Remember when the Farm was Riverdale‘s most distant and ominous threat? Introduced as Polly (Tiera Skovbye) and Jason’s escape hatch from their awful town, it molted into something far more sinister with Betty’s (Lili Reinhart) mother Alice (Madchen Amick) seemingly becoming its truest believer. They bought the old convent, moved in, and furthered their real money-making operation: organ harvesting. Then, they skipped town with Alice and Mr. Weatherbee (Peter Bryant) still in their number.
But as seen on this week’s episode, it seems the writers just got tired of the whole thing. Polly appeared at the FBI field office with a bomb and as soon as Betty made her way to the Farm’s new stronghold (the most opulent “motel” we’ve ever seen), she learns Edgar is ready to sacrifice his followers and escape FBI custody in a custom built rocket! That explosively silly idea highlights how off the rails the Farm went. It also indicates that much like viewers, the writers understood the concept wasn’t working. Which is nice as this is the same writing staff unwilling to admit the Black Hood stopped working half-way through the second season. Drawing out the Farm any longer would risk a needless complication continuing into the show’s new normal.
And, to be honest, we like the new normal. Sure, Riverdale is still filled with intrigues, but it no longer coalesces around a single crime or criminal. The show definitely outgrew that convention and we’re happy to see its runners — like the clash between the newly christened Veronica Luna (Camilia Mendes) and her father — operate without Betty and Jughead (Cole Sprouse) investigating the town’s latest serial killer.
Of course, old habits die hard, so let’s ponder how Riverdale will double back to a killer as we watch a preview of next week’s show. Betty is once again harassed by the Black Hood(!), but as this is their Halloween episode, we’ll assume a copycat is interested in giving her a hard time. What’s the over/under on it being Jellybean (Trinity Likins) behind the prank?
Riverdale airs Wednsdays on The CW.