Why I will never forgive Shonda Rhimes for killing Derek Shepherd

Published: April 24, 2015

Killing the man with those melting eyes, Dr Derek Shepherd aka McDreamy, is beyond it all.

The previous episode of Grey’s Anatomy had hints that this may happen, but I said to myself that Shonda Rhimes, the writer, cannot do this.

Meredith has already been through way too much. Name any tragedy and mishap in the world and she has been through it. Mom had Alzheimer’s, dad was an alcoholic. Her best friend George died. The plane crash killed her sister Lexie and friend Mark Sloan and mangled Derek’s hand, and he was unable to do surgeries for months. Before that, in 2010, Derek was shot in the chest. And Meredith nearly died so many times and had a near death experience and gave birth to her baby boy in candlelight under very unusual circumstances. And you took away her person, Christina Yang. Tragedies make the best stories, but even Shakespearean tragedies have limits.

Killing the man with those melting eyes, Dr Derek Shepherd aka McDreamy, is beyond it all.

Smug Facebookers and weeps who need a life went on about how they had moved on from Grey’s to Game of Thrones and Sherlock Holmes etc.

“I gave up at Season 10.”

Then why must you, oh kill joys, confirm to the world that you are inherently evil by giving out feeling-less spoilers that Derek had died? We would have found out eventually, but may be the next many hours or even a day could have gone by without knowing that he is gone.

While I have moved on to watch other shows too, I have loyally stuck to Grey’s since 10 years. It is something me and my daughter bond over. The characters have grown and so have we. Some seasons have been amazing, others have been mediocre. But the quotes, the symbolism and the evolution of the characters has kept us glued. But today, I am not so sure.

Shonda, I will never forgive you for doing this.

The first reason is simple – you could have done away with Derek’s character more creatively. After all, you are the person behind one of the world’s most watched shows. You creatively designed the life and times of these doctors and came up with amazing stuff. Where was your sense of novelty when you decided it was time to let go of Patrick Dempsey? As my daughter rightly said,

“So disappointed in Shonda Rhimes! After 11 years of showing us the constant ups and downs of Meredith and Derek, this is how you choose to end it? This was by far the most disappointing episode I have ever seen. The writing of the episode was purely lazy and everything went by too fast.”

But more importantly, Ms Rhimes, you have made it hard for us, the viewers, to continue believing in the fact that good things happen to good people. The character you killed off was a good person whose mantra was

“It’s a beautiful day to save lives.”

He was saving lives and you killed him off. You killed off hope in a world that is becoming too cynical that a love like Mer-Der can last. They were meant to grow old together. Their marriage vows included

“We’ll take care of each other, even when we’re old, and smelly, and senile.”

We wanted to believe that it still happens.

McDreamy is no longer there to make us believe. He said,

“I’ll be back before you know it.”

But he won’t.

Serial shows, when they lose the punch and creativity, and stop understanding what the viewers want, should end gracefully with finesse.

You could have done better, Shonda.

Farahnaz Zahidi

Farahnaz Zahidi

Farahnaz is a writer and editor, and has worked as the Features Editor with The Express Tribune. Her focus is human-centric feature stories. She now writes as a freelancer, and works in the field of marketing and corporate communications. She loves literature and traveling. She tweets on @FarahnazZahidi. Her work can be seen at chaaidaani.wordpress.com/

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • A.I

    Do you realise you just ruined it for everyone who didnt know yet ? Seriously!? have you heard of ‘spoiler alert’!!!Recommend

  • Farhan

    Thank you for the huge spoiler and ruining for those who haven’t watched it!

    (spoilers not dying)Recommend

  • anon0912

    First of all,talk about a spoiler in the title…wowza.Secondly,there are rumors that Derek was probably killed cause Shonda and him were having problems on the set.I have been watching this show since s1 and i gotta tell you I thoroughly enjoyed this episode cause his death came out of the blue.This is a soap opera make no mistake whose job is to tug at your heartstrings and judging by the outrage of people including yourself seems to be doing an excellent job.Plus people wake up everyday thinking they have their whole lives ahead of them but some don’t…whats so hard to understand about that?Not to mention its a fictional character on a tv show..so stop whining and if you don’t like what you see…just move on.Recommend

