Riverdale season 6, episode 6 review: Unbelievable

Riverdale -- “Chapter One Hundred and One: Unbelievable” -- Image Number: RVD606b_0557r -- Pictured (L-R): Cole Sprouse as Jughead Jones, Lili Reinhart as Betty Cooper and KJ Apa as Archie Andrews -- Photo: Michael Courtney/The CW -- © 2022 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Riverdale -- “Chapter One Hundred and One: Unbelievable” -- Image Number: RVD606b_0557r -- Pictured (L-R): Cole Sprouse as Jughead Jones, Lili Reinhart as Betty Cooper and KJ Apa as Archie Andrews -- Photo: Michael Courtney/The CW -- © 2022 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved. /

Riverdale season 6 officially kicks off, but the aftermath of “Rivervale” ensures that we’re in for a completely different era for the show.

Riverdale has made an explosive comeback to screens. Pardon the pun because that is, by no means, a reference to the bomb that Hiram Lodge left under Archie Andrews’ bed. However, it is one to the fallout that resulted from it.

“Chapter One Hundred And One: Unbelievable” seems set to kick off a new era for Riverdale, as the show enters territory that it has only toyed with before, and what better time to do that than in the aftermath of its bonkers 100th episode?

Birthed out of the remnants of the bizarre “Rivervale” event of last year, Riverdale‘s new normal now includes the supernatural, it seems. Is that something to celebrate or should we be worried about the show’s wicked new direction?

Super Barchie rises in Riverdale season 6

Much of the focus of “Unbelievable” is placed on the brewing relationship between Betty Cooper and Archie Andrews in a creative choice that makes sense, particularly when you factor in how the bomb Hiram Lodge left behind in the season 5 finale exploded under Archie’s bed just as the old-flames-that-never-were were finally getting intimate.

But as happy as the Barchie fans might be, “Barchie nation” isn’t the only thing that is rising, because the new pairing is at the heart of the show’s pivot towards the supernatural, and with that comes questions, namely “How did they survive the bomb explosion?”. The answer: Super powers.

Through some frustratingly obvious expositional dialogue, Betty spoke to her lover about how his body shielded her from the blast, quite clearly setting the stage for Archie himself to discover that he was now magically invincible. And the key word there is “magically” because it seems that Cheryl Blossom’s ancestor Abigail has put a magical curse on the town that somehow turned Archie into Superman, imbued Betty with the ability to sense danger and left Jughead without his hearing.

As far as who benefits from this the most, I would say that Betty is obvious answer here at the moment. She’s always been Riverdale‘s most interesting character, so giving her that “Spider Sense”, if you will, is something that will no doubt benefit her in her quest to track down the deadly Trash Bag Killer in the future. And judging by how the episode ends, she’s going to need that sooner rather than later.

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Riverdale — “Chapter One Hundred and One: Unbelievable” — Image Number: RVD606a_0063r — Pictured (L-R): KJ Apa as Archie Andrews and Lili Reinhart as Betty Cooper — Photo: Michael Courtney/The CW — © 2022 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved. /

On the other hand, Archie Andrews is a character that Riverdale has struggled to find a place for since the first season, with him wearing many hats over the course of the show’s run, including but not limited to high school football star, vigilante, musician, mobster-in-training, boxer, vigilante again, so I’m not sure turning him from the town’s resident Batman into Superman (and rendering him without weaknesses) is the way to make him more interesting.

This is where the character moments are important to the show and why it’s so frustrating that they’re so often overlooked. For an episode so focused on aftermath, “Unbelievable” doesn’t seem too bothered about explaining to characters that “Barchie” is a thing now, with Betty talking to Archie’s longtime love interest Veronica about being in his bedroom and Ms. Lodge not even wondering why that was (even though they had just recently broken up).

“Barchie” is a big deal, but the show doesn’t seem concerned about treating it that way, and that just becomes another one of those character moments lost in yet another over-the-top storyline.

The She-Wolf of Riverdale

Veronica Lodge has long been a character that walked that line between good and evil, but almost always did it for the right reasons, and we very much saw that again in the midseason premiere. The self-proclaimed “She-Wolf of Wall Street” grew tired of her father’s unforgivable actions and reached out to the mob to terminate him once and for all, seemingly getting her wish in the end.

