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| 4 REASONS WHY DANA'S DEATH WAS A MISTAKE
Written by Bethan
4 Reasons why Dana's death was a mistake
1.) Ratings: Everyone loved and could identify with Dana. How many T.V. characters can a Lesbian say that about? Her outstanding dramatic and comedic acting ability stunned us each week. The show is considerably lessened by her absence. It is like booking a multi-million dollar concert tour for No Doubt - then murdering Gwen Stefani after 2 shows.
2.) Hopelessness: I think Dana's death had the opposite effect of what the writers and producers wanted. A healthy young athlete accepts her diagnosis and does everything the Doctors suggest with enormous strength and willingness to do whatever it takes to live. After her death, I am left with a feeling of hopelessness. Why go through the excruciating journey of a mastectomy and chemotherapy? Why live your last days with 1 breast, intolerable nausea, and hair loss? My Father was diagnosed with prostate and colon cancer at the age of 63, with many other complicating ailments, and died at the age of 75 on January 19th, 2006 from something other than cancer. My Mother was diagnosed with breast cancer 3 years ago at the age of 72, and is doing well. Of course death can occur as in Dana's situation - but why do the writers and producers feel they need to teach us about reality? I know reality. I am surrounded by it everyday. The show has been an inspiration to me and has now left me with a sense of hopelessness.
When Dana was diagnosed, women felt compelled to schedule a breast exam. When Dana died - they canceled their appointment.
3.) Affects on the cast: When Dana died I am sure their insecurity and anger grew - while their "happy family" work environment diminished. They are all probably looking at their contracts to see how to get out early. These are all talented women actors with plenty of opportunities. In the future, the writers and producers will be scrambling to write out main characters that choose to leave. When their Manager murders Gwen Stefani - how do you think the drummer feels?
4.) Personal demons: I am getting the sense that Dana's death and other story topics are being used to exorcise the writers and producers personal demons. I suggest writing a novel or organizing a march. I am in entertainment marketing research and do not mean to sound superficial - but what you have is a hit Lesbian T.V. series on a premium channel. It's a business and the customer is always right. It is a known industry fact that "Stars" do not make television - television makes "Stars". To make a Star like Dana and then kill her is just bad business. I am amazed that it was actually accomplished. Usually network oversight, marketing research, fans, or anyone who makes money from the series has input and would never allow such a stupid move. Checks and balances are the American way of government, law, and industry. With the popularity of the show and a strong core audience, marketing research and focus groups are not even needed. You have a free voice of the customer from the web sites - use it!
With Love & Respect,
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2006-03-28, 18:45:58 PM
Comments: Wow!!!! I am in total agreement with what you have said here. I think killing Dana was a colossal mistake for this show. I, for one, don't plan to follow it into year 4, because between the death of Dana and a thoroughly depressing and negative finale, I feel there is no reason left to watch it.
2006-03-28, 20:08:27 PM
Comments: All pretty valid reasons except maybe you’ll have to be slightly less subjective. Although it was sad to see one of the original characters go in such a dramatic way, I thought it was something that was long overdue:The show is about womanhood, lesbians and the dynamics of friendships. Frankly, I’m sick and tired of seeing the stories revolve solely around hookups, breakups and sex. Although I think these topics are important for the essence of the L Word, these grown women need to experience conflicts beyond these parameters. Every once in a while I see the writers attempting to bring this about .e.g. the difficulties of gay parenting. This time it had to be about death and the loss of a great friend. You might not relate to that, but others do. Furthermore, it makes the show more exciting, creative and somewhat random. It’s a dramatic show. The characters can’t always be there forever. People have to die, move away, trip and fall, have a baby, fly to mars. Whatever it is, things have to change. In terms of ratings you should try and image how many people tuned in to see Dana die and get a final glimpse of her. Thinking beyond that, how many people do you think will look back and say: “Remember the episode when Dana died? It was so sad. I cried so much… blah, blah, blah.” These little snippets make a show successful. Without them would be like having a No Doubt hits CD that did not contain neither “Just a girl”, nor “It’s my life”, nor “Excuse Me Mister”, nor “Spiderwebs”, nor “Don’t Speak”. Or in other words, leaving much to be desired. A CD that I would not purchase. Dana was chosen to be the drama of the season and she successfully rose to the challenge. The key thing now is to follow it with someone just as good or better.Having said all that, Dana’s departure could have simply been that Erin Daniels chose to move on and so asked to be killed. The End.
