2016 really was a terrible year for celebrity deaths - and this chart proves it

Narjas Zatat@Narjas_Zatat
Tuesday 20 December 2016 09:00
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(Picture: Baron/Theo Wargo/John Sciulli/AFP/Chris Jackson)

David Bowie, Alan Rickman, Prince, Muhammad Ali, Gene Wilder and many other famous faces sadly died this year.

And this week we reported that legendary film and TV actress Zsa Zsa Gabor's had sadly joined them.

The late, great Gabor is the most recent celebrity to have died in what has widely been referred to as a ‘bizarrely bad year’ for high-profile deaths.

The BBC’s Obituaries Editor, Nick Serpell counted the number of pre-prepared BBC obituaries running across a number of platforms, including TV, radio and online from January until March for the years 2012-2016.

Comparing the years, he found that the beginning of 2016 was indeed an unusually busy year for celebrity deaths.

Serpell then went on to look at the rest of the year, published his findings and Statista created a graph to showcase the information.

Picture: Statista/BBC(Picture: Statista/BBC)

As you can see, there have been 42 obituaries as of December 2015.

Serpell does provide a giant caveat however:

The last six months of this year were broadly in line with the previous last six months of the previous four or five years.

So we didn't see that spike continuing throughout the 12 months.

Although 2016 appears to have been an especially bad year, Serpell concludes that over half of the deaths counted in 2016 happened in the first four months of the year.

The obituaries do provide some idea about the volume of celebrity deaths in the beginning of 2016, which, in comparison to previous years, was higher than usual.

However, the definition of 'celebrity' also needs to be taken into account, as there have been other deaths in the media industry that may not have received prepared obituaries.

More: 9 unforgettable quotes from Zsa Zsa Gabor

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