I remember checking my Her Campus groupchat and Twitter on Monday to find out that Luke Perry had died. Only recently, he had been hospitalized for a severe stroke. I remember thoughts flooding my mind. “Wait, he died? When?! How did I miss this?” “He was my parents’ age.” “He was such a great actor.” “What does this mean for Riverdale?” “Does anyone remember that he was also on 90210?”
And ultimately my questions were answered.
Tributes and posts came pouring in. The CW and the Riverdale team canceled production for the day and will now dedicate future episodes to Perry. As for how his character will be killed off or replaced on Riverdale, that is yet to be known. As for 90210, he touched many people’s hearts in the older generation—my mom, for example, grew up watching him. I also had seen a handful of his 90210 episodes.
One thing the tributes and posts can show for certain is that he touched many. He played many different roles and brought his lovable charm to each. He brought shows to life and mentored so many of his young co-stars, spanning generations with his craft. He was such a bright role model in the entertainment industry. He was “Archie’s dad” and “Dylan,” and also that one guest starring role that you just couldn’t remember he did. He meant so much to each of his fans and colleagues for a variety of reasons.
Here’s to you, Luke Perry. You were a heartthrob, a loving TV dad, and so much more. You brought the humanity to the arts and connected across generations. My mom watched 90210 in its heyday; I watched Riverdale. Through that, we formed a connection of knowing who you were and loving your acting.
Thank you, from a fan. You are worth every tribute there is.