The New Archies, Series Recap

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The period from the end of the Filmation cartoons until Archie’s Weird Mysteries was an unremarkable time for the Riverdale gang. Years after the failed 1970s pilots but still a few years before the TV movie that went nowhere, there was The New Archies, a Saturday morning cartoon series on NBC. Co-produced by DiC, it was the first of their Archie-related productions, which included the TV movie, Archie’s Weird Mysteries, and the Sabrina cartoons. Archie Comics advertised the show in their comics, of course:

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The show was also represented in a montage of NBC cartoon characters. Pictures like these often appeared in comic books to advertise NBC’s Saturday morning line-up as a whole:

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The show was also previewed on NBC’s Saturday morning preview special from that year, “ALF Loves a Mystery”. For those of you too young to remember, Saturday morning cartoons used to be a major deal until the late 1990s / early 2000s. Kids would religiously tune in and watch cartoons all morning long, usually while eating snacks and/or sugary breakfast cereals of dubious nutritional value. In addition to new shows every fall, corporations would often launch new commercials aimed at kids on the morning that the new season began. So, for example, in addition to seeing new cartoons, we might also see a new McDonald’s commercial starring their mascot characters. To get kids (and also their parents) ready, the networks would air preview specials on the evening before the new season began, hosted by characters from one of their live-action series. I looked forward to these previews as much as Saturday morning itself.

Personally, I primarily watched ABC, because that came in the clearest (this was in the days of analog transmission via antennas), but I occasionally changed the channel to NBC or CBS for other shows. Obviously, I didn’t see this special when it aired, and I didn’t see The New Archies back then either (I didn’t get into Archie until three years later).

 

For the The New Archies preview, skip to 20:17.

Hilarious, ain’t it? From the misspelled title to Archie listing “Miss Grundy’s back” as a selling point.

Anyway, what we ended up getting were thirteen half-hour episodes, each containing two segments, for a total of twenty-six unique stories about the gang as tweens at Riverdale Junior High School. Or Riverdale Elementary School. The setting is weird, containing a mix of elements from both elementary school (one teacher) and junior high school (football, cheerleading). It’s like the writers couldn’t decide and wanted to have it both ways. Supposedly, the reason that they’re not in high school was because the rights to the teen versions of the characters were optioned by a film studio at the time for a potential movie (which never happened), hence this. They also threw in plots involving aliens, werewolves, and wacky inventions, which sort of makes this series a prototype for Archie’s Weird Mysteries. Combine this with a general lack of parental oversight (Fred Andrews and Hiram Lodge appear twice each, and Mary Andrews and Ricky Mantle are heard once each), and the kids end up doing things that no junior high student would actually do.

Honestly, most of the stories weren’t particularly good. These were animation writers, not the writers of Archie Comics. While Archie Comics put out some shit stories sometimes, this cartoon is almost nothing but.

I’ve already reviewed the stories themselves in probably way more detail than anyone ever has, so I won’t do so here (suffice it to say the two stories where Betty’s a bitch are the only ones that have stuck with me as being really good). Instead, I’ll discuss the writers, characters, and voice actors.

The Writers

Kimmer Ringwald wrote 4 segments as part of a career that spanned 1977-1999, dying on March 29, 2011, at the age of 63.

Jon Cohen wrote 2 segments, his sole work in the industry ever.

Scott Anderson wrote 2 segments, his only actual writing work. He primarily worked in the animation and art departments in a career that spanned 1986-2004.

The writing team of Eleanor Burian-Mohr and Jack Hanrahan wrote 6 segments, making them the largest contributors to The New Archies animated canon – at least by plurality. Mohr’s career spanned 1980-2001. Hanrahan’s career of writing and acting spanned 1961-2004. He died on April 28, 2008, at the age of 75.

Herb Engelhardt wrote 2 segments. He had a short career, spanning 1985-1987.

The writing team of Pat Allee and Ben Hurst wrote 4 segments. Allee’s career spanned 1981-1999. Hurst’s writing career spanned 1987-1999, and he also, strangely, had 1 acting credit for being the narrator in a short in 2008. He died on August 10, 2010, at the age of 59.

Dennis O’Flaherty wrote 2 segments. His acting career spanned 1957-1980. His writing career spanned 1981-1999.

Gary Greenfield wrote 4 segments. His career spanned 1978-1997.

With so many different writers (and probably a very short period of time in which to write), there probably was no way that any kind of cohesive, consistent product could be created.

The Characters

Each character will include the number of story appearances. For the dogs, this will include the total number of appearances. For the humans, this will include only the number of segments in which s/he has at least one clear line all to herself/himself. In other words, no silent cameos or segments in which they just grunt or have one line mixed in with everyone else’s.

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Archie Andrews

Appearances: 26

Archie appeared in every segment, of course. He comes across as an accident-prone but generally well-meaning kid. Thankfully, the love triangle from the comics is absent.

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Veronica Lodge

Appearances: 25

Veronica appeared in every segment except “Making of Mr. Righteous”. In contrast to her radio and Filmation incarnations, she’s not Southern; she’s a Valley girl. That’s…different. Otherwise, she’s the same Veronica. She’s often paired with Reggie.

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Jughead Jones

Appearances: 25

Jughead appeared in every segment except “Thief of Hearts”, and he was often the focus (his name appeared in 4 titles). He’s basically the hungry, lazy Jughead from the comics but without the woman-hating and with an added “character trait”: he really loves listening to music.

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Reggie Mantle

Appearances: 25

Reggie appeared in every segment except “Take My Butler, Please”. He’s the same old schemer that you love to hate from the comics. He’s often paired with Veronica.

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Betty Cooper

Appearances: 24

Betty appears in every segment except “Change of Minds” and “Take My Butler, Please”. She’s the sweet Betty from the comics – except when she’s not.

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Ms. Geraldine Grundy

Appearances: 24

Ms. Grundy appeared in every segment except “I Was a 12 Year Old Werewolf” and “Incredible Shrinking Archie”. She comes off as a strict (sometimes overly so) but caring teacher that’s stuck in a thankless job. She even considering leaving at one point. She obviously has a thing for Mr. Weatherbee, so why don’t these two just get together already?

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Eugene

Appearances: 20

Eugene appeared in every segment except “Jughead Predicts”, “Hamburger Helpers”, “The Prince of Riverdale”, “Incredible Shrinking Archie”, “Jughead’s Millions”, and “Take My Butler, Please”. He’s basically Dilton Doiley from the comics turned black in order to be the smart scientist kid while also fulfilling the role of the boys’ token black friend without having to add Chuck Clayton as well. He gets a decent amount of stuff to do and is the focus of several stories, much like Dilton will later on Archie’s Weird Mysteries.

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Moose Mason

Appearances: 15

Moose appeared in “Ballot Box Blues”, “Last Laugh”, “Jughead Predicts”, “Stealing the Show”, “Hamburger Helpers”, “Goodby Ms. Grundy”, “Jughead the Jinx”, “Telegraph, Telephone, Tell Reggie”, “Wooden It Be Loverly”, “I Was a 12 Year Old Werewolf”, “Loose Lips Stops Slips”, “Change of Minds”, “Gunk for Gold”, “Jughead’s Millions”, and “Making of Mr. Righteous”. Much as in the comics, he’s basically a dumb jock – but without (most of) the violent tendencies, largely due to a lack of one Midge Klump.

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Amani

Appearances: 14

Amani appeared in “Thief of Hearts”, “I Gotta Be Me or Is It You?”, “The Awful Truth”, “Future Shock”, “Stealing the Show”, “Hamburger Helpers”, “Goodby Ms. Grundy”, “Telegraph, Telephone, Tell Reggie”, “Wooden It Be Loverly”, “Loose Lips Stops Slips”, “Change of Minds”, “Gunk for Gold”, “Jughead’s Millions”, and “Making of Mr. Righteous”. She was created for the show, specifically to be Eugene’s love interest (because they apparently weren’t daring enough to pair the black boy with a white girl). She’s also the show’s equivalent of the comics’ Nancy: a token black friend for the girls. While she appears often enough, only one story really gives her any focus (the one where she and Eugene try to act like each other). Most of the time, she’s just along for the ride. Her lines could have easily been given to someone else, and the show wouldn’t have been worse off.

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Mr. Waldo Weatherbee

Appearances: 12

Mr. Weatherbee appeared in “Last Laugh”, “Thief of Hearts”, “I Gotta Be Me or Is It You?”, “Jughead Predicts”, “Future Shock”, “Stealing the Show”, “Goodby Ms. Grundy”, “The Prince of Riverdale”, “Loose Lips Stops Slips”, “Change of Minds”, “Gunk for Gold”, and “Making of Mr. Righteous”. Much like in the comics, he’s the ultimate authority figure in the school and has to deal with shit from the students. He has a thing for Ms. Grundy.

