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Riverdale Season 4, Episode 7 Recap: “Welcome To Riverdale, Mom”

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Thanksgiving is next week, and Riverdale has given us something to be thankful for with this holiday-themed episode. In our Riverdale season 4 episode 7 recap, get ready for a heaping side of Falice, some more weird sh*t at Thistlehouse that we’d rather not deal with, and a surprising amount of violence for dessert. Hey, it’s better than celebrating the pilgrims’ systemic genocide of Native Americans! This holiday is pretty f-ed up.

RIVERDALE SEASON 4 RECAP, EPISODE 7: WHAT JUST HAPPENED?!

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Riverdale’s Halloween episode was only a pregame for this Thanksgiving-themed hour, but putting two holiday episodes in the same season means the writers have committed to “The Ice Storm” taking place less than a month after Hiram Lodge was released from prison. This would be fine, if Riverdale didn’t expect us to believe that Hiram has already run for mayor and won in an uncontested election. His first order of business is trying to shut down Archie’s latest good deed, putting together a Thanksgiving dinner at the community center. Next on the agenda is antagonizing FP and Alice over drinks at La Bonne Nuit, where FP threatens Hiram with a broken bottle (swoon) but backs off because he’s a better man (double swoon). The whole ordeal shows FP he can be Riverdale’s sheriff *and* a gang leader, much to Alice’s delight and ours.

Dodger was apparently raised by budget knockoffs of Wes Anderson characters who have sworn revenge on Archie for putting Dodger in the hospital. Of course, this comes to a head at Archie’s community center Thanksgiving, where else? Dodger’s family holds the center hostage and makes the kids watch as they eat their food. NGL, Archie making a Thanksgiving dinner for his disenfranchised youths was the hottest he’s been all season, even if it involved deep-frying a turkey. Veronica had a banner episode, skewering one of the attackers’ hands *and* standing up to her dad, but it’s Mrs. Andrews that saves the day by finessing a gun from the thugs. Well, Mrs. Andrews and a conveniently-timed deep frier explosion.

Jughead’s new writing teacher tells him that Mr. Chipping yeeted himself through a window because of his drinking problem, but Jughead grew up with an alcoholic father, so he knows that sh*t’s a depressant. Jughead and Betty are the only two teens on the Sweet Valley High campus during Thanksgiving break, so obviously Jughead wants to bone investigate his aging professor. Luckily, Betty has her priorities in order, and we get a steamy Bughead hookup interspersed with some adorable Falice moments. Riverdale giving the people what they want! Once the deed is done, Bughead gets right back to investigating whether Mr. Chipping was being blackmailed by an SVH secret society. Riverdale forgets which holiday we’re celebrating for a second when Brett sneaks up on Jughead in a rabbit mask with an ax, but Betty kicks some Donnie Darko butt with a golf club she found lying around. Gotta love the one percent. Donna reveals this was supposed to be a harmless prank (Sure, Jan), so the gang heads back to Jughead’s dorm to stitch up Brett’s head wound. Betty investigates Donna’s dorm while Jug distracts his classmates with a rousing round of Never Have I Ever, and she finds a tie pin that connects Donna and Chipping to the Quill & Skull society. In reality, it just connects Donna and Chipping to each other: they were having an affair, and Chipping jumped out of that beautiful stained glass window after Donna threatened to tell the headmaster. If television has taught us anything, it’s that hot young teachers cannot be trusted, but Betty thinks there’s more to the story. Bughead are top-notch sleuths, but somehow Riverdale’s answer to Sherlock and Watson didn’t notice a poorly hidden camera recording them in bed.

Choni is weirdly calm about last week’s murder which is just par for the course at this point. They invite Aunt Cricket and her son to Thanksgiving dinner in a misguided attempt to scare the remaining Blossoms away for good by having Nana Rose tell the story of the Blossom’s first Thanksgiving. The ancient Blossoms turned on each other during a particularly rough storm and went full Donner Party, which Cheryl related to eating her twin in the womb. She also made her relative thinks they were eating Uncle Cricket to coerce them into leaving them TF alone and convince them that Uncle Cricket’s body will never be found. Seeing Dead Jason’s corpse is the last straw for the Elder Blossoms, who flee the scene. Toni seems more than happy to be going along with this plot, but we’re still wondering if Sweeney Cheryl served up actual human flesh. You know a show has gone off the rails when casual cannibalism isn’t even a little beyond the realm of possibility, even if Cheryl claims Uncle Cricket is six feet under Sweetwater River.

THE MOST CW MOMENT

Another day, another new way to dump a dead body.

HOW WE FEEL

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What up, I’m Kristy, I’m 24, and I never f*cking learned how to use Google Translate. Tragically, Veronica’s sister is *not* named “Sister” in Spanish. “Hermosa” means “Beautiful,” and from this day forth “Kristy” will mean “Someone Who Fact Checks Her Jokes Before Publishing.” Thanks to our online trolls for pointing that one out, we couldn’t do it without you.

This episode put Fred Andrew’s absence front-and-center as the first real holiday without the Riverdale patriarch (sorry, Fourth of July and Halloween). Archie dedicates the community center to his father at the end of the episode — RT if you cried — and Molly Ringwald decides that all of the happy coincidences that have allowed our protagonists to narrowly avoid being murdered this season are really Fred watching out for the people he loves. That’s sweet, but mostly we’re glad that Riverdale acknowledged its characters are 80% luck, 10% skill and 10% teenage hormones.

Touching tributes aside, this Thanksgiving episode was super f-ed up. Not as f-ed as smallpox blankets, but it definitely kept with the spirit of the holiday. There were inappropriate student-teacher relationships, possible cannibalism, and criminals eating poor children’s turkey dinner while the kids watched. Normally, we delight in Riverdale’s macabre nonsense, but that was just depressing.

Join us on December 4th for the next Riverdale recap to marvel at Brett’s ability to make fun of a former gang leader without any fear of retaliation. White men really are something.

Riverdale Season 4 RECAP, Episode 7 FAN REACTIONS

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