Don’t say Riverdale has gone off the rails. Don’t you dare. Give the infamously bonkers show, starring increasingly and sinisterly absurd versions of the unquestionably wholesome Archie comics characters, the respect it deserves.
Riverdale started going off the rails back in season one, when it was revealed Betty (Lili Reinhart) had a split personality who was into S&M. It went sailing off those rails entirely in season three, which featured multiple cults, one of whom might have had access to Satanic magic. Now, the show is in season six, and those rails can no longer even be seen, which means an upcoming time-travel episode is simply par for its utterly ridiculous course.
Rather than try to explain what’s happened in season six, let me simply tell you what’s happened: Veronica’s dad tried to murder Archie (KJ Apa) by putting a bomb under his bed. When it exploded, it sent the TV series to an alternate universe called Rivervale, where Archie was almost immediately ritually sacrificed by the entire town, including Betty, Veronica (Camila Mendes), and Jughead (Cole Sprouse). When the Riverdale reality returned, Archie, Betty, and Jughead inexplicably received superpowers, which is good, because a man named Percival Pickens (Chris O’Shea) has come to town with a sinister plan and mind control powers. Oh, and at some point, Cheryl Blossom (Madelaine Petsch was possessed by her ancestor whose also an evil witch. This has all happened in the first nine episodes of the season.
Given all that has happened in season six so far, sending Pop’s diner owner Tabitha (Erinn Westbrook) back in time in an attempt to discover more about Pickens’ pernicious plan shouldn’t raise anyone’s eyebrow. Now, to be clear, Riverdale has done a handful of flashback episodes, where the show’s main stars all play younger versions of their parents. And from the stills that Entertainment Weekly snagged, that still looks like it will be the case—but Tabitha might be going back further than the ‘80s. You can see more of them here.
Riverdale airs Sundays on the CW, but you’ll have to wait until the episode after next airs to see Tabitha’s journey through time on April 24.
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