2006-03-28, 20:21:52 PM
Comments: In agreement with you on the death of Dana.Totally took something away from the show.
2006-03-28, 20:33:59 PM
Comments: The show will defintley feel the loss of Erin Daniels next year. And Erin did not choose to leave....she was in essence fired. The handling of the cancer Dana had left only feelings of hopelessness. IC has really lost her vision of what this show was about.Unless she turns it around in S4 no one will be there for S5
2006-03-29, 00:21:38 AM
Comments: i am totally angry over the danas death. they should have never killed off a main character like that erin daniels was so good in that role and will be greatly missed. if they needed someone to kill off why not one of the new ones, the max so called storyline, come on they say they wanted to give us a butch storyline. i dont buy it. the butch woman i know dont want to be a man, if lesbian woman wanted to be with a man then they would be straight!!! carmen, kit, lara, why not one of them. i have become so negative about the show that i doubt i will watch next season. they split bette and tina up, that was bad enough, but to put her with a man and show the sex scene, its becoming the sex show. not the l word, i loved this show im in a setting were being gay isnt accepted at all. and the show was my out and my friends out of this little world. but it has all gone down hill, dont get me wrong the actresses have done an awesome job with what they are given, but the spark of the show is gone. and it is sad. i bought the first two seasons, but i dont know about the third. i will be watching erin daniels on her new show. but not the 4th season of l word unless this totally change.
2006-03-29, 06:39:32 AM
Comments: Bethan I totally agree with you. It makes absolutely no sense to kill Dana. WIth this nonsense taking place, I can only surmise that the producers and the writers of the L Word have been replaced with members of the Bush administration.
2006-03-29, 13:14:06 PM
Comments: Your absolutly right about Danas death!Of course it was a strong storyline and it is true that people die of cancer. but from my personal surrounding I can say a lot of people with diagnosis cancer live a long and happy life. its hard but can be done.
2006-03-29, 16:49:11 PM
Comments: I couldn't agree with more. Eveything I wanted to say, you've said for me, or, for us.
2006-03-29, 18:50:10 PM
Comments: Perfectly said. Made me have a huge sigh - someone has spoken for thousands ... Dana's death only exacerbated fears and anxiety, and left the show humorless and morbid. We have enough negative lesbian stereotyping on the show as it is (is it REALLY written by lesbians? dear god!) and one of the few totally watchable dignified adorable talented and interesting women has been "fired" - says a lot about who's running the ship. They went totally off any possible spiritual path ... and Bette screaming after the meditation retreat? How stupid, shallow and base - I'm so surprised Jennifer Beals allowed that.
2006-03-30, 09:32:11 AM
Comments: Damn straight, I think we may have been able to forgive them if Erin Daniels had wanted to leave (or wasnt one of the 2 best actors on the show, the other being Leisha) but it shows disinterest toward the cast and the fans. Plus a loss of hope in a way for cancer sufferers.
2006-03-30, 23:32:33 PM
Comments: I agree with you I feel sad watching the show not that Dana isn't on anymore I feel like it ruined the show in a way. I think it was a bad move everyone I talk to Dana was one of their favorites why kill off a stable character unless she wanted to leave the show but she didn't...so to the producers bad move..
2006-03-31, 22:19:24 PM
Comments: I really feel the same way you do about dana's death. I cried for two hours and swore never to watch the show again.
