Luke Perry’s passing is still fresh on many people’s minds, especially with the upcoming Dylan McKay-less 90210 set to premiere next month, but this week has been particularly emotional as the cast of Riverdale began production on the fourth season without their co-star and friend.
Mädchen Amick, who plays Betty’s mom, Alice Cooper, took to Instagram to post a photo of the cast at the first table read of the season. “There was nothing but love, memories and mourning for our beloved Luke as we honor him in our first episode back,” read her sweet caption, adding the hashtags “#wemissyouluke #inmemoriam #riverdale #S4 #tableread.”
Since Perry died while the show was filming, Perry’s death or the fate of his character, Fred Andrew, was not addressed in the Season 3 finale — though fans did get emotional over what marked the actor’s final appearance on the show. That last scene was barely a blip — but with good reason. Creator Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa told Entertainment Weekly in May, when the finale aired, that Fred’s absence would be further explained and focused on in the upcoming season. “We obviously are going to deal with Fred’s death on Riverdale,” explained Aguirre-Sacasa. “When Luke passed, we’d already more or less outlined the last two or three episodes, and we didn’t want to rush that or get it wrong. So we are 100 per cent going to deal with it narratively at the beginning of season 4, and we want that episode to really honor the character of Fred and honestly, to honor the actor Luke and our friend Luke.”
Aguirre-Sacasa added: “We didn’t want to rush into that at the end of the season and give it short shrift or not make that story as great and emotional as it needs to be to honor both the character and the actor. I think that’s going to be a big part of Archie’s journey next season, honestly.”
As previously reported, the fourth season premiere of the CW series will be dedicated to Perry, who was removed from life support in March after suffering two strokes.
Riverdale returns Oct. 9.