Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3 Review: Chapter Sixteen: The Watcher in the Woods

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The killer has made his presence known. "The Black Hood" is here to slay on Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3.

I love a good murder mystery. Give me tension, thrills, and paranoia spreading across the town. It's all the ingredients for a great season plot.

Now, if only Archie can stop him in time.

Don't Mess With Toni - Riverdale

"Chapter Sixteen: The Watcher in the Woods" proved me wrong (and maybe everyone as well) with my assumption because the gunman didn't kill Moose and Midge.

This revelation is shocking. I'm not a doctor, but Moose sustained A LOT of bullets while protecting Midge from the attacker. He should be in a coma, not joking around with Reggie and Archie in bed.

For a while, I had the strangest theory Archie made up "The Black Hood." He had the comic in his hand, and he wanted people to believe him. Everyone would take him seriously about the crimes being connected if Alice Cooper wrote a story.

Obviously, this theory was wrong, especially when the evidence was verified. But, it does seem like an Archie thing to do.

Southside High - Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3

Mayor McCoy and Sheriff Keller never wanted that letter to see the light of day. The look on the Mayor's face after Alice said she was going to publish it was pure amazement. She was blown away in shock.

I think them not wanting the letter published had something to do with appearances.

As a horror movie fan, this is not the approach to go. You have to warn the town of any danger or proclamation. If not, the killer is going to keep going on their rampage none the wiser.

Just look at Ethel! She was almost the next target. At least Polly had enough sense to get out of town before the killer possibly went after her.

The smartest people to survive horror movies are the ones who don't stick around to be in the horror movie.

Blast From The Past - Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3

Jughead's decision to revive the school newspaper was an interesting move. It shows that Betty has a positive effect on his life. The old Jughead would've retreated to become a moody loner again; instead, he channeled his efforts into a project.

I hope this storyline isn't dropped anytime soon.

We need Jughead to be passionate about something in his new setting. He loves to write, and this gives him the chance to do so. Also, it could be his way of cleaning up the school.

Archie: Can we at least agree now there’s a killer on the loose?
Jughead: A terrible way...
Archie: Jughead, he murdered Ms. Grundy.
Betty: Arch, we don’t know that these three crimes are related.
Veronica: Guys, can we focus on what happens here? Midge and Moose are alive, Archie’s dad survived...the new season of ‘The Bachelorette’ starts tonight. You’re all coming over to watch.
Jughead: There’s a shooter terrorizing the town. Do you really want us to watch a gross reality dating show?!

After what we saw on Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3, would Southside High still be allowed to run like this?

Don't get me wrong, I understand Riverdale is simply a TV show. We have to extend some form of disbelief. However, there were kids openly doing drugs in the hallway like it was no one's business.

Do the adults not notice these things?

At some point, Mayor McCoy would've stepped in to shut that down. It seems weird from a plot standpoint that no one has said anything after seeing how bad the school has become.

Toni Topaz - Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3

What are your first thoughts of Toni Topaz?

I like the character. She's fun, cool, and she has Jughead's back. She didn't need to protect him at school or lie to Betty, but she did.

Jughead needs to have a good friend, and I hope that will be Toni.

Though, it seems there is the potential for a romance or future trouble with Bughead. I'm crossing my fingers they stay closer as friends. He needs to have a strong ally with all the gang trouble at Southside High.

Meet The Parents - Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3

I never realized Veronica was so desperate to impress her father. Her sudden need to gain his approval came out of nowhere. Especially after her dismissing him on Riverdale Season 2 Episode 2.

From the way their relationship has been presented before, it always seemed like Veronica was the apple of Hiram's eye. I had the impression they were close before he got arrested. This thinking might be wrong.

She looked ecstatic introducing her friends and boyfriend to her father. I don't get it. She hated him just last week!

Was this simply to get involved with the Lodge business or just a plot mistake?

Meet The Boyfriend - Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3

Marisol Nichols deserves a raise for cementing my "love-to-hate" status with Hermione. This character continues to prove why she's the worst. And yet, I love the direction she's taking Hermione.

Her effortless tone while chastising Veronica before the dinner, and the half-drunken cold barbs she threw at Veronica after dinner, were perfect acting choices. We're getting a real sense of the type of character Hermione actually is.

She may have started Riverdale as a concerned mother. However, she enjoys placing the blame on her daughter. It's clear Hiram gives unconditional love to Veronica while Hermione isn't so lucky.

Hiram: You know the one thing about this apartment is that sound carries. You know my study, when the door closed, I could hear you and Veronica in the dining room as if we were all together. If you want to burn down your relationship with our daughter, that’s your business. Don’t ever try to poison her against me. Clear?
Hermione: Of course.

Hiram is a creepy guy. Everything he did during "Chapter Sixteen: The Watcher in the Woods" reaffirmed all my initial thoughts. He is majorly hiding something.

Mark Conseulos and Marisol Nichols have great chemistry together. Particularly, I love their scene in front of the mirror. The lighting, the music, the creepy way he touched her hair. Everything clicked to create a creepy and tension-filled moment.

Mr. and Mrs. Lodge - Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3

Was Betty too invested in Kevin's love life?

