‘Riverdale’ Fans Finally Learn The Truth About Jughead

For months, Riverdale fans have been worried about Jughead’s (Cole Sprouse) fate. The show set up a mysterious murder storyline and led fans to believe his friends were responsible for his death. But with the latest episode, fans are finally getting details of exactly what happened that fateful night in the woods, and whether or not Jughead is truly dead.  

[Spoiler alert: This article contains spoilers for Riverdale season 4, episode 15.]

Cole Sprouse and Lili Reinhart - Riverdale
‘Riverdale’ – Cole Sprouse and Lili Reinhart | Dean Buscher/The CW

How ‘Riverdale’ set up Jughead’s murder 

Riverdale has been teasing Jughead’s death through flash-forward scenes all season. In the last few episodes, it became clear that the murder took place during the Ides of March party. All the key players were in attendance, including Archie (K.J. Apa), Betty (Lili Reinhart), Jughead, Veronica (Camila Mendes), and the Stonewall Prep crew.

When Archie and Veronica come upon Jughead’s body after the party, they find Betty standing over him with a bloody rock in her hand. She doesn’t remember what happened, and can’t explain how Jughead died. 

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Betty insists that the Stonewall Prep kids are trying to frame her, but the lingering shadow of Dark Betty makes it feel like she’s hiding something sinister. But clue by clue, Betty figures out Donna (Sarah Desjardins) and Bret’s (Sean Depner) plans. She thinks they killed Jughead to get him out of the way, and are conveniently pinning the murder on his friends. 

Upon realizing his son is missing, F.P. (Skeet Ulrich) takes out a search party and finds his body in the woods. But with the abundance of inconsistent details — including Jughead’s body switching jackets — fans were sure something other than murder was at play. 

Fans finally learn the truth Jughead’s fate

In Riverdale season 4, episode 15, “Chapter Seventy-Two: To Die For,” fans discover that Jughead was indeed hit in the head with a rock after the Ides of March party, but survives the attack. Betty reveals that Bret and Donna really tried to kill Jughead, but his beanie saved him by taking the brunt of the hit. 

When Betty and Jughead realize what the Stonewall preppies are up to, they decide to fake his death. To keep out of sight, Jughead hides in the bunker and conspires with Betty to figure out a  way to implicate Donna for his murder.

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And apparently, all of Jughead’s friends and family are in on the charade. Archie, Veronica, F.P., Jellybean (Trinity Likins), Alice (Mädchen Amick), and Mary (Molly Ringwald) all know Jughead is alive, and they’re doing a great job faking their grief.  

Now, knowing Donna is watching their every move, Archie, Betty, and Veronica are actively trying to make Jughead’s death look real. Betty and Archie pretend to be falling for each other and purposely makeout while Donna is watching. An outraged Veronica finds them, but again, it’s all for show. 

The episode ends with Veronica finding information about Donna’s true identity that could explain her sordid behavior. Hopefully, Riverdale‘s next episode will shed more light on Donna’s past, as well as Jughead and Betty’s plans going forward.