TV Reviews

Riverdale Season 2 Episode 18: A Night to Remember Review

If you would like to read my review of last episode, click here.

Synopsis: As Riverdale High begins rehearsals for Carrie the Musical, the arrival of an ominous letter forces director Kevin to make a difficult decision about the show. (IMDB)

Writers: Arabella Anderson & Tessa Leigh Williams

Director: Jason Stone

Rating: TV-14

Running Time: 45 mins

Airs: Wednesdays at 8pm on The CW (United States)

“A Night to Remember” starts off with Kevin coming to Jughead to do a behind the scenes video for their production of Carrie. And after they show everyone getting ready for school, cue the music! Fred offers to help build the sets for the musical and to drive Archie to school, but he says he’ll take his bike. Fred still doesn’t know about the car. As the cast list off their roles, with some being less thrilled than others, Alice shows up to say she’ll be in the musical as well to keep with age appropriate casting. Chuck also arrives trying to reinvent his image.

Betty and Archie, playing a couple in the play, argue over the trustworthiness of Veronica, but it’s back to practice. Cheryl stands to confront the rumours that she isn’t fit to play the lead and proceeds to burst out into song and dance which gets everyone clapping, but as she walks back to her seat a sandbag nearly decapitates her. After the brush with death, Kevin receives a letter from someone calling themselves the Black Hood demanding the role of Carrie to be recast. However, he decides to keep this between him and Jughead as the show must go on.

The next song pits Betty against Veronica with some very terrible dancing on Archie’s part. After rehearsal, Archie asks Veronica if he can leave the car at her place to avoid his dad seeing the Lodges’ generous gift. The Lodges decide to try to destroy Fred’s change of becoming mayor be destroying his platform built on family values. Jughead brings the Black Hood’s letter to Betty, but Betty has an idea of who it is. She goes to Ethel and they talk about her losing her chance to be Carrie in the musical, but Ethel realizes what they think and storms off. Alice goes to Pop’s and has some small talk with FP, asking him to come by the musical, but he brushes it off. The next musical number has a duet with Cheryl and Josie, but she can’t focus because of Josie’s distance behaviour. Cheryl admits she was acting crazy and apologizes for letting Josie get wrapped up in her confusion and bam back to the song about friendship.

Hiram confronts Veronica about the car being parked in their garage and she reveals the car would tear Archie and Fred apart, which of course gives Hiram a brilliant idea. Back to Veronica’s solo number, which sounds an awful lot like her own life and Betty lets her know it. Archie pulls Betty aside and tries to reason with her about Veronica’s struggles at home, but they are interrupted to go to the stage and sing their love ballad. Another very typecasted part of this musical, as they all definitely end up being. Betty comes to Veronica who admits she has been a terrible friend and they make up. Because everything that has happened can be forgiven through song and dance!

Fred and Archie are building sets for the musical when Hiram comes by and reveals the secret car he got Archie for all the help he’s been for the Lodges. He leaves and Fred walks off upset, he wanted it to be a family thing, but Archie took that away from him. That evening, Betty walks downstairs to hear Alice leaving a voicemail to Chic showing she regrets throwing him out. Kevin pulls Jughead aside to reveal he received a second note from the Black Hood ordering Cheryl be recast or the sandbag won’t miss.

Kevin comes to Cheryl and tells her he has to recast her to protect her, but she wants to show she is a phoenix rising from the ashes. Of course Penelope Blossom shows up and explains Cheryl cannot participate in the musical without her permission and just like that Carrie is reassigned to Midge. Toni retreats to the bleachers to sit down with Cheryl and talk about confronting her mother. Carrie is her role and she deserves it. To the next song! The duet of Carrie and her mom with Alice going off script and directing the song at Betty believing she, like the rest of the Coopers, will leave her. She chases after her mom and hears her out about her feelings of loneliness and feels like she has to do something to help.

As the Lodges plan to hand out mayoral flyers in the playbills, Fred shows up with the sets to Archie’s surprise. He sits down with Jughead to open up about how he doesn’t feel like his character, he doesn’t feel good. Archie goes to the Pembroke to have a chat with Hiram and decides he will not let Hiram get between him and his father, giving him back the keys to the car. Betty and Alice eat dinner as Hal returns home with two bouquets of flowers, one for each of them. Turns out the ones he got for Alice she’s allergic to, but he stands up for himself. He wants to come home, and she wants to make it work, but they need to clear the air. She lets Hal know that Chic isn’t his son and he still wants to come home leaving a smile on Betty’s face.

Archie brings Fred to the garage where he reveals he bought an old broken down car from the junkyard for the two of them to rebuild together just like Fred did with his father. He tells Archie to head off to the musical, but Fred is brought to tears by the gesture. Here it is, opening night. In the dressing room the cast sings another number,, but Cheryl has other plans. She goes full Carrie, soaked in blood, as she confronts her mother for everything she has done. Penelope is frightened by her daughter, but Cheryl takes it one step further as she kicks her mother and estranged uncle out of their house.

At the musical, the drama is at an all-time high. FP watches Hal kiss Alice for good luck, Jughead is looking around trying to find everyone for last minute interviews when he finds Ethel’s garbage and the magazines used for the Black Hood’s letters, Moose finds out Midge has been screwing around with Fangs and Chic arrives to watch his sister. The episode ends as Alice performs her solo; she turns to reveal Carrie where they find Midge impaled against the wall with a letter from the Black Hood saying they have returned.

Questions

  • Will McCoy endorse Fred Andrew’s campaign?
  • Will Archie and the gang band together to defeat a common foe?
  • How will Hiram try to pull Archie and Fred apart?
  • When will FP be revealed as Chic’s father?
  • Will Penelope and Claudius strike back against Cheryl?
  • When will Kevin’s mom return? It’s bound to happen.
  • Who will become mayor of Riverdale?
  • Who is the REAL Black Hood?

Overall, this was an alright episode. The musical’s characters and numbers eerily bear resemblance to the relationships on Riverdale so it was able to help push the plot forward without feeling like it was standing in place for too long. It was hilarious to think that Jughead’s role of videographer was done solely for Cole Sprouse’s inability to sing, but it does fit the character nicely. The final twist in the episode ramps the tension back up as the mayoral election was never going to be a satisfying finale to this explosive season.

Score: 7/10

What did you think of “A Night to Remember”?  Let me know in the comments below!

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