Arielle Tschinkel
July 22, 2019 8:02 am

The upcoming fourth season of Riverdale will be the first without Luke Perry, who died after complications of a stroke on February 27th. The loss was felt by two generations of fans: one who grew up with Perry in the ’90s when he starred as Dylan McKay on Beverly Hills, 90210, and those that loved him as Archie’s dad, Fred Andrews, on the hit CW series.

Now, Riverdale‘s executive producer is opening up about how the show’s Season 4 premiere will pay tribute to the late actor. Fans of both shows will definitely want to tune in, because Perry’s longtime friend and 90210 co-star Shannen Doherty will guest star on Riverdale for the series premiere. Our hearts are already breaking thinking about how emotional this is going to be.

Showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa revealed to Entertainment Tonight on July 21st that not only will the Season 4 premiere be a Perry tribute episode, but that Doherty will have an “emotional, important” guest-starring role which will honor their longtime friendship. Here’s what we know about the episode.

In an interview at Comic-Con in San Diego over the weekend, Aguirre-Sacasa said, “It’s almost going to be a stand-alone episode. It’s going to reveal the fate of Fred Andrews and it’s set on July 4th. It’s a really emotional episode; it’s a tearjerker.”

Doherty, who played Perry’s longtime love Brenda Walsh on 90210, is on hand to help pay tribute to Perry. It seems she’d been in talks to join the show in some way for a long time.

“There was a very emotional, important role and we sent the script to Shannen and she read it and loved it and said, ‘I want to do it,’ so it’s about honoring their friendship a little bit,” he said. “I know she was really moved when she read the script and immediately said yes.”

Doherty confirmed she’d be appearing on the episode in an Instagram post on July 21st.

Though he wouldn’t give too many details about Doherty’s role, he did say that “she helps Archie [KJ Apa] process what happened to his father. That’s what I’d say about that character.”

Fans will have to wait until October 9th to see the episode, but we’ve already got our tissues nearby because we know it’s going to be a special one.

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