Character deaths keep TV interesting. And it's a question everyone has had over the past decade as more and more shows feel it necessary to kill off audience favorites. Do some show runners have certain characters axed simply because they can't stand the actor? While a lot of producers and writers will stay mum on that subject, Shonda Rhimes doesn't mind telling the truth. In a recent interview with The Nightly Show, she confided in host Larry Wilmore that she has put a hit out on a certain character in the past. And it was because she couldn't stand the so-called 'thespian' bringing her creation to life. Though, don't look for her to name names, of which there are many.
The simple fact is, you do not cross Shonda Rhimes! The woman is behind some of the biggest hits on TV at this moment in time. She has created Grey's Anatomy, Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder and Private Practice. While most shows don't hesitate to snuff out guest stars and recurring characters, these four shows have never hesitated to take out a prominent member of the cast. About ending certain characters lives just because the actor was a horrible person, Shonda Rhimes had this to say.
"Yes. And I'm not naming names."
Since she uttered those immortal words, fans have been speculating about who Shonda Rhimes hated enough to have killed off. And there are plenty of possibilities. Many, many Shondaland characters have been put to rest since Grey's Anatomy first premiered over ten years ago. Where it gets complicated is the fact that, while she might not like certain celebrities, she is very loyal to the ones she loves. And even if they do die on one of her shows, she doesn't hesitate to bring them back in a different series.
So, who has died at the hands of Shonda Rhimes? There will be plenty of spoilers if you are not caught up on any of these shows at this time. And we start with the longest running series first. Grey's Anatomy most recently killed off Patrick Dempsey's Derek Shepherd, who was taken off life support by Meredith following his tractor-trailer crash. Then you have Eric Dane's Mark Sloan, who died in a plane crash. This is the exact same way Chyler Leigh's Lexie Grey went. Then there is T.R. Knight, who's George O'Malley was hit by a bus. He might be the biggest suspect, as he's openly talked about his "breakdown of communication" between himself and Shonda Rhimes over what he was doing on the show.
But there are more possible candidates on Scandal. The show has only been on the air for 5 seasons, less than half the time Grey's Anatomy has been around. But one of the biggest stars of that show met an unlikely and unsuspecting demise when Columbus Short's Harrison Wright was murdered by Eli Pope. He's a strong suspect, as he was fired from the show over his drug problem. Then we have Dan Bucatinsky, who played the beloved James Novalk. He was savagely murdered by Jake Ballard. Was it because Shonda Rhimes hated the guy's guts? Quite possibly.
How to Get Away with Murder only just now entered its second season, and it's managed to kill off two key players. Tom Verica's Sam Keating was killed off by Wes Gibbins. And Katie Findlay's Rebeccas Sutter died at the hands of Bonnie Winterbottom. Private Practice, which is no longer on the air, also offed two of its primary characters. Tim Daly, who played Pete Wilder, had a heart attack. And poor Dell, played by Chris Lowell, succumbed to injured he sustained in a car accident. Looking at this laundry list of dead people, it really could be anyone.
What do you make of Shonda Rhimes' admission? Are you surprised? Do you think you know who it is? And who might be next? We'll have to wait and see. But one thing is for certain, we won't be crossing this woman anytime soon. She seems to already know what she wants to do in the afterlife. She obviously wants to take up a job as the next Grim Reaper. She's already doing a bang-up job of that on her multitude of hit shows.