'Riverdale' season 5: What happened to main characters – Insider

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In the time between the high school graduation and the seven-year time jump, Archie served as a sergeant in the army. After several years of service, he was reassigned and ordered to revive the inactive RROTC enlistment program at Riverdale High — which Archie saw as a demotion.  
When he returned to Riverdale, he was surprised to discover that the town had become an even worse breeding ground for destruction and anarchy at the hands of Hiram Lodge and the Ghoulies.
Archie also learned that Pop Tate was retiring, so he called up his former crew in the hopes of preventing Riverdale from dying. 
Over the course of season five, he became an RROTC instructor at Riverdale High, served as the football coach, became a volunteer fireman, and mined for palladium beneath Cheryl Blossom’s maple groves. While juggling these various jobs, Archie also struggled with PTSD and survivor’s guilt after serving in the army for seven years. 
All season long, Archie worked tirelessly to restore Riverdale to the town he knew and loved.
At a town hall meeting on the finale, he announced his intention to re-incorporate Riverdale with a council of four guiding the town, rather than a singular mayor.
The members — Frank Andrews, Alice Smith, Tabitha Tate, and Toni Topaz — would put Riverdale’s collective needs before any single individual. A majority of the residents in attendance at the meeting voted in favor of re-incorporation and Archie unveiled a brand new welcome sign at the Riverdale border. 
This season also featured Archie and Betty Cooper finally hooking up after several years of longing looks, flirtation, and one kiss during season four’s musical episode.
They agreed to be friends with benefits, but later in the season, Archie revealed that he had feelings for high-school sweetheart Veronica Lodge. Betty also told Archie that they should make sense as a couple, but deep down they’re different people. So, they ended their romance. 
But on the season finale, Archie told Betty that he wanted them to try again, not as friends with benefits, but for real. Betty agreed to go all-in with him and they went to his bedroom to have sex. They were interrupted by a strange ticking sound, only to realize that a bomb was planted under Archie’s bed and set to detonate in seconds. 
The final moments of the finale revealed that Hiram was behind the bombing, and it’s unclear if Archie and Betty made it out of the house alive. 
After high school, Betty graduated from Yale and headed to Quantico as a trainee at the FBI Academy. 
During her time as a trainee, she joined a task force for a serial killer known as the Trash Bag Killer (TBK). 
In her pursuit of TBK, Betty followed a hunch and found his lair. Instead of waiting for backup, she went in alone and got captured by TBK. Betty was held captive for two weeks and TBK escaped. 
Afterward, she had vivid nightmares of being tortured by TBK and was relegated to desk duty at the FBI, filing cold cases.
When she returned to Riverdale, Betty taught a shop class at Riverdale High. Most of her season five storyline involved tracking down the person who captured her sister, Polly, along the Lonely Highway.
Betty’s investigation led her to the discovery that Polly was one of many victims who were taken and murdered by a secret illegitimate clan of Blossoms that lived in the woods for two generations. 
On the finale, Betty officially became an FBI agent after getting her diploma in the mail. She was also given permission to re-open Riverdale’s FBI office.
Much of Jughead’s season five storyline revolved around his increasing substance abuse issues, which developed while he was in college. 
After graduating, Jughead went to the Iowa Writer’s Workshop. He found his freshman year to be boring, and would get whiskey and start writing every afternoon at dusk. Jughead sent out pages to literary agents, and moved to NY to become a full-fledged writer after old school legend Samm Pansky signed him as a client. 
As a struggling writer in NY, Jughead continued drinking heavily. He also started a toxic relationship with a writer named Jessica. She supplied him with maple mushrooms to help with his writer’s block.  
While tripping on mushrooms, Jughead wrote 200 pages in one night, which became the basis for a raw first draft of his YA book titled “The Outcasts.” The book was an homage to  “The Outsiders” and the characters were based on the Riverdale residents.
During that time, Jughead and Betty still communicated, but they drifted further apart. The final straw was when Betty said she’d attend his book release party, but ended up not being able to make it because she got an offer that night to join the TBK task force. 
