It is no secret that Riverdale can be totally ridiculous sometimes. The teen drama embraces a heightened, campy energy that lends itself to wild storylines about masked serial killers and teenage biker gangs, but the currently airing third season has turned the absurdity up a few notches. Now, we have a cult that can make babies float, an outbreak of seizures, a dangerous Dungeons and Dragons-like game that affects reality, and a cult-ish killer in a gargoyle mask all happening at once. And honestly, the show's newest episode reached peak ridiculousness. Riverdale Season 3 Episode 9 is the most absurd the show has ever been, and viewers probably have about a million questions.
1. The town quarantine randomly just ends.
Before Riverdale went on its winter hiatus, the big cliffhanger that we were left with was that Hiram Lodge had managed to close Riverdale off from the outside world by having a quarantine ordered due to the seizure outbreaks. This totally seemed like it was going to be a major deal when the show returned — especially since Archie, Jughead, and F.P. were locked out of town — but the mid-season premiere totally skipped over it. All we get is a Jughead voiceover saying that the quarantine lifted five weeks ago. Uhh, wasn't that quarantine, like, Hiram's master plan? Shouldn't it have been a bigger deal?
2. Cheryl and Toni are cat burglars now for some reason.
Completely out of nowhere, Cheryl and Toni begin robbing rich people in the episode. Oh, and to drive the "cat burglar" thing home even more, they wear actual cat masks while they are doing their burglarizing. This new hobby has never been mentioned or hinted at before at all, and there is never a reason given for why they are even robbing these people.
3. A bear mauls Archie.
During the cold open of the episode, Archie gets mauled by a bear. Yep, that happens. We don't even see the bear. Archie just walks in the woods, screams, and then we see him hobbling into his cabin with bleeding claw mark on his chest as he calls the police to say he's "in bad shape" after a bear attacked him. What is going on!?
4. Hiram is extorting his teenage daughter, who owns a speakeasy.
Honestly, the most ridiculous part about Season 3 is the fact that Veronica (who is about 17 years old) owns and operates a nightclub for teenagers, which she calls a speakeasy and forces everyone who comes to dress and talk like they are in the 1950s. Adding to that vibe is the face that her dad is an actual mob boss who has been bent on killing her boyfriend for months now. In the new episode, Hiram decides he wants to start forcing Veronica to pay him a percentage of her speakeasy profits, leading Veronica to cook her books to try to scam her father. OK...
5. Betty lets dozens of escaped psychiatric patients sleep on her living room floor.
Prior to the new episode, Betty dressed up in a strange Christ-like cosplay to make a hospital full of mentally unstable teenagers believe that she is their queen. But when Betty busted them out of the asylum, they had nowhere to go. So Betty lets them all sleep on her living room floor, something that apparently her cult-brainwashed mother is totally okay with.
6. Archie has wild hallucinations because a bear attacked him.
For some reason, that scratch from the bear leads to Archie having intense hallucinations. I guess they could be caused by blood loss, but it definitely felt super weird. Archie sees a bunch of dead people and visions of his friends, who all inform him to go back in time and murder the problematic people in his life. The bear-induced vision quest end with Archie have to — you guessed it — metaphorically kill his past self. Incredible stuff.
Honestly, I am here for even more ridiculous stuff to happen in future episodes, so bring it on, Riverdale!