TV ReviewsRiverdale Season 3 Episode 16: Big Fun Review

For our review of the last episode of Riverdale, click here.

Synopsis: Rehearsals for this year’s musical, “Heathers: The Musical,” get underway, and Cheryl, as queen bee Heather Chandler, channels her own HBIC to deal with a recent fallout. Meanwhile, Betty grows increasingly annoyed by Evelyn’s involvement with the musical—as well as the lives of her friends. Elsewhere, Veronica learns some devastating news about her family, and Archie and Josie make a decision about their future. Lastly, Jughead makes a surprising move against Gladys. (CW)

Writer: Tessa Leigh Williams

Director: Maggie Kiley

Rating: TV-14

Running Time: 45mins

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

“Big Fun” starts off with Hermione complaining about the choice of musical given last year a student died during production. Kevin interjects and explained the importance of Heathers. This causes the entire young cast to break out into the musical’s opening number. Cheryl is introduced as the lead Heather Chandler with Veronica and Betty rounding out her crew. But it isn’t a high school musical without some drama so Evelyn is promoted to co-director and Toni is introduced as choreographer.

Right away, Evelyn is using her Farmie charm in a touchy-feely exercise. Betty feels uncomfortable about the whole situation, but no one wants to listen to her. She approaches Evelyn about using the musical as cult recruitment, but she just smiles and deflects. Evelyn decides it is best to have a pre-production cast party with everyone dressed in their costumes.

Meanwhile, Cheryl and Toni constantly bud heads as Cheryl ignores the choreography in spite of Toni. FP tells Jughead that a bunch of drugs and their old trailer were stolen. Jughead believes someone is trying to set up a mobile drug lab. At the Brownstone, Veronica receives the shocking news that her parents are separating. Hermione reveals that Hiram figured out the truth about the drug lab and the murder attempts. There is no coming back.

At the party they burst into the song “Big Fun” while Kevin takes one of Evelyn’s drugged brownies. He has a vision of Midge from the last production, but he learns that Fangs also had the same vision. The next morning, secrets are revealed at their rehearsal. Josie and Archie are dating. Veronica’s parents are getting divorced. Things are heating up. Evelyn decides to intervene and give them a closed rehearsal that has Kevin and Fangs reborn as Farmies.

Suddenly things go from bad to worse at Riverdale when Cheryl berates Toni for wearing her signature red. She orders Toni to find a different school. This causes her to break into song, grab Sweet Pea and the Pretty Poison Peaches for a little group fun. However, Toni has a vision of Cheryl and runs off before they do anything. She runs back to Cheryl and pleads for her to take her back saying that it isn’t too late for them.

Jughead sends out the Serpents to find the old trailer with a hunch. They find the trailer filled with drugs and lab equipment. So Jughead decides the best option to destroy his mom’s latest pet project is to burn it to the ground. Meanwhile, Josie stops by the gym to ask Archie what they are. She knows they have baggage and is scared that he isn’t serious. This causes them to break into a duet dancing in the boxing ring.

On opening night, Jughead is informed that he is a part about the cast now for its final act. Kevin wants to make a big statement. The cast stands up together to sing “Seventeen” as they change from their characters to their regular clothes. The audience watches on, including Hermione and Hiram who agreed to be civil and sit together. As the number ends, the auditorium stays silent except for a lone slow clap. Up stands Edgar Evernever (Chad Michael Murray!) as he is joined by the Farm in his applause.


  • What is Edgar Evernever’s deal?
  • Is the Red Paladin Quest over?
  • Will Hiram turned bad with nothing left to lose?
  • How long until FP learns about Gladys’ plan?
  • Will Betty forgive her father?
  • How are The Farm and The Gargoyle King connected?
  • What is Gladys’ plan?

Overall, Big Fun was a great episode. Riverdale is making it a habit of doing a yearly musical although this one does not end in murderous fashion. Instead, it reveals a much bigger problem for the gang in the form of the Farm’s mysterious leader. The musical episodes are on brand for this show’s pulpy, campy drama. It even makes sure to pick a musical that feeds into the themes revolving around its core cast to integrate it back into the overall story. While Riverdale has been doom and gloom for the better half of this season, it’s great to see these kids just be kids and enjoy themselves every so often.

Score: 8.5/10

What did you think of “Big Fun”? Where do you see this season going? Let me know in the comments below!

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