Graphic: Dying On TV

As our TV dramas get more dramatic, the deaths of prominent characters continue to rack up per show. But how likely are main characters to die on deathmongers like American Horror Story, Game Of Thrones, or Grey’s Anatomy, and in what way? Some TV watchers, apparently with a lot of time on their hands, compiled the stats on TV deaths over recent years, and created several helpful graphics.

Dying On TV examines the causes of deaths on a variety of popular TV shows, culled from the IMDB and Wikia. Some of these are not surprising at all, as the shootings on The Sopranos were plentiful, as are the zombies on The Walking Dead; and with no firearms, those Game Of Thrones types must make do with stabbings. But sifting through these gloomy red-and-black graphics uncovers some interesting information beyond the top causes of character deaths in your favorite TV shows. Breaking down the overall deaths by male and female, we find that (excluding shootings and stabbings) women are more likely to die by explosions, strangulation, and drowning, men by burning alive and death by impact. Female TV characters under the age of 18 have a one in eight chance of being poisoned (call it the Game Of Thrones influence). There’s also an interactive feature where you can figure out your most probable way to die if you were a TV character, based on your age and gender:


Perhaps the most heartening stat of all: On a show that practically featured death as a main character—Six Feet Under—the most common cause of death was relatively benign: old age.