'Riverdale' Season 4 Episode 13: The fall of Jughead Jones raises more questions than giving answers
Spoiler alert for Season 4 Episode 13: 'Chapter Seventy: Ides of March'
The end of Season 3 and the start of Season 4 saw many flashforwards and raised even more questions about the fate of Riverdale's favorite author, Jughead Jones (Cole Sprouse). While there have been many assumptions as to who might have killed the Serpent King, Episode 12 titled 'Chapter Seventy: Ides of March' took us through a rollercoaster of teen angst to reveal Jones' lifeless body.
The beginning of the Jughead narrative sees Mr Francis Dupont (Malcolm Stewart), the originator of the Baxter Brothers books, kick the elite writer off the Quill and Skull Secret Society. Dupont also terminates Jughead's contract with the Baxter Brothers franchise unless he can pull off the tiresome task of completing an entire novel by the Ides of March, in five days.
Jughead decides that he is going to write about his time at Stonewall Prep — from Mr Rupert Chipping's possible murder to the fact that his classmates put him in a coffin. Amidst this mess, Jughead is informed by Dupont that he is accused of plagiarizing the story that he submitted to Yale — the student he plagiarized from is conveniently a member of the secret society.
This member claimed he had written the story two months ago, but Jughead wrote the story last summer on his laptop. Wanting to prove his innocence with a digital timestamp, Jughead goes to get his laptop only to realize that it is missing. With little time in hand, he has to present himself to the headmaster and the committee for a writers' worst crime. This is when Jughead and Betty decide to snoop around. What they find in Dupont's office is a Baxter Brothers manuscript "ready to print" — the story? Jughead's original idea of the "The Boy in the River", which all 'Riverdale' fans would remember, is about the murder of Jason Blossom (Trevor Stines).
Jughead finds out that his contract with the franchise allowed the "brotherhood" to conveniently remove the parts of the story they didn't like, and allow ghostwriters — in this case, the Quill and Skull Secret Society members — to edit the story.
With an ever-ready murder board still in progress, Betty paints Dupont to be the puppeteer of an elaborate manipulation scheme. Did he urge Donna to lie about her affair with Chipping? Did Dupont give her Chipping's tie pin to back up the lie? These questions fall on deaf ears when Betty asks Donna Sweett (Sarah Desjardins), another vile student enemy.
Jughead, who is ready to fight for his integrity and right to be a student at Stonewall, reveals to Bret Wallis (Sean Depner) that he will not hold back at his tribunal and reveal all that has happened since he started at the insufferable school. Wallis has been after Jughead since the day he enrolled. So Jughead has ample material for his tribunal and Wallis has enough to fear. Cue in the blackmail — Wallis has a sex tape of Betty and Jughead.
At the tribunal, Jughead is faced with having to either quietly walk off the prestigious school's property without a trial or risk Betty's dignity and fight for his innocence. He chooses to leave of course, but after he is invited by the smug virulent pair that is Donna and Brett to an Ides of March party behind the school in the woods, he devises a plan.
When Betty caught wind that Jughead chose her over a prestigious school, he tells her that he has a plan once he's done taking care of the tape. This might honestly be the first time that Jughead has not revealed his plan to his loyal partner.
Armed with a knife, a rabbit mask and a serpent jacket, Jughead intimidates Wallis to settling the score in the woods. The rest of the gang — Betty, Veronica Lodge (Camila Mendes), and Archie Andrews (KJ Apa) — are all at the snobby gettogether as well. Not able to find Jughead, Betty follows Donna into the woods only to find out that Donna had a rendevouz with Evelyn Evernever (Zoé de Grand'Maison), the wife of Edgar Evernever (Chad Michael Murray), the leader of the "farmie" hypnosis, organ harvesting-fiasco in the previous season.
It seems as though the infamous word "tangerine" isn't the only word that gets Betty riled up enough to hurt her loved ones, Evelyn revealed to Donna, another word that does the same. Even though it wasn't revealed explicitly shown that Donna put Betty into a trance, we're cut to the scene where Veronica and Archie find Betty over the body of Jughead, officially catching us up with the flash-forwards to Spring Break.
Jughead said he had a plan though. Was faking his death part of it? Did he expect Donna to trigger Dark Betty? We have no idea, but what we do know is Riverdale's finest four may have to face a murder charge. Ironically, the investigative bunch are on the south side of the tracks, dancing around a bloody bonfire.
'Riverdale' airs Wednesdays at 8 pm EST on The CW.