Exclusive

Blind Item: Hit Series Poised to Whack Lead

Among the surprises Santa Claus left under my tree Sunday morning: The spoiler equivalent of a big ol’ lump of coal.

In a move that is sure to stoke shock and awe among fans, a major (and incredibly popular) character on a hit drama series will take his/her last breath during 2012. And I’m not happy about it.

What’s more, per the Grinch St. Nick the actor/actress in question in not going quietly into the night.

“There has been a lot of tension on the set,” whispers the spy, “because [spoiler] isn’t happy with how [pronoun redacted] is being killed off.”

And while there’s a part of me that admires this program’s willingness to laugh in the face of conventional wisdom by whacking such a pivotal character, it’s tough to imagine the show without him/her.

To put things into perspective, the departure of [spoiler] is as bold and audacious as this recent primetime loss.

Stay close to my Twitter feed for additional clues. In the meantime, hit the comments with your most educated guesses! Oh, and Happy Holidays!

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1008 Comments
  1. Stacey says:

    Derek Shepherd. The writers already said one would die if an actor wanted to leave and Patrick Dempsey seems to want to go.

  2. Dana Aquino says:

    I thought Roger a long time ago. The clues here that would allude to that are the St.Nick since he was forced to play santa last season. Also, the show not being the same since he is the comedic relief.

  3. Ldydncr says:

    What about Danny from Hawaii Five-0? Seems like he has has air time since Lori joined the team.

    • H50Fan says:

      Kono also has less screentime since Lori joined (& I actually LIKE Lori). So, with respect, I don’t think that proves your point.

      It’s NOT anyone from Hawaii Five-0. If it is, I won’t be very happy.

      If it’s anyone on the show, besides Kono (I posted upthread that there’s been rumors since the end of last season that Grace Park has been missing her home country of Canada a lot, allegedly), it MIGHT be Lori. The fans haven’t really warmed to the character (though I like her). She’s technically a “lead” character, despite the fact the actress doesn’t appear in the opening credit sequence with the “core 4″ (Alex, Scott, Daniel & Grace Park) & Masi Oka.

    • H50-Fan says:

      If I had to guess I’d say Kono is the better possibility if anyone might leave.

      CBS is kind of pushing Danny in all its new H-50 promos and we have a Danny based episode coming up.

  4. Sandra says:

    I hope it’s Chuck from Gossip Girl! The pic reminds me of Westwick! Ed would be relieved and happy to go!

  5. Chris says:

    Barbara, from The View… (j/k)

  6. nitemar says:

    House. It’s something SHore would do to his creation. It will bring Lisa Cuddy to their final farawell with his kid in tow. Suicide by means of OD?

  7. Sarah says:

    RIP Derek Shepherd.

  8. Susanna says:

    Blaine from Glee.

  9. Pheebs says:

    McDreamy! Absolutley! They were in contract talks and Patrick Dempsey said this would be his last!

  10. Barb says:

    OK, I’m thinking:
    Tension on the set
    Main character
    Probably a show which has to revise or die…

    One of the Winchester Brothers on Supernatural.

    • Kristine says:

      It is Jared. I know someone who works at Warner Brothers. Sera Gamble is out too.

      • Louise says:

        *Sera Gamble is out too*

        is that really true? Only there has been a lot of speculation about why she hasn’t made any kind of comment about Misha coming back.

      • Percysowner says:

        I haven’t heard rumors of tension on the set, but who knows. If by some bizarre chance it is Jared and Sam is replaced by Castiel I would walk away and never look back. This is one case where I agree, I can’t see how the show goes on without EITHER brother.

        • Cody says:

          How ironic, since you’re one of the Septics who has spent the last three months hurling abuse at all the Casfans who stopped watching after 7-02.

      • Mae says:

        Supernatural only has two main characters, Sam and Dean. You can’t have a show without one of them. If Sam/ Jared Padalecki is killed off, we are left with 1 single main character, Dean. There is no way the show would survive.

        I’m quite certain the show, including the producers, etc who I follow on Twitter, wouldn’t shoot themselves in the foot by getting rid of one of the J’s.

        Also, there is no way the J’s would continue without the other. Not only are they great friends who have been in it together since the beginning, but there is NO WAY either J could carry the workload by themselves.

        • Laura says:

          “Also, there is no way the J’s would continue without the other.”

          This never fails to make me laugh out loud. I think in practice you’ll find the J’s ability to pay their mortgages and support their families will be a lot more important to them than a friendship that has been blown up out of all proportion by the tinhat brigade. They have their own groups of friends and hardly socialize off-set at all – in fact, Jensen socializes more with Misha Collins these days than he does Jared.

