#popculture

Riverdale Roundtable 3: “The Watcher in the Woods”

“No need to be so thirsty, Veronica”

Welcome to Riverdale Roundtable: a recap series where we chat about all the drama and sexy intrigue from last week’s Riverdale — just in time to get you up-to-speed for tonight’s episode. Today we’re talking about the second episode of Season 2: “The Watcher in the Woods.” Join us precious, beautiful, compulsive pieces of trash to laugh and cry over these tortured teens and their handsome fathers.

Please note: this recap includes Extreme Spoilers for this episode, as well as the entirety of Season One. We warned you!!

 


 

CC: ok mood re: this episode:

 

The Watcher in the Woods cheryl Looks

 

Rachel: lol
yeah this one was not great

Jenny: i mean no witches and too much archie
also cheryl was barely there

CC: maybe you just needed to be on
“”””” the JJ “”””””
to Get It

 

The Watcher in the Woods topaz

 

Jenny: i screamed
when she said that
like it was no big deal

Rachel: I can only think of this guy

 

 

Jenny: HONESTLY
I AM SO GLAD

CC:

 

 

Jenny: UGH

Rachel: NO CAROLYNN
I KNOW IT’S HALLOWEEN
NOTHING HAS BEEN SCARIER

CC: uhHHHhhhHHhh hiIIIiii it’s meEeee JjJjjJJJJj

Jenny: oh but yeah actually cheryl did call him JJ a couple of times

Rachel: FUCK

Carolynn: ya dude i am calling it
“the jj” is made from the ground up bones of jason blossom

Rachel: … that’s pretty metal

Jenny: 😏
that’s why the GHOULIES
are into it

Carolynn: AAAAAAAA

Jenny: but those weenie serpents aren’t
too metal for serpents

Carolynn: lol ghoulies

Jenny: i do want to point out that for a while in the 70s sabrina was on a show with the “Groovie Goolies”
not sure if that’s related

Rachel: Jenny with the deepcuts!

CC: these archie multiverse deep cuts are intense

Rachel: it was def a serpent that beat up Jug though
that ploy is transparent as fuck

Jenny:

 

 

Jenny: i really want my street name to be sweet pea

CC: oh yeah it was sweatpee
sweaterp
there is this makeup subreddit i like that calls everybody “sweaty” condescendingly and purposefully and that is what i was thinking about whenever sweetpea was on screen

Jenny: lol
yeah 100%

CC: i mean that dude does look really sweaty
to be fair

Rachel: I love that a tough dude is named Sweet Pea
I’m basic like that
I’m very easy to please

Jenny: speaking of sweaty
can we go ahead and get this out of the way rn
this is so lAMe

 

 

Rachel: lol
i hate this militia storyline
I’m not into it

CC: “we are legion”
archie u are drunk on your gf’s hot dad’s rum, Go Home

Jenny: THE RED CIRCLE
THE BLACK HOOD

CC: in the year of our lord, the last thing we need is a bunch of teens who LITERALLY WERE RECENTLY BUSTED FOR SEXUAL ASSAULT EN MASSE forming a militia

Rachel: why is nobody shutting this down
I do not understand why the principal was on board???

CC: oh yea weatherbee is just like
so chill

Jenny: like archie wonders to himself — how do i intimidate??
shirtless dudes in masks
that’s the answer

Rachel: they’re just flexing menacingly in the background

Carolynn: that guy on the far left looks so resigned
like, welp, i still need one more semester to get my letter

Jenny: only good side is it gives sheriff keller a chance to be a reasonable and responsible adult

 

 

Rachel: Sheriff Keller was a real hero this episode
the only voice of reason for once

Carolynn: also re: sheriff kellar: what the heck are u gonna do? u haven’t really done shit all season til today??
like kudos 2 u for waking up and being like “there has to be one parent who isn’t completely awful in riverdale at a time, i guess it’s my shift” but still

Rachel: look he’s busy!!!
he’s got a lot going on!!
gangs, the JJ, a murderer
getting into his tight pants

CC: why is every adult in riverdale so bad at being a grown ass fucking human being around teens

Rachel: ok you know who the real adult hero was this episode?
fucking
Hermione

 