2006-03-31, 22:38:05 PM
Comments: when dana was going through her cancer operation... so was i... i was operated on Feb 28... ok it wasn't breast cancer... but cancer is cancer... and here you have a healthy womam... and she dies... and here i am 51 years old... and you know what... i beat it... i am now cancer free... this only showed me ... why go through all of that ... look dana died... she was healthy... if she didn't have her operation she would still be alive... so they sent out the wrong message here... instead of helping women and getting checked... they scared the hell out of them... and they will take their chances...now i'm not saying don't get checked... hey it saved my life... they were able to catch it early and remove it... so please everyone out there... don't listen to what we saw on this show... get tested... get checked... get cured...
2006-04-03, 15:30:37 PM
Comments: It would have been so much more positive and refreshing to have Dana really fight for survival, as great athletes should do. Great athletes don't just give up, they fight and keep on fighting. That's why such athletes make such a huge impact as role models. Look at cancer survivors like Lance Armstrong and Scott Hamilton, just to name a couple.I understand they wanted to say, not even strong ones survive. But wouldn't it have made more impact to say, yes, that's true, but here's one who will keep fighting to do it!
2006-04-03, 22:18:49 PM
Comments: What's wrong with giving a character breast cancer? It portrays what many millions of women suffer from everyday. It's also the number one killer of woman besides lung cancer. What's wrong with symbolizing the struggled felt all over the world by women in a show about women?? Seems right on to me. I think this is a total case of "I love Erin Daniels", not really about the L Word or about reality. But girls, Erin Daniels is still alive by the way. You can catch her in other shows.
2006-04-04, 04:33:36 AM
Comments: So yes, it was very sad when Dana Died. I will admit that I cried. But I think that in the end it is going to amke all of the other characters grow. They haven't had anyobdy actually. They've had people leave, and people attempt to kill themselves, but i think this is just an eye opener. Whether Erin Daniels was fired or got a better offer, i think that it was a good decision to have her leave the show the way she did. Yes, it is very real, and very depressing, but that is life right? the show is supposed to be about what real life lesbians go through, and thats what they have given us. I dont think that because after all of her treatment she still passed away is a reason to give up hope. Yes, there is till hope ouyt there for other people with cancer, but things do happen and treatment doesnt always help everyone. I would prefer that she had stayed on the show because she was one of my favorite characters, but what can you do? thats life right? I think that in the end the writers will find a way to turn this into a more positive situation than it has been. It's s show that you are here to watch and be interested in. It's not going to always go the way you want it to, just like life. If you get tired of the way things are going, stop watching. Although as much as I wouldlike a 4th and 5th season I would hate for somebody to feell hopeless about cancer because a fictional character passed away.
2006-04-04, 08:18:54 AM
Comments: I am a sorta new fan to the show but i have season 1 and 2 on DVD and i havent see all of season 3 buit i am waiting for that DVD to come out. Aout this articale this is what shocked me.....When Dana was diagnosed, women felt compelled to schedule a breast exam. When Dana died - they canceled their appointment. that is what made my jaw drop....:( so sad.
2006-04-04, 08:20:05 AM
Comments: wow i made lots of typoes sorry....LOL!!!!
2006-12-29, 23:16:58 PM
Comments: While I wasn't thrilled with the death of Dana, I do respect the writers and Ilene's decision to take Dana out. All of them can't stay together forever, and it is certainly true that some people do survive with cancer, but I know two people who have died within a year of being diagnosed, and I'm only 18. Both of them meant very much to me, and I miss them terribly; but the truth of the matter is, most people who get cancer die from it or something that the cancer contributed to. Think of it as AIDS, chances are you will die from AIDS; some don't but most do. How many women have or will get breast cancer in their lifetime? Too many to count. The odds of one of those women actually getting breast cancer is very good. Will we miss Dana?? Absolutely. Will we get over it?? Eventually. Season Four is almost upon us, and I can't wait to see it; I want to see how our girls are coping with everything, which is EXACTLY what The L Word is about.