There are two quite dissimilar genres which have the commonality of having character who can never really be dead. These are Sci Fi shows and afternoon Soap Operas. I've been watching Days of Our Lives since leaving Microsoft five years ago. Recently the popular character John returned after being killed by a hit and run driver last fall. I think a majority of character on the show have been presumed dead at one point in time. Stefano has been "dead" ten times. Currently he is considered brain dead after a stroke induced by Marlena, herself presumed dead at least four times (strangled, plane crash, gunshot, and tsunami). John, who joined the show when I was 14 as the mysterious Pawn. Just two weeks ago they finally finalized who his actual parents are, Santo Dimera and Colleen Brady. This means his granddaughter Claire is related to every single character on the show. She's only three and has already been kidnapped twice and presumed dead once.
Tonight is the return of the dead inexplicably hot Scottish doctor, Carson Beckett on Stargate: Atlantis. He died in an explosion last season. Usually I don't like to put spoilers on my blog, but this isn't really a spoiler. Last week during the "next time on", the narrator states, "and you won't believe what happens in the last five minutes!" And then they showed us Carson during the previews. I will now completely believe what happens in the last five minutes since you just told me. I'm happy to have Carson back, but I would have been happy to be surprised. He's probably a replicator like Elizabeth Weir.