I understand she's being a good friend and worrying about him; you can't stop this side of Betty. And sure, we can't deny the fact a killer is running around Riverdale. But, she's also low-key judging him about his choices.

Kevin has been nothing but supportive of her crushes on Archie and Jughead. And he was right; she never asked his permission.

I like the character of Betty. She is one of my favorites. However, she does tend to judge on her soapbox every now and then; it's the worst side of her.

No one is perfect.

What's In The Box? - Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3

Cheryl was living for Kevin's drama. She was lapping up every minute of it and wanted more.

I love Cheryl, but she and Betty are two sides of the same coin.

Betty obsessed over Kevin's love life because she cared about him. Cheryl obsessed because she wanted to cause drama. One is good, the other bad.

It's no wonder they're opposites who complement each other.

Kevin: Betty, what do you want from me?
Betty: I want you to have more respect for yourself than this.
Kevin: Respect for myself?
Betty: Yes.
Kevin: Look, we’ve been friends for a long time, but you still have no idea.
Betty: Well, then tell me, Kev, please!
Kevin: You act like we’ve got the same set of options. You live in this pale pink world of milkshakes and first kisses, and “Am I going to date Archie or Jughead?”
Cheryl: Except, for when she’s Dark Betty...
Kevin: Right! Right! Right! Except for when you’re exploring your BDSM sexuality, which again you’re allowed to do. But I’m not, because why? This is what I’ve got, Betty. Me, these woods, so please don’t come here and tell me it’s disgusting. If you can’t accept what I do, whatever I do then we’re just not really friends.
[Kevin leaves]

Kevin's speech to Betty really hit close to home.

I've never fully connected with Kevin as a character before Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3; except for his witty nature, of course. I understand him better now after he was honest with Betty and shared his thoughts about his love life.

Dating is terrible. Regardless if you're gay, straight, bi, older, younger, etc., the dating world has its challenges. Most of us have had THE WORST experiences. (I've got stories to tell, but we're here about Riverdale...)

It's a tough world out there. His options are most likely pretty limited in a small town like Riverdale. I get why he's seeking out romantic connection anyway he can.

He must've been ecstatic to find Joaquin on Riverdale Season 1 Episode 4. You know, before it all went downhill.

I'm happy he came to his senses and stopped cruising. There's no telling who could be in those woods. I was so worried he was going to be the next victim of the gunman.

This is a message for the coward calling himself, “The Black Hood”. You think you can attack us from the shadows? But Riverdale is a lot stronger than you, and we’re not afraid. You see there’s only one of you, but we are legion. We’re called “The Red Circle” and we’re coming for you. We will find you. We will hunt you. And we will end you.

Archie

I couldn't stop laughing during Archie's livestream with "The Red Circle."

Seriously?! Did the members of The Red Circle have to be shirtless? Did they need to do tough guy poses? Why are they wearing masks? Who is this going to scare?

I'm a big Batman fan, and there is an enemy called, "The Red Hood." Check it out; it looks similar.

This may be the most ridiculous moment I have ever seen on Riverdale. It's no wonder Hiram is smirking at the end of Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3. I would be, too.

Though, his smirk must be tied to something greater. He wanted Archie to instill fear in the town. I can't wait for the big overarching Hiram plot reveal; he's definitely sinister evil.

My spidey senses are tingling.

Fighting Back - Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3

What did you think of "Chapter Sixteen: The Watcher in the Woods"? Will Jughead successfully relaunch the school newspaper? Is Betty and Kevin's friendship over? Why was Veronica so interested in getting involved in the family business?

If you missed the latest episode of Riverdale, you can watch Riverdale online via TV Fanatic. Come back here and let us know what you think.

Chapter Sixteen: The Watcher in the Woods Review

Editor Rating: 4.3 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (27 Votes)

Justin Carreiro is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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Riverdale Season 2 Episode 3 Quotes

Archie: Can we at least agree now there’s a killer on the loose?
Jughead: A terrible way...
Archie: Jughead, he murdered Ms. Grundy.
Betty: Arch, we don’t know that these three crimes are related.
Veronica: Guys, can we focus on what happens here? Midge and Moose are alive, Archie’s dad survived...the new season of ‘The Bachelorette’ starts tonight. You’re all coming over to watch.
Jughead: There’s a shooter terrorizing the town. Do you really want us to watch a gross reality dating show?!

Kevin: Betty, what do you want from me?
Betty: I want you to have more respect for yourself than this.
Kevin: Respect for myself?
Betty: Yes.
Kevin: Look, we’ve been friends for a long time, but you still have no idea.
Betty: Well, then tell me, Kev, please!
Kevin: You act like we’ve got the same set of options. You live in this pale pink world of milkshakes and first kisses, and “Am I going to date Archie or Jughead?”
Cheryl: Except, for when she’s Dark Betty...
Kevin: Right! Right! Right! Except for when you’re exploring your BDSM sexuality, which again you’re allowed to do. But I’m not, because why? This is what I’ve got, Betty. Me, these woods, so please don’t come here and tell me it’s disgusting. If you can’t accept what I do, whatever I do then we’re just not really friends.
[Kevin leaves]