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Season 8 of Blue Bloods got off to a surprising start when the premiere revealed that Linda Reagan had died in a helicopter crash over hiatus, as Amy Carlson had opted to leave the series after fulfilling her commitment of seven seasons to the series. Most fans did not see the death coming, as Season 7 had ended without any sign that we'd soon be saying goodbye to both Linda and Carlson. Now, other members of the Blue Bloods cast have shared their thoughts on Amy Carlson's decision to leave the series behind. Bridget Moynahan, who plays Erin Reagan, had this to say:
What I think it has done is opened up a whole new bottle of storylines. I know it's sad to see somebody go, but it has reignited some beautiful, creative juices.
While the cast is evidently bummed to have lost Amy Carlson on set, some good has come out of her departure when it comes to storylines. There are some directions the show can go with plots and certainly characters now that they're forced to compensate for Linda's permanent absence in the present. We'll get to see characters handle situations in ways other than they would have back when Linda was still around. The episodes that have aired so far in Season 8 have made it clear that Linda hasn't and won't be forgotten, and that bodes well for the future of the series. Her character will be honored by the other characters' reactions to her death.
Marisa Ramirez plays Detective Maria Baez, who has been Danny Reagan's partner for many years, and she spoke about how her character's dynamic with Danny will change moving forward:
They say that when detectives work so closely together as partners, it's like they're almost married. So he had the support of his wife and now he needs the support of his partner -- but we'll see if he takes it, because he's very, very stubborn.
There's no denying that Danny can be quite stubborn at times, and the death of his wife is obviously a very sensitive subject. His partner may need to be pretty patient with him if she's going to help him in his difficult time. Losing Linda has changed the whole status quo of the series, and Maria Baez may take the brunt of any of Danny's frustrations.
Sami Gayle, a.k.a. the actress who brings Nicky to life, weighed in on the lack of Linda to TVLine as well:
Amy made the decision to leave, but we adore her. We're very sad she left.
Story opportunities aside, the cast did lose one of the members who has been on board from the very first season. We can bet that the atmosphere behind the scenes without Amy Carlson is quite different. Who knows? Maybe she can come back some day to film Linda in flashbacks or hallucinations or something. We might not want to rule anything out. Interestingly, Blue Bloods was not the only series to return to the airwaves this fall with a wife/mother who had died over hiatus, although Blue Bloods definitely doesn't go for as many laughs.
You can catch new episodes of Blue Bloods on Fridays at 10 p.m. ET on CBS. For your other viewing options, take a gander at our fall TV guide.