TV offered plenty of amazing and memorable moments in 2012. Whether they were sad, funny, violent or just plain shocking, we had no trouble piling up a list of some of our favorite moments in television this year. And because we came up with so many, we've broken them down by category, staring with the demises of numerous notable characters and then moving into the other big TV moments from 2012.
SPOILER WARNING: Obviously, this list contains major spoilers from 2012 television. Read on at your own risk!
Spartacus: Vengeance: Half the lead characters.
Spartacus was brutal on fans this year, closing out Vengeance with the death of a number of characters in varying degrees of violent ends. Rest in peace Lucretia, Ilithyia, Ilithyia’s baby, Oenomaus, Ashur, Glaber and Mira.
Mad Men: Lane's self-inflicted exit.
Things weren't going so great for Lane in Season 5 of Mad Men, but nothing could have fully prepared us for the character's exit after he was caught embezzling money. After dropping off his letter of resignation, Lane hanged himself in his office, only to be found later by some of his coworkers. Sad and disturbing all at once! RIP Lane.
Dexter: LaGuerta follows Doakes into the afterlife.
Maria LaGuerta was the most notable casualty during Dexter's seventh season. Given that she spent most of her on-screen time pursuing Dexter and how closely she followed in Doakes' footsteps in the process - including getting herself killed by a woman in love with Dexter - her death wasn't a huge surprise but it was still a major exit and a loss that'll leave a mark come Season 8.
True Blood - Russell Edgington meets the true death.
After bringing him back from his burial place to pursue vampire superiority in the world once again, Season 5 of True Blood then sent Russell Edgington to a gory true death at the hands of none other than Eric Northman.
Sons of Anarchy - Opie takes a fatal beating.
Opie's never had it easy, losing his wife and father over matters concerning the club. His life was one of the few things he had left, so it was probably just a matter of time before he lost that too. Still, it was heartbreaking to see him go, getting beaten to death in prison while his brothers watched on, unable to do anything.
Justified - Robert Quarles loses his arm and his life.
Neal McDonough’s Robert Quarles was a loose cannon for a solid portion of Season 3 of Justified. Once he ran out of allies and good options, however, it was obvious he would go out in a blaze of glory. The only question was how. Fans got their answer when he showed up at Elston Limehouse’s and got his arm chopped off mid-argument. Given the fancy mechanical piece he loved so much, it was fitting.
Grey's Anatomy - Lexi and Mark both die.
Despite the good news that the show had been renewed, 2012 was a rough year for Grey’s fans. First the Season 8 finale left us crying as a plane crash took Lexie’s life, and then Season 9 shook fans further with the death of Mark Sloan as well.
Boardwalk Empire - What’s in the Box? Owen.
It wouldn’t be Boardwalk Empire if people didn’t die, horribly, and Season 3 was no exception. In the middle of last year, Charlie Cox’ Owen Slater started to secure his spot as Nucky’s new number two not to mention a place in Margaret’s heart but both of those relationships were cut short, and the love triangle flattened, by a late night delivery from Joe Masseria. Owen’s corpse. In a crate. Surprise!
The Walking Dead - T-Dog and Lori die in prison.
Lori and T-Dog met their demise in gruesome fashion. For T-Dog, it was a zombie bite that eventually led to him throwing himself to the walkers to save Carol. For Lori, it was complications during childbirth, which led her to insist that Maggie cut the baby out of her. Both characters' fates were sealed, but both took a quicker route to death to save the life of another and went out like champs.