OK, TV star, would you prefer a death scene or a spinoff - write your own character's ending

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The cliffhanger ending to season 5 of "Grey's Anatomy" last night put two of the show's main characters on hospital gurneys, flat-lining simultaneously.

Whether Katherine Heigl and T.R. Knight's characters are saved for next season remains to be seen. But if the cold hand of dramatic death takes Izzie and George, they'll be joining a proud tradition of TV talent purging.

Killing off a character is a time-honored method for getting rid of an actor for a whole host of reasons - money, attitude, ratings or just plain old spite.

True, they don't always die off. Some ride into the sunset to pursue noble causes, like Noah Wylie's Dr. Carter on checking out of the "E.R." to become an aid worker in Africa. And sometimes, for the lucky ones, it's a trip off the show to be written into their own spinoff, like Kate Walsh's Addison Montgomery character leaving "Grey's Anatomy's" Seattle Grace to set up her own "Private Practice in Los Angeles.

But the most memorable TV character exits are the 6-feet-under variety - and maybe the most famous is the death of McLean Stevenson's Henry Blake on "M*A*S*H."

So here's the question: If you were a character on a show, how would you write yourself off? A heroic, blaze-of-glory death? A quiet evolution into another phase of life? A spinoff, starring vehicle?

Here's your chance to tell the world how your character would finish its final scene. Think of it as writing your own obit, but with better ratings and less finality.

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    This page contains a single entry by Craig Newman published on May 15, 2009 1:29 PM.

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