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Ethel Muggs

Appearances: 10

Despite the fact that Ethel isn’t considered a main character (since she doesn’t appear in the opening theme), she’s still a strong supporting character. She appeared in “Last Laugh”, “Jughead Predicts”, “Future Shock”, “Stealing the Show”, “Telegraph, Telephone, Tell Reggie”, “Wooden It Be Loverly”, “Loose Lips Stops Slips”, “Gunk for Gold”, “Making of Mr. Righteous”, and “Horray for Hollywood”. She’s a love interest for Jughead, as in the comics, but she doesn’t display stalker tendencies. She’s also a decent friend to the others.

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The Unnamed Coach

Appearances: 08 (1 of which is just a daydream)

The coach might or might not be Coach Kleats from the comics. The hair color doesn’t match. Anyway, he appeared in “The Visitor”, “Future Shock”, “Stealing the Show” (in Moose’s daydream), “Loose Lips Stops Slips”, “Change of Minds”, “Gunk for Gold”, “Making of Mr. Righteous”, and “Take My Butler, Please”. He basically comes off as a stereotypical coach, prone to anger and worry.

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Red

Appearances: 07

Red appeared in “Ballot Box Blues”, “Thief of Hearts”, “Hamburger Helpers”, “Red to the Rescue”, “Telegraph, Telephone, Tell Reggie”, “Making of Mr. Righteous”, and “Take My Butler, Please”. Only 1 segment really focused on him.

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Smithers

Appearances: 04

Smithers appeared in “The Visitor”, “Hamburger Helpers”, “Incredible Shrinking Archie”, and “Take My Butler, Please”. Only 1 segment really focused on him; mostly, he was just Veronica’s servant.

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Pop Tate

Appearances: 02

Despite the kids frequenting his establishment, Pop himself, ahem, popped up in only “The Visitor” and “Horray for Hollywood”, bookending the series. There’s not much to him, but he does act as a guidance counselor of sorts for Betty at the end.

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Fangs Fogarty

Appearances: 02

Fangs isn’t a main character. He was lifted from the Little Archie comic book and aged up for this series. He appeared in only “Last Laugh” and “I Gotta Be Me or Is It You?”. Typical troublemaker.

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Hot Dog

Appearances: 02

Hot Dog appeared in only “Red to the Rescue” and “Telegraph, Telephone, Tell Reggie”, and he certainly didn’t do much – if anything – useful.

The Actors

The voice acting on this show was generally competent, especially considering the kids were voiced by actual kids. No one stands out as great, but no one’s awful either. Here’s my round-up of the actors:

This show was the only thing that J. Michael Roncetti (Archie) ever acted in.

Alyson-Court.jpgAlyson Court (Veronica) started acting in 1985 and hasn’t stopped, even branching out into other areas. She’s probably most famous as the voice of Jubilee on the 1990s X-Men series and as the longtime voice of Claire Redfield in the Resident Evil series (before being replaced).

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Michael Fantini (Jughead) had a short but fairly prolific acting career, spanning 1985-1989.

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Sunny Besen Thrasher (Reggie) had a fairly prolific acting career, spanning 1985-1995. From 2010 to 2016, he’s had a bit of a career resurgence in production, direction, camera, and grip work.

Victor E. Erdos (Moose) had a fairly prolific career, spanning 1984-1997. He produced a movie that was released in 2002.

Jazzmin Lausanne (Ethel) had a sporadic career that spanned 1981-1987. This was her third and final role.

This show was the only thing that Colin Waterman (Eugene) ever acted in.

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Karen Burthright (Amani) has had a long, albeit very sporadic, career, which started here and has lasted until 2013. She has only 6 credits. She also acts in live theater.

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Marvin Goldhar (Mr. Weatherbee) had a long career, spanning 1966-2002. He died on March 31, 2002, at the age of 67 or 68 (IMDb and Wikipedia give two different dates of birth, and other sites use one or the other).

Linda-Sorenson.jpgLinda Sorensen (Ms. Grundy) has had a long, prolific career, spanning 1969-2017.

Greg Swanson (Coach) had a fairly prolific career, spanning 1979-1998.

Lisa-Coristine
Lisa Suzanne Coristine (Betty) was born on September 10, 1975, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. She started acting in 1985 (coincidentally playing a character named Elizabeth). This was her 4th of 8 roles, the last being in 1989. She later went into teaching. At the age of 25, she was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer that began in her sinuses. After a three-year struggle, four surgeries, and endless hours of treatment, she sadly lost her battle with the horrible disease. She died on June 14, 2004, at home, at the far-too-young age of 28. From her IMDb bio: “Although Lisa is no longer with us, her family and friends are left with a tremendous sense of gratitude, because targeted radiation allowed Lisa to live her life to the fullest in spite of her illness. With fewer side effects to combat, Lisa traveled the world during her final years; climbing the Great Wall of China, running on the beach in Mexico, and living with a sense of adventure and hope – hope for a healthy future. Lisa spent a great deal of time at PMH during the course of her illness. While she was certainly a young patient, she understood that she was not the youngest patient who had ever endured cancer treatments. She was deeply moved by the fact that many children also fight cancer there, and that they stand to benefit the most from future developments in radiation therapy. This is why she believed so strongly in the mission of the Brave Heart Foundation, which now bears her name as a tribute to her courage, her kindness, and her indomitable spirit.” Read this article for more information.

Conclusion

The New Archies is definitely a product of its time, a mostly uninspired animated take on an existing property. It was a relative success (it’s the only thing that made it to series) in between the failed 1970s pilots and the TV movie. Archie Comics stuck blurbs advertising it on the front covers of its comics, cover-dated November of 1987 (likely came out in September) through October of 1988 (likely came out in August, when they knew the show wouldn’t be coming back in the fall). For issues cover-dated March of 1989 through February of 1990, a new cover blurb announced the series was back and told readers to check their local TV listings for time and channel. I’m guessing the series entered syndication at that point.

The series has mostly been forgotten – in large part because of its unavailability on DVD. Still, you can find it on YouTube, so check it out, if you want. It’s nothing great, but it’s not completely awful either. It’s mostly a show that will, among older fans, trigger a response of “Oh, yeah, that was a thing that happened.”

As I’d mentioned previously, Archie Comics created two tie-in comic books for the series. I happen to have a few issues of the floppy comics. I’m not sure where or when I picked them up. Probably at the used bookstore (which closed nearly 17 years ago) at the flea market. Who knows? I’d completely forgotten I had them until I went searching through a tote for something to review. I might review some of these stories, if I feel like revisiting this iteration of the characters, but this post is, for the most part, my final word on The New Archies as a series.

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Archie Comics has released a digital collection of some of the comics (the blurb places them in Riverdale Middle School), so you can check that out.

It might or might not be the same as this collection:

The-New-Archies-digital-2I won’t be promoting another series to a regular feature on this blog, because there are still plenty of episodes of Archie’s Weird Mysteries and Riverdale for me to review. I’ll try to review one episode per month. The rest of the month will be devoted to comic reviews – with a continued focus especially on Cheryl Blossom.
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The New Archies, Segment 26 – Horray for Hollywood

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Writers: Pat Allee & Ben Hurst
Director: Jim Simon
Original Air Date: Saturday, December 5, 1987 (assumed)
Length: 11:21

Well, here we are, at long last, at the series finale of The New Archies. It definitely felt like the series is a lot longer than it actually is. That’s because I’ve written these reviews a couple minutes of story at a time, for the most part, and, admittedly, I’ve dragged my feet in reviewing this series. Then, after I finished and posted my review of the previous segment, I decided to just watch this segment all in one sitting (something that I hadn’t done for any previous segment while reviewing it), because I remember enjoying it, and I was surprised that it was over so quickly.

Oh, yeah, remember, in my review of the first segment, I mentioned a possible fourteenth episode? Wikipedia and IMDb list the segments as “Got Hair?” and “Teenage Birthday Party”, and the former gives an original air date of December 12, 1987. This info has been copied by other sites. I have found no evidence that these segments were actually made, and, again, thirteen was the standard number of episodes for a network TV season of an animated series at the time. Maybe they’re unproduced segments, but, again, I can’t find anything. So I’m considering “Horray for Hollywood” to be the series finale of The New Archies. And what a way to go out: with a typo in the episode’s title.

Anyway, let’s get into it.

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The segment opens with a lovely nature shot.

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But, okay, the story begins with Betty fixing Archie’s bike. Wow, they actually added one of Betty’s character traits from the comics (being a bit of a mechanic) into the show.

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Archie’s impressed with Betty’s skill.

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Jughead shows up with a hitherto-unmentioned cousin, Cary. Archie gives so little shit for this guy that he immediately gets his name wrong, calling him Terry (note: I’m certain that this was a flub).

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Betty gets a lady-boner for Cary.

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As Cary approaches, Betty tries to make herself presentable. Cary mistakes her for a dude.

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Cary apologizes, but Jughead calls Betty “just one of the guys”.

