One of my wife’s favorite shows unexpectedly killed a favorite character this week, and we still haven’t quite recovered from the shock.  As a fan, I enjoy being surprised by storytelling, but I’m also not a fan of sudden, brutal moments, ala the patented Johns “impaled from behind by an off-panel assailant” technique.  The death of Gwen Stacy came with a cover blurb that promised a shocking death, and it was still an incredibly moving sequence that became one of the most-remembered moments of Spider-Man history, leading to today’s unexpected query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) is a fan of surprises, depending on how they’re done, but hates a senseless death in a story that hasn’t had fatal consequences before, asking: Which sudden death in fiction is the most moving for you?


About Author

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. The Tulip fakeout in Preacher, especially after Jesse spent the last 2 issues explaining why he disappeared, was a real gut punch reading that as a teen. Thankfully, it didn’t last.

    And of course, Wash in Serenity. Pour one out.

  2. Bambi’s mom getting shot was the most heartbreaking thing for me as a kid. I watched and rewatched that movie probably 50+ times between the ages of 4 and 7. I don’t think any sudden death quite affected me that much since then.

Leave A Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.