Faking your death is an extreme solution to a problem.
Sometimes, it's the only card a character has to play.
At least that’s what these characters told themselves.
Sherloque Wells - The Flash
This Wells is a brilliant detective, but he's terrible with money and relationships. Not only does Sherloque money to Team Flash but he's also behind on alimony payments to his many ex-wives.
Instead of responsibly paying off his debts, Sherloque's go-to move is faking his death. He would've continued to get away with it were it not for Cisco's deductive skills and Nora meddling with his love life.
Donna Shellstrop - The Good Place
A police officer told Eleanor her mother had gotten trampled to death at a Rascal Flatts concert. The truth was Donna faked her death because didn’t want to pay the money she owed to a charity.
Eleanor was beyond hurt when she found out, and certain Donna was using her new identity to scam her boyfriend. However, faking her death was the death of Donna’s con artist ways and led to her rebirth as a PTA mom.
Bellamy Blake - The 100
Bellamy didn’t want anyone from the Ark following the 100 to Earth. As their leader, he convinced the others to take off the wristbands monitoring their health because it would trick the Ark into thinking the 100 were dead.
The plan backfired because it caused chaos on the ground. It also made Abby desperate enough to send Raven down there to gather first-hand knowledge of the situation.
Paige, Phoebe, & Piper - Charmed
Zankou had control of the Book of Shadows, the Halliwell Manor, and the Charmed Ones' powers. Out of moves, Paige, Phoebe, & Piper decided to sacrifice themselves to destroy the Nexus and defeat Zankou.
Miraculously, the sisters survived the battle, but government agents were waiting to take them out. Weary of fighting, the Charmed Ones magically disguised themselves and let everyone think they died in the explosion.
Gregory House - House
House’s life was going up in flames because Wilson only had five months to live, and he faced six months in prison. Even someone with House’s problem-solving skills couldn’t get out of this mess alive.
House chose not to live -- at least not officially. He faked his death -- allowing him and Wilson to ride off into the unknown.
Alison DiLaurentis - Pretty Little Liars
It’s not surprising Alison didn’t know who trust after she had been hit over the head with a rock and buried alive.
On Mona’s advice, she faked her death. Considering Alison was framed for murder not longer she revealed herself to be alive, maybe she should’ve kept playing dead.
Nick Fury - Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D
Believed to have died upon learning Hydra compromised S.H.I.E.L.D., Nick Fury showed up in time to rescue Fitz and Simmons from drowning in the middle of the ocean.
Fury couldn’t stick around for long, but he accomplished his objectives: traded banter, ensured Garret was on the receiving end of smackdown and handed Coulson the tools (plus the title of director) to rebuild S.H.I.E.L.D.
Alex Cabot - Law & Order: SVU
In her quest to bring a murdering rapist to justice, ADA Alex Cabot became the target of a drug cartel, which sent a shooter after her.
Benson, Stabler, and the rest of the SVU squad believed her to be dead. Alex survived, but she was forced into witness protection.
Adrian Pimento - Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Pimento's long stint as an undercover agent left him with psychological scars and an enemy named Jimmy "The Butcher" Figgis. While tearing it up at his bachelor party with Jake, Terry, Hitchcock, and Scully, a hitman Figgis hired tried to kill him.
To fool Figgis, the Nine-Nine faked Pimento's death. The situation became more complicated when they discovered Figgis had a mole in the FBI. Adrian went off the grid, and Rosa had to play the grieving fiancee at his fake funeral.
Michael & Fiona - Burn Notice
James' organization got dismantled, but James had his hand on a dead man's switch and wasn't about to let Michael and Fiona walk out alive. After the flames died down, Michael and Fiona were buried with full honors.
Sam and Jesse, however, knew better than to believe their friends were dead, and they were right. Fiona finally got Michael to retire from the spying, and the two of them were living happily in Ireland.
Alex "Star-Burns" Osbourne - Community
Star-Burns was more than just a guy with sideburns shaped like stars. He was also a sleazy drug dealer who was surprisingly competent at faking his death.
It took another criminal mastermind, the Ass Crack Bandit, to smoke Star-Burns out of hiding. Star-Burns appeared to have moved on to a more lawful business -- developing cat powered vehicles.
Charlotte "Chuck" Charles - Pushing Daisies
Chuck didn’t fake her death voluntarily. She faked it to cover up the fact she died, and the Piemaker brought her back to life.
Although grateful to be alive, she hates having to lie to Olive. She is also forced to stay away from the beloved aunts who raised her.
George Bluth Sr. - Arrested Development
Lucille hired a bounty hunter to find George Sr. Ice, both bounty hunter and party caterer, tracked him down to a Mexican prison and discovered a guard stabbed him to death.
Only the part about winding up in a Mexican prison was true. George Sr. found a way to fake his death. Then he came home and hid in the attic.
Jean-Ralphio Saperstein - Parks & Recreation
While most of our favorite Pawnee inhabitants moved on and found success in their personal lives, Jean-Ralphio never changed.
In 2022, he faked his death and planned to use the insurance money to start a casino. It's unlikely his plan went far. The rabbi chasing after him looked pretty fast.
Crowley - Supernatural
Castiel burned Crowley's bones and put an end to the demon once and for all. Except not because the whole thing was a fake-out.
Crowley and Castiel had teamed up. Faking Crowley's death was part of their plan to gain to access Purgatory.
Sophia Petrillo - The Golden Girls
Sophia threw herself a funeral because she wanted to hear all the nice things people would say about her, and, in the process, everyone would have a good time partying.
The flaw in her plan was letting Rose send out the invitations. People showed up at the wake thinking Sophia was dead, and no one said anything nice when told otherwise.
Ross Geller - Friends
In retaliation for Ross posting he was gay on their college alumni website, Chandler posted Ross was dead. Distraught over how no one seemed to care about his passing, Ross decided to hold a memorial service for himself.
Only one person showed up to mourn him. She freaked and stormed off when she found out he was alive, but Ross discovering she crushed on him was enough to call the fake memorial service a win.
Elizabeth "Liz" Keen - The Blacklist
Worried her daughter would always be in danger because of her association with Reddington, Liz agreed to fake her death. She, Tom and Agnes hid in Cuba, but they couldn’t stay hidden from Red.
Worse, Alexander Kirk was on the Keens’ trail too and found them first.
Jughead Jones - Riverdale
He goes missing during spring break. Betty and FP identify his body at the morgue. Is that enough evidence to conclude Jughead Jones is dead?
No -- it's more likely Jughead authored his own demise -- faking it as a way to turn the tables on the people at Stonewell Prep who aren't happy about the secrets he's uncovering.
Over to you, TV Fanatics!
What other characters faked their death?
Did they do a good job or did the plan blow up in their faces?
Hit the comments below!
Becca Newton is a staff writer for TV Fanatic.