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Betty and Cary’s formal meeting doesn’t go well, and Betty ends up feeling embarrassed.

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Cary refuses the rag, and Jughead says they gotta go, because they’re on their way to Pop’s. Betty tells “Jerry” that it was nice meeting him. And guess what. We never see or hear of Cary again. I hope you enjoyed his roughly 45 seconds of screentime. Yeah, his sole purpose was so Betty could get embarrassed over her tomboyishness in front of a guy.

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So, yeah, Betty’s feeling very embarrassed, but Archie says he appreciates her.

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Betty get a lady-boner for him.

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Then he calls her “a real pal”, and that’s the end of that.

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On another day, at Riverdale Junior High School, Veronica stops to check herself out in a glass case displaying a sign for the Annual Spring Fling.

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In the gym, Betty is really proud of her decorations; the theme is Nature Welcomes Spring. Veronica is underwhelmed.

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Ethel is making flowers out of toilet tissue. Veronica isn’t impressed, but Betty thinks they’re “cute”.

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Eugene is painting a life-sized cardboard cut-out of Moose. Um, why? Did Betty seriously think cut-outs of the people that will actually be attending the dance was a good idea? It just seems really weird. But I guess it’s a bit less creepy than this:

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Betty then points out the “great” mechanical birds that Eugene made and has Veronica try one out.

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Veronica is impressed.

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Betty admits they still need a little work. She asks Veronica what she thinks.

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Veronica calls the birds old-fashioned and tacky. This disappoints Betty.

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As Veronica goes on about Betty’s choice of decorations, Ethel pop up behind her and makes funny faces to try to cheer Betty up.

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It works.

Veronica eventually discovers what Ethel is doing and leaves in disgust. Betty and Ethel laugh.

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By the next scene, however, as Betty and Ethel are walking along (past DiC’s headquarters, which is based in Riverdale, apparently), Betty has done a complete 180, admitting Veronica’s right.

Ethel’s like “Bullshit! Shopping solves everything!”

How is this supposed to help?

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The saleswoman compliments Betty’s choice of dress, but Ethel says it’s not for “our Betty”. She brings over another dress that she says “is Betty” and calls it “durable and reliable”. What a shitty thing to do.

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See? It’s clear that Betty doesn’t want to always be thought of in the same way by everyone. She’s getting tired of the same old thing.

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At home, Betty is even more depressed, despairing that she even looks like one of the guys. I really don’t see this as an issue, but, then again, I went through school just being myself and giving zero fucks what other people thought of me.

On the other hand, I would find my middle/high school self obnoxious and annoying. I’ve grown way more boring and quiet since then, and I generally try to be non-intrusive and not acknowledge people and hope they’ll treat me likewise (they usually don’t).

My point is people change. I don’t know what Betty’s going through, but I’m guessing she’s hoping for some loving and wishing people wouldn’t be so reliant on her.

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Betty spots an ad in the newspaper (because apparently, like all preteens, she keeps a newspaper in her bedroom): “Mr. Maurice, beauty expert to the stars. Change your looks and change your life.” This is the sole “Hollywood” connection in this story: some dude making a claim in a newspaper ad.

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“I’ll do it!” Um, how? Do you have enough of your allowance saved up? Are you gonna ask your parents for money?

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Bothering only to take off her headband, Betty heads right over to the office of some guy that placed an ad in a newspaper. Did one of her parents drive her? Do they even know she’s out of the house? This is a major problem that I have with this series: these kids are out and about way too much on their own. I never did this when I was their age. Sure, a friend of mine stopped at my house, trick-or-treating with his friends, one Halloween, and some of my friends came by once, so we could pick blackberries from a vacant lot (well, not me; I considered it trespassing and potentially dangerous), but, whenever I wanted to go somewhere, my mom or dad had to drive me. Then again, I live in a rural town, not a suburb, and everything is way more spread out. To get to any kind of store (other than a convenience store), I’d have to cross a busy highway and then go a few miles north. No way was that happening. And I don’t feel like I missed out on anything. I can get around and shop just fine, now that I have a car. I’m kind of glad that I didn’t get to go walking around town on my own or with some friends as a kid, because who knows what might have happened?

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Anyway, the first thing that Maurice does is insult Betty’s appearance, making her feel bad.

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Without discussing any payment (that will cum later), the sleazy French guy puts an arm around Betty and has his way with her.

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There’s an abrupt cut to a panning shot of Riverdale Junior High School, where Archie, sans bookbag, is having trouble carrying more books than I ever had to. Seriously, there aren’t even that many periods in a school day.

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This is only to contrast with Veronica, who has a laugh at Archie’s expense, because she has Smithers to carry her unrealistic multitude of books (but no other supplies) for her. Smithers lets out a creepy moan. Yeah, I know he’s supposed to sound like he’s sick of this shit, but it’s still pretty creepy.

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Archie stops at his full-sized locker, which I didn’t have until high school, and then something surprises him.

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Ditto for Reggie and Veronica.

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Jughead is the only one to have a delayed reaction to:

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Oh, dear Goddess…

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In class, Ms. Grundy asks when the Magna Carta was signed. She calls on Jughead.

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What in the actual fuck?

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Anyway, Jughead somehow loses his balance and falls out of his chair, and the class laughs.

Ms. Grundy decides to go to “someone more reliable” and asks Betty.

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Betty responds with “Yo!” Veronica’s pissed (for some reason). Reggie has a boner.

Ms. Grundy is a bit thrown off by Betty’s greeting but repeats the question. Betty will have to get back to Ms. Grundy on that, which surprises her.

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See, Betty didn’t get to do her homework, because she had to do her nails to match her outfit.

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Seen here: absolutely nothing that took more than a few minutes of her time, tops.

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Ms. Grundy gets a bit sassy with Betty and gives her detention, but Betty doesn’t give a fuck.

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Later, at Pop’s, Reggie demands to know why Betty won’t go to the movies with him. Betty gives him a total bullshit answer, citing “the new me” and “the same old you, such as it is”.

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Veronica’s pissed, because Betty’s an hour late.

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Betty’s excuse is “Price of popularity, babe. Everyone wants a piece of your time.” No doubt because you’ve been walking around town in a leotard. Just who, exactly, got a piece of Betty’s time, and did they get a piece of Betty’s anything else as well?

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Veronica, without a hint of irony, finds Betty’s behavior obnoxious. She’s starved and wants to order. Ooh, we get to see Pop’s menu, and it doesn’t include the name of the business on it but does include a generic design that Pop probably threw together in a few minutes in Paintbrush on Windows 1.0 (Windows 2.0 didn’t come out until four days after this segment aired).

I’m gonna pause the review for a moment and talk about food. I hadn’t been to locally-owned restaurants much. There was actually a 1950s-themed diner right on my street, just over a half-mile from my house, open for thirty years (twenty-seven of which I’d lived here), and I never once ate there. I used to work in a small office in the early-to-mid-2000s, and the mom of one of my coworkers owned another 1950s-themed diner. Our whole office would go there one night per month for a kinda-sorta party/event. I ordered ten sliders and a glass of Pepsi each time. It was okay but nothing special. More recently, my mom and I got gift certificates for free breakfast at another diner. This one, as far as atmosphere (and I use the term loosely) went, was New England-themed. We ordered breakfast platters and got basically the same thing that we get at Burger King, except burned. My point is I really don’t “get” locally-owned diners; they just don’t seem that special to me. And I certainly don’t get how the gang (except Veronica and maybe Reggie) can afford to continually hang out at Pop’s. What kind of allowances are they getting?

Anyway, Betty ditches Veronica to get to her acting class, surprising and pissing off Veronica. Betty’s taking an acting class? How is she paying for it? And how is she paying for her numerous new outfits? Is it part of a package deal that Mr. Maurice offers? If so, who actually paid for it?

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Before she leaves, Betty asks Veronica to “be real with” her. Veronica happily agrees, despite being pissed at her a moment earlier. Betty tries out the new name “Jasmine” and asks for Veronica’s opinion. Veronica isn’t quite sure what to say.

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Betty doesn’t have time for an answer, though, and tells Veronica to get back to her on that. Betty teases the decorations for the dance, telling Veronica that she won’t recognize the gym. Veronica’s afraid of that. Then, with a parting “Toodles”, Betty leaves.

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Archie asks Betty to take a look at his bike, but Betty doesn’t “do bikes anymore”.

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When Betty leaves Pop’s, Ethel sees her and comments on her “wild” outfit. She also asks “Whatever happened to blue jeans?” Um, when, precisely, has Betty ever worn blue jeans on this series? She’s a pink overalls kind of girl.

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Betty’s exact response is “Oh, Biggie, get back! I don’t do jeans anymore!” You’ve never done jeans, bitch; shut up.

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Archie comes by with Moose and worriedly asks “Just what does she do now?”