 

Jenny: firmly disagree

Rachel: she was still a bad mom, but a bad mom with good lines

CC: hermione do u know what show this is
on one hand, I feel for her because she’s in this position where she really can’t win

Rachel: oh yeah she’s fucked it up real bad

Jenny: i feel like she kept trying to insinuate that any attempt veronica made to be part of her own father’s life was somehow sexually undermining her marriage
“thirsty”

Rachel: oh weird
I didn’t get that

CC: she knows something we don’t re: hiram and it’s p scary; bUT her shit about veronica getting her “daddy’s” attention was g r o s s

Jenny: there was some weird shit about private throne room
and that garbage oil painting above his desk

Rachel: omg that was horrifying

Jenny: that was p creepy

CC: omg i am so glad you mentioned it
sorry in advance rachel but

 

 

CC: same painter????

Jenny: lol!
honestly might be

Rachel: what is that second one????
oh
oh wait
sigh

CC: it’s rory gilmore
maybe there’s just a standard “paints rich girls for a paternal figure’s creepy study” oil painter in hollywood
i mean RIP richard but still

Jenny: honestly

CC: maybe all of us plebs just assume rich people still go around getting their portraits painted
which ends up permeating pop culture

Jenny: i mean as someone who paints child portraits for rich people, can confirm

CC: IT’S REAL????

Jenny: v real

CC: THIS IS A REAL THING???
OMFG
WOW

Jenny: i know it

CC: the only art of me in my family
is home is a weird photoshop my mom made of Kid Me in a pumpkin patch that she printed out and framed

Jenny: that’s kind of sweet?

CC: it’s A Lot tho
maybe with more resources you can afford more weird art of your kids

Jenny: i think people never tire of weird art of their kids/pets
but getting back to this weird art
hiram is a bad parent

Rachel: the worst

 

 

Jenny: this is bad advice

CC: lol he is definitely trying to get archie killed

Rachel: 100%!!!

CC: “challenge them to a duel. if you believe hard enough u won’t need bullets”
“is this a face that would lie to you???”

Jenny: can’t sneak into v’s bedroom if he’s dead

CC: “archie, let me speak with you man to man.”
“what you really need is
to bring a knife to a gun fight”
“that is what you need to do”

Rachel: I can see why Hermione is like this right now

 

 

Jenny: same

Rachel: it was a very Cersei reaction
wine will solve her problems

CC: everybody is cutting loose this episode / offering booze to minors

Jenny: at least there’s one reasonable man left

 

 

Jenny: oh shit and the new one

 

 

CC: wew
but also
LOL at this teacher being precious about his submissions criteria for his defunct newspaper
“i’ll take a look at your stuff” lol k mr hotguy
“look jones, I need to see three different bylines in that portfolio before we’ll let you get behind the ol’ windows ME desktop”

Jenny: also

 

 

CC: emery called her topaz tapioca and i almost thought that was her name lol

Jenny: i misread that at topaz topanga
like from boy meets world

CC: but my theory about it is
jug knows sweetpea beat him up but toni doesn’t
and if jug outs sweetpea as the beater-upper, it’ll cause chaos within the serpents and jug doesn’t know if he can get away with making waves
so he’s keeping his head down and watching them for now
there was some Significant Eye Contact between sweetpea and jug
imo

Jenny: fair enough
i may have slept through all the non-cheryl scenes
like it took me so long to figure out what happened w ethel???
and i still don’t know?

CC: I was definitely stanning for the “the murderer is the cat puppet” fan theory so don’t take my word for it lol

Jenny: i’m kind of on board w the cat puppet rn
esp after what midge said at the hospital

 

 

CC: his eyes had noooooOOoOOooo color
the face of a flesh puppet for a cursed felt cat
when the truth comes out everybody is gonna feel SOOOO silly
“cc how did u know”

Jenny: i mean you did call it right from the get go

CC: but speaking of cheryl
i did not understand why she seemed so pleased with herself throughout the episode
like i mean more than normal
i Get It, I mean, she should be, but what was her end game here????

