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‘Riverdale’ Promised a Darker Season 2, & That’s Exactly What We’re Getting

Prior to the premiere of Season 2, Riverdale cast members were fairly tight-lipped and vague about what to expect this season. To prevent spoilers from slipping, each time they were questioned during an interview, they shared that this season would be much darker than the first. Since the Season 2 premiere, viewers have seen small moments that indicated darker storylines—but this week’s episode was the darkest thus far.

In Season 1, we got a taste of Dark Betty when she traded her signature blonde ponytail for a short, black wig and teamed up with Veronica to rightfully punish Chuck Clayton after he mistreated some girls at school. In this week’s episode, we saw how much darker Betty can become under pressure from The Black Hood, who is under the impression that the two of them can cleanse Riverdale of its sinners.

In order to prevent deaths, Betty agreed to The Black Hood’s demands—in exchange for an answer to one of her questions after each task. This included publishing a piece in the school newspaper exposing her mother, Alice Cooper, for being arrested as a teenager, and cutting off her Veronica (who The Black Hood said is not as innocent as Betty thinks). Because of The Black Hood, Betty accused Veronica of being a shallow, party girl who only hangs out with her Riverdale crew out of circumstance. And as if that scene wasn’t heartbreaking enough, Betty broke up with Jughead to prevent him from becoming The Black Hood’s next victim. No one has been attacked since Betty started answering The Black Hood’s phone calls, but who knows how much longer Betty can possibly keep doing this before the darkness takes over.

Even Jughead is succumbing to the darkness that’s taking over Riverdale. Since his father, FP Jones, got put in jail, Jughead has been struggling to maintain relations on the Northside and the Southside. After this week, it’s safe to say that Jughead is a full-fledged Serpent. To prove his loyalty, he was forced to take care of Hot Dog, confront a rattlesnake, and get repeatedly beat up by the other Serpents. Jughead has been trying to prevent an all-out war between the two sides, but his official status as a Serpent (plus the new tattoo on his arm and kiss with Toni Topaz) suggest that he’s not longer a mediator between the North and the South.

Darkness manifested itself this week in the form of a new character as well: Nick St. Clair. Nick, who was close with Veronica during her time in New York, clearly had bad intentions from the moment he appeared. He invited Veronica and her friends to his hotel room for a party, then pressured them into taking jingle jangle. Following the party, Nick harassed Veronica, who had already said she wasn’t interested. And even though Veronica slapped Nick in the face to make her message clear, it wasn’t clear enough because he then decided to pursue Cheryl. While at the Lodge’s open house, Nick drugged Cheryl’s champagne and took her to his room. Thankfully, Veronica and the Pussycats stepped in before Nick could sexually assault Cheryl, and the final scene of the episode indicated that Nick won’t be getting away with his monstrous actions.

With Nick pegged as the Black Hood’s next target (via Betty’s suggestion), one can only assume how much darker Season 2 will get as it progresses.

Olivia Singh is currently a senior at Hunter College in New York City, majoring in Media Studies. Her concentration is Journalism and she is a Pop Culture Blogger for HerCampus.com. Music, movies, television, and pop culture in general are her areas of expertise. She’s that one friend who knows just about every detail of the latest news story in the entertainment world. Close friends rave about her storytelling skills, so she can only hope that other people will enjoy her writing as much as she enjoys telling a good story. When she isn't scrolling through her plethora of social media sites, she can be found cuddling with her cat, playing the piano, obsessing over boybands, or eating a cupcake.
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