Riverdale: Ashleigh Murray to Return in Season 4 Premiere

Riverdale's Season 4 premiere is set to be an emotional tribute to Fred Andrews (Luke Perry), and it sounds like the show will be calling on some familiar faces to do so. ComicBook.com was on hand for the show's panel at San Diego Comic-Con, where it was revealed that Josie McCoy (Ashleigh Murray) will be returning for the season premiere.

As fans will remember, Josie departed the show midway through last season, after she decided to pursue her music career and go on tour with her dad. This was also coupled by the behind-the-scenes news that Josie would play a role in The CW's Katy Keene pilot, which has since been ordered to series.

With Katy Keene not premiering until midseason - and Josie having years of history with Fred and Archie Andrews (KJ Apa) - it certainly makes sense that Josie would return for the tribute.

Perry passed away at the age of 52 earlier this year, after he had suffered a massive stroke in the days prior. Within the world of the show, the absence of Perry's character, Fred Andrews, was never officially addressed, but that was expected to change in Season 4.

"We obviously are going to deal with Fred’s death a story on Riverdale." showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa explained last month. "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% 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. 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?” So Tim, I would be so grateful if you make it clear that we are 100% going to deal with Fred’s death. 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."

"His legacy is gonna live on in the lives around him, that he worked with, you know?" KJ Apa, who starred as Archie Andrews said in a previous interview. "I'm never gonna forget him and I think it's still very fresh and we're all still dealing with it... We're definitely gonna obviously have to address it at some point. [Possibly] that [means] Molly stepping in as more of an active parent for Archie, but that all depends on the availability of the actors around us. So, you know, we'll do what we can."

Murray's returning isn't the only major casting news to come out of the episode, as Perry's 90210 co-star Shannen Doherty will be appearing in a pivotal guest star role.

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Riverdale’s fourth season will begin Wednesday, October 9th, at 8/7c on The CW.