In response, Jughead got wasted on his way to his own party and left Betty a horrible voicemail in which he called her a “cold, fake, duplicitous bitch” and reminded her of the time she cheated on him with Archie.
Jughead went on a days-long bender in NYC, which involved him falling into a sinkhole, losing consciousness, and getting rabies. 
When he returned to Riverdale, he taught an English class at Riverdale High and took a waiter job at Pop’s to make ends meet. He also investigated potential extraterrestrial activity, which turned out to be a cover for the illegitimate Blossom clan.
On the finale, Principal Weatherbee asked Jughead to be the supervisor of the revamped Blue and Gold student newspaper.
Jughead agreed and told the students that the paper — renamed to the Riverdale Choice — would be “a new, free press” for all of Riverdale. The publication would report on everything that happens in the town “truthfully and without bias.”
Post-graduation from Barnard College, Veronica became known as the “she-wolf of Wall Street” in NY. She got married to a business guy named Chad Gekko and their relationship became strained after a near-fatal helicopter accident. 
Their relationship worsened upon Veronica’s return to Riverdale, as she and Archie reconnected. 
Chad trying to kill Archie with a ghost gun provided by Hiram was the final straw in their relationship, which was already rapidly declining. On episode 17, Chad and Veronica got into an altercation in her apartment, which resulted in her shooting and murdering him. 
Veronica also opened a jewelry store called La Petite Bijoutière in Riverdale, where she sold legal and illegal products. She later launched a business firm called Pearls and Posh, which Reggie Mantle joined.
On the finale, Veronica and Reggie began working together on a new business venture: a full-service, family-friendly casino in town that could provide jobs and a fresh cash flow in Riverdale.
On the finale, Nana Rose Blossom told Cheryl that their ancestor named Abigail Blossom was accused of witchcraft and burned at the stake in 1890. Archie, Jughead, and Betty’s ancestors were the primary conspirators of the murder. The Riverdale residents also exploited Abigail’s death by mining beneath the Thornhill groves in search of palladium.
In her final moments before dying, Abigail bestowed a curse on Riverdale. During the finale, Cheryl, filed by rage, interrupted the town hall and recited the exact speech. She also ceded Thornhill from Riverdale, so they will have no jurisdiction over her property.
Cheryl also took inspiration from Abigail and decided to start her own academy at Thornhill for lost and wayward girls. 
After Cheryl recited the curse, the town became mysteriously windy even though that wasn’t in the forecast. 
“Riverdale” showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa teased what’s to come on season six during an interview with Deadline, saying, “it feels a lot like a supernatural threat, doesn’t it?”
“The fact that Cheryl invokes the curse after learning the truth about her ancestor definitely suggests that even worse things are coming, like an epic, Stephen King-ish conflict between Good and Evil playing out on the streets of the town,” he added.
The strange activity suggests that supernatural elements will be part of season six, which explains the recent announcement that Kiernan Shipka’s Sabrina Spellman from “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” will be appearing. It’s highly likely that Sabrina and Cheryl will be interacting on the upcoming season. 
Kevin got his BA from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and continued his relationship with Serpent member Fangs, who graduated from the University of Pittsburgh. When they returned to Riverdale, the couple lived in an apartment with Toni. Kevin became a drama teacher at Riverdale High and Fangs worked as a trucker.
Kevin and Fangs also had an open relationship during a portion of their romance and engagement, primarily when Fangs was on the road. On season five, Fangs told Kevin that he wanted them to be monogamous,
Toni served as a surrogate for Kevin and Fangs, and the intention was to raise the child together as an unconventional family.
But by the end of season five, the pair broke up because Kevin decided that he wasn’t ready to get married. 
Fangs and Toni went on to profess their love for each other, became Serpent King and Queen, and raised baby Anthony together. 
Meanwhile, Kevin left Riverdale for NYC again, most likely to continue writing, performing, and directing.
After graduating high school, Toni attended Highsmith and graduated with a GPA of 3.9. She majored in social work with a minor in photography and did charity and social work. Toni had a job lined up with social services in Riverdale after graduation, but the office got shut down. So, she took a job as a guidance counselor at Riverdale High. 
