|“||Our story continues. The Mayor's Jubilee was supposed to change everything. Be a new start. But when we woke up the next morning, Riverdale was still, at its heart, a haunted town. Meanwhile, Archie Andrews, who doesn't even have a driver's license yet, is at this very moment careening down the streets of Riverdale, - trying to outrace death. [...] Now, I don't believe in miracles, usually, but it was a miracle that Archie got his dad to Riverdale General without wrecking the truck.||”|
THE ANGEL OF DEATH — As Fred’s life hangs in the balance following the shooting at Pop’s diner, Archie struggles with the emotional aftermath of what he witnessed. Meanwhile, as Veronica steps out of her comfort zone to support Archie, she learns that her father Hiram has arrived to Riverdale earlier than expected. Elsewhere, at Pop’s diner, Pop Tate recounts the chilling details of the shooting, which leaves Jughead and Betty questioning the gunman’s true motives. Lastly, after running into Cheryl at the hospital, Betty and Kevin are surprised to learn about the fire at Thornhill.
- NOTE: PLOT IS UNDER CONSTRUCTION
The episode unfolds with the aftermath of the last season's ending. Archie Andrews rushes his shot father, Fred, to the Riverdale General Hospital. Even though Archie Andrews doesn't even have a drivers license yet, he careens down the streets of Riverdale, trying to outrace death. He finally arrives at the hospital, without wrecking the truck, as he shouts for help at the entrance, explaining that his father was shot. They put him on a wheeled stretcher as they rush to the emergency room. Archie stays on the other side of the door, reassuring his father repeatedly that he is waiting right there.
Suddenly, the time flashes forward to Archie's high-school graduation. As Fred is about to take a picture of Archie, Veronica, Betty and Jughead, he says that he just can't believe that he's there, at Archie's graduation, a day he didn't think he'd live to see. Jughead replies that he didn't. Fred is confused by this, so then Veronica reminds him of the incident that occurred at Pop's Chock'lit Shoppe. The same bell jingles, and the shooter appears as the graduates laugh. When the shooter enters the room, he brings out his gun and Fred yells for everyone to go down. The gun fires, and Fred returns back to reality; in the hospital, on the operating table.
Meanwhile, Betty is at home eating breakfast with Alice. Alice approaches Betty, asking her what she and her friends did after the Jubilee. Betty replies that she went to Pop's and later went to FP's trailer with Jughead. It doesn't take long for Alice to assume that Betty and Jughead had sex. Betty assures her that they didn't, well they almost did, but they were interrupted. While initially glad to hear they were interrupted, when Betty says who interrupted them — the Serpents, Alice's demeanor changes. Alice tries to prove her point, saying she knew Jughead would fall into FP's criminal footsteps, and then Betty gets a phone call. Alice says that if Jughead's the caller, block him. Betty says, instead, that it's Archie, to which Alice says to block him too.
At the Pembrooke apartment, Veronica sits at the table with a glass of mimosa and a plate of chocolate almond croissant. When Hermione sees the glass of champagne in Veronica's hand, she reprimands her for opening the bottle of Cristal that was saved for her father's return. Veronica gets a phone call from Betty, who spreads the news from Archie. At the same time, Jughead also receives a phone call from Betty. Jughead exits the trailer, uncovers the motorcycle parked in front of the trailer, and without hesitation, gets on, puts on the helmet and leaves.
Betty and her parents, Alice and Hal, enter the hospital. She sees Veronica and her mother on the way, along with Jughead. They find Archie pacing back and forth, covered in the blood of Fred and embrace him in a group hug. When they all sit down, surrounding Archie, he explains what happened. Archie recounts the events at Pop's — Archie came out the bathroom to find a hooded man with green eyes pointing a gun at Pop Tate, then at his dad, Fred. He fired the gun, then bolted, leaving a bloody Fred on the floor. Pop Tate called the ambulance, but Archie took it upon himself to drive him all the way to the hospital, but he's questioning this decision as he thinks he may have made it worse. Jughead refuses to agree with that, saying that first, he saved Cheryl, now Fred, if he keeps it up, he might need a superhero name, as Jughead proposes, 'Pureheart the Powerful'.
With his dad still in surgery, Hermione urges Archie to speak to his mother. When Archie leaves the group, Alice scrutinizes Jughead, who questions her accusing look. Betty, already knowing her mother's thoughts, reprimands her from inciting a feud. Alice is nonchalant, pretending not to understand what she means. Despite a warning from Betty, Alice speaks up anyway, as she "can't help but wonder" if Jughead's Southside associates were involved in the robbery/shooting. Although Jughead can't speak for all of the Serpents, he knows she can't accuse his father, considering he's in jail.
In the hallway, Archie is on the phone with Mary Andrews, while initially hesitant to tell her about Fred, he does so anyway telling her about the incident, and that she should come immediately. When Sheriff Keller arrives, The core four greet him. They inform him of Fred's status before Sheriff Keller suggests Archie has a private conversation with him regarding the incident. When Jughead asks to tag along, Sheriff Keller doesn't agree at first, until Archie does.
Archie describes the shooter as a man that's maybe 5'10, 160 pounds or so. He was wearing dark pants and jacket. When Sheriff asks if there was a symbol or insignia on the jacket, Jughead immediately catches on to what he's insinuating; if the shooter was a Serpent. Archie states that it was just a normal, dark jacket, with no snakes. According to Archie, the shooter wasn’t wearing a ski mask; it was a homemade hood with the eyes cut out by themselves. Sheriff Keller says that Pop Tate did provide them with information of what happened, up until the point Fred got shot. Archie is asked to fill in the gaps. When asked about what the shooter did after shooting Fred, he hesitates, refusing to get into details, making it pretty clear that he’s keeping something from them. He simply states that he shot his dad, and ran out. Sheriff Keller's professional opinion is that it was probably someone out of his head on meth or the jingle jangle, or perhaps a Southside lowlife looking for a cash grab. Jughead asks how much cash he got, suspicious that robbery wasn't the motive. Sheriff Keller suggests it may be someone who has a grudge against Fred that wanted to make it look like a robbery, although it is too early to even speculate.
