SPOILERS ARE AHEAD FOR THE 100 AND RWBY. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.
I know what you're thinking. Nobody likes it when their favourite character dies, whether they're on a sitcom, anime, cartoon or a show that kills their characters off regularly (Walking Dead and Game of Thrones, here's looking at you!) That being said, there are some things to be said for being more accepting.
Everyone is sad when their favourite characters die. It's inevitable, and if it didn't happen the writers would simply not be doing their jobs properly. However, the trend I've seen lately is a knee jerk reaction. People who are upset do some very rash things, I think we can all agree. Lately, character deaths have been met with angry articles being sent to the creators of the TV show. There have even been petitions.
The petition above was made for the show RWBY. Originally made with the intent to bring it before RoosterTeeth, the creator of the show, it has since been changed to tell people that it isn't meant to force the creators into doing anything. Its original purpose when first posted though, was to make them bring back a character who died in the finale. For more on the finale, click HERE.
Forcing a creator to change their storyline because your emotions were wrecked by a character's death is asking them to rob the show of the very reason your emotions were evoked in the first place. They write it as they wish, and you as a fan love it that way. The petition above is a bit of a cautionary tale in that way. If you're going to create something like that, wait until you're calm and your emotions have subsided a bit. Actions taken rashly can sometimes be regretted greatly. An author has the right to write the story as they wish. If you think about it, I'm sure you wouldn't have it any other way.
This isn't the only time it has happened though! Recently on The 100, the LGBT pairing finally got together, kissed and made love. Pretty much right after that sweetness overload, fans were faced with the death of half of that pairing. The total badass Commander Lexa died. Fans were outraged. A few wrote nasty articles about 'queer-baiting'. The odd thing about this and the RWBY death is that BOTH THE DEATHS WERE INTEGRAL. It wasn't like someone made them a throwaway death (The Vampire Diaries I'm looking at YOU now). The deaths were essential to furthering the plots! In the case of RWBY, the big shock of a friend's death was needed for Ruby's hidden powers to awaken. Commander Lexa's death was necessary to show fans where the second version of the AI went. The first AI destroyed the world. The second was supposed to be improved and injected. Turns out it was passed down through the commanders, inserted near the brain stem to which it clings. This wasn't even the first time fans were outraged at a plot point in season 3 of The 100 though! When information leaked, some fans threatened to boycott the show (more on that HERE.)
The sad part of all this is of course the title 'queer-baiting.' That happens when someone puts an LGBT pairing in a show only to get rid of them. We all knew Lexa's death was coming though. The actress who plays her, Alycia Debnam-Carey, had been teasing that on her twitter for most of the season. Last season, it was made clear by the creators that Clarke was bisexual. This was a big thing, someone recognizing her bisexuality outright; a fact which made me, as a bisexual woman myself, jump for joy because there was finally representation that the network wasn't tiptoeing around because of denial. Turning around and saying that the network is queer-baiting just because we're upset? It has very little basis. Save that term for the shows that are actually doing it, or the word will lose its power.
This isn't to say I won't be mourning these characters as much as the next fan. I bawled when Lexa died. When Pyrrha from RWBY died, I almost did the same. However, if we petition and complain when we're upset about a character's death, we will end up with deaths like on The Vampire Diaries, where nobody really dies for good. Death then loses its punch as a plotline (nothing against The Vampire Diaries though). The death of Lexa hit us all so hard because of how well it was written and acted, and how we WERE emotionally invested. They have the power to make us feel that, and we do not want to take that away.
What about you? What do you think about character deaths and how they're sometimes handled? Tell me in the comments what you think!