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A Brief Explanation of the Conspiracy Behind Jughead's Fake Death on 'Riverdale'

By Dustin Rowles | TV | March 12, 2020 |

By Dustin Rowles | TV | March 12, 2020 |


We have known that Jughead would “die” since the third season finale, when — in a flashforward — we saw a search party find Jughead’s body. Nearly a year later, that entire storyline has wrapped and in typically anti-climactic fashion.

TL;DR: Jughead was invited to Stonewall Prep in the fall. There, he was asked by Mr. DuPont to be a ghostwriter for a series of Baxter Brother novels. He learns that his own grandfather also attended Stonewall Prep and created the Baxter Brothers franchise, but Mr. Dupont at Stonewall stole it. Mr. Dupont, we discover, is a serial killer who has been hiring Baxter Brothers ghostwriters based on their ability to execute a perfect real-life murder. Mr. Chipping was one of Mr. Dupont’s puppets/murderers, and his guilt is what drove him to jump headfirst out of a window to his death. When Betty, Jughead, and FP confront Mr. Dupont with this information, he also jumps out the same window to his death.

Meanwhile, Betty later confronts Donna Sweet, and we discover that Donna basically put the entire conspiracy into motion in order to get revenge upon Mr. DuPont, who killed Donna’s grandmother over a Baxter Brothers character, Tracy True. This is the first time that Donna’s grandmother has ever been mentioned on Riverdale. Betty essentially lets it slide with Donna because, eh, what’s a little attempted murder among brief acquaintances?

Ultimately, however, this entire 16-episode arc was designed to backdoor the Archie-Betty-Jughead love triangle back into the series, a relationship dynamic that wasn’t interesting the first time around and that no one will care about a second time. Riverdale gets a lot of things wrong — most things wrong — but Betty and Jughead (and the chemistry between Cole Sprouse and Lili Reinhart) is the only good thing this show has going for itself. That, and the Hedgwig and the Angry Inch musical Riverdale High is putting on in the next episode, April 8th.

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.

Header Image Source: The CW

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