Riverdale season 5, episode 17 recap: Did they find Polly?

Riverdale -- “Chapter Ninety-Three: Dance of Death” -- Image Number: RVD517fg_0037r -- Pictured (L - R): Cole Sprouse as Jughead Jones and Lili Reinhart as Betty Cooper -- Photo: The CW -- © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved.
Riverdale -- “Chapter Ninety-Three: Dance of Death” -- Image Number: RVD517fg_0037r -- Pictured (L - R): Cole Sprouse as Jughead Jones and Lili Reinhart as Betty Cooper -- Photo: The CW -- © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved. /

Riverdale season 5 “Chapter Ninety-Three: Dance of Death” closes out a major mystery of 5B to make room for the drama that’s going to push us into season 6’s five episode event.

It all starts with the continuation of the Lodge feud that’s been wreaking havoc for seasons. Veronica has been confidently outmaneuvering her ex-husband, Chad, and her father, Hiram, with the kind of hubris that’s likely to spell trouble for the She-Wolf of Wall Street.

Spoilers ahead of Riverdale season 5, episode 17 and 18

Nothing made that clearer than the attempts on Archie’s life by the two major thorns in her side. Chad tried and failed to take out his romantic rival and got a trash can lid to the face for his efforts. There are many reasons that Veronica would choose Archie over her ex and crow loudly about it in divorce proceedings but his competence is likely high up on the list.

Chad bumbles everything he does and this was no different. In disgust, Hiram tells his former son-in-law to leave town and that he should have never sent a boy to do a man’s job. Mr. Cliches then takes matters into his own hands by setting off a bomb in Cheryl’s palladium mines that causes a cave in and traps Archie and Eric inside.

In Hiram’s mind that’s check and mate, however, Veronica has come so far into her own that she doesn’t mince words with her father when she confronts him about it. She tells him point blank that she will kill him if Archie dies.

Who won the Lodge feud?

With patricide firmly on the table, the Lodge feud stopped being a game of wills and manipulation between this father and daughter. Instead it became a moment for Veronica to unquestionably assert dominance over Hiram.

In “Chapter Ninety-Two: Band of Brothers” she stole his palladium, the very metal he’s been working to find for decades. His petty shot at her over it and his scare tactic of blowing up the mines, doesn’t put V in her place the way he likely thought it would.

No, Veronica lets Hiram in on a piece of information that he was unaware of and has been ignorant to for well over 10 years. She overheard him express his disappointment in having a daughter during her quinceañera and how he’d wished he’d had a son.

It was a slight that she carried with her from that point on. His words, his expression of finding her to be lacking simply because of her gender, influenced their relationship. It made her fight for his approval and acceptance in ways that teared at her because in the end it would never be enough.

Speaking to her father, after knocking him out and tying him up, Veronica declares herself to be free of her fear of him. It’s a triumphant moment for her. One that seems to suggest that she’s finally bested Hiram and can move on.

However, her last moments with Chad may have reset the chessboard between her and her father. Meaning she may not have won the war, she may have only won another round in their sick and twisted game.

Who dies in Riverdale season 5, episode 17?

Both Hiram and Chad set out to kill Archie this episode, and they both managed to fail. Though Hiram’s failure is due to divine intervention and Archie getting a little help from his (ghost) friends.

Archie’s deceased unit have been rolling tight with him since “Chapter Ninety: The Night Gallery.” Last episode, it seemed as if making sure General Taylor was disgraced and dishonorably discharged closed out their time on the show but that wasn’t the case.

No longer bloodied and bearing the wounds that killed him, Bingo makes an appearance when Archie’s strength and will is flagging. With Eric losing a lot of blood from his injuries, Archie is the only one who can dig them out from where they’re trapped. It’s difficult work especially with their oxygen depleting.

Bingo’s arrival invigorates Archie after he’s given a pep talk by the soldier and the rest of his ghostly unit help their sergeant move the rubble. Meanwhile outside, as the crew working to dig Archie and Eric out from their end take a break, Cheryl calls on Mother Earth to help Archie.

Her display of power, joined with Archie’s help from beyond the grave, is enough to see her friend and Eric returned to safety.

Chad, friendless and out for revenge not salvation, isn’t so lucky. In a stupid plan to kill Veronica, he sneaks into her apartment after she’s returned home from doing her part in working to dig Archie and Eric out. When she’d left they were still in the mine, but she wasn’t so distracted by her boyfriend’s life being on the line that she couldn’t tell someone was out to get her.

Quick and resourceful, V tells her smart device Pippi to turn the lights off in the apartment and start playing “Flight of the Valkyries” by Wilhelm Richard Wagner at top volume. It’s enough for her to turn the tables on Chad and get the upper hand as they struggle over his gun.