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After the commercial break, Veronica’s at the park, ready to skateboard. Because it was the 1980s, and everybody skateboarded. Even Reagan. Anyway, she asks Jughead if he’s seen Betty Jasmine. Jughead kinda-sorta says yes, implying Betty’s also skateboarding. See? Told ya.

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Jughead comes across Ethel, who complains about Betty’s shitastic ’80s clothes.

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Veronica skates over, complaining about Betty’s hair. Then Reggie skates over and complains about Betty turning down a date with him. Jughead insults Reggie and skates off, and a pissed Reggie gives chase.

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“Motherfucker, don’t you fucking hurt him, or I’mma fucking kill you!”

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Wait, wait, wait. A large chunk of that bridge/path is very blatantly missing. Shouldn’t the area be sealed off to, I dunno, prevent dumbass tweens from trying to skateboard over it?!

Anyway, can we get back to Betty, please? This is supposed to be her story, and I feel this stupid rivalry between Jughead and Reggie is taking away precious time from that.

In case you’re wondering, Jughead puts absolutely no effort into his skateboarding, just standing perfectly still. Because that’s totally believable.

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Anyway, Ethel comes out of nowhere and knocks Reggie into a shallow pool of water. Whatever.

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Veronica has a laugh over it and then tells Smithers that she’s ready. What the fuck? That’s just ridiculous. Besides, why, after recent events, does she still want Smithers to do stuff with her? Also, we just saw Veronica’s regular skateboard earlier in the scene. But anything for a cheap laugh, right?

Whatever. Can we get back to Betty now? Please?

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Later, they go to Riverdale Junior High School for the Spring Fling. Ethel says Betty wouldn’t let anyone in to see it. She can’t wait. They enter the gym.

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Jughead makes a Star Trek reference.

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Honestly, though, it feels more like Star Wars.

Yeah, Betty went with a sci-fi theme for the Spring Fling dance. That’s…different.

Archie suggests checking out the food. Jughead says he’s brave.

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Archie asks about a certain food, and Veronica – the worldly, well-traveled girl – incorrectly identifies it as sushi, even though it’s actually sashimi. Jughead thinks it’s disgusting not after he tries some but after Veronica talks. So typically sitcomy.

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Ethel identifies steak tartare.

Okay, I’m gonna pause the review to talk about food again. I grew up in the 1980s and was raised by two Polish parents that, really, were old enough to be my grandparents, having been born during World War II. One dish that we often made was what they called “tatar” (TAH-tahr). That might be a corruption of tartare or a Polish version of the word. I don’t know, and my mom doesn’t either. Anyway, we made it by mixing raw ground beef in a bowl with olive oil or vegetable oil as well as salt and black pepper. We cut up garlic and onion into little pieces and added it to the mix. We served it on bread (usually Italian). It actually tastes quite good. I often add a homemade Cajun seasoning and/or hot sauce into the mix (after my mom’s taken her share). So it’s not quite like the recipe in the Wikipedia article, and we’ve never used egg yolk. Anyway, just thought I’d share. Now, back to the review.

Jughead takes a piece, sniffs it, and says it looks weird. Ethel says it’s “raw hamburger” (not really accurate). Jughead promptly drops it in disgust. Are we expected to believe Jughead, who lives for hamburgers, has never tried making his own?

Anyway, Jughead declares, this time, Betty’s gone too far.

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Betty comes by, fishing for a compliment from “Juggy” regarding the dance, but he isn’t impressed, and she’s like “What the fuck?”

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Betty asks Archie to dance, but he doesn’t do “that kind of music”, utterly shocking her.

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Betty asks “Ronnie” and “Big Ethel” (this was back when making fun of tall people was considered okay) if they wanna go to the “powder room” with her, but they “don’t do powder rooms anymore”. Considering “powder room” is a euphemism for “restroom” (from back in the days when females wanted to avoid acknowledging they piss and shit), that’s unintentionally hilarious.

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Aaawww. Betty’s sad. Do we feel sorry for her? Well, we shouldn’t, considering it’s already been established Betty’s a horrible piece of shit when freed of any self-restraint.

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Suddenly, Betty brightens up.

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Reggie calls her out on wanting to hang out with him only because everyone else has turned her down. She whimpers sadly and walks away. Reggie considers hanging out with her, but it’s too late: she’s gone.

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Betty goes to Pop’s to drown her sorrows. Pop is surprised to see her (or perhaps surprised at how she currently looks).

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Betty tries to order a root beer float, but she can’t even get it out before she starts crying.

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Eugene walks by Pop’s and is shocked to see a sad Betty. He runs off.

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Back at the gym, Jughead wants to fucking leave already. Yeah, um, why are they still here? They were clearly pissed at Betty, so I don’t think they’d stay out of obligation to her.

Also, Moose is wasted in this segment. He doesn’t really say anything except maybe one line mixed in among other characters’ lines.

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Eugene rushes in and fills them in.

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Archie and Ethel feel bad over how they treated Betty, but Veronica and Reggie defend their actions.

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Reggie goes too far with his suggestion of a bucket of cold water in the face, and the others let him know they disapprove.

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Reggie claims it’s a “joke”.

Ethel feels awful, because Betty was just trying her best with the decorations. Jughead says Betty’s best was “pretty good”. They all miss “good old Betty”.

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Archie suddenly has an idea.

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Back at Pop’s, Betty has recounted everything to Pop. He tries to make her feel better.

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Suddenly, the others show up. After confirming Betty’s still here, Archie signals to the others to be quiet and come on.

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Pop points out that Veronica didn’t work on the decorations.

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Betty realizes, if Veronica wanted other decorations, she could have done the work.

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Betty mentions “Big Ethel” called her “dependable and reliable”. Actually, she’d called the dress, comparing it to Betty, “durable and reliable” (although Ms. Grundy had called Betty “reliable”).

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Anyway, Pop is amused that Betty thinks this is bad, and Betty, knocking her stupid wig off the counter, realizes it isn’t.

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But then Betty gets upset again over Archie and Jughead calling her “just one of the guys”. Actually, just Jughead did; Archie called her “a real pal”.

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There’s some antics as the gang brings in and sets up Betty’s original dance decorations, which they had somehow found (and were damn lucky that she hadn’t thrown out).

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Pop gets a bit creepy when he predicts Betty’s future sexiness.

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Rather than be creeped out, Betty’s just sad; she says it doesn’t matter, because it’s too late now.

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She believes she’s lost all of her friends.

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“Look behind you, dumbass.”

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Pop offers ice cream sodas on the house.

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Jughead asks about hamburgers.

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Betty gets the final line of the series: “I’ve got the best friends in the whole world.”

This segment was really nice and actually my favorite of the entire series. This and “The Awful Truth” are good character studies of Betty. I only wish they were longer, so they could further explore the issues that Betty has. Speaking of those issues, that’s where this segment kind of bungles it toward the end. Through Pop’s questions, we’re led to believe Betty was making a big deal out of nothing and feeling depressed about basic compliments (she even agrees with him), but I always understood Betty’s issues to be not wishing to be thought of in exactly the same, predictable way all of the time; she desired something more, something different. Still, overall, the series went out on a high note.

I will do a recap of the entire series fairly soon.

The New Archies, Segment 25 – Take My Butler, Please

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Writer: Gary Greenfield
Director: Jim Simon
Original Air Date: Saturday, December 5, 1987 (assumed)
Length: 11:20

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The segment opens with Smithers picking up Mr. Lodge’s “priceless” new statues at an antique store (creatively called Antiques). He vows to “guard every step”.

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He slips on a banana peel (which he somehow didn’t see while guarding every step) but manages to catch the statues.

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Meanwhile, a couple dumbass workers (one of which is named Louie) push a piano along a sidewalk (instead of using a truck) and lose their grip on it. The piano goes downhill.

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Archie, who happens to be biking along, warns Smithers, who’s running. Um, what happened to guarding every step?

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Archie jumps off his bike and pushes Smithers out of the way, because he’s too stupid to realize a piano’s coming toward him. I assume this piano has wheels.

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Archie tries but fails to save the statues.

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Archie tries to fix them and apologizes to Smithers.

Smithers gets a funny line: “Who cares? They were merely worth millions.” Then he throws the statues away.

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Smithers bad-touches Archie in gratitude for saving his life and vows to be his “humble servant forever”.

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After Archie protests, Smithers undusts him.

Archie realizes he’s supposed to be home in a few minutes and worries. Smithers has an idea.

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At the Andrews’ house, Fred’s raking the leaves and wondering where Archie is.

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Don’t tell me that it took only a few minutes for the helicopter to come to their location, pick them up, and fly to Archie’s house.

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Fred’s pissed that they just destroyed two hours’ worth of work.

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Smithers takes Fred’s rake and gets to work.

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When Archie decides to cut the grass, Smithers abandons raking and takes over, basically forbidding Archie from doing any work whatsoever.

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Archie warns Smithers (too late) about the mower. If a grown man can’t handle it, what makes Archie think he can. By the way, yeah, this is total bullshit. Oh, well, Smithers doesn’t seem fazed by it.

