Body count may not be the MOST important thing to horror fans, but many agree it’s near the top of the list so when we heard that the results of a 2012 TV Body Count Study included quite a few of our favorite series (and most likely several of our readers’ as well), we thought we’d pass them on.
Have you ever wondered how many people die in the TV shows you watch every week? Funeralwise wanted to look at the role of death in popular culture, more specifically in broadcast and cable shows, and the following are some highlights of the reported results after evaluating over 300 episodes that recently aired:
The Starz series “Spartacus: Vengeance” topped all shows with an average of 25 dead bodies per episode, followed by HBO’s “Game of Thrones” with 14 dead bodies per episode.
The deadliest shows for non-human creatures were The CW’s “The Vampire Diaries” with 18 dead vampires per episode and AMC’s “The Walking Dead” with 16 dead zombies per episode.
The deadliest broadcast network show was The CW’s “Nikita” with 9 dead bodies per episode. The CBS series “NCIS: Los Angeles” was second deadliest with an average of 6 dead bodies per episode.
CBS was the deadliest network due to having 11 shows selected for the study, by far the most of any network. Five (5) CBS shows were among the top 10 deadliest.
The 40 TV series analyzed averaged 132 dead bodies, in total, during a single week for an average of more than 3 dead bodies per episode. Including non-humans, the figure rises to 171 dead bodies per week.
Very few funerals were shown during the programs Funeralwise.com analyzed. Of the 300+ episodes counted totaling 1,000+ dead bodies, there were only 8 instances where some type of funeral or memorial service was shown.
Many of the shows that regularly display dead bodies are popular with viewers. However, there does not appear to be a direct correlation between the number of dead bodies shown in a program and the number of viewers who watch the program.
The objective of Funeralwise’s TV Body Count Study is to quantify the role of death in popular culture by analyzing the portrayal of dead bodies on television shows.
Do we find death entertaining?
How do portrayals of death affect the popularity of entertainment programs?
Can the acceptance of death in entertainment programming make it easier to accept the reality of our mortality?
There’s definitely some food for thought here. For more details and the full list of shows included in their survey, click the link at the bottom of the page.