          Having already shot itself in the foot when it write out Misha Collins, the show would gutshoot itself fatally if Jensen was written out, but Jared’s proportion of the fanbase is minimal, and a show with just Jensen and Misha would do as well if not better than the show is currently doing with just the Js. I’s watch the hell out of it, having not bothered with many episodes at all this season.

          • Kit says:

            I see the tinhats are in the house. Regardless of what you may think you know about their relationships I seem to recall that both Js said they wouldn’t do the show without the other. That may be complete bunk but I’ll take their verbal confirmation over your wishful thinking any day.

        • Percysowner says:

          Hey, I thought the character of Castiel was problematic at best and played out at worst. I never abused anyone for leaving after Castiel left. My opinion is once you stop enjoying a program, stop watching it. I was disdainful of people who went on and on about how the show was ruined when Castiel left (even though they claimed to have stopped watching it) and who crusaded to vote AGAINST Supernatural in the People’s Choice Awards, not because they liked the competition (or even watched the competition) but in order to make certain Supernatural lost because their favorite character was not longer on.

          Watch Supernatural, don’t watch Supernatural, your choice. For me the show is about TWO BROTHERS fighting supernatural beings. If that changes, then most of the appeal of the show will be gone for me and I will stop watching. I won’t try to undermine the show because it hurt my feelings. I might participate in a campaign to return the missing brother, but probably not.

          BTW, stalking me across the Internet is really creepy and slightly unhinged.

      • JJ says:

        I smell a big fat lie right here.

        • Kristine says:

          Think what you like, dear, it’s no skin off my nose – I don’t even watch the show. However I do have a friend who works in the legal department at WarnerBros, and that’s what she heard.

          • Kit says:

            Well I heard from a girl who works in the mailroom at CW who has a boyfriend that is a mailman in Vancouver and delivers their mail that Misha Collins was actually an alien. Truth!

      • M says:

        “Sera Gamble is out too.”

        Who would replace her? Will Kripke come back? If both Gamble and Padalecki are gone, will the show end or continue like The X-files with newer characters?

        • lianne says:

          “Who would replace her?”

          Actually Robert Singer has already replaced Gamble as Executive Producer and show runner.

          • M says:

            I thought Singer was Co-EP with Gamble, but Gamble was the real show runner, the one who plans stories, etc. When did Singer actually replace Gamble? Why has that not been made public?
            It’s odd, but recently with the news of Misha Collins’ return for an episode or two, no one from SPN made the announcement, but WB did. Is there some kind of vacuum at the top level as far as SPN is concerned? If Singer was showrunner, why didn’t he?

    • Paul says:

      While “Supernatural” does okay I think describing it as a “hit drama series” is probably a long-shot.

  11. db says:

    The image on the story looks like Jim Caviezel as “John Reese” on Person of Interest!!

    I hope this is an unfortunate coincidence :)

  12. spuddy says:

    This could be chris o’donnall from NCISLA as his name recently turned up on not one but three cast lists—two for pilots and one for a movie

  13. Amanda says:

    I know that Glee isn’t drama, but when I read about tension on the set – few days ago was published an article about “not so good” relationships between cast on the set of Glee. I wouldn’t wonder if they wanted to get rid off Lea Michele. Her character is going to graduate, she wouldn’t stay on the show anyway. She is supposedly leader of the revolt against Ryan Murphy. And she always tweets in not so subtle way about how much and how long they have to work.

  14. TM says:

    As long as it’s not anyone from Castle or Bones,I’ll survive.And I know that with such a small cast it’d be crazy for the writers to kill off one of the leads,but as the article actually mentions “pivotal character”, “it’s tough to imagine the show without him/her”, “laugh in the face of conventional wisdom” I guess anything’s possible.I just wish people would stop trying to fix something that’s not broken.I mean , if it were a show that has been running for a long time and is struggling with the ratings(House,Gossip Girl) or has contract renewal problems(Grey’s Anatomy) maybe I would expect this kind of move(so it won’t really shock me).What would really have me throwing things at my TV is a show with good ratings and a numerous fan-base pulling something like this.Does anyone know what Michael Ausiello’s favourite shows/characters are?(cause from what I read he won’t be happy about this death…)

  15. Blix says:

    Hmmm… appropriately vague. Not even a cable or network clue to go by, since each outlet has it’s fair share of “hit dramas.”

    Not even an “in a season finale” clue, so no speculation about actors whose contracts might be up for renegotiation this season, either (although contracts always have riders and clauses allowing the dismissal of any actor during the life of a show)

    While I’m sure we all have our guesses, those that make some ecstatic and those that bring out the rabid hordes, we’ll all just have to wait and see.

  16. wisconsin says:

    Jeff Probst!!! Wait…. Maxim Chmerkovskiy!!! Dammit….