 

 

Jenny: yeah i think she was just there as an agent of the narrative
like, to make confrontation happen

CC: like i am here for ~all~ many of of cheryl’s plots
but i hate not knowing
was she just trying to make betty feel bad???? or get the hot gossip???

 

 

Jenny: oh on that note!
i read a fan theory that cheryl might be a spellman
bc twins
and also bc she gets what she wants
and that stuff w kissing fred in the hospital??
seemed witchy
i mean her goal here might just be like the ep from s1 where she crashes jug’s bday
agent of chaos

CC: you know who loves a good witch hunt

 

 

CC: >:|

Jenny: oh no!
OH NO
i really hope that doesn’t happen
i mean
it’s a whole town over

CC: same same same same same

Jenny: but i guess that doesn’t stop the BLACK HOOD
who somehow thinks having a girlfriend for a couple of weeks after a 2year divorce that’s still happening is worse that being a child predator
shoot fred first
but also good for calling out that grundy was in fact a child predator

CC: ya for sure

Jenny: (but idk if i like that bc fred wasn’t really an adulterer; and midge and moose aren’t “drug and sex addicted teenagers”)
so are they maybe trying to say that this guy is blowing grundy’s action s out of proportion??

CC: i mean i guess that moose and girl * were * on the Jingle Jangle
fred tho

Jenny: right???

CC: i think polly made a good move getting the heck out of dodge

Jenny: BLESS POLLY

 

 

CC: there is one thing i do wanna cover before we wrap up!
which is kevin

 

 

CC: damn a lot of this episode was Trash but I super appreciated kevin’s monologue to betty

Jenny: same!
all of kevin’s stuff was really what saved me this week

CC: pointing out that he doesn’t have the same options she does and really addressing her moralizing
but at the same time, I do think betty was doing her best as a friend because she was worried; like, if you think your friend is literally gonna get himself killed, you probably wanna do whatever you can to keep them from like, not getting stabbed
but i loved that there are consequences; like, kevin didn’t thank betty for meddling; he’s realistically pissed off
even tho it led to that conversation with his dad

Jenny: i liked that he found support in moose and in his dad
but also i was kind of upset w betty for telling on him?
(but also i guess idk what to do in that situation)
mostly i was focused on moose and papa keller
being good!

CC: yeah like, idk what I’d do in that situation

 

 

CC: MOOSE
MOOOOOSE
;o;

Rachel: awww I love Moose

Jenny: literally quote “if i wasn’t such a big slab of beef, he might’ve gotten midge”
bless that big slab of beef

CC: an intrusive hypothesis:
moose is bi OR moose and midge are each others’ beards

Jenny: that’s what i said last week!
moose and midge beard bros

CC: oh shit ya you did I’m sorry!
100% credit to you for that

Jenny: but i think moose is bi is probably a more realistic explanation
and midge does seem genuinely into him
so maybe we’ll just say they’re both bi
maybe everyone is just bi
i think that’s the best way to consume media
is with that assumption

CC: like a CLAMP book
everyone is bi and no one questions it

Jenny: exactly like that
i just don’t want to live in a world where midge is straight

CC: i meannn

 

 

Jenny: also THAT
b/v endgame!!

CC: 2 gals being pals
1 gal just sitting on her pal’s lap
like u do
in a 100% heterosexual friendship
look i don’t sit on people’s’ laps in general but I def don’t sit on people’s’ laps when there are other seating options if they are my regular platonic friend
like, 10 people crammed into a car – 100% normal 2 sit on somebody’s lap
in a library etc where u can pull up a seat???

Jenny: i think it’s a sound argument

CC: i guess like, one of the reasons I think b/v shipping is so satisfying is
for literal decades, most of their characterization went into being played against each other in pursuit of a man
i just
i
i love an endgame where they are just beautiful & perfect together :sob:

Rachel: sammmeee

Jenny: same budd
same
so takeaways?

