For Riverdale fans who have felt that Kevin Keller (Casey Cott) has been pushed to the side this season, last night’s episode was a welcome Kevin-centric episode.
This week’s installment, titled “The Watcher in the Woods,” was a chapter that showed the out and proud high school student looking for hookups in Fox Forest, Riverdale’s version of the Ramble.
Since his best friend, Betty (Lili Reinhart), started dating Jughead (Cole Sprouse), and Archie (KJ Apa) and Veronica (Camila Mendes) are now an item, Kevin feels lonely and looks for companionship in the woods—even if the town is on lockdown after a string of murders by the mysterious killer known as the Black Hood.
“Kevin has pent up a large amount of loneliness and he’s in a lot of every other character’s drama up until now,” Cott told Bustle about his plot in the episode. “He just needs to feel something and he’s trying to find someone in whatever way he can and that leads to this really risky, dangerous situation we find him in in this episode.”
On Riverdale Betty might be pre-occupied with Jughead, but in this week’s episode she took time to worry about her best friend and his safety as he goes “night jogging” with a killer on the loose.
“Why can’t you use GrindEm like every other gay guy in the world,” Betty asked Kevin after Archie and the gang meet about the Black Hood.
“Nobody is who they say they are online,” he replied. “At least in real life, what you see is what you get.”
Not only did the episode bring up gay online dating apps (Grind’Em is Grindr in the Archie universe), but it also featured Kevin hooking up in the woods—even after he came across the aftermath of Moose getting shot by the Black Hood in Lovers Lane—and some sweet moments too, particularly in a sweet scene between Kevin and Moose in the hospital.
Moose might have been with Midge at Lovers Lane, but he is closeted and has hooked up with Kevin before (the most notable being when they came across Jason Blossom’s body mid-hookup at the river). When Kevin comes to visit him in the hospital, Moose tells Kevin that he can come talk to him anytime, also fearing that Kevin will get into danger if he keeps jogging through the woods at night.
“It’s really lovely. We’ll see where it goes and what happens, but for the time being, they are just friends,” said Cott. “It’s a really beautiful friendship and this is a cool moment for them. And that’s what Kevin really needs more than anything right now.”
This new episode showed a different side of Kevin, and now that Cott is a series regular in Season 2, the actor promised that Kevin will be getting more action—including a significant relationship.
“I think what’s cool about Kevin in season two is we kind of explore many different kinds of love interests, the same way that high schoolers do. Some are people you just meet, but are quick; sometimes you find a long-lasting relationship,” Cott explained to Teen Vogue. “We kind of delved into a few different kinds of relationships in Season 2. I think a bigger, more long-term relationship is coming for Kevin very soon.”
If Kevin is cruising the woods in the third episode of the season, we can only imagine where the series will take him by the season finale.