Could you explain more of how you think the riarkle "campfire scene" would go? I would love for that to happen, but if it does, then what about all the episodes after that that will have so little interaction between them?
Yes! I totally can.
My current theory is that ski lodge one is going to have a Riarkle moment a la the Lucaya campfire moment from Texas 2. Obviously it won’t actually be at a campfire.
I have no idea where they’ll be (I have a feeling it’s outside though) and obviously I’m not psychic so I don’t know what words they’ll use or what will actually go down but there are a few beats I think they’ll hit:
1) Farkle and Riley both have an OMG moment during which they realize there is an attraction/something deeper going on between them. A lot of people think Farkle already knows he has big boy feelings for Riley but I don’t think he does, to be honest. Lucas is fairly clueless that his feelings for Maya are vastly different than his feelings for Riley and I think the same can easily be said for Farkle re: his feelings for Riley vs his feelings for Smackle. They’ve been playing Riarkle up A LOT since STEM/late season 2 (STEM, NY, Texas 3) and even more so this season (him coming to Topanga’s in HS 1, their solo scene in PR, the volcano stuff in TM (the TM stuff is subtler, to be fair). It reads to me like a repeat of the slow Lucaya build up over season two. So it definitely hits the square dance theory that @theowldetective has.
Let’s say that the writers don’t want to be that bold in ski lodge 1, at least one of them has this moment. If that’s the case all my money is on Riley being the one to have it. Why, you ask? Well, both Lucas and Maya blatantly have struggled with “loving two people” (Couples Game throwback). Riley hasn’t. If Riley is eventually going to grow as a result of this arc (I think we can all agree that she hasn’t learned anything yet and I doubt finally getting together with Lucas is going to teach her a valuable life lesson) she needs to experience this. It seems like a good time for her to realize her Farkle feels. Maybe she doesn’t figure out the extent of them, but she will definitely have an a ha moment (hormonal telegram).
2) Depending on whether it’s one of them or both of them (and if you’re asking me to pick I would say it will only be one of them), one or both will put whatever epiphany they just had aside because the other’s happiness is what is most important. These kids are being driven by their flaws throughout this entire arc. Riley Insecure Matthews and Farkle I Am A Nothing Minkus are not going to go from this moment (I have no doubt that it will be something that clearly requires individual reactions and not a kiss) to thinking the other one feels the same way. Riley and Farkle are the two who actually are good at talking but…dramatic irony they won’t be able to do that in this moment. They’ll convince themselves it was nothing, they dreamed it, there’s no way the other one is feeling the same thing.
3) They’ll go on to actually encourage each other and support each other. Riley will reinforce Farkle’s relationship with Smackle and Farkle will reassure Riley that Lucas is everything she wants and deserves.
Now the orange maple leaf is undoubtedly a Farkle symbol. Does it play into this moment? Most likely. But maybe it doesn’t. The question is how. What I DO NOT think will happen is Farkle giving the leaf to Riley in a special moment and her turning around and re-gifting it to Lucas. I think that Riley either picked it up where she and Farkle had their moment as a keepsake or got it somewhere else entirely and her giving it to Lucas is her way of saying she chooses him too? Idk. Like I said I’m not MJ and details aren’t my strength.
Now. If you need more hope that Riarkle may have a moment in Ski Lodge 1 (and remember: THIS IS NOT CONFIRMED IT IS CONJECTURE), I would say that Riley talking about how she and Maya will have several boyfriends and Lucas and Josh are only their first boyfriends as a BIG clue. Only a few episodes before (Jexica), Riley clearly thought she was going to marry Lucas. How did Riley Eight Year Lucas Plan Matthews go from marrying him in Jexica to thinking she’ll date other guys in Ski Lodge 2?!?? Something happened to change her perspective and it makes sense that that something would be realizing something about the boy she’s been having higher and higher key moments with. Also, Evan tells FARKLE that all Riley talked about during their all nighter was “you guys”. Huh? Take this to mean the whole clique six or take it to mean Lucas and Farkle. We won’t know until we see both episodes. It’s still a 🤔 line.
Side note: Evan is a mischief maker so I wouldn’t be surprised if he picks up on some Riarkle vibes and plots to have them alone/manufactures a moment. Though idk how’d they’d have time for that AND I think the moment needs to be natural and authentic and catalyzed by Riley and Farkle and only Riley and Farkle. Maybe his line to Farkle about only wanting to talk about “you guys” is his way of stirring the Riarkle pot. Maybe Riley just confided in Evan about her newfound Farkle feels and Farkle didn’t share the moment/experience the same thing so this is Evanms way of hinting.
Side note two: Evan basically takes credit for Riley and Lucas getting together. In GM Hollyworld, we hear a lot about authenticity. Regardless of any Riarkle moment, I think it’s interesting that in both New World AND Ski Lodge 2, Rilucas getting together is anything but authentic. Fight me on this if you want and maybe I’ll change my mind after I see Ski Lodge 2 put together, but Lucas had a lot of pushes either way. I don’t want those kinds of machinations anywhere near Riarkle (or any other couple meant to last).
Okay, so as for Riarkle having “very little interaction on the episodes after them”, I have five words for you: THEY ARE BOTH IN RELATIONSHIPS. Neither Riley nor Farkle is a bad person. They aren’t jerks. They certainly aren’t cheaters. They are both going to be pushing what happened between them so far out of their minds (trying to anyway).
Does it always succeed? No it doesn’t. Let me direct you to GM Bear, in which Farkle acts much more like Riley’s boyfriend than Lucas does. Let me direct you again to GM Great Lady of NY, in which there is an epically long Riarkle hug. There’s a very sweet and meaningful interaction between them in GM A Christmas Maya too.
In terms of solo scenes, I actually think the fact that there are no solo Riarkle scenes after ski lodge actually further the hypothesis that things go down similarly to what I’ve put forth. If they do happen like that, one or both of them will definitely be avoiding being alone because one or both won’t want things to get weird.
Sorry this is insanely long. If you have any follow ups or clarifications, please feel free to ask!