  • Vicki Edwards-Bruni

    Shondra Rhimes, you have to have rocks for brains and be a nitwit with the latest move you made by firing the actor that played Derek!! You must be a pretty pitiful person if you can’t take a little bit of advice from anyone but yourself!! Pity you!!Recommend

  • Cathleen Hart

    ummm does the fact that Patrick Dempsey wanted to leave the show enter in to it. :-)Recommend

  • Sarah.D

    It matters to every fan of this show. Meredith and Derek were the show’s starring lovers. Although the show centers around meredith, he was always alongside her and deserved a more emotional death that should have lasted longer than it did. If it really was just a show (and make no mistake, studies show that repeatedly viewing images or clips can enhance the secretion of certain hormones, creating a mental attachment, good or bad, to what it is that you were viewing and thus proving that shows can impact your life) then why did you take the time to write c speech about it? If you expect fans of a show to move on, why don’t you do the same.

  • Zara Ahmed

    I really don’t care, but there is some etiquette of journalism, foremost that you do not spoil tv shows for others! Her clear emotional instability does not allow her to ruin the next episode for thousands of ET readers, an episode which was released just a few hours back.Recommend

  • Tami Maybrier

    I agree, I loved this episode, the way Sandra played the flash backs, making us think ok he’s alive then the hospital, him knowing the doctors were wrong, and Derek kept thinking,NO, that isn’t what Meredith would do! It was brilliant, yes this is real lifeRecommend

  • Caylin Frye

    Honestly my biggest problem is the lack of respect Shonda showed. Having Derek save those lives then after no phone service the whole time his phone suddenly has service and he gets hit by a semi??? Then has to be taken to some poduck little hospital with no trauma unit, with no chance ?? Like ever heard of a helicopter, he could have very well been taken to Seattle Grace, and if he had to die he could have died there. I am so upset with Shonda, Derek didn’t have to go out like this. The show will never be the same. Derek was Greys Anatomy. Recommend

  • Fharen

    My issues with the episode was it was written so poorly. This character has been on the show since day 1 and his death should’ve been told better. It was rushed and completely unbelievable. From what Ive been reading that’s been almost every fans main complaint. Recommend

  • Nouman Ahmed

    If you had an iota of common sense, you would have guessed from the blog title that there will be spoilers.Recommend

  • anon0912

    @fharen:disqus Maybe our opinions differ on this issue..i expect top notch writing from something like mad men not greys anatomy..this show to me is the very definition of cliche yet still enjoyable.I mean how many times have they used a recycled plot?
    @Sarah.D Move on ? that doesnt even make any sense.I got no complaints and I am a fan of the show.More emotional death ? care to elaborate ? Like going out saving 4 lives wasn’t enough.Maybe for you,they should have let him stay in a coma for a season and then have people cry over it and then he would make a miraculous return…cause that would have been so much better.People fail to realize that they had run out of plots regarding that couple.They milked his death for an emotional finale and to progress the Amelia’s storyline further.It was that or let him stay alive and just let him linger which would have been so much worse.Recommend

  • haayyaa

    the blog title was the spoiler….Recommend

  • Nouman Ahmed

    Oh yeah. Did not notice that. Sorry. It is me who did not use common sense.Recommend

  • Donna Williams Tarver

    Your right huge spoiler in the title, but unless you live under a rock it has been everywhere for days. I agree I will never forgive her for this death. If they are back next year why not think of another way to give Patrick Dempsy more time off without resorting to death. I am in no way crazy I realize they are fictional characters but after 10 years of viewing we are invested in the fictional lives of the characters. I would have loved a happily ever after for Derek and Meredith. Why must every show kill a major character , there have to be better ways to move story lines. I know there are better ways to get my viewership.Recommend

  • Dante

    I feel sad, really really sad. I actually don’t have a life of my own, but my life was being dictated by Rhonda Shimes and Derek Shepherd, and now that the two candles have run out of fuel, so has darkness creeped on my life. I shed tears of sorrow as I recite Surah Fatihah in their remembrance.

    What am I going to do from this point on? What???Recommend

  • Farhan

    I didn’t read the article, I was browsing the tribune homepage and saw the post title which is a huge spoiler itself.