A few weeks ago, I received an email from Netflix, telling me that I could watch the season premiere of Riverdale ahead of its release. Since then I’ve also had access to episodes 2 and 3, but this is the first time I’ve been organised enough to write a recap. At this point I haven’t received any further screeners, so this may be the only recap for the season.
Before we get into this week’s episode, some thoughts on the first two:
- The Riverdale Hospital looks like it’s out of the 1950s. It’s ridiculous, but it adds to the idea that Riverdale is a town out of time, and reminds me of the bucolic nature of Twin Peaks (I haven’t finished The Return yet).
- Speaking of Twin Peaks, Mädchen Amick is still great as Alice Cooper, even though she spoke about (presumably what would have been) consentual sex as Jughead ‘defiling’ Betty. They chose to write her that way for a reason, but I stared at the laptop in disbelief for a couple of seconds.
- Me when Veronica got in the shower with Archie: “Really?”
- I wondered if the storyline about Pop’s closing would be a reference to last year’s too short run of Betty & Veronica, and there are some elements that are similar, but this is its own thing.
- Just pay the lawyers, Jughead!
- Alice blamed Betty for the serpents and the new drug-dealing Reggie being at Pop’s. Because closing down a diner would eliminate all crime.
- Jughead was still hanging out at Riverdale High in episode 2 but now he’s at South Side.
Onto “The Watcher in the Woods”
Luke McGregor and Celia Pacquola. Image courtesy of the ABC.
Last Monday I went to see the Rosehaven premiere at ACMI, which was a screening of the first two episodes followed by a Q&A with Celia and Luke. It’s not the first event of this kind that ACMI has hosted, and if you live in Melbourne, I highly recommend signing up to their mailing list, or buying a membership if you can afford it. I’m pleased to report that Rosehaven is still great, which is reflected in its performance overseas. This week they’re holding the US premiere at the New York Television Festival before it airs on Sundance the same day and date as Australia.
The first two episodes have storylines that involve pub trivia and working at the tuck shop. If I’d written this right after I’d seen it, I might remember more, but all you need to know is that it’s still great. I forgot to bring a notebook (usually there’s just one in my bag, so I need to figure out where that one went), so I scribbled some notes from the Q&A on the back of my ticket. Here are some of the highlights that are spoiler free:
- Celia and Luke stayed in a hotel/inn while they were in production for season one. Luke asked Celia to swap rooms because he thought the painting in there would haunt him. Celia said no because she didn’t want to be haunted, and Luke stayed anyway because the painting could have been angry at him. The next time they stayed there he requested a different room. He’s gone full Hollywood.
- Someone asked a great question about Celia and Luke’s writing process: they map out (or ‘break’) the episodes together, and work on the scripts separately in the same flat, so they can yell out things like “What would Emma say if I came into the room drinking a juice box?” The scripts then go to their script editor/producer Michael Lucas to read.
- The tag at the end of episode 1 is based on a conversation Luke and Celia actually had.
- There was another really great question about doing episodes on issues, and they responded that it’s a silly show. They also said that due to the production cycle, if they try to address the issue of the day, it will probably be out of date by the time it airs. Celia and Luke also try to address issues based on their own experiences, which makes the show more truthful.
- Luke and Celia were asked how similar their characters are to them in real life. Daniel is Luke if he’d never gone into comedy, and Emma is Celia in a silly happy mood 100% of the time instead of the usual 20%. The best part of this answer is that they worked for Luke’s parents for a few weeks and were recognised. They said that comedy didn’t work out, and people were definitely ready to believe them.
- The visual gags are all written into the script, but there’s some great background work in the pub trivia scenes that were improvised.
- The opening credits (which are great, but make me slightly nauseous – it’s better on the big screen than the TV) are symbolic of Tasmania being on the bottom of the world. Both the opening credits sequence and the theme song have been nominated for awards.
Rosehaven season 2 premieres Wednesday, October 25 at 9pm on the ABC
This is my desktop background, I love it.
Hey, remember when I posted this GIF yesterday? It was so my erstwhile editor Steve Molk could save it, because Slack won’t let you save GIFs. That’s what I learned late last night while I was watching the Dynasty premiere. Netflix did a number on me when they didn’t give me any warning that the latest seasons of Jane the Virgin and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend were dropping, so I had to highlight them retroactively. Last week was a little busy, so I couldn’t do both which meant I got really into my Crazy Ex-Girlfriend synopsis.
So, other things in streaming: I’m still not sure how I feel about The Babysitter, which I watched on Tuesday night. If you want to talk about it, please leave a comment or contact me on Twitter. At the start of the film I began counting how many songs had been used – there were 5 in the first 15 minutes – but when it gets to the point, it’s pretty fun. I know that last song choice as they cut to credits is supposed to be funny but it still rubbed me the wrong way. I liked that last line though! Oh well.
I haven’t watched The Meyerowitz Stories yet, but I’m looking forward to it. I have seen the season two premiere of Good Behavior, and I was drawn in immediately, despite not having seen the second half of the first season. I think Michelle Dockery’s performance is fantastic, but when I read the description, I was hoping it would be a little more like Leverage. Plus Ann Dowd and Laura Bell Bundy are guest starring! Okay, Ann Dowd was in the first season, but I’m definitely more interested in the show now than I was during the first season.
I think I’m going to start writing Riverdale recaps, but starting next week. I might put in a few bullet points tomorrow if I have time/remember. There’s a direction I think it’s going to take based on plot points I’m not allowed to reveal from my screener emails, so I’m looking forward to seeing if I’m right (I haven’t watched ahead yet – I’ll probably stick to one episode per week because I like talking about it with my friends).
My editor needed a way to save the GIF for the streaming guide, so I thought it would be fun to leave it here sans context.