It's been two weeks and I'm definitely still mourning the death of Andrew DeLuca.
Grey's Anatomy and Station 19 returned from their winter hiatus with a devastating emotional roller coaster that got DeLuca (Giacomo Gianniotti) killed in the pursuit of a kidnapper. It was a noble death, but a frustrating one. He had just been through a major mental health journey and had come out the other side better and healthier than ever. I was patiently waiting for Meredith (Ellen Pompeo) to recover from COVID-19 so she could reunite with the first man she loved since the death of Derek Shepherd (Patrick Dempsey) five whole years ago.
Instead, Meredith and DeLuca said their goodbyes on her COVID coma beach and he reunited with his dead mother while I sobbed. I cried as I realized what was about to happen. I cried when it happened. I cried for several hours afterwards, and when I say I was in a constant state of tears for the entire next day, I am not joking or being hyperbolic. I silently wept while talking to Gianniotti on the phone. I was a full-blown mess.
Of course, I wasn't just crying because a fictional character died. I was crying because my favorite show chose to kill off one of my favorite characters on the one year anniversary of the global pandemic that turned my life (and the lives of almost every person on earth) upside down. I cried because that pandemic was still happening, and because I tuned into my favorite show hoping Meredith would recover and make out with her healthy boyfriend and then I could feel good for a few hours, only to then watch him get murdered while she was still in a coma. I cried because I haven't seen my family in over a year, and now this?
I know that Grey's Anatomy is, at its core, about grief and moving on. It started as a story about Meredith trying to live up to the life her brilliant doctor mother, who was sick with Alzheimer's, had laid out for her. It became known as the show that would kill off your favorite character, even though only five main characters have died over 17 seasons. Grey's Anatomy is and always has been emotional torture, for the characters and for the audience. But when I tuned in a couple of weeks ago, I didn't want emotional torture. I wanted comfort and normalcy, and instead I got a murder.
Many of my favorite shows are about grief. From Six Feet Under to Lost to WandaVision, I will often happily get lost in someone else's sadness. I have rewatched Grey's at least three times, meaning I've seen Lexie Gray die in that plane crash at least three times. I've seen George write "007" in Meredith's hand at least three times. But this time, I wasn't ready, and I'm mad about it. This might actually be one I won't be able to rewatch.
In honor of DeLuca's death and the many that have come before it, the E! News staff looked back on some of the other TV deaths that we're still mad about, months or years after we first watched them. Spoilers follow, obviously.
Marissa Cooper (Mischa Barton), The OC
That episode aired in 2006, but I still remember crying as the song "Hallelujah" played when Ryan carried her out of the car. Marissa's death also marked the end of the show, as we knew it, anyway. There was one more season after that, but it felt more like an epilogue than the show we once loved. I still re-watch the show with my brother whenever we can, but we always stop after Season 3 since that was true end of the show at its peak. —Marenah Dobin
Will Gardner (Josh Charles), The Good Wife
Whenever anyone asks which death caught us the most off guard, this is the first one we think of. Definitely did not see it coming, and we have never recovered.
William Hill (Ron Cephas Jones), This Is Us
"My next door neighbor heard me crying so hard they were...concerned." —Alyssa Ray
Glenn Rhee (Steven Yeun), The Walking Dead
We will never ever forget watching Glenn get brutally murdered by Negan. We will never forgive Jeffrey Dean Morgan, which is actually very complicated because...
Denny Duquette (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), Grey's Anatomy
This death happened 15 years ago and we still can't look at Jeffrey Dean Morgan without thinking about it, so when we look at Jeffrey Dean Morgan, we see both Denny's death and Glenn's murder. Like we said, complicated!
Catelyn Stark (Michelle Fairley), Game of Thrones
The Red Wedding still physically hurts us.
Prince Oberyn (Pedro Pascal), Game of Thrones
"He was just so much fun and I really wanted to see more from him. I especially wanted to see him finally get revenge for his sister. But he was gone in the blink of an eye (pun intended)." —Beth Sobol
Mitch Leery (John Wesley Shipp), Dawson's Creek
"Don't eat ice cream and drive." —Jamie Blynn
Logan Echolls (Jason Dohring), Veronica Mars
He had to die in the final episode of the revival for what?!
Creighton Bernette (John Goodman), Treme
"I stopped watching the show, it made me so sad." —Kate Riley
Tara Knowles-Teller (Maggie Siff), Sons of Anarchy
"As soon as that happened I knew the series would never have a happy ending." —Beth Sobol
Matthew Crawley (Dan Stevens), Downton Abbey
"I briefly stopped watching it until I wasn't angry anymore. I know the show is a drama and bad things need to happen, but this man literally lost his first fiancé to the Spanish flu and nearly died in the first World War. Then, once he and Mary finally have their happy ending in the form of their first son, the guy crashes his little car into a truck and dies. Dan Stevens didn't deserve that." —Cydney Contreras
JT Yorke (Ryan Cooley), Degrassi
"Like, Degrassi was obviously known (and marketed!) as going there but my teen self just didn't expect it to go therrrrre. Too real!" —Tierney Bricker
Bill Henrickson (Bill Paxton), Big Love
"When Bill Paxton died in Big Love. I was DEVASTATED. Even more so when he died IRL! RIP BILL!!!!! At least they killed him off in the series finale, obvi there'd be no show without Bill but it was like a really frickin' sad series finale for a show I was 100% very committed to." —Alli Rosenbloom
Poussey Washington (Samira Wiley), Orange is the New Black
"I never watched another episode after Poussey died. It ruined the show for me." —Lauren Piester
Mark Greene (Anthony Edwards), ER
"Losing Mark Green on ER traumatized me as a young adult. Seeing my mom cry for a TV show really inspired me to cry all the time now when I watch TV. Thanks mom." —Alli Rosenbloom
Rita Morgan (Julie Benz), Dexter
That bathtub full of blood haunts us.
Bomb Squad Guy (Kyle Chandler), Grey's Anatomy
Bomb Squad Guy was barely on the show (and we don't even remember his actual name), but we think about his death regularly.
Jen Lindley (Michelle Williams), Dawson's Creek
Was it really necessary to kill her off in the series finale?!
Stefan Salvatore (Paul Wesley), The Vampire Diaries
He finally married Caroline (Candice King) and then died?! It was cruel and unusual!
Lucas Ripley (Brett Tucker), Station 19
"I was completely obsessed with Vic (Barrett Doss) and Ripley's secret romance, so watching him die right on the verge of proposing and making their relationship public absolutely devastated me. I still don't know how Vic went on after that!" —Lauren Piester
May they all rest in fictional peace.
Grey's Anatomy airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. on ABC.