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Later, Archie relaxes while Smithers washes “Master Red”.

Red runs away. Smithers, declaring “I am relentless”, gives chase, resulting in:

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“What the fuck are you doing, Smithers?!”

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Smithers explains. Then Archie pretends to be tired, so Smithers grabs his ass and carries him off to bed.

YOU THOUGHT I WAS JOKING.

Veronica vows to get Smithers back.

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Smithers has gotten Archie some new pajamas. Kinky.

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He even brushes Archie’s teeth, getting his mouth ready for his cock.

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Archie doesn’t feel sleepy, so Smithers serenades him.

By the way, check out that hitherto-unseen second bed. Smithers is sleeping in Archie’s bedroom. How are Archie’s parents okay with this?!

Oh, and you damn well know that second bed is just for appearances and will go unused.

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Archie wakes up later (in the middle of the night, apparently) and is relieved that Smithers is gone.

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Spoke too soon.

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Smithers starts feeding Archie, but, after only one bite, Archie refuses the rest. Smithers is amused and says “Now, let’s dress for school.” I guess he’s in a hurry to get the young boy naked.

Not to worry, the episode skips over that, literally cutting to the next scene and showing Archie running to the front door while Jughead calls out: “Hey, Arch!”

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Oh, look, Jughead’s at the door, and Archie greets him. I wonder if Jughead’s greeting to Archie wasn’t animated, so they just carelessly placed it before the door opened.

Anyway, Archie wants to get the fuck out of here before Smithers shows up.

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Smithers rises up, like he passed through the floor out of the basement, and says “Halt! I shant let you scuff your tennies!” This results in Smithers giving Archie another piggy-back ride. Jughead wants in on it, too, but we never find out if Smithers obliges or not.

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At Riverdale Junior High School, Smithers has to undust Archie’s desk before he can sit down. Archie is pleased.

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Veronica isn’t, though. She’s pissed at both Smithers and Archie.

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Archie gets into it with Veronica.

Veronica tries to pull Smithers home with her (even though the school day just started), to no avail. Smithers refuses to go with her. She storms off. Where’s she going? Is she ditching school?

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Smithers takes out a large thermometer (which he just keeps in his jacket), declares the room is one degree too warm (by whose standards?), and tries to cool it with a broom or mop or feather duster (which he also keeps in his jacket).

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Ms. Grundy finally shows up from wherever the fuck she’s been and calls out Smithers on his bullshit.

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She also mentions Archie is “plant monitor” and gives him a watering can to start watering the plants. Smithers won’t have that, though. He tells Archie to sit the fuck down and…

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Ms. Grundy is pissed, puts a dunce cap on Smithers, and tells him to sit in the corner.

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Smithers agrees with the punishment.

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Later, the coach tells the kids to do ten push-ups.

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Smithers comes by with a chair, has Archie sit, and does his push-ups for him.

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Well, tries to, anyway.

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After seeing Reggie do pull-ups Smithers tries to do them, and Reggie ends up helping him.

Question: Why the fuck are the teachers and students enabling this behavior?! Smithers should be told to leave school grounds, and, if he refuses, he should be escorted off and barred from re-entry.

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Anyway, Smithers continues to fail epicly at sports.

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The coach finally gets on Archie’s case about not exercising (took him long enough), but Smithers takes offense to the coach even yelling at Archie. Then the coach just gives up and walks away instead of enforcing the rules.

Archie says they’re even now, but Smithers won’t have it, because his “honor dictates” lifelong servitude to Archie.

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“After all, I have my dignity to uphold.” Okay, that’s pretty funny.

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Archie realizes he has to ditch Smithers.

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Archie and Jughead hide out in the theater. Jughead says Smithers will never find him in here.

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Archie’s eager to see a scary scene that he’s heard about.

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Smithers denies Archie the moment, though, for fear that Archie will have nightmares. If I was Archie, I would have physically assaulted Smithers right then and there, tearing into his flesh like a wild animal. Then I would have sued him for the cost of a movie ticket to see the film again.

Anyway, Archie freaks out, and then everyone else in the theater freaks out…for some reason.

TNA-25-Take-My-Butler-Please-64-Archie-Jughead-run
Archie and Jughead get the fuck out of there. Archie decides they’ll hide in the amusement park.

There are two frames of black space in my copy of the episode, and then the next scene abruptly starts.

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Let’s just dwell on the fact that Riverdale has an amusement park. Not a carnival that’s in town for a while. An actual amusement park. Little town, my ass.

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Archie and Jughead get in a bumper car.

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Somehow, Veronica has found them. Has she been following them around town, or did she just coincidentally decide to go to the amusement park after school and lucked out on coming across them? Anyway, she demands to know where Smithers is. Archie insists he doesn’t know.

TNA-25-Take-My-Butler-Please-68-Smithers-bumper-car
For fuck’s sake…

Veronica demands Smithers get over to her. He obliges (even though he had effectively quit his job) and…

TNA-25-Take-My-Butler-Please-69-Smithers-ejects
That’s what happens, man. Wear your fucking seatbelt.

Archie and Jughead quickly get out of their car and get out of there, sensing impending mayhem.

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They think they’re safe, but…

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Everyone runs away from Smithers, and then…

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You go, girl! Show him who’s boss!

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Actually, she just guilts him over her nightmarish life since he’s been gone. She had to butter her own toast this morning! Yesterday, she tripped, fell down, and had to pick herself up! Y’know, it’s kind of amazing that she’s able to function outside his presence. Oh, wait, no, it’s not; she does it all of the time on this show.

Anyway, Veronica finally admits she misses Smithers. Smithers misses her, too, but also manages to point out her faults. Veronica begs him to come home, saying she’ll be “extra awful”. That’s pretty funny. 🙂 Citing “a matter of honor”, Smithers declines to return. Veronica says she’s gonna hold her breath until he comes home, and then he just leaves. Ha.

TNA-25-Take-My-Butler-Please-76-Jughead-Archie-boatTNA-25-Take-My-Butler-Please-77-Jughead-Archie-boat-2
Archie has the idea to go on a boat ride, saying it “can’t fail”. See, when they spot Smithers, Archie will jump overboard. Smithers will dive into the river to save him, and they’ll be even. Solid plan, Arch.

Also, props to the show for actually putting a river in Riverdale. I really don’t recall seeing that in the comics.

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Smithers freaks the fuck out over Archie being on water.

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Unfortunately, Archie had put his feet on two large wads of gum and is now stuck. Ditto for Jughead. Um, gum isn’t that powerful, dudes.

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Archie cries out for help, because, um, reasons. Seriously, is this ride really unsafe?

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Smithers quickly takes off his jacket, kicks off his shoes, and dives into the river. I seriously doubt he’s had much (if any) experience doing this.

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After swimming for a while, Smithers suddenly remembers he can’t swim. *headdesk* THAT MAKES NO FUCKING SENSE! He starts flailing about in the water and cries out for help.

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Veronica kicks off her boots and rushes into the river to save Smithers.

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“You’re not drowning, you fucking dumbass! The water’s only two feet deep!”

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Archie and Jughead rush ashore, and Archie helps Veronica get Smithers out of the river.

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Since Veronica “saved” his life, Smithers will now serve her “forever” instead of Archie. Archie’s cool with that.

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Unfortunately for Veronica, Smithers won’t even allow her to apply her own lipstick.

Smithers vows, when they get home, he’ll wash her hair and paint her toes, and Veronica runs the fuck away before she can hear anything even creepier.

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“Hahahaha, isn’t the creepy old man just hilarious?!”

Archie even yells “Go get her, Smitty!”

TNA-25-Take-My-Butler-Please-89-Smithers-chases-Veronica
“Get the fuck away from me, you old fucking pervert!”

This segment…Goddess, this fucking segment. Seriously, Smithers, what the fuck?!

The New Archies, Segment 24 – Making of Mr. Righteous

TNA-24-Making-of-Mr.-Righteous-01-title
Writers: Pat Allee & Ben Hurst
Director: Jim Simon
Original Air Date: Saturday, November 28, 1987 (assumed)
Length: 11:21

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The segment opens with…these two random girls walking as Eugene talks.

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They walk past Eugene’s house.

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Eugene has made a robotic duplicate of himself and is wrongly convinced no one could tell the difference. Um, I can.

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He turns the robot off, not having time to test it today.

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Unfortunately, at the same time as Eugene leaves out the back door, Moose arrives through the front door. Two questions: Why does Eugene run out the back door? (Answer: So he and Moose miss each other; that’s it.) And why the fuck does Moose just run into Eugene’s house unannounced? Who does that in real life?

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Of course, Moose is a dumbass and thinks “Eugene” is just playing funny by standing completely still. He accidentally activates the robot. Oh, and he ran in here to get Eugene for school, because they’re running late. I know I haven’t addressed this yet, but since when do junior high students walk/run/skateboard to school? I know I never did that. I took the school bus. On the very rare days that I missed the bus, and neither of my parents were home, I just stayed home.

