One can never look at the old Archie Comics the same way again after they have watched “Riverdale” on The CW. Despite sharing a setting and characters, the darkly subversive teen drama is completely different from the timeless funny books that were the source material. The season 3 finale certainly pushes the envelope in the grimness of the series storyline with three of the central cast apparently murdering the fourth. Speaking of fourth, Season 4 will premiere this coming October, and apparently it is considered the most important episode of the show the production would make for this whole year.
That is because, according to Entertainment Weekly, the first episode of “Riverdale” season 4 will include a tribute to series cast member Luke Perry, who plays Fred the father of main character Archie Andrews. Perry had suffered a stroke last February, during the run of season 3, and eventually died on March 4. He was 52 years old. “Riverdale” creator and show-runner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa termed the premiere as “probably the most important episode of #Riverdale we’ll do this year, if not ever.” On Twitter Aguirre-Sacasa showed an image of the episode shootings script, commenting that it was a tribute to a fallen friend and an opportunity to honor Perry and the series character he portrayed.
The last season 3 episode of “Riverdale” to feature Perry as Fred Andrews aired in April, and it would be a chore for the production to address his subsequent absence. Fortunately there has been a time skip in the narrative without any mention of the character, affording a window wherein the story writers can put in a plot element – possibly character death – to remove Fred from the show. How this is handled is vital as Aguirre-Sacasa noted that viewers were thinking that the series had simply ignored the actor’s passing.
The show-runner noted that the production was almost finished outlining the last three episodes of “Riverdale” season 3 when Luke Perry died, so they had little time to modify the narrative to mention why Fred Andrew is not around. “I’ve read online that they’re like, ‘Ooh, Riverdale‘s not dealing with this. Is Fred going to just be on a business trip?’” Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa tells EW about the fan reactions. He is thus making sure that Fred’s final fate will be addressed as soon as season 4 starts. From the episode title, the resolution is obvious.
“Riverdale” season four’s premiere, entitled “In Memoriam,” will air on The CW this October 9. Aguirre-Sacasa himself will write the episode, while second unit and first assistant director Gabriel Correa is on the director’s chair. Interestingly, Perry’s character of Fred was shot in the finale of the inaugural season, though he eventually survived the injury.
Image courtesy of E! Online