Villains and heroes, parents and children, characters we loved and characters we loved to hate. No one was safe from the TV Grim Reaper in 2016.
Some fans celebrated the deaths of certain characters. Other deaths sparked outrage. Some characters we’ll see again in 2017 despite their deaths because of flashbacks, or hallucinations, or sci-fi what-have-you.
Regardless, as 2016 comes to an end, let’s look back on some of the TV characters we lost this year. (As you might imagine, there are major spoilers below!)
1. Lexa (The 100)
In a devastating turn of events, Lexa is hit by a bullet that isn’t meant for her shortly after she has sex with Clarke. Fans, especially Clexa shippers, took to social media to express their outrage after the episode.
Lexa — or at least a version of her — makes one more appearance in Season 3 after her death. Clarke sees her in the City of Light, and Lexa is last seen charging into battle to help Clarke — certainly a more fitting final image for the fallen warrior.
2. Lincoln (The 100)
There was another character death that sparked some off-screen discussion in Season 3 of The 100. Halfway through the season, Lincoln sacrifices himself so others can live, and he’s executed — shot in the head while on his knees — by Pike.
After Lincoln’s death, Ricky Whittle spoke to AfterBuzz TV about how he felt he was being treated poorly by showrunner Jason Rothenberg and that storylines for Lincoln were being taken away, which led to his decision to leave the show.
3. Hive (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)
Grant Ward had a complicated relationship with the team after he was revealed to be an agent with HYDRA near the end of Season 1, but Ward as we knew him died in the Season 3 mid-season finale.
Brett Dalton returned, however, as Hive, an Inhuman creature that takes over Ward’s dead body and has some plans for, to put it simply, world domination. Daisy goes to extreme measures to kill him, sending him into space on a Quinjet with a nuclear bomb.
Even though Hive was pure evil, his death meant Brett Dalton leaving the show for good, and it’s always sad to say goodbye to an original cast member.
4. Lincoln Campbell (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)
Hive isn’t the only one who meets his end in space.
Lincoln boards the Quinjet, both to ensure Hive doesn’t find a way to escape and to stop Daisy from sacrificing herself in an attempt to do the same thing.
His and Daisy’s final conversation is heartbreaking, and his loss is devastating for Daisy. He had his ups and downs with S.H.I.E.L.D. and even with Daisy, but Lincoln goes out a hero, saving the world, the team and the woman he loves.
5. Laurel Lance (Arrow)
When Laurel joins Team Arrow on a mission to take down Damien Dahrk near the end of Season 4, she gets stabbed by the Big Bad, answering the “whose grave is it?” question that was planted at the beginning of the season.
Laurel’s death was a divisive one in the Arrow fandom. Some haters were glad to see her go. Others were upset by the loss and thought the character deserved better. But whether you like it or not, we haven’t seen the last of her, since Katie Cassidy is now a series regular across all of The CW’s Arrowverse shows.
Most recently, in the Arrow mid-season finale, she shows up in the Arrowcave, but fans will have to wait until 2017 to see how that’s possible and how long she’ll be sticking around.