Unlike in previous decades, when the worst thing that could happen to a TV character was being sent to another city or getting upstaged by Urkel, today's hit shows aren't afraid to brutally murder important cast members. Every acclaimed series out there has at least one shocking death per season, and it always happens in ways the audience could have never, ever seen coming ... unless, you know, they were actually paying attention.
Yes, it turns out that TV writers' well-documented love of telegraphing their biggest plot twists also applies to deaths, almost as if they felt bad for killing off our favorite characters and wanted to prepare us psychologically. That, or they were banking on us being too distracted by our phones to notice the (in retrospect) pretty obvious clues, like ...
WARNING: This article is one big, ongoing spoiler.
The Walking Dead's Major Deaths Are Foreshadowed In Advance (Yes, Even Those Ones)
Apparently, coming up with new, Kenny-esque ways to have zombies kill your characters can get pretty tedious, so the writers of The Walking Dead amuse themselves by playing a little game: seeing how much fatal foreshadowing they can cram into the episodes. For instance, in Season 4, the gang runs into a decapitated corpse lashed to a tree with the word "Liar" written on a sign across its chest. You know, just a little bit of scenery to set the mood.
The nail was overkill. They had rope right there.
But then, in the very next episode, Hershel the magic-shotgun-wielding farmer is beheaded by the dastardly Governor. The killer's last words before he chops off that magnificent beard? Just one word, actually: "Liar."
Hershel's zombified beard really should've become a wacky sidekick. Missed opportunity!
Later, Bob (D'Angelo from The Wire) continued his multi-series bad luck streak when he had his leg barbecued by a bunch of cannibals and died -- at which point he presumably traveled back in time and became the walker with the amputated leg he himself faced a season earlier.
Well, the "hobbler" with the amputated leg.
And remember when Beth took a bullet to the head and the internet lost its proverbial shit? The emotional moment when a broken Daryl carries her lifeless body down the hospital stairs was telegraphed a bunch of times before it actually happened: for instance, when Beth got her foot caught in an animal trap (The Walking Dead hates feet).