20 Most Shocking TV Character Deaths EVER

From Deadwood to Nashville, BoJack Horseman to Futurama - TV's most shocking fatalities.

This Is Us Jack Death
NBC

The decision to kill off any TV character is not one to be taken lightly. Too early, and you'll anger your fans; too late, and no one will care. And god forbid you kill the wrong character, a beloved fan favourite whose loss will damage the show for years to come (looking at you, Glenn).

Get the death of a character right, though, and you're standing on the precipice of greatness. A good death - one well-executed, well-timed, necessary for the plot but emotional and important enough not to look like a cheap, gratuitous twist - can spell wonders for a TV show, lingering on audiences' minds for all the right reasons.

Either way, any TV death is a shock, whether it's an unexpectedly beautiful goodbye closing an epic drama (like at the end of Six Feet Under) or a brutal murder appearing from the gloom as if from nowhere (like in The Shield). The shows may not always get it right, but the most infamous deaths have certainly left a mark.

With that in mind - and a big warning about spoilers for each of the shows discussed - here are the 20 most shocking TV character deaths ever delivered.

20. Seymour - Futurama

This Is Us Jack Death
Fox

At their best, stories surprise us, twisting our expectations against themselves. That's certainly what happened here, in the otherwise silly Futurama episode "Jurassic Bark," when the audience is treated to a montage showing how Fry's beloved dog Seymour spent his final days. 

Throughout the episode, we're told that Seymour was suddenly fossilised one day and that the Professor has the ability to bring him back. Fry embraces the chance to see his best friend again, but changes his mind when he learns Seymour lived for 12 years after Fry was frozen. 

In a beautiful moment, Fry lets his dog go, safe in the knowledge he had a good, full life. But then the final scene of the episode shows Seymour waiting for Fry for over a decade, aging and dying without leaving the spot he'd so often be picked up from. All of this is set to Connie Francis's rendition of "I Will Wait For You." 

Seymour never forgot him, and Fry will never know. Cue an entire generation's tears. 

 
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