“Riverdale” pays tribute to Luke Perry

The season kicks off in memoriam to the late actor


(Gage Skidmore / Wikimedia Commons)

Season four of “Riverdale” premiered on October 9 with promises of coming back to its milk-shake drinking, football-loving, light-hearted roots. After two seasons of cults, serial killers and gangs, “Riverdale” writer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa says season four will be grounded at the high school level like season one.

However, “Riverdale” would have to address the death of star Luke Perry who played Fred Andrews. Perry passed away from a stroke. In the episode, Fred died in a hit-and-run accident after he chose to stop and help a stranded driver on the side of the road. 

This brings Archie and his pals to Cherry Creek, the town where his father died in order to bring his body home. While in town, they meet the stranded driver who Archie’s father had saved. Shannen Doherty, who starred alongside Perry in his breakout TV show “Beverly Hills, 90210,” made a cameo appearance as the stranded driver.

In classic Fred Andrews’ fashion,  he saw a car coming and pushed her out of the way, saving her life over his own. Fred Andrews was always one to put others’ needs first, the way he took Jughead in or treated Betty like his own.

“He saved my life, and if he hadn’t done what he did, there’s no way I’d be here right now; I know that,” she tells Archie.

A grieving Archie becomes hell-bent to  find the man who murdered his father. When he confronts the man who turned himself in, it turns out that he is covering for his son who took the car without asking.

Archie relates to the young boy. He knows that Fred would have done the same for him. The gang heads back home to hold a touching memorial service. 

The episode was touching and handled respectfully. While the storyline felt a bit rushed, under the circumstances they had no choice. Fred Andrews died in a manner that felt somewhat natural.

He died doing what he always did, helping someone else in need. While most deaths on “Riverdale” seem over the top, this one felt dignified and had no flair for dramatics.

You could feel the grief that both the actors and characters felt for losing a loved one. Perry’s family provided photos for the episode and there was a touching tribute to the actor at the end. Archie put it best, “Fred Andrews will always be apart of Riverdale.”

Email Nasya at [email protected] or follow her on Twitter @lilbbynas.

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