Fred, Sierra, Hermione, Penelope, Marty, Daryl, Hiram, and Tom in their junior year of high school.
Sometime during the early 90s, Hal is approached by Alice Smith and asked to go on a date with her at Pop's Chock'lit Shoppe, which lead them to end up marrying and having two daughters together.
Hal gets an unexpected visit from Betty. She shows him the documents with his forged signature on it, explaining that Alice stole her college funds and so now Betty needs him to sign an affidavit that says the signature is a forgery. In reading the papers recently, Hal’s found himself compelled by the Gargoyle King, whose claimed 14 souls, which Hal states as being remarkable. He knows that it greatly angers Betty that she hasn’t caught him yet and even offers to help her. However, Betty’s only interested in her funds being returned. Hal tells Betty to bring him the Gryphons and Gargoyles manual that he’s heard so much about and then he’ll be more than willing to sign the affidavit.
As requested, Betty brings Hal a manual for G&G, and as promised, Hal signs the affidavit. Betty takes the document and attempts to leave without so much as a goodbye, though Hal reels her back in with the mention of ascension night. He claims he was there for it even though he wasn’t a member of the Midnight Club. He was aware of them and claims that he sent out the invitations for ascension night, dressed up as the Gargoyle King, and poisoned the chalices. Hal’s plan was to kill as many members of the Midnight Club as possible as they were all sinners, but Principal Featherhead crashed the party and drank from the chalice. This is why Hal believes he can solve the mystery of who the present Gargoyle King is. It’s because he was the Gargoyle King of the past. As Betty signs out, the guard informs her that she and her mother keep missing each other. However, as far as Betty knew, her mother hadn’t come to see her father in months. Though, the guard tells Betty that Alice comes by to visit Hal every Monday.
Betty confronts Hal with the information she’s gathered, that he wasn’t at ascension night and that he only knows what he knows because Penelope told him. But still, Betty wonders why he would lie about killing Featherhead. Then, Betty realizes that he did it to keep her coming back to her. Hal claims to have missed Betty and their talks, though Betty has no desire to talk to him any further.
Despite being so adamant against seeing her father again, Betty does just that, by going down to the prison to vent. No one else understands what her mother is capable of except Hal. She gave all Betty’s money away as if her education meant nothing. Hal is sorry as her education means everything, but the good news is that Betty will have colleges lining up to give her scholarships. He recalls that the SATs has just passed, asking how Betty did. She thinks she did well.
Hal gets another visit from Betty following Claudius Blossom's death while in his cell. Betty became infuriated. The Lodge Ledger is calling Claudius’ death a suicide, but Betty believes he was murdered, and suspects that Penelope Blossom was the culprit. Hal remarks that poison does in fact suit Penelope. But he can’t help but wonder why Betty is asking questions to begin with when no one else is. Betty explains that it’s wrong and that Penelope’s been getting away with murder for years. Darryl Doiley was poisoned with Oleander. Featherhead and the Sisters of Quiet Mercy were poisoned as well. Betty’s already found the pattern of murders disguised as suicides, so now Hal asks who else close to Penelope has died by suicide. Betty realizes that the only other person was Clifford Blossom, who hung himself. Hal wonders if that’s the entire story. Aside from Penelope, Cheryl was also there. So if there’s a witness then it’s not a perfect murder and Betty has a chance at proving her suspicions.
Betty’s encounter with Penelope has shaken her world view and there was only one person she could talk to about it, that being her father. Betty reveals to Hal that she found proof of Penelope killing Clifford. Hal is impressed, asking what Betty plans to do next. But, not even she knows. She thought that she would turn Penelope in, but hearing her talk, seeing how she’s living her life and how she’s been twisted, Betty almost feels pity for her. Hal explains that he and Penelope are products of their environment. Raised by those who taught them a twisted sense of right from wrong. Hal asks if Betty still believes that Penelope’s a monster who deserve to be in jail. However, Betty isn’t sure. Maybe not every murderer is guilty and maybe not every victim is innocent, Betty says. She starts to interpret the world in shades of grey rather than black and white. Hal wonders if one day Betty will ever manage to see him in that same compassionate light.
Hal is a middle-aged man of average height, around 5' 11", with a muscular build. He has tan skin, blue eyes and blonde hair. Like his wife, Alice, Hal is typically dressed in professional clothing, suits or collared shirts and vests.
Hal's relationship with his daughter, Polly, became estranged after she got pregnant with Jason Blossom's babies. Jason being of the Blossom family, who Hal openly despised, only made matters worse between them as Polly never understood the root of his hatred for them. Hal's desire for Polly to abort the babies only left them further estranged as Polly chose to keep them. Shortly after she got pregnant, Hal disowned Polly as he refused to have as he puts it "Blossom blood in his household". However, after revealing that the real reason he was upset about Polly's pregnancy was because she and Jason were blood relatives, the relationship became less hostile. They even attended Clifford Blossom's Will-Reading together, along with Betty.