We've all been there, settled in our favorite spot on the sofa to watch the show we've been waiting for all week. We've read that this particular episode is going to be a game-changer, and we're ready for it. At least, we think we are...until we a popular character dies. Wait a minute! There had been no inkling of this person leaving the show. We should have been warned, but that's the way writers keep us off-guard, never letting us get too comfortable with characters because they could be here one day and gone the next. Let's take a look at five character's deaths we weren't expecting and aren't sure we'll ever forgive the writers. As an FYI, there are many other deaths I could have included, but these are ones that are still painful for me to watch.
These scenes are spoilers! Proceed at your own risk!
1. Lucy Knight (ER)
To be fair, we knew Kellie Martin, the actress who portrayed medical student Lucy Knight on the long-running television drama ER, wanted to exit the series. Honestly, I didn't think much about it. After all, people come and go in a hospital setting. When George Clooney wanted to leave, they simply wrote him out of the series in a way befitting his character. We did not expect Lucy to fall victim to a man's psychotic break. From the time she was discovered on the floor, bleeding profusely, the clock starting ticking, and we knew Lucy wasn't going to survive. Still, when she was pronounced dead after Dr. Romano and Dr. Corday tried valiantly to save her, it was heartbreaking. And unforgettable.
2. Jimmy Olsen (Smallville)
No one saw this one coming. We hadn't read or heard anything about Aaron Ashmore wanting to leave Smallville. Besides that, Jimmy Olsen is an iconic character in Superman lore. He couldn't possibly die. What would the the Daily Planet be like with him? Honestly, the possibility of Jimmy Olsen dying didn't even register on our radar. Yet that's exactly what happened when he fought with Davis. Viewers were horrified to see the photographer get impaled and fall to his knees only to die in Chloe's arms. Tears quickly became sobs when Jimmy's last words were "I love you." When the series ended two seasons later, we still weren't over Jimmy's death.
3. Henry Allen (The Flash)
Henry Allen spent so much of his son's life in prison that we fully expected him to have some time to spend with Barry. In fact, when Henry said he was staying in Central City, viewers looked forward to more interaction between father and son. Zoom had other plans, and when he kidnapped Henry, giving Barry no choice but to follow, all of us held our breaths, waiting to see if Barry would be able to save his father. John Wesley Shipp had only been in a few episodes of The Flash so we couldn't see him getting killed off. After all, Barry had already suffered the death of one parent. Surely, the writers wouldn't make him endure his father's death as well. We were horrified when Zoom killed Henry in front of Barry, forcing him to watch the life drain from his father's eyes. This death was as excruciating as they come.
So many of our favorite characters have passed on. Here are more:
- 3 Character Deaths That Remained Long After Their Shows Ended
- Ranking The Walking Dead's Most Important Deaths
4. Jonathan Kent (Smallville)
This one left us guessing for a long time. Why did Jonathan have to die? It didn't make sense that Clark's father would be taken at a time when it seemed like he was needed the most. Yes, in Superman lore, Jonathan Kent dies, but no television show follows canon to the letter. Though Clark had a better understanding of his powers, he was still struggling to come to grips with who he was, what his presence on Earth meant for the rest of the world. Jonathan Kent was his mainstay, the one person he knew he could count on no matter how bad things got. And when Jonathan was ripped away from Clark by a heart attack, we all felt the loss as much as he did. Even John Schneider, the actor who played Jonathan Kent, was surprised. "I thought he would make it to a little closer to the end of the series," Schneider said.
5. Moira Queen (Arrow)
Arrow is one of my all-time favorite shows, and though Moira Queen wasn't one of my all-time favorite characters, I never expected nor wanted her to be killed off. She was deceptive and cunning, but she loved her kids, and though she might not have won the mother of the year award, she got points for her dedication to keeping them safe even if she went about things the wrong way. When Thea, Moira, and Oliver were kidnapped, every viewer knew something horrible was going to happen. Still, we watched in shock when Deathstroke drove the sword through Moira's chest. Our dismay was complete when Thea screamed and Oliver fell to the ground, both shattered in their grief.
Characters come and go on television shows. Some actors choose to leave; other times the writers decide it's time for characters to exit stage left. Either way, it's painful for the viewers. We've gotten attached to them, or we know what their death is going to mean to the characters we love, the ones they leave behind. It will never be easy to watch a death scene, but when it's unexpected and so sudden, it rips our hearts out. We're left wondering why we invest all this time into something that's going to make us feel this way. Until the following week when we settle into our favorite spot on the sofa and watch the fallout.
Were any of these deaths surprising to you?