Rachel: don’t go into the woods
a basic but good rule of thumb

CC: never go there; don’t go camping; stay in the city
ok but for me
i have a prediction actually, in lieu of a takeaway:
PREDICTION: tapioca topanga hooks up with jug; they kiss at the exact moment betty walks into the room, she prettycries and breaks up with him; jug becomes Dark Jug and joins the serpents and dates topaz for a bit and they break up; meanwhile this all sets the stage for the B & V endgame to kick in

Rachel: oh wow

Jenny: noice
i can honestly really see that

CC: (naturally, jug leaves the serpents shortly after but betty doesn’t get back w him anyway)

Rachel: I hate most of that but then end I’m very into
also if he does that I will never forgive him
I will be off the Cold Sprouts train

Jenny: i mean they kind of set those seeds
and also YES
WHAT HAVE I BEEN SAYING
ALL THESE YEARS

Rachel: lol

CC: nobody that hot joins the cast this early in season 2 to just hang out and be a solid platonic friend

Jenny: i mean yeah

Rachel: god I just want them to not do the obvious thing with that
for fucking once

Jenny: but maybe toni/midge??
not obvious
but obviously great

CC: toni……veronica?????
nah that doesn’t feel like it works as well
maybe it’s topaz and betty
that’s the ship
the whole time

Jenny: OOOOOOHHHHH
that sounds really good

CC: toni cheryl

Jenny: oh my god

CC: toni is a cool gf who reins in cheryl when she goes too far
they ride around on a cool ass motorcycle being babes

Jenny: cheryl reminds me i need more thistlehouse in my life
toni&cheryl hexing men in that evil greenhouse

CC: or toni just is like, i don’t need 2 be sandwiched into ur romantic subplots; i have better things to do

Jenny: yeah
yeah

CC: toni/sabrina

Jenny: !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
🙌

CC: I’d sprinkle in more hetero pairings but we got like
3 decent boys in this whole show

Jenny: moose!!
MOOOOOOSE!!

Rachel: I’m on the moose kev train

CC: same tho

Rachel: sweet moose

Jenny: pure moose

CC: a sweet endgame love

Rachel: make an honest dude of kevin

CC: i think the saddest thing about kev’s speech was
my heart aches for this pure kid

Jenny: i knowwww

CC: i think he wants to have a teen romance and feels trapped
and he just so recently got his heart broken by joaquin

Rachel: joaquin ;-;

Jenny: and that was such a GOOD teen romance

CC: maybe joaquin will clean up his act and come back 4 kev

Rachel: but mooooossseeee

CC: ;__:

Jenny: moose/kev/joaquin
easy

CC: anyone who makes kev happy makes me happy

Rachel: oh Jenny! what is your takeaway?

Jenny: my takeaway is
i felt about about being attracted to him when he was the evil mayor on when calls the heart, but i do not feel bad about it anymore

 

 

Jenny: BUT MAYBE IT’S TIME WE START TRYING

CC: [weeps]

Jenny: really earned the hotdad merit badge this ep

CC: that sounds like a podcast segment LOL

Rachel: OH MY GOD WAS HE IN WHEN CALLS THE HEART

CC: is that the mountie romance????

Rachel: YES IT IS

Jenny: yeah

CC: OH SHIT

Rachel: I FORGOT
EVERYTHING ABOUT SHERIFF KELLAR IS DIFFERENT NOW

CC: i only know it from you talking about it rachel; i really gotta get on that

Jenny: you don’t
it’s bad

Rachel: lol
it’s real bad
I love trash

Jenny: same

 

 

Jenny: drag me

 

 

Carolynn Calabrese

If you prick your finger and write “Cat Fancy” on your mirror in blood during a harvest moon, CC will appear behind you and make you put human clothes on your pets. CC is Head Crone in Charge at POMEgranate Magazine, as well as the co-host of Moon Podcast Power MAKE UP!!

Jenny Mott

Jenny is just a Silly Nerd with a lot of Feelings about Comic Books and Friendship and also This Capitalist Yoke We All Share; she enjoys Dogs and Sleeping and Cartoons. Her three favorite words are: Breakfast All Day.

Rachel Weiss

Rachel is a big weirdo that likes to design in Photoshop and code in JavaScript. She is pro-feminism, pro-crones, and pro-dogs. She's also Boss Crone at POMEgranate Magazine, and one day hopes to be able to drink her tea without so much milk and sugar.

© 2014 - 2017 Carolynn Calabrese, Jenny Mott and Rachel Weiss and POMEgranate Magazine

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