Toni decided to be Kevin and Fangs’ surrogate after she was diagnosed with a medical condition that made it more difficult to get pregnant as she got older. 
She became the Serpent Queen upon her return to Riverdale and pooled cash with the crew to become owners of the new Whyte Wyrm where La Bonne Nuit was previously located.
Toni becoming a member of the new Riverdale council on the finale made sense considering her social work experience and desire to make the town better for its residents. 
Reggie served as Hiram’s right-hand man on season five, carrying out all of his malicious orders. He initially began working for Hiram as a way to pay off his father’s debt. Once he got that squared away, he expressed interest in continuing to work for Hiram and execute big ideas. 
On episode 12, Reggie stopped working for Hiram and gave his relationship with his father a second chance. Reggie and his dad made amends and agreed to be business partners for the Mantle family car dealership. 
Reggie and Veronica also rekindled their romance this season, especially as Veronica realized that their goals aligned. Both of them are business-oriented and like the idea of living in a penthouse in NYC and working in finance. 
Tabitha turned down a six-figure CEO position in Chicago to run Pop’s in Riverdale after her grandfather retired. 
After hiring Jughead as an employee at the diner, the two became close and eventually started dating. By the end of the season, Tabitha asked him to move in with her since her apartment lease will end soon and Jughead’s been crashing in Archie’s garage. 
Tabitha also became friends with Betty and helped her investigate the missing people on the Lonely Highway. 
On the finale, a Ghoulie set fire to Pop’s on Hiram’s orders.
Archie and the volunteer firefighters were able to act swiftly and prevent the famed eatery from completely burning down. But Tabitha revealed to Jughead that insurance won’t cover the damage because she hasn’t been paying for it. She had to choose between paying her employees or the insurance, and she chose the staff. 
Pop’s, who was living in Florida, met with Tabitha and said that he’d put his retirement money toward rebuilding the diner. He also said that he wanted to come back and work for her, because he missed the adrenaline of work and customers.
Season five put Alice through an emotional roller coaster, culminating in the inevitable revelation that Polly was murdered. 
The penultimate episode of season five, a musical episode based on the play “Next to Normal,” showed Alice struggling to move on after her daughter’s death. She lived in denial and told Betty it was her fault Polly died because she left Riverdale for seven years and drove Polly away when she returned. 
Alice and Betty made up, and Betty vowed to never leave her mom alone again. 
Hiram, who’s been a major villain since his arrival on season two of “Riverdale,” finally left town, seemingly for good. 
Throughout season five, he tried to attain a rare and valuable metal known as palladium. The metal had a large vein located under the Blossom family maple groves, and Hiram was relentless in his pursuit. 
Hiram built a prison as a smokescreen for his palladium quest and made the inmates dig for the metal. He even began developing a town called SoDale in order to get funding for his mining efforts. 
Episode 12 revealed that Hiram’s palladium dreams traced back to his father’s past. 
In the ’80s, a man told Hiram’s father that the palladium located in a “small Rockland County town called Riverdale” could change his life. The promise of buried palladium led Hiram, then known as Jaime Luna, and his parents to move to Riverdale.
But after a collapse at the mine, the area was shut down and the palladium hunt was halted. Hiram’s dad decided they’d stay in Riverdale and make their American dreams come true.
As Hiram’s dad struggled to financially support his family, Hiram took on a job working for a mobster. The gig resulted in the mob men murdering Hiram’s father. To avenge the death, Hiram killed the mob men. 
The search for palladium drew Hiram back to Riverdale after he wed Hermione and became a father.
In addition to searching for the metal during season five, Hiram also tracked down the original mobster, Vito, who hired him as an errand boy, and murdered him. 
The footage was caught on surveillance cameras and Veronica used it as leverage to make Hiram leave town on the season finale.
Veronica, along with other townspeople personally victimized by Hiram, pointed their weapons at Hiram and exiled him. 
He left town, but not before one last attempt at murdering Archie. 
As Archie and Betty detected the bomb in Archie’s bedroom, Hiram was shown in a car, counting down the seconds until the bomb detonated.
Once the time ran out, he drove out of Riverdale with a smile on his face. 

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