  17. scott says:

    I’m thinking NCIS too. It has an MO of killing off the major players in manor ways (Kate, Jenny). Would Ziva be too Kate-esque? DiNozzo leaving would deflate all the chemistry. Harmon, unless he wants to go, is a producer and calls the shots, so I doubt it’s him

    • Svenja says:

      I doubt it’s anyone from NCIS. Besides, tensions on set are not typical for NCIS. Unless a cast member wants to leave (which I highly doubt. They keep emphasizing how much they love their job), they won’t kill any major player off.

  18. Max says:

    Damon on VD (since it would go hand in hand with the books)
    Hodgins on Bones (that’d be a dramatic twist)
    Amy Pond on DW (since Karen and Arthur are leaving in s7)
    Sam on SPN (just writn’ that so all fangirls collapse)
    Klaus on VD (killing the whole ‘oh Klaus is sooooo bad’ storyline)

  19. Zak S. says:

    I would say it’s Mariska Hargitay from Law & Order SVU

  20. Carla says:

    Vampire Diairies always kills people off so it wouldn’t be a shock. I think Derek on Grey’s Anatomy. It would shock people if they killed off Derek and there was no hope for a MerDer ending.

  21. TM says:

    Found this in an article posted in October:
    “Question: Just curious — what are your five favorite shows at the moment? —Julie
    Ausiello: That’s tough. There’s a lot I’m loving right now. How about I tell you the five shows I most enjoyed this past week: Homeland, Community, Happy Endings, Sons of Anarchy and The Good Wife.”
    Community and Happy Endings are both comedies so they’re out,and I know there are tons of other shows that may be MA’s favorites but it’s a start I guess…

    • NoChance says:

      Might help to know what Ausiello considers a hit. One of the shows he loves or is it really a high Nielsen Ratings show?

      Still need more data before guessing. Cable or Broadcast would at least narrow it down a bit.

      • TM says:

        Yeah but in addition to saying it was a hit he also says, quote “And I’m not happy about it.” so I thought it must be one of his favorite shows.

        • NoChance says:

          Good point, TM. That probably eliminates both ‘NCIS’ and ‘NCIS: LA’ because it has to be something he’s a fan of himself not just a show he reports on.

          So he likes ‘The Good Wife’ and it’s a relative hit – even with the move from Tuesday night. Who on that show fits the bill of “incredibly popular”?

          • TM says:

            Well, in my opinion for a show to be considered a hit, it would have to fall into at least one of the following categories:
            a)has been on air for a really long time without loosing its steam
            b)has decent ratings and is very well-liked by the critics
            c)it’s ratings have been through the roof
            Homeland and TGW would fall into category b) I guess. But there really is no way of knowing whether NCIS is one of MA’s favorites,unless somebody has the patience of going through hundreds of MA articles in order to find a word or two on his thoughts of the show.

          • NoChance says:

            NCIS fits both A and C but half of B.
            A. Came on in 2003 and it’s still going strong.
            B/C. Ratings are not just decent but are outstanding for a 9 year old series.

            I still don’t think that it’s going to be NCIS. I know it doesn’t matter if contracts are all signed but I just can’t see the show killing any of the main cast off.

          • TM says:

            Actually the reason why I wouldn’t put my money on NCIS is because it wouldn’t be all that shocking if they did kill somebody.What I mean is, NCIS has a history of killing lead and supporting characters so it wouldn’t come as a surprise(and the article says it will,so…)

          • NoChance says:

            TM,
            If it’s Ziva I think her fans would be floored and very sad that the show killed her off.
            I know I’d be devastated if it was Gibbs or Tony even though I was watching the night they killed off Kate and KNEW one of the major players was not going to survive the season finale that year.

            That said, I really don’t think it’s going to be an ‘NCIS’ character.

  22. Kevin says:

    If they whack Meredith and/or Derek then I may watch tired, old Grey’s Anatomy again. My guess its someone from The Good Wife.

  23. Dan says:

    Rick Grimes in walking dead? It’d be a pretty wild upset very common of kirkman

  24. Shiri says:

    I really think its Derek from Grey’s. I’m going to be heartbroken but I wonder what they will do with Meredith then.

  25. T.S. says:

    I’m actually thinking Alaric on VD. It would be a terrible loss and really sad for the show, especially since I’ve read in interviews that Kevin and Julie know they have a better actor than what he’s been given to work with. He’s really been underused and ever since his stint as Klaus for two episodes has taken a backseat to the action. Plus, we also know that a VD character will be leaving in one of the first few episodes back after the hiatus. I wish I didn’t think this, I hope I’m wrong!!

    • kelsey says:

      I don’t think its hard to imagine TVD without Alaric though. I like the actor and character but I just don’t think he’s that central. From the way its worded I think it has to be someone that is one of the “faces” of a show.