This is the kind of crazy storyline that only Riverdale can get away with and, for the most part, it does. While it’s shocking in a way to see Veronica do such a thing, it’s totally believable given that her father has pushed her so much over the years, ruined her relationships and attempted to destroy her friends.

What doesn’t work here is her complete 180. While it’s understandable that Reggie’s father having a heart attack would make her second-guess killing her own, the execution let the story down, with it coming off as little more than a convenient plot device that wasn’t helped by the fact that Reggie’s father having a heart attack wasn’t treated like it was a storyline for Reggie, making it clear that it wouldn’t carry any consequences for that character or his father right from the offset.

As far as how Veronica will live with having apparently killed Hiram, that is unclear yet, but it does give the She-Wolf of Wall Street an interesting conflict to deal with in the episodes ahead.

Something wicked this way comes (but has it come around too late?)

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Riverdale — “Chapter One Hundred and One: Unbelievable” — Image Number: RVD606b_0557r — Pictured (L-R): Cole Sprouse as Jughead Jones, Lili Reinhart as Betty Cooper and KJ Apa as Archie Andrews — Photo: Michael Courtney/The CW — © 2022 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved. /

Introducing the extraordinary is a major step for Riverdale but one that seems all the more possible after the “Rivervale” event paved the way for it. If it’s what the show needs remains to be seen, because it already feels like it’s overshadowing the core dynamics, and this isn’t the first time that a fleeting storyline has overwhelmed the characters in them just to point them in a particular direction. Is this what the Betty and Archie storyline really needs right now? Debatable, but it does promise to revolutionize the show – perhaps even more than the recent time-jump did.

One of the biggest drawbacks of bringing in the supernatural now, however, is that “Rivervale” has already done it in recent memory, so the novelty may have worn off, especially because witchcraft – thanks in no small part to Abigail Blossom – is once again at the center of it. But the weirdest stories in Riverdale always come from the Blossoms, so while that’s not exactly fresh either, it does at least pose a familiar tie to the show that it once was, which it may need if it’s intent on taking this dive into the inexplicable.

It’s all very confusing and totally in-line for Riverdale, but I will commend the show for taking the leap they have been afraid to for so long and going all in on it. What we have here is an evolved Riverdale – one that not only confirms the “Rivervale” event was necessary but canon to the main story.

It’s bold of the show to do this so late into its run, but it’s a move that could breathe new life into it if executed correctly. The fact that most of this analysis has discussed it just highlights how big a step it actually is, but while the risks of it are quite huge, they also come with the potential of an even bigger reward. Here’s hoping that by the end of Riverdale season 6 that’s what we’re looking at.

Riverdale Ramblings

  • The wildcard in all of this supernatural talk could be Jughead. His hearing loss could just be the unfortunate consequence of being too close to a bomb explosion, but is there more to this story than we think? Could this be the beginning of a power manifestation for him too?
  • Hiram Lodge’s “death” was a shocking twist, but one that comes off as rather flat in execution. Why kill your biggest big bad off-screen when you had the chance to showcase that in the season 5 finale? Unless of course he isn’t dead… which is actually very possible given we’re talking about Riverdale of all shows.
  • No amount of “Yas Queen!” moments from Betty Cooper will change the fact that Glenn continues to be such a thinly-written character. I suppose that will change now that he’s, you know, seemingly been killed by TBK.
  • Dialogue is often Riverdale‘s biggest enemy and we did see that again here, with flat, leading lines forcing conversations and attempting to place thoughts in viewers’ heads instead of letting the story do what it’s supposed to.

B. Even though it skips over a few crucial character moments, <em>Riverdale</em> season 6’s midseason premiere promises to flip the show’s status quo on its head with interesting new dynamics and that long-awaited journey into the unknown.. Riverdale. . Chapter One Hundred And One: Unbelievable

dark. Next. 20 most shocking Riverdale moments

Riverdale season 6 airs new episodes on Sunday nights t 8:00 p.m. ET. on The CW.

What did you make of Riverdale season 6, episode 6? Let us know in the comments below!