Anyway, Moose is delighted that the robot points out a chocolate stain on his shirt. Moose wants to get going.

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The robot death-stares at Moose and tells him to tuck in his fucking shirt.

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Later, Archie’s playing frisbee with Red. Wow, remember Red? We haven’t seen him in a while.

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Eugene stops by to play with Red. That’s cute.

Then Eugene and Archie walk to school together. Archie tells Red to stay. Um, Archie leaves his dog outside, untied and unsupervised? That’s a recipe for roadkill. I admit my cat has free roam of the yard, but he’s a fat, lazy-ass motherfucker that likes to sleep most of the day.

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Aaawww… 😦

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“What the fuck?!”

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Red doesn’t know what to make of this, takes his frisbee, and leaves. Moose is confused.

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Archie and Eugene enter Riverdale Junior High School. Eugene teases a “big-deal project” but can’t tell Archie before testing it.

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Because he, too, is a dumbass, Reggie mistakes the robot for Eugene and demands to see his homework. Apparently, Eugene is not above letting Reggie copy his homework. The robot is, though, and lets him know it.

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Ms. Grundy overhears and busts “Reginald”.

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Later, Mr. Weatherbee tries to sneak a snack, but Ms. Grundy reminds him that he’s starting his diet today.

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The robot tries to get smart about Mr. Weatherbee’s weight, and Moose has to shut him up. After some banter, Mr. Weatherbee throws his snack in the trash can, probably figuring he’d get caught again. Why doesn’t he just eat in the privacy of his own office? Anyway, he sees this:

TNA-24-Making-of-Mr.-Righteous-25-Eugene-Archie
He blames the diet, claiming he’s “weak from hunger”.

TNA-24-Making-of-Mr.-Righteous-26-Eugene-Reggie.jpgIn class, Reggie tells Eugene that he got an hour’s detention. Eugene apologizes and then offers Reggie his homework to copy quick.

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At lunch, Jughead approaches the robot and Moose and asks which “lucky guy” will loan him “a measley five bucks”. The robot calls Jughead out on his bullshit, which Moose finds hilarious. Jughead wonders what’s with “Eugene”. Moose suggests trying Big Ethel, because she’s “always got money”. Okay, um, Ethel isn’t exactly rich or anything close in the comics, but whatever. Jughead dismisses it, saying he’s “not that desperate” and doesn’t wanna hang out with her.

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Betty has shit luck with her locker. Haha, I remember trying to fit everything in my locker back in the day. Never ripped a sweater in the process, though.

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Eugene comes by and compliments the color (of her sweater, I guess). She thanks him and offers to “grab a sandwich” with him. He politely declines and walks away.

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Holy shit, that’s a big burger! Don’t let Jughead see it!

Anyway, Moose suggests the robot come to watch him at the track and field tryouts. Wow, that’s arrogant. The robot decides to try out himself and chastises Moose for talking with his mouth full.

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Moose isn’t sure what to make of “Eugene” trying out but then gives him a hamburger (he has “plenty”), thinking “Eugene” “forgot” his lunch.

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Betty comes by and is like “What the fuck?” The robot insults Betty’s outfit. Betty gets confused and then pissed off. What she doesn’t do is take note of the obviously mechanical parts and robotic-sounding voice of her supposed friend.

Yeah, everyone on this show is a fucking idiot.

TNA-24-Making-of-Mr.-Righteous-37-Grundy-Moose-robot
Anyway, Betty storms off, and Ms. Grundy randomly walks over to their table with an empty tray – for absolutely no reason except so the robot can put his huge burger on her tray and insult her weight. Oh, and he also insults her hairdo and suggests “a complete makeover”. She gives him an hour of detention today – “after school”. Um, is there another kind?

Anyway, Moose guesses “Eugene” won’t be at tryouts. “Eugene” says “I’ll be there.”

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After the commercial break, Mr. Weatherbee complains about the “rabbit food” that he has to eat.

Both Eugenes walk past his door, confusing him. How does Eugene not see the robot walking directly in front of him?

TNA-24-Making-of-Mr.-Righteous-39-Amani-robot
Later, Amani calls out to “Eugene”, and he criticizes her for yelling (it’s not “ladylike”). She’s pissed but also needs his help with her computer project, so she’ll meet him at their “usual place” after school. I guess they stuck to those computer lessons. She says “Gotta run” and leaves.

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For some reason, this causes the robot to short circuit.

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Later, Eugene asks his “buddy” Moose where he’s been all day. Moose finds this funny and says he’ll see Eugene at tryouts. Eugene says he isn’t coming and leaves, confusing Moose.

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Later, Moose encounters the robot, which is dressed for tryouts, confusing him. The robot tells Moose to eat more fish – “brain food”.

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Somehow, Moose doesn’t murder it.

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Later, Ethel and “Juggie” pass them on their way to Pop’s. The robot calls Jughead “desperate”.

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Ethel gets angry.

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Jughead “predicts” a storm and uses it as an excuse to run away.

Ethel confronts “Eugene”. Jughead told it that he’d have to be desperate to borrow money from her.

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She whacks him in the face with her purse. He runs away, and she chases him.

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Later, Mr. Weatherbee leaves his office, sees only one Eugene, and decides the worst must be over.

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Spoke too soon.

Mr. Weatherbee decides he needs food to avoid seeing things.

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Later, Eugene makes a passing mention to Betty about the “brutal” math test that they’d had.

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This pisses her off.

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Eugene asks “Juggie” what happened to him. Jughead gets pissed.

Eugene wonders what the fuck’s going on.

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Ms. Grundy nabs Eugene and throws his ass in detention.

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Reggie vows revenge. Eugene is hopelessly lost. Ms. Grundy piles on fifteen or fifty more minutes for talking.

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“I don’t understand! Someone please explain!”

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At the tryouts, Moose throws a discus and does pretty good.

Moose cautions his “little buddy” to be careful while throwing the heavy discus.

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Somehow, this doesn’t tip anyone off, but, then again, humans on this show regularly demonstrate superhuman capabilities.

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The coach gets excited over “Eugene” (again) and violates personal boundaries.

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Moose is done.

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Later, at Pop’s, Amani chews Eugene out for being late. He’s confused and doesn’t answer when she asks where he was, giving her the idea that he doesn’t want to help her.

Eugene goes inside.

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Jughead, Moose, and Betty are here – and want nothing to do with Eugene. He leaves.

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Mr. Weatherbee is here, too. He sees the robot out the window and freaks out again.

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Eugene comes home, still confused, and realizes his robot is gone.

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Back at Pop’s, the gang (sans Veronica, who I guess is absent today) discusses Eugene’s odd behavior. Archie suggests checking up on him.

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This warrants a group cheer.

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Mr. Weatherbee wonders what to do and apparently contemplates suicide.

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The robot just happens to show up…for some reason. It causes Mr. Weatherbee to fall in the water, and then it admonishes him for not reading the sign. Mr. Weatherbee says he can’t swim. As he drowns, the robot says “Hmmm. Well, then, technically, you’re not breaking the law.” Okay, that was pretty funny. 🙂

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The gang shows up…for some reason.

Mr. Weatherbee cries out for help. The robot is conflicted but eventually decides he has to help.

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“Eugene” saves Mr. Weatherbee. The gang cheers.

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Mr. Weatherbee comes to…

TNA-24-Making-of-Mr.-Righteous-81-Weatherbee-freaks-out
…and faints upon seeing “Eugene”.

“Eugene” says it serves him right for not reading.

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Moose doesn’t take kindly to that.

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He angsts over decapitating his “little buddy”.

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Archie points out that it’s a robot, and Moose is upset that his “best friend” is a robot.

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Mr. Weatherbee wakes up and sees this:

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Surprisingly, he doesn’t faint. Also, why do the robot’s eyes open on their own?

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Eugene suddenly shows up…for some reason.

Mr. Weatherbee freaks out and…

TNA-24-Making-of-Mr.-Righteous-88-gang-falls-1TNA-24-Making-of-Mr.-Righteous-89-gang-falls-2TNA-24-Making-of-Mr.-Righteous-90-robot-Weatherbee
Then the decapitated robot touches Mr. Weatherbee’s arm.

It goes as you’d expect.

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Eugene laughs as he finally realizes what’s been going on.

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As he reaches down to help Betty onto the dock, the robot knocks him into the water.

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It’s all good, though.

This segment was kinda funny, but it relied too much on 1) everyone being too much of an idiot to see a robot for what it was, 2) no one except Mr. Weatherbee encountering two Eugenes throughout the day, and 3) everyone just randomly showing up at the dock at the end.

The New Archies, Segment 23 – Jughead’s Millions

TNA-23-Jughead's-Millions-01-title.jpg
Writer: Gary Greenfield
Director: Jim Simon
Original Air Date: Saturday, November 28, 1987 (assumed)
Length: 11:21

I’m sorry that this is a bit late.

