Spoiler alert: This post contains spoilers from Riverdale Season 5, Episode 3, "Graduation." Pour out a Pop's milkshake, Riverdale fans, because another central couple just bit the dust. After Archie and Veronica imploded at prom, it was only a matter of time before Betty and Jughead also fizzled. But, in a strange twist, their split didn't really feel like a split at all. Betty and Jughead's breakup on Riverdale Season 5 was uncharacteristically low-key, which made it even more depressing for Bughead stans to watch.
Betty and Jughead's relationship was a ticking time bomb ever since Archie came clean about his secret kiss with Betty during the Hedwig and the Angry Inch rehearsals. Archie admitted the truth to Veronica at prom, causing Varchie to break up, but Jughead was still in the dark about the hookup. However, that changed in the Feb. 3 episode. The guilt finally proved to be too much for Betty after high school graduation, and she confessed to Jughead that she had kissed Archie. But unlike with Varchie, the confession didn't directly lead to a breakup. Quite the opposite, actually — it was followed by a steamy Bughead hookup scene.
Jughead's willingness to get spicy with Betty was definitely a confusing reaction to finding out his girlfriend made out with his best friend, but it seemed to indicate he wasn't planning on ending things. Before Archie shipped off to join the Army, the Core Four talked through the confusing love triangle (or, love square?), and in an even more confusing turn of events, nobody seemed to care about the Barchie kiss at all. Veronica said she was feeling too sad about Archie leaving to give the kiss any thought, and Jughead said something about how he was kind of glad to have some normal teen drama for once. Ummm, OK?
For a show as melodramatic as Riverdale, which has pushed countless storylines to get viewers invested in these relationships, it was incredibly strange to see everyone being so casual about their romances coming to an end. And even weirder to see Bughead slowly drift apart rather than explicitly break up with one another.
After Archie and Veronica both left town, Betty and Jughead noticed they weren't very close anymore, so when Betty opted to leave for Yale early, they both understood that it was over, even if they never really said it out loud. But while Bughead may be done at the moment, Riverdale will finally pull the lever on its seven-year time jump in its next new episode, which will reunite the Core Four after almost a decade apart. Could that mean Betty and Jughead will rekindle their romance? Fans will have to wait to see what their reunion looks like when Episode 4 of Riverdale Season 5 airs on Wednesday, Feb. 10, at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.