Fictional or not, TV tragedies affect us. I don't know about you, but sometimes I'll go as far as to make up a character for myself in my favorite TV shows just so I can get involved in what's going on. I know...I'm weird. :) I guess that happens when you don't have a life. Anyway, most good TV shows get us involved enough to where the characters feel like real people. That's what makes TV tragedies, well, tragic. Anyway, here are some of the worst (?) TV tragedies I've seen. I'm sure you can add your own.
1 Grey's Anatomy - Plane Crash
If they gave awards for the most TV tragedies set on in a single episode, Grey's would win it. In the season eight finale, several of the regulars are on their way to Boise when their plane crashes in a very remote location. Here's a short list of what this set off: Lexie and Mark die, Arizona loses part of her leg, the pilot dies, the surgeons sue the airline company and, on their lawyer's advice, the hospital (since Dr. Hunt was the one who picked the airline), the hospital goes bankrupt and is about to be bought by the worst company possible, until the surgeons use their “winnings” to buy the hospital. That's not even counting the PTSD, the damage to Derek's hand and the relationship issues that crop up all over the hospital. I know I've just given you a recap of the entire eighth season but I suggest watching it on Netflix anyway, if only for the gorgeous men.
2 Game of Thrones - Deaths of Catelyn Stark, Robb Stark and Talisa Maegyr
In an event many fans refer to as the “Red Wedding”, Robb takes his mother and wife to Lord Frey's house in an effort to make peace for having married Talisa rather than picking a wife from among the Frey clan the way he previously promised. Turns out Frey planned a massacre in which Robb, Catelyn, Talisa and several Stark soldiers were killed. And, to make things worse, Talisa was pregnant! “Tragic” doesn't even begin to cover it.
3 Downton Abbey - Matthew Crawley's Death
Season 3 ends with Matthew getting into a car accident after Mary delivered their son. What I found strange was that he came back from another injury in Season 2 that was probably just as traumatic, if not more. He got paralyzed in the war, but he recovered to not only walk, but to father a child. The doctors didn't see either coming. Huffington Post says that Dan Stevens was leaving the show, though, so I guess they had to do something. Here's the Season 4 trailer, showing the wreck.
4 Glee - Finn's Death
After Cory Monteith died suddenly of a drug overdose, Glee really didn't have a choice but to have him die on the show as well. What I find it really interesting is that they never said how it happened. There was a lot of speculation in the blogosphere, but this quote from Kurt I got from BuddyTV.com sums it up: “Everyone wants to talk about how he died, too. But who cares? One moment in his whole life. I care more about how he lived. And anyone who has a problem with that should remember that he was my brother.” Very true.
5 Bones - Vincent Nigel-Murray's Shooting
In Season 6, Vincent answers Booth's phone and is hit by a sniper's bullet. His death was quickly avenged, but it was still tragic because a) it was the latest in a line of killings by someone from Booth's past, and b) the bullet was meant for Booth. It's also tragic because I had a massive crush on him and now he's gone. Now where will I get my trivia from? Or, with such a sexy accent? Life is so *unfair*! :) Here's a sweet tribute video I found on YouTube.
6 M*a*S*H*-Henry Blake's Plane Crash
This came out of the clear blue sky - literally. In the 1975 season finale, Radar gets a message saying that Lt. Col. Blake died in a plane crash on his way home. As you can imagine, the death of such a beloved character was shocking and upsetting to both viewers and cast members. One thing I found particularly interesting was that, according to the website DenofGeek.com, this was the first time death was mentioned on television. Considering that it's not exactly something you'd want to talk about on your favorite sitcom, that makes a lot of sense. Here's the reading of the message.
7 Game of Thrones - Eddard Stark's Death
I can think of a couple of reasons Eddard's death was tragic; a) it was with his own sword, and b) his daughters Sansa and Arya had to watch it. Those of us who didn't read the books were shocked because we thought he was “too important” to be killed off so soon. That's certainly what I thought but, as my reader friends told me, his death is more important to the story than his life. Either way, it's still sad.
I'm sure I've left out a few, but these are the worst TV tragedies I've seen. What about you? What TV tragedies bothered you the most? Have any bothered you at all? Discuss!
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