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The segment opens with Veronica relating a rich, privileged white girl anecdote in class.

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Betty calls her out on it.

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Reggie and Veronica are shocked by this challenge to their worldview.

Archie talks about what being a middle-class kid is like.

Jughead talks about having to prepare his own “after-breakfast before-lunch snack”.

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Ms. Grundy brings up a “special class project”. They’re going to pretend to be adults.

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She marries Archie and Betty for a day.

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Reggie and Veronica laugh at that. Notably, Veronica’s not the least bit jealous.

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Ms. Grundy then assigns the “two gigglers” as their children. Veronica protests. Grundy then corrects Veronica’s grammar (complete with finger wag), because she’s petty. Thankfully, Reggie has a snappy comeback (whether intentional or not) that Riverdale fans can appreciate.

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Jughead’s all for the assignment, because he doesn’t have to do shit, but Ms. Grundy gives him $5.00 to invest in the stock market, despite the fact that he’s legally unable to. He wants to invest it in a dozen cheeseburgers, but she won’t let him.

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Amani wants to know what the c-list characters are gonna do.

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They’re gonna take care of a baby goat, of course! Ms. Grundy had the poor creature stashed in the storage closet. Did Mr. Weatherbee approve this shit?

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Also, Ms. Grundy doesn’t care that the goat is eating her students’ papers.

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The goat immediately gets on Jughead’s bad side, eating his sandwich.

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Ms. Grundy wants the rest of them to write a composition entitled “What It Means to Be an Adult”. The class hates it, and I distinctly hear Veronica protesting, even though she should be exempt from having to write it, because she’s roleplaying for this assignment.

Everyone gets up to leave, even though a bell hasn’t rung, and the class hasn’t been dismissed.

Jughead asks Archie to help him invest the money. Archie gets a bit sassy.

TNA-23-Jughead's-Millions-16-Betty-Archie-Jughead
Betty decides Archie’s “wife and kids” are gonna follow him everywhere.

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“Um, suuure, honey.” *mutters* “Creepy fucking bitch.”

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Reggie’s already had enough of this shit, and Veronica vows to drive Archie and Betty crazy.

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So Jughead goes downtown and invests the $5 in some sketchy cheeseburger company. I’m still not sure how he’s able to legally do this. Also, the broker never gives him a stock certificate.

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Reggie tries to fuck things up by putting gum in the computer’s keyboard.

Archie’s pissed and orders his “kids” to stand in the corner.

TNA-23-Jughead's-Millions-25-Betty-tissue
Betty explains her “kids” are cranky when they’ve missed their nap, which is kind of funny. She offers the broker a tissue for the gum, which doesn’t help. Archie also tries getting the gum off.

TNA-23-Jughead's-Millions-26-Reggie-Veronica-mess-aroundTNA-23-Jughead's-Millions-27-mess
Reggie and Veronica continue fucking shit up.

Suddenly, the computer informs them that the company that Jughead wanted to invest in (although we never actually see that investment take place) is now the “hottest company in the country”. Jughead’s investment is now worth $50,000, and the value is going up every minute. What the fuck?

Anyway, Reggie and Veronica are excited, but Archie tells them to take it easy, because Jughead is a “responsible adult”.

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Nope. He gets his hair and nails done. I find this very unrealistic. Jughead would be spending all of his money on cheeseburgers. Period.

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Anyway, Betty suggests Jughead’s overdoing it. Archie seconds what “the little woman” said, and Betty doesn’t react. At all. If I was her, I would have punched that sexist pig right in the fucking face.

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Anyway, Jughead literally throws his money away, causing a riot, and promises more. Veronica (the billionaire heiress) and Reggie (the son of the owner of the town’s newspaper) ask “Uncle Juggiekins” (ugh) for some spending money. Well, Veronica does; Reggie just laughs obnoxiously. Jughead’s happy to give the “kids” money to buy themselves “some more trinkets”. They’re unjustifiably happy. Remember, Veronica is basically Riverdale’s version of Paris Hilton. Why the fuck is she excited over getting a few hundred dollars?

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Veronica goes out shopping and takes interest in a 49-carat diamond, which she apparently has to put her sunglasses on in order to examine. Why the fuck is she even still wearing those stupid sunglasses at all at this point?

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Meanwhile, Reggie’s bought ponies…and brought them into the department store.

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Veronica decides they’re gonna race to the ticket booth. What in the actual fuck?

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Veronica wants to buy tickets to the Rolling Pebbles concert. The ticket booth attendant, trying to go for a young, hip California surfer accent, disappoints the “rad chick” by revealing he just sold the last two tickets to “this righteous old babe”. Veronica’s bummed.

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LOL!

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Archie and Betty arrive and have a laugh at it.

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Reggie and Veronica leave their ponies unattended. Betty informs them that Jughead has a “surprise” for all of them.

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Yeah, Jughead bought a fucking wrestling arena.

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“Why the fuck did you blow a ton of money on this, you fucking idiot?!”

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“I can do rich-people shit now, ’cause I’m one of them. Check this out.”

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Yeah, Jughead also bought a fucking all-girl wrestling team known as the Fabulous Bone Crushers.

Reggie isn’t impressed, because he’s a sexist pig, so…

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The fuck?

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Archie informs his “son” that they’re off to Jughead’s new house. When did Jughead inform him of this? They just now learned about his new arena.

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Yeah, Jughead also bought a fucking mansion. Betty tells her “children” to behave themselves and informs them that dinner’s almost ready. Veronica tells “Mommy” that they will.

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Yeah, right. Oh, and Jughead doesn’t even give a shit, in case you’re wondering.

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Jughead’s butler serves him some “before-dinner burgers”. The doorbell rings. Jughead sends him to see who it is.

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It’s the fucking goat. Wow, I’d completely forgotten about that.

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Oh, and Moose, Amani, and Eugene barge in as well, chasing after it.

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Jughead can’t catch a break.

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Um, no.

The video that I have goes black for six frames, so I guess that was a commercial break.

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Anyway, Betty sucks at cooking steaks, but she manages to joke about it.

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Betty’s rice spills onto the floor, and Archie walks onto the slippery floor like a dumbass, slips, and falls.

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Betty fucked up the toast as well and jokes about it.

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Ha.

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Reggie and Veronica start chanting “We want food!”, because they’re spoiled pieces of shit, and their “parents” happily serve them. Of course, the “kids” refuse to eat “this slop”.

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There is no fucking way that that goat can drag Moose Mason.

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Okay, that’s pretty funny.

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Veronica starts a food fight.

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Jughead comes by and tries to gently tell the “kids” to knock it off.

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But then he promptly forgets about it when there’s food in his mouth.

Anyway, he tells them that he’s gonna be on The Lifestyles of the Filthy Rich. Archie makes a joke.

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Holy shit, that’s a lot of shit that Jughead ordered.

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Anyway, Jughead is interviewed poolside by a Robin Leach knockoff that doesn’t look anything like him.

The butler comes by and accidentally knocks the host into the swimming pool. He hands Jughead an “urgent telegram”. Jughead guesses it’s from his broker with news of more money.

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Nope. “All of [his] investments took a nosedive” (despite the fact that Jughead only ever showed interest in investing in one company), leaving him “flat broke”.

The butler passes out at the thought of having to stand in the unemployment line, and then he falls into the swimming pool.

Jughead doesn’t care, since he still has all of his possessions.

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Faster than you can say “What the shit?”, a bunch of guys show up and take away all of the shit that Jughead had ordered but hadn’t opened yet, despite the fact that he used cash, check, or credit to purchase them. These companies would have no idea that Jughead’s suddenly broke.

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Some random guy even comes by and confiscates Reggie and Veronica’s ponies.

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So, naturally, they throw temper tantrums about wanting their ponies.

Jughead gets out a burger “to think”, saying at least no one can take that away from him.

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Ha.

So everyone falls into the swimming pool.

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The host does the sign-off for his show, despite the facts that 1) his microphone probably is no longer working, and 2) his camera operator has probably long since taken off.

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Later, at Riverdale Junior High School, Ms. Grundy asks Jughead what he’s learned about the stock market. He says it’s risky business, and he prefers the supermarket. Don’t ever go into stand-up, Jug.

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Ms. Grundy asks Archie and Betty what they discovered about raising children. Betty says it’s not easy, and Archie has a new appreciation for parents. Ms. Grundy hopes everybody gained from their assignment.

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Veronica says Archie and Betty are “creepy parents”. Um, did they force you to watch them fuck, Ronnie? If not, then shut the fuck up. Reggie blames them for the loss of their ponies, because…reasons.

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Veronica proposes letting the two of them be the parents for a day, saying they’ll do better. Ms. Grundy asks if they’re sure, saying sometimes kids get “special treatment”. They’re sure.

