Funeralwise.com has analyzed four months worth of television and cable programming aired during 2012, and discovered that cable programs tend to have more dead bodies than television programs. However, 40 selected broadcast television programs averaged 132 dead bodies weekly, over three per program.
For the record, Funeralwise.com is an online funeral planning service and for that reason found the topic interesting. It also noted that with all the dead bodies populating the small screen, very few of them led to the broadcast of a funeral.
Spartacus: Vengeance on STARZ was by far the deadliest program, with 25 corpses per episode. Game of Thrones on HBO was a distant 2nd with 14.
“We did not find a direct correlation between the body count and viewership, but these programs are definitely popular with the viewing audience,” said Funeralwise managing partner Rick Paskin. “As a funeral resource, the role of death in modern society is an interesting subject to Funeralwise. We know how difficult it is to get people to proactively plan for their funeral. There is a clear disconnect between the acceptance of death in popular culture and the acceptance of it in reality.”
Key findings were:
* The deadliest show was the STARZ series Spartacus: Vengeance, with an average of 25 dead bodies per episode. HBO’s Game of Thrones was the next deadliest, with 14 dead bodies 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.
* 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 “safest” shows for humans and other creatures were ABC’s Revenge, TNT’s Leverage and USA’s White Collar, all of which had no dead bodies in the 8 episodes analyzed.
* Very few funerals were shown during the programs analyzed.