7 Minor Characters Who Should Have Lived

The Character: Marvin, Pulp Fiction (1994)

How They Went: Possibly one of the most famous minor character deaths in cinematic history.

Poor Marvin (Phil LaMarr) is riding harmlessly in the back of John Travolta and Samuel L Jackson’s car when he’s accidentally shot in the face and his brains are splattergunned all over the back of the vehicle.

If They'd Have Lived: Marvin the informant gets his own segment of the film.

Titled “Marvin”, the footage sees Marv taking over from Samuel L Jackson as Marsellus Wallace’s new hitman. He even gets his own theme tune - Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler), by Marvin Gaye.

Oh, Quentin, you wag.

How They Would Eventually Die: Unfortunately for Marvin, he proves to be the single worst hitman in the history of the job.

He shoots himself in the face on his very first assignment, leaving his brains splashed over the back of his brand new car.

It’s like fate had it in for him…

Next: Greedo


The Character: Greedo, Star Wars (1977)

How They Went: Greedo is the unfortunate bounty hunter who dares to tangle with Han Solo at the Mos Eisley Cantina.

Charged with bringing Solo to Jabba The Hutt, Greedo instead tries to kill our hero, and receives a stomach full of blaster for his trouble.

Han shoots first, folks - don’t let anyone tell you otherwise!

If They'd Have Lived: The originally trilogy would look very, very different. Greedo wounds Solo with his shot, and delivers him to Jabba, who kills him, stuffs him and installs him in the throne room.

Luke and Obi Wan get a ride with Slapsto Frax, who proceeds to eat them. The Empire wins.

How They Would Eventually Die: Greedo lives a long and happy life as a bounty hunter, eventually settling down with one of Jabba’s retired slave dancer girls and raising a healthy brood of broccoli-hued daughters.

Sadly, the aged Greedo ends up annoying Jabba and becomes one of the guest stars at one night’s performance of Rancour And His Victims.

Next: Dennis Nedry


The Character: Dennis Nedry, Jurassic Park (1994)

How They Went: Smug, lardy, thieving tech nerd Dennis Nedry (Wayne Knight) gets some well-deserved come-uppance dino-style when he steals embryos to win a payday from a rival genetics company.

Knocking the security systems for a loop, he heads for the Isla Nubla dock in a raging storm, only to crash and get taken down by a venom-spitting Dilophosaurus.

Jurassic justice!

If They'd Have Lived: Nedry escapes with his bounty and meets up with Lewis Dodgson, who shockingly keeps his word.

Dodgson’s rival genetics team conjures up their own dinosaurs and instead of The Lost World tackling a return to Jurassic Park, it focuses on a war between the corporate teams to create SoldierSaurs.

Because no one thinks that creating hyper-intelligent reptiles with laser cannons strapped to their backs is a bad idea, most of humanity is eventually wiped out by the dino-revolution.

How They Would Eventually Die : Nedry buys one metric tonne of Twinkie bars with his pay and eats himself to a heart attack.

In a weird twist, his corporate overlords cover up his death and he’s fed to one of the newborn SoldierSaurs.

Next: Jack Murdock


The Character: Jack Murdock, Daredevil (2003)

How They Went: When lowly mob enforcer – and former boxer – Jack Murdock (Keith David)’s son Matt is blinded in an accident that’s partly his fault, he decides to go back into the ring to raise funds to help him.

But when he’s approached by his old crime boss to throw the fight, he refuses, and is beaten to death by a man who will go on to become the Kingpin.

His tearful, sight-free son finds his body adorned with a rose and swears to fight crime with his heightened other senses. A superhero is born…

If They'd Have Lived: Jack throws the fight, collects his cash and goes home with his lad.

Matt becomes a hugely successful corporate lawyer and ends up working for the Kingpin, who delights at making “seen it?” jokes at his expense.

How They Would Eventually Die: Disgusted by his drinking, Matt gets Jack into Alcoholics Anonymous.

But since he knows too much about the Kingpin’s activities, he’s eventually killed by Elektra.

Yes, she beats up an old man. What a bitch!

Next: Coral


The Character: Coral, Finding Nemo (2003)

How They Went: Coral (Elizabeth Perkins) and Marlin (Albert Brooks) are happily settling into their first sea anemone home and getting ready to raise their kids.

But tragedy strikes when a barracuda arrives at the reef with a bad attitude and a hunger for baby fish.

Marlin is knocked out, and when he comes to, he discovers that Pearl has become fish food, along with all but one of their eggs.

If They'd Have Lived: Coral and Marlin somehow manage to fight off the marauding fin fiend and end up raising their hundreds of kids.

Nemo lives a perfectly ordinary life, at least for a few years (see below).

It’s the most boring Pixar film ever made.

How They Would Eventually Die: Things are going well until a rampaging shark – who couldn’t stick to his veggie diet without the inspiration of Marlin and Dory - murders Coral and the entire family.

It’s also the most depressing Pixar film ever made.

Next: George Kirk


The Character: George Kirk, Star Trek (2009)

How They Went: Kirk Sr (George Hemsworth) is the big hero who kicks off the movie, saving his wife, just-born son Jim and many other crew members of the USS Kelvin.

When the ship’s control systems are damaged, George stays at his post, piloting it straight into the maw of the Narada. He dies by exploderisation.

If They'd Have Lived: George makes it off the ship and into a shuttle to watch his wife give birth to his son.

With his father around to inspire him, Jim Kirk excels at everything and becomes a dashing, womanising hero. But, crucially, he plays more by the rules and so doesn’t become captain of a starship in three minutes.

How They Would Eventually Die: There’s just one slight problem with the new timeline – with the Narada still out there, and with Kirk in no position to stop him, Nero destroys the Earth.

George Kirk, now an instructor at the academy, is busy patting his smarmy kid on the back for being awesome when he, and the rest of humanity, are sucked into a black hole.

Next: Spicer Lovejoy


The Character: Spicer Lovejoy, Titanic (1997)

How They Went: Spicer’s a sneery, uppity sort, who handles discreet security matters for Caledon Hockley (Billy Zane, hamming it up as ever).

Lovejoy (David Warner) frames Jack (Leo DiCaprio) and generally makes life hell for both him and Rose (Kate Winslet) before meeting his end as the giant ship fractures in two.

Shouldn’t have stayed aboard, should you, pillock?

If They'd Have Lived: Spicer makes it into the water and fetches up at the floating refuge of Rose just as Jack slips beneath the surface.

He chucks her off to freezing death and drifts to safety thanks to a nearby lifeboat.

He later turns on Cal and shoots him in the back, stealing his money to boot.

How They Would Eventually Die: Settled and rich.

Very, very rich. Bastard.

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Freelance Journalist

James White is a freelance journalist who has been covering film and TV for over two decades. In that time, James has written for a wide variety of publications including Total Film and SFX. He has also worked for BAFTA and on ODEON's in-cinema magazine.