This episode originally aired October 16, 1999 and was written by Michael Patrick Dobkins.
Not to tell stories outside of Riverdale High, but word is that Veronica Lodge is a bit spoiled. We open this episode with Archie carrying a mountain of books out of school. Too much homework? No! He’s carrying Veronica’s books for her. All of them. Not only are his arms full, but he also has to get the door for her as well. Archie dumps the books in the back seat of his car (Betsy from the last episode, now not possessed) and races around to the other side to open Veronica’s door for her. Veronica then is upset because the top is down on the car and the wind could mess up her hair. Archie struggles to put the top up. All of this happens in front of the judging eyes of Jughead, Betty, and Reggie. Reggie who, so far on this show, is one of the gang and not at all a rich snob who schemes half the time against Archie. I guess the weird mysteries take precedence over the group in fighting.
Later, Veronica is poolside at stately Lodge manor and beckons for the butler, Smithers, to do every little task for her. Smithers I need a new spoon, mine fell. Smithers the phone is too far away. Veronica’s father, Hiram Lodge, watches and decides that his daughter has gone too far and needs to be taught some work ethic. He brings his daughter into some sort of study/trophy room/whatever it’s not important and instructs her that she is to pack up everything in the room within an hour before the museum picks it all up. Hiram has graciously donated some of his collection to the local Riverdale museum. Smithers oversees and Veronica in heels and a dress packs up all of the strange artifacts from around the world. “Hiram’s Weird Stuff” doesn’t have the same ring as a show title. Veronica is upset over all of this work and wishes everyone in the world would be like her. Coincidentally while saying this she is holding some sort of idol which grants wishes! Meanwhile, Betty, Reggie, Jughead, and Archie are all at Pop’s and Betty is looking at the museum brochure of Hiram’s collection. They’re really close to the deadline here if everything is just now being packed up. Betty says this wish idol looks interesting, reads the blurb, and we’re all caught up on how this will work.
The Gang asks for more food and Pop’s is the first to change. He begins acting like Veronica. He doesn’t want to work, he wants someone to do the work for him. The Gang finds this very odd. Archie and Betty are about to leave to figure out this mystery when Veronica shows up. Archie drags Veronica inside and they both discover that Pop’s has changed into Veronica!
Betty wants to do some research but Veronica wants other people to do the work, despite this clearly having something to do with her. They head outside and Veronica’s car is being stolen by another Veronica. The police officer who has also turned into a Veronica can’t be bothered. In fact no one who has changed into a Veronica can be bothered to do anything. At this time it’s worth pointing out that Veronica’s voice does not sound like a teenage girl. She sounds like Katey Segal now. Nothing against the actress, but that voice does not quite fit for a teenage girl.
Betty puts the pieces together and realizes that the idol caused all of this. Veronica calls her daddy to help retrieve the idol but he and Smithers are at the pool acting like Veronica as well. However, they have not changed form. Interesting.
At the museum it is revealed that the idol is in place however the museum has been set up as an exact replica of the temple which originally held the idol, booby traps and all. While racing to the temple room, Betty and Archie begin to act like Veronica but do not change form. Veronica realizes, ironically, that the only person who isn’t acting like her is her thus it’s up to her to save the town. She dodges arrows, leaps chasms, basically has a good ole’ fashioned Indiana Jones level romp through the museum. Which is how featured exhibits are set up in real life to this day.
Veronica has a heart to heart with the idol but nothing changes. She wishes everything would go back to normal and that’s when the idol finally responds. That magic word was necessary. No one has any recollection of their Veronica selves and Riverdale gets back to normal.
Veronica has learned… the value of hard work? Not to casually wish around idols? Why museum fees have tripled because death traps are expensive?
I learned that Pop’s is the only male to physically turn into a Veronica. All of the other ones only changed their attitudes. Jughead and Reggie didn’t change on screen at all. I think the E/I and family friendly PAX channel allowed only one trans character per episode.