A shot goes off just as Veronica’s butler, Smithers, walks through the door. When he turns on the lights, he sees Veronica standing over Chad’s dead body holding a gun. We know it was self-defense but that’s not what Smithers witnessed.

Veronica may think that with Archie safe, and Chad out of the picture permanently, that things are finally being set to rights in her world, but the security she’s feeling will likely be short lived. She made the mistake of telling Hiram she killed Chad. Hopefully, V enjoyed luxuriating with Archie in that bathtub because her father may be coming to pop that bubble very soon.

Did they find Polly’s body?

Elsewhere, in the episode’s second plot, Polly’s disappearance case is cracked wide open. When Tabitha asks Bughead for help finding her friend Squeaky, the two sleuths fall back into the familiarity of their investigating partnership.

It leads them on a trail straight to Nana Rose after Dr. Curdle Jr. reveals that the swab he’d taken of Betty’s DNA didn’t match up with the mutilated Jane Doe that’d come into the morgue but did show she’s related to one of the killers through the Blossom side of her family tree.

Apparently, there’s an off-shoot of the Blossom branch that they’d kept hidden. Nana Rose’s husband was a philanderer who fathered children outside of his marriage. At his insistence, and to save face, Nana Rose gave those children to a family who lived out in the woods called the Starkweathers.

To keep people away from them, the Starkweathers spread the myth of the Moth Men. With that revelation, the “alien” plot in season 5 is put to bed but not before it crashes into the quest to find Polly.

Nana Rose’s brief spin into Blossom history puts the killers squarely in Old Man Dreyfus’ junkyard. Bughead had visited the place earlier in the season unaware that it’s the home of a family of killers. The two decide to head out to get Dreyfus with Tabitha but then Toni calls and she, too, becomes a part of the investigation.

Toni donned her guidance counselor hat for this episode as she helped the young football player Britta come out to her parents. The queen of the Serpents knows all too well how telling a loved one that you’re not straight can go left. Unfortunately, Britta’s coming out went the way Toni’s did and her parents’ asked her if she could just not be gay.

Their reaction prompts Britta to runaway and she gets nabbed by the killers. Refusing to sit on the sidelines, Toni calls in reinforcements via Bughead with Fangs stating he’s coming along, too. Originally, she’d wanted him to stay with their son, but the two have been quite the unit, and Fangs believes he should be with Toni as his mom looks after Anthony.

Sidenote: The exploration of Toni and Fangs’ relationship this episode as they navigated being parents, commiserated over their own experiences coming out to their families as bi, and asserted that Anthony wouldn’t go through what they went through was a nice, quiet portion of the episode that otherwise was a chaos tornado.

Now back into the fray! The junkyard showdown, which also reveals the Starkweather who young Lerman said helped him escape when he’d been mistakenly abducted by the family, brings an end to the Moth Men and Polly plot as the killers are brought to justice.

Earlier in “Dance of Death,” the Jane Doe had been revealed to be Squeaky which meant Polly was still out there somewhere. As such Betty asks Dreyfus where Polly is and he draws her a map to where the Starkweathers left her remains. She and her mother, Alice, finally find Polly in the trunk of a car in the junkyard. Bringing this tragic storyline to an even sadder close.

What else happens in Riverdale season 5, episode 17?

Penelope plants a seed of doubt in Kevin’s mind about Cheryl and whether or not she’s truly worshiping a divine force and not something dark and twisted. He asks Cheryl if they’re really praying to Jason.

Cheryl, unsure about who she’d been praying to all this time, fasts and paints. When she’s done, she showcases her work to Kevin. It’s a painting of a sailboat on fire with a cardinal and an angel in the foreground. Beneath the water is what looks like a Kraken. Cheryl concludes that her faith stems from nature and that she’s been praying to Gaia.

Kevin leaves the Church of Jason Blossom because praying to Gaia is a step too far but apparently praying to Cheryl’s deceased twin brother was not.

Also, neither Veronica, Cheryl, nor Kevin fill the rest of the gang in about the mine collapse so it’s unclear whether or not the others know Archie’s life was in danger. Also unknown is whether or not those four are aware that the Coopers found Polly’s body. I guess we’ll find out next episode.

What is Riverdale season 5, episode 18??

“Chapter Ninety-Four: Next to Normal” will see the Coopers mourning.

Alice will be struggling not only with Polly’s death but with the fact that she blames Betty for the loss of her oldest daughter.

In a lighter plot, Tabitha and Jughead are set to fall into the fake dating trope when her parents come to town. Meanwhile, Varchie will be moving forward together and possibly moving in together.

Bonus: This will be a musical episode!

Stay tuned to Hidden Remote for more Riverdale news and coverage.

How many episodes are in Riverdale season 5?. dark. Next

New episodes of Riverdale season 5 air Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.