When Archie and Jughead make it back to the waiting room. Jughead, who noticed Archie holding something back to the Sheriff, confronts Archie, who tells him Fred just fired a bunch of Serpents from his construction crew. He’s worried one of them came back looking for revenge, and Jughead promises to use his Serpent connections to investigate further.
As Jughead leaves, Fred's doctor, Dr. Steven Masters, explains that Fred is out of surgery and Archie won’t be able to see him for at least an hour. They managed to get the bullet out and stop the internal bleeding, but Fred still cannot breathe on his own. Archie asks what he's supposed to do in the meantime, and Betty and Veronica recommend that he goes home to change. While Archie is reluctant to leave the hospital until he sees his father, Alice reassures Archie that Fred is strong stock, and not the man to leave things unfinished.
The time flashes forward again to another of Fred's hallucinatory visions, where Archie and his father are in the trailer at the Andrews Construction. Archie says that it is time for Fred to go, and Fred believes something is not feeling right. Archie reassures his dad and tells him he needs a break. Then, Archie says that they're waiting for him, which confuses his father. Archie continues by naming Uncle Oscar and Grandpa Artie. And suddenly, the door starts slamming, and Archie states that it is the dead relatives. The vision ends, as Fred is drawn back to the reality, where he is lying on the bed.
Archie and Veronica return home, where Vegas runs towards them excitedly. Archie rushes to get out without changing his clothes, but Veronica stops him telling him that he needs to get out of those bloody clothes first. They go out, and Archie talks about the Vegas' strong relationship with his father. Veronica stops walking, overcome by emotions, to which Archie embraces her.
Jughead has a meeting with two Southside Serpents. Jughead explains that Fred was shot during a robbery at Pop's by a hooded man He explains his physical characteristics, and one Serpent says that they don't wear masks. However, Serpents were actually working for Fred Andrews, and, for reasons unknown, he decided to let them go, someone could've taken it personally, went rogue, and attempted to harm Fred. Tall Boy reassures Jughead, telling him that he'll knock heads and let him know.
Back at the Andrews house, Archie finally takes a shower, when he and Veronica return from walking Vegas. Veronica walks up to the door and asks if he's okay. Deciding to join him instead, Veronica walks in, and strips down her clothes, initiating another steamy session.
At the hospital, Kevin hands Betty a cup of coffee. Kevin gets Betty's mind off the matter at hand and talks about what happened with Jughead and Betty. He is shocked to hear that Betty and Jughead are officially a couple on their own terms. Betty continues by saying that things may become complicated for her relationships, in a "my boyfriend may be joining the Serpents" kind of way, to Kevin's shock. He reminds her about his experience with a serpent boyfriend, Joaquin, but Betty contradicts that, saying he was nice, sweet. But as far as Kevin is concerned, he possessed those qualities when he wasn't dumping bodies in Sweetwater River or mopping up buckets of blood. Cheryl Blossom arrives at the hospital, following a doctor pushing a gurney with a bandaged person on it.
Curious, Betty and Kevin approach Cheryl, who reveals that Penelope is on the gurney. She explains that there was a terrible fire at Thornhill last night. However, rather than telling them the truth, that she started the fire in an attempt to start over, Cheryl creates a cover story; She was asleep after the incident at Sweetwater River, the breeze probably knocked a lit candle over, setting fire to the curtains. After Penelope returned from the Jubilee, she ran headlong into the blaze to save Cheryl. Unfortunately for her, she suffered third-degree burns and acute smoke inhalation in the process. Cheryl then asks Kevin and Betty why they are here.
Back at Archie's house, Veronica folds Fred's clothes, as Archie walks in. Archie starts searching for his father's wallet, but is unable to find it. He claims that everything that is important to his dad is in that wallet, and starts to get angry. He lashes out at Veronica, and tells her to leave, to Veronica's disbelief. She starts to walk away, but pauses. Realizing what it means to be a good girlfriend, she refuses because he needs some form of moral support. He may be angry, hurting and terrified, and he can push her and scream at her, but she's not going anywhere.
Later, Archie is called to the police station where Sheriff Keller and Archie go through a lineup of suspects.
- The title for the episode comes from the 1953 crime novel by Ira Levin which has been adapted into film twice, first in 1956 then again in 1991.
- Fred Andrews' fate was revealed by the end of this episode.
- The episode ends with the notes of "Rosemary's Baby Main Theme", the soundtrack of Roman Polanski's Rosemary's Baby (1968), based on the 1967 novel of the same name by Ira Levin.
- This is the most watched episode of Riverdale.
- Moses Thiessen, who played Ben, also played the unnamed attendant at the snack bar in "Chapter Four: The Last Picture Show". It's not clear whether this is the same character or not.
- ↑ Final Adjusted TV Ratings for Wednesday 11th October 2017
- ↑ Season 2 Episode Title - Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (@WriterRAS) - Twitter
- ↑ The CW Announces Fall 2017 Premiere Dates - Spoiler TV
- ↑ Riverdale - Episode 2.01 - A Kiss Before Dying - Promotional Photos & Press Release
- ↑ Riverdale Season 2 first look: Archie tries to save his father