Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Riverdale pays tribute to Fred Andrews, and Luke Perry

Molly Ringwald, Madelaine Petsch, Vanessa Morgan, Lili Reinhart, Cole Sprouse, KJ Apa, Camila Mendes, Casey Cott, Ashleigh Murray, Charles Melton
Photo: Robert Falconer (The CW)

Here’s what’s happening in the world of television for Wednesday, October 9. All times are Eastern. 


Top pick

Riverdale (The CW, 8 p.m., fourth-season premiere): Riverdale is back, and that means all kinds of nonsense is returning with it. Hot Archie! Ludicrous plot twists! The fact that the Riverdale Vixens have a designated mourning uniform! And a lot of that is reflected in the trailer below.

However, the season premiere is also called “In Memoriam,” and directly concerns the fate of Fred Andrews, played with warmth by the late Luke Perry—so, probably not your average hour spent with Jughead, Veronica, Betty, and company. Riverdale isn’t the only return of the evening, for Charles Bramesco also returns to recap.

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Regular coverage

Modern Family (ABC, 9 p.m)
American Horror Story: 1984 (FX, 10 p.m.)
South Park (Comedy Central, 10 p.m.)
It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia (FXX, 10 p.m.)

Wild card

Nancy Drew (The CW, 9 p.m., series premiere): Like Riverdale before it, Nancy Drew takes a beloved classic down an extremely dark path. Typically known as a plucky, law-abiding, titian-haired heroine, the CW version of Nancy Drew (played by Kennedy McMann) is depressed (her mom has just died); lives in Horseshoe Bay, not River Heights; and is straight-up floundering.

Her girl squad (Maddison Jaizani and Leah Lewis) has not yet gelled, her stern lawyer father (Scott Wolf) is tired of bailing her out of jail for her investigation shenanigans, and she’s hooked up with the town bad boy/former Boy Scout Ned Nickerson (Tunji Kasim). Although there’s been a considerable reimagining of the character, McMann does have the requisite hair color, and she sells the sleuth’s steely determination to get to the truth. But Horseshoe Bay’s truth is a bit creepier than that of River Heights and yes, even Riverdale—supernatural scares are yet another sinister element The CW adds to the franchise, making this version of Nancy Drew among the creepiest. But hey, Halloween’s just around the corner, so if you’re down for a murder mystery possibly committed by a g-g-g-ghost and aren’t fiendishly devoted to the Nancy Drew canon, this show might make an enjoyable chaser to your Wednesday night Riverdale shot. [Gwen Ihnat]

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