Wow, can one week go by where I don't worry about Cheryl Blossom!? She may have been the school bully in Season 1, but the new season has been peeling back Cheryl's tough outer shell to reveal the actually sweet and vulnerable woman that she's had to keep hidden from her vindictive family. Unfortunately, learning more about Cheryl also means seeing more of the horrors she has to endure, which came to a head at the end of this week's new episode. Though she's in her worst situation yet, a clue from next week's episode suggests Toni and Veronica will rescue Cheryl on Riverdale. So don't lose hope yet, Cheryl fans! Spoiler alert: This post is going to discuss plot points from Riverdale Season 2 Episode 16 "Primary Colors," so don't read on until you've seen it.
Wednesday night's new episode of Riverdale was a particularly tragic one for Cheryl Blossom. After she overheard her mom and newly introduced Uncle Claudius scheming about getting rid of her last week, Cheryl is constantly on edge in her own home. Her suspicions prove true when she finds out that her Nana Rose was poisoned and then pushed down the stairs (although she miraculously survived the murder attempt). When Cheryl finally confronts her mom about her and Claudius' clear plot to get rid of both Nana Rose and Cheryl herself, Penelope claims that Cheryl has gone mad and admits her to the Sisters of Quiet Mercy — the home for troubled children we saw earlier in the series when Alice admitted Polly.
In the car, it sounds like Penelope is admitting Cheryl to the religious-run group home over claims of insanity or mental illness, but the real reason Cheryl is there become clear after she meets her unnerving new counselor, Sister Woodhouse. Speaking in the third person, Woodhouse drops some pretty obvious clues that Cheryl is being forced to undergo gay conversion therapy:
She's going to rid you of all those naughty demons, the ones making you think such awful unnatural thoughts. Today you must rest; tomorrow the real work, the conversion, begins.
Cheryl Blossom's sexuality was only recently first discussed a couple episodes ago, when she revealed to Toni Topaz that she once grew to love a girl named Heather before Penelope Blossom forbade her from seeing Heather once she caught wind of the developing romance. Since then, Cheryl and Toni have been growing closer — even nearly kissing earlier in Wednesday night's episode — and Penelope's disgust over the budding same-sex relationship has been pronounced.
The new episode left Riverdale fans with a very depressing new struggle for Cheryl Blossom, but luckily, it looks like she may be saved very soon. One production photo from next week's episode shows Toni and Veronica on a rescue mission, standing outside a metal door marked "Authorized Personnel, S.o.Q.M." That must stand for Sisters of Quiet Mercy, which means Toni and Ronnie are teaming up to break Cheryl out!
A high-stakes rescue mission definitely sounds like something that might jumpstart the Cheryl and Toni (#Choni) relationship that has been slowly cooking for the past few episodes, and the pairing of Toni and Veronica is also pretty surprising since we have not really seen the two women interact for this Project Save Cheryl break-in.
The good news is that it seems like the rescue will likely be successful, considering that the episode after next week's will be the one focused on the Riverdale High musical, which showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa has revealed will star Cheryl Blossom in the main role:
She can't really star in a school musical when she's locked up in Sisters of Quiet Mercy, right? So there is hope for Cheryl after all!