Riverdale A Kiss Before Dying Recap Season 2 Episode 1 – Riverdale returns to form with its second season premiere “Chapter Fourteen: A Kiss Before Dying,” and the episode is aided by showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa’s script. The hour picks up directly after the events of the first season finale, with Archie rushing his father to the hospital after he’s shot by an armed robber bursting into Pop Tate’s Chock’lit Shoppe. It’s a fast-paced affair that finds all of Riverdale’s main players coming together – at least, for a moment – to recognize this harrowing moment in the Andrews family, but Riverdale also takes some time to find out how Archie and Fred feel about it on an emotional level.
Riverdale A Kiss Before Dying Recap Season 2 Episode 1
Riverdale always has a lot going on – it’s effectively a primetime soap opera – so it’s interesting to see “Chapter Fourteen” stick so closely to one scenario. Throughout the episode, it’s truly unclear whether Fred will survive the ordeal, and Sacasa explores the potential consequences behind that loss. Archie, finding it difficult to cope with possibly losing his father, attempts to crawl within himself; he remembers the good times he had, the way his dad bonded with his dog, and he also pushes people closest to him away in his pain and anger.
It’s a dramatic shift for the character, who often becomes Riverdale‘s least interesting performer. KJ Apa gives a good performance, but again, the episode finds its most compelling moments in the rest of the ensemble. Veronica steps up to make sure that Archie knows no one’s leaving him alone, and even Reggie shows his solidarity after showing up at the hospital. It helps that Pop Tate makes a bunch of burgers and fries to feed the troops. “Chapter Fourteen” feels like a reunion after all of the crazy things that happened last season between groups of people, and it’s an important way to show how closely knit Riverdale truly is – even when people are trying to kill each other.
With that said, some of the more flawed moments occur when Sacasa tries to get into Fred’s head, who is experiencing some hallucinations in his semi-conscious state. In his dreams he sees his son growing up, getting married, and basically living his life without his father. While it’s important to Fred’s recovery – he effectively states that he didn’t die because he realizes Archie still needs him – it’s a bit too overwrought in the episode, and it takes away from the bigger reveals that could have used a bit more development.
One of those surprises is the appearance of Hiram Lodge, who finally gets to come home after his imprisonment much to the chagrin of his daughter Veronica. The other, and much bigger, twist is Ms. Grundy’s murder, something that kind of surfaces out of nowhere since the show left Archie’s gross relationship with his teacher behind. It sets up this season’s new storyline: there’s a killer on the loose, and it seems like he’s specifically targeting people in Archie’s life. And it’s a shocking moment of bloodshed in an episode otherwise focused on Fred’s recovery. But one can’t help but wish for some more time with Ms. Grundy so that the final scene doesn’t feel so empty of emotion.
Still, the new serial killer plot gives Riverdale some forward momentum after the resolution of Fred’s shooting. While “Chapter Fourteen” lacks some of the compelling mysteries that kept the show moving in its season one finale, it’s clear that Sacasa and the rest of the Riverdale team have some exciting ideas for the future of the show. And the presence of the ensemble in this episode helps cement the relationship bonds that Riverdale has built with its audience already.
Other episodes of Riverdale reviewed on TV Eskimo include:
Riverdale The Sweet Hereafter Season 1 Episode 13 Recap characters and cast include:
Archie Andrews – K. J. Apa (Shortland Street, The Cul De Sac, A Dog’s Purpose)
Betty Cooper – Lili Reinhart (The Kings of Summer, Miss Stevens, The Good Neighbor)
Veronica Lodge – Camila Mendes
Jughead Jones – Cole Sprouse (The Suite Life of Zack and Cody, Grace Under Fire, Friends, Big Daddy)
Hermione Lodge – Marisol Nichols (Delta Farce, 24, GCB, Teen Wolf, Felon)
Cheryl Blossom – Madelaine Petsch
Kevin Keller – Casey Cott
Fred Andrews – Luke Perry (Beverly Hills 90210, Black Beauty, Jeremiah, John from Cincinnati, Oz)
Alice Cooper – Madchen Amick (Twin Peaks, Sleepwalkers, Priest, Longmire)
Mary Andrews – Molly Ringwald (Sixteen Candles, Pretty In Pink, Raising Expectations, The Secret Life of the American Teenager)
Josie McCoy – Ashleigh Murray
Hiram Lodge – Mark Consuelo (Queen of the South, Pitch, Alpha House, A Walk Among the Tombstones, 1-800-Missing)
Sheriff Keller – Martin Cummins (Dark Angel, When Calls the Heart, Shattered, UnREAL, True Justice)
Geraldine Grundy – Sarah Habel (Atomica, Rush, Warren, Underemployed)
Penelope Blossom – Nathalie Boltt (District 9, 800 Words, The Cult, When We Go to War)
Principal Waldo Weatherbee – Peter Bryant (Jumanji, Scary Movie, Rogue, Stargate SG-1)
Clifford Blossom – Barclay Hope (Paycheck, Timeless, The Age of Adaline, Wayward Pines)
Hal Cooper – Lochlyn Munro (White Chicks, Unforgiven, Major Crimes, Longmire, When Calls the Heart)
Reggie Mantle – Charles Melton
Melody Valentine – Asha Bromfield (The Gabby Douglas Story, Fall Out)
Valerie Brown – Hayley Law
Coach Clayton – Colin Lawrence (Rogue, Impastor, Supernatural, The Killing, Battlestar Galactica, Watchmen)
Moose Mason – Cody Kearsley