Question: I just finished watching The Shield finale, and holy &%*$ Shane killed Lem!
Answer: I still can't believe it happened. Seriously. I mean, I knew someone was going to die, but I never in a million years imagined it would go down the way it did. I watched an advance screener of the episode Sunday night, and the sight of Lem sitting in the car all bloodied and lifeless is still haunting me. Short of popping six Xanax, the only thing I could think to do was to call exec producer Shawn Ryan and ask him, "Why did you do that to poor Lem!?!" "We just started thinking in terms of classic tragedy," Ryan says. "And we came up with this idea, but I didn't really commit to it until right before Christmas, because I love Kenny Johnson so much as an actor and as a person, and I didn't want to do it if I felt it was just for shock value. I really felt like we had to earn it. By the time we got to Christmas, we were seven episodes into the season, and I felt like we were earning it. The episodes were coming out well, and I felt like we could get there." He adds that it "was an emotional night for all of us when we filmed" Lem's death scene. "You didn't really want the evening to end, because you knew when it did, Kenny was going to be done with the show." I'll have more from my interview with Shawn including the latest on a possible sixth season in Friday's Ausiello Report.