  26. muffy says:

    Is CSI really considered a “hit” drama anymore? It used to be a hit and is still successful but it got ousted from its prime Thursday 9/8c slot. It seems ridiculous they would get rid of ANOTHER lead & original cast member as well.

  27. Bella Waldorf Donut Fan says:

    I’d LOVE it if it was Douchtastic Dan Humphrey from Gossip Girl since he ruins the show for me. I know Penn Badgley would be thrilled since he’s been itching to leave for years and mocked the shows constantly. It would also break Ausi’s Bland loving heart. But unfortunately the Donut isn’t exactly hugely popular so I doubt it’s him. :( My guess is it’s Derek from Grey’s Anatomy. Shonda would have no problem denying the MerDer fans a happy ending. She’s ruthless like that.

  28. Katie says:

    PLEASE don’t let it be Reid from Criminal Minds! I know Gubler’s contract is almost up!

  29. Dani says:

    No it won’t be Don Draper. Jon Hamm is signed on until the end of season 7 which will probably be the end of the show.

  30. Angela says:

    I agree with Jenna. It is Nick from CSI. Not only BC of the 2 clues,but he also said it is as bold as the recent primetime loss meaning Katherine Willows.

  31. Dani says:

    It’s interesting that the actor/actress is more upset with ‘how’ they’re being killed off rather actually being killed off itself, which makes me think that he/she knew they were leaving anyway. Either it’s an incredibly lame or just plain offensive.

  32. angela says:

    Oops sorry missed as this primetime loss was a link to another article. I still think it is Nick. I hope not though. Can’t afford to lose 2 main characters.

  33. tahina says:

    Ausiello, you always kill me with your Blind Items because it’s never who I think/wished it was, or who regretfully wished wasn’t.

    I hope is HOuse. But wished it’s not Brenda from The Closer who ends in 2012–I know Kyra is leaving..but we dont know if they are killing her off..

  34. Sabrina says:

    i think someone from Fringe…..Peter, Olivia or the dad….

  35. nitemar says:

    Not Kalinda, Please! Know Archie had indicated earlier in an interview, she was planning on starting a family in a near future, but her hubby is in UK, so maybe she is planning moving back home?
    :(

  36. Tim says:

    It could totally be Wilson, Robert Sean Leonard came into my work recently and seemed moody, then again it was morning and he was ordering coffee.

  37. Kay says:

    Patrick Dempsey. no doubt.

    • Jamie says:

      Patrick Dempsey is not the lead of Grey’s Anatomy and that’s what Ausiello is referring to in this blind item – the “lead” of a hit show.

  38. Annie says:

    It won’t be anyone from the Vampire Diaries, guys.
    A) that show is so shocking that it wouldn’t be unbelievable for any of them to die, and the only truly main characters (the brothers and Elena) can’t die, or else the premise of the show would too.
    I don’t think NCIS would actually go so far as to kill one of our beloved field agents – especially not Gibbs. If they did that, the show would flop and everyone knows it.

  39. Zola says:

    The blind item stated “a major character on a hit TV show” not “lead” so this could be Derek on Grey’s. I hope so but I’d also be satisfied with him disappearing in the parking lot like all the other characters who left. Except George who got the Edie Britt treatment. There are no happy endings on Grey’s anyway.

  40. Spencer says:

    Well, I hope it’s Emma from Once Upon a Time, because I really don’t like her character, lmao. Although, before I make my final decision of his getting offed, I need more info, Aus! Could you at least give us 3 possible networks the show is on?! Also, I am hoping that it is not a character on Revenge, although it could be….

  41. Zoe says:

    Please tell me it’s not Olivia Benson.

  42. Jordan says:

    Tony from NCIS. Isn’t michael weatherlys contract up.

  43. Nadine says:

    I agree with those that are thinking Patrick Dempsey. Hmmmm, wonder how Derek will die.

  44. bexx says:

    please please please say it’s not from NCIS!

  45. Brett says:

    It’s obviously Ted from How I Met Your Mother.

  46. Ian L. says:

    Peter Bishop. All the numbers line up in my head.

  47. nora says:

    Im predicting Shane from Walking Dead. Ive read the comics and can’t wait to meet all the new characters and say goodbye to that ass. Also, i really hope it happens similar, furthering the twisted world they live in.

  48. Andy says:

    The “incredibly popular” character description makes me think it’s Daryl from The Walking Dead. Killing Daryl off would certainly be bold, and I could see TWD going there, even if it would be wildly unpopular.

  49. trann says:

    I hope it’s Ginnifer Goodwin from Once upon a time, she is SO ANNOYING!!!

  50. Mike says:

    It’s Dr. Bailey on Grey’s. Her contract is up and she asked to come back for limited episodes, but Shonda instead – likely as a warning to any other actors hoping to do the same – axed her. Bailey bites the dust in ep 19.

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