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Ms. Grundy gives Betty and Archie the last two tickets to tonight’s Rolling Pebbles concert.

Veronica protests, demanding the tickets. Ms. Grundy says just the “kids” get to go. Lest you think Ms. Grundy set all of this up ahead of time, she actually admitted she was lucky enough to get the tickets, so this is merely an impromptu, last-minute lesson for Veronica and Reggie.

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Reggie blatantly snatches the tickets out of Archie’s hand. Archie demands them back.

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Just then, the goat, running unsupervised throughout the school, busts open the door, heads directly for Reggie, and eats the tickets, because no one except him is allowed to be happy.

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Oh, yeah, we learn from Archie, who makes a joke, that the goat’s name is Munchie. Whatever. The class yucks it up.

This segment was pretty stupid. It was impossible straight from the start, because Jughead would never be allowed to make an investment in the stock market on his own.

Tune in next Wednesday!

The New Archies, Segment 22 – Gunk for Gold

TNA-22-Gunk-for-Gold-01-title
Writers: Eleanor Burian-Mohr & Jack Hanrahan
Director: Jim Simon
Original Air Date: Saturday, November 21, 1987 (assumed)
Length: 11:21

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The segment opens with a soccer game. A player kicks the ball to Moose and tells him to go for the goal.

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Moose is initially confused but then thanks the kid, whose name is Biff. He makes a goal.

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The coach asks Eugene for a stat update. It seems this is the twelfth goal that Moose has scored for the other team. Oopsie.

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Ms. Grundy is trying to support the team, but Mr. Weatherbee laments this is Riverdale’s tenth year in a row losing to the Bainbridge Bongoes. Ms. Grundy says Veronica still has a chance to win this game.

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Unfortunately, that asshole Biff appeals to Veronica’s vanity, takes the ball, and then makes some trash talk at Archie.

Biff then scores the winning goal, ending the game. Ms. Grundy tries to kinda-sorta console Mr. Weatherbee.

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In the boys’ locker room, the coach tries to look on the bright side: they’ve played only three games. However, Jughead is all negative, pointing out that they’ve lost three. Holy shit, look at that huge stash of burgers. Jughead has a mountain of hamburgers in his fucking gym locker. That’s fucking nasty!

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The coach continues to try to be optimistic, but Biff shows up to insult them.

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Moose wants to beat the shit out of Biff, but Archie and Eugene somehow restrain him. Yeah, I don’t think so. Anyway, Archie’s still optimistic about their team, but the others aren’t and leave.

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Later, Archie’s hanging out at Eugene’s, and he’s frustrated that the team’s so down on themselves.

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Eugene feels the same but suggests Archie help him with a science project, claiming it’ll get their minds off soccer. How many science projects do these kids do per year? I seem to remember it being only a once-per-year thing, and I never enjoyed having to do it. Of course, knowing Eugene, he might be doing this just for fun.

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Archie agrees and then asks what this shit is.

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As Eugene explains, some of the pizza that Archie’s eating drops into an Erlenmeyer flask, contaminating the contents and turning them green.

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Eugene immediately notices and runs off with the contaminated substance. Please note the pizza has turned all of Eugene’s compound green, despite the fact that the pizza was dropped into only the one flask.

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Eugene dumps the compound in a trash can, which gets all cartoony and barfs it back out.

The gunk bounces around the room. Archie tries to grab it with a net but fails. Finally, he jumps on it…

TNA-22-Gunk-for-Gold-20-Archie-window
…and promptly bounces out the window.

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Archie’s having a great time.

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Show-off.

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Eugene comes outside and throws a football for Archie to catch. I find this very unbelievable. Why would Eugene have a football? For that matter, why does he have a basketball hoop?

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So Archie kicks the ball while spinning in the air and then just lands. I think Eugene might like his ball back.

Anyway, Archie loves the gunk. Eugene, the intelligent one, wonders what they can use it for.

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Fortunately(?), Reggie, who just happens to be hanging out near Eugene’s house, has an idea.

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Reggie’s plan is to smear the gunk on the soles of their gym shoes. Okay, so they’re ripping off Son of Flubber.

Archie asks if this is cheating, and Eugene asks if it’s the misuse of science, but Reggie rationalizes both of their concerns away.

They hear people coming, so Eugene puts the gunk in a locker to keep it safe. Um, take it home with you, you dumbass!

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They make a pact to keep this top secret.

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Before a game, Archie and Reggie give a pep talk about “magic feet” that even their teammates find lame.

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Veronica and Betty share a laugh over Jughead’s bouncing around while thinking nothing odd about it. They also bounce around themselves like it’s perfectly normal.

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So Riverdale does really well while also breaking the rules of soccer and the laws of physics.

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Not to worry, though: all authority figures are too jazzed up to care.

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The team takes its success on the road.

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They’ve even come up with a cheer: “We got the beat! We got the magic feet!” It makes the Walmart Cheer sound almost tolerable by comparison.

No, it doesn’t.

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Archie and Eugene are tired.

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“What the fuck’s wrong with you guys? We won the last three games! Yay, us!”

Archie says he thought winning would feel better.

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At another game, Jughead’s listening to Michael Jackson and moonwalks into the soccer ball.

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“Hold my burger, asshole. I gotta score a goal now.”

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Do school principals and random teachers regularly accompany school sports teams on away games? I’m guessing no.

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Riverdale continues to kick ass in the world of junior high school soccer.

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After the commercial break, Archie’s helping out in the school garden for whatever reason. Ms. Grundy praises the team. She says they’re only one game away from the championship. I smell conflict.

Ms. Grundy realizes Archie’s planting his gloves and asks what’s wrong. Archie tries to speak of “someone” having a hypothetical moral dilemma, and Ms. Grundy suggests “someone” look into his heart.

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Eugene comes by and catches the end of the conversation.

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Later, Archie and Eugene are spreading the gunk on the soles of their shoes. Eugene asks Archie if he’s looked into his heart yet. Archie says yes and asks Eugene the same question. Eugene says he thought they could look later. Well, aren’t you a badass?

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They’re startled by the rest of the team entering the locker room, but I guess they don’t get caught, because it moves on to the next scene.

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During the game, Ethel kicks the ball to Moose, but she does it in such a way as to show off. Apparently, as we’re led to believe, the gunk allows the team to perform weird tricks, like bouncing the soccer ball off all of the players (while not hurting them in the slightest).

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The stupid “magic feet” cheer has caught on.

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Riverdale wins another game and is now in the championship game.

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That night (I guess), at Archie’s house, Archie and Eugene look into their hearts. Archie calls up the newspaper to tell “the newspaper guy” (Reggie’s dad?) the truth. After Archie explains, he’s just laughed at. Archie shakes his head in sadness. Eugene tries to comfort him.

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The next day (I guess), at Pop’s, Archie explains everything to the gang (minus Ethel, because she’s not a main character). Veronica is in disbelief.

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To prove it, Archie gunks Jughead’s stupid hat. It bounces around for a bit and then lands right back on Jughead’s head, because of course it does. The gang is awestruck.

Archie says they’re going to the championship tomorrow. He brings up Biff. Wow, I’d forgotten about that asshole. Anyway, Archie asks if they should gunk or not.

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Ha.

Reggie protests. Archie gives a half-assed line about winning.

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That’s all that it took, apparently.

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The next night, at the championship game, the team is depressed.

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Well, except for Jughead. He doesn’t give a shit.

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So the team sucks without the gunk.

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Biff makes fun of their “magic feet”.

TNA-22-Gunk-for-Gold-77-Ethel-surprisedTNA-22-Gunk-for-Gold-78-Grundy-Weatherbee-disappointed
Riverdale’s audience is disappointed.

So Riverdale continues sucking, and the Bongoes keep racking up points.

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Veronica says they’re no good without gunk. Reggie says he knew they should have used it.

Archie tries to give a pep talk, saying they still have half of the game left to go, but the others won’t have it and tell him to shut the fuck up. Archie lies his ass off, claiming they played the last two games without gunk. He gets Eugene to go along with it.

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This really shouldn’t fool anyone, but it does, because everyone on this show is a fucking idiot. They do the “magic feet” chant, even though they’re not wearing the gunk, because fuck this show.

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Ms. Grundy and Mr. Weatherbee join in, somehow hearing the team from way up in the bleachers.

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So the team suddenly plays unusually well. Jughead even jumps really high, as if he’s wearing the gunk, but he blends into the crowd, so I can’t really get a good screencap of it. The point is Riverdale suddenly rocks for no apparent reason except “morale”.

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I’m pretty sure this is illegal in any soccer game, but it’s too late in the story for the adults to start enforcing the rules. Let’s just get this over with.

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So the score’s tied 6-6. The coach informs them that they have 30 seconds to win or lose this game. Either way, they’re proud and all rooting for them.

The crowd keeps doing the “magic feet” chant.

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The Bongoes, led by Biff, try to get past the “losers”.