The second half of Riverdale's second season kicked off tonight, and it could've introduced another interesting mystery in the process.
Spoilers for tonight's episode of Riverdale, "The Blackboard Jungle" below!
Early on in tonight's episode, Archie Andrews (KJ Apa) was approached by Special Agent Adams, an FBI agent who needed Archie's help with something.
As Agent Adams explained, he is investigating the possible illegal business dealings of Hiram Lodge (Mark Consuelos), and he needs Archie's help with getting to the bottom of things. He then tasks Archie with uncovering the mystery of Nick St. Clair's (Graham Phillips) sudden accident, which seemed to be caused by the Lodges.
Archie goes along with the task, basically bringing Veronica (Camila Mendes) and Cheryl (Madelaine Petsch) into things in the process. But throughout it all, Agent Adams promises that those close to Archie -- namely, Veronica and Fred (Luke Perry) -- will stay safe in the situation.
For some, the introduction of Agent Adams raises some eyebrows, and not just because it serves as another sort of Twin Peaks homage. Namely, it feels like a sort of narrative ploy, especially considering the sharp turn it brings following the whole Black Hood debacle. All in all, the situation between Archie and Adams just seems a little too perfect; there could be something more going on.
So, could Agent Adams actually be impersonating an FBI agent? And if that's the case, who is instructing him to do so? Here are some of our theories.
A Business Rival of Hiram's
This feels pretty likely, although it would require a little bit of extra explanation within the world of Riverdale.
After all, as this episode confirmed, the Lodges aren't afraid to get their hands dirty when it comes to their business deals, as they brought Mayor McCoy (Robin Givens) in on their purchase of the land under Southside High.
Someone else, albeit someone we haven't met yet on the show, could be pulling the strings behind the FBI ploy as a way of getting the SoDale development to fall through.
The St. Clairs
On a related note, it wouldn't be impossible to see the St. Clairs behind the FBI investigation -- albeit for a completely different reason.
The fact that Adams asks Archie to investigate Nick's accident would be the biggest indicator of this. The St. Clairs very well could suspect that Hiram was behind the accident, but not know why it occurred in the first place. (After all, while they knew about Cheryl's assault, they don't seem to know about Veronica's quite yet.)
Sure, it's somewhat of a roundabout way of doing things. But it certainly wouldn't feel out of question in the world of shady parents that is Riverdale.
Fans last saw the Snake Charmer in the show's midseason finale, as Jughead threatened her to stay out of town. But in a way, having Agent Adams string Archie and the rest of the town along could end up being her way around that.
After all, Penny previously stated that she "likes surveillance," as she uses the town's various resources to hold leverage over people. Picking up dirt on the Lodges, who are currently trying to destroy the world of the South Side, certainly wouldn't seem out of the question.
The New Sugarman
On a related note, there's a chance that the FBI sting could be behind another prominent figure: the newest incarnation of the Sugarman.
The mystery of Riverdale's Jingle Jangle dealer came about earlier this season, when it was revealed that the title of the Sugarman has been used for quite some time. The most recent person to hold the mantle was Robert Phillips, the English teacher at Southside High.
Obviously, Phillips was quickly killed while inside prison, but there's a chance that someone else could have taken up the mantle. Having both Southside High and the drive-in taken down -- places that the Sugarman would've been able to sell Jingle Jangle -- would certainly justify that person going after the Lodges.
The Real Chic Cooper
And finally, there's a chance that the FBI situation could complicate another plotline altogether: the arrival of Chic Cooper (Hart Denton).
Betty's long-lost brother was finally introduced this episode, and it's safe to say that he's already brought a bit of trouble for the Cooper family. This varies pretty wildly from Chic's Archie Comics counterpart, which finds him as a well-mannered... government agent.
Sure, it sounds a little crazy now. But it isn't out of the question that the Chic we've met so far is some sort of impostor, and that Adams, who is about the right age range, could be the real Chic Cooper.
So, what's the real story behind Riverdale's FBI agent? Either way, fans will just have to stay tuned.
Riverdale airs Wednesdays at 8/7c on The CW.