By Sandra Gonzalez
Updated April 13, 2011 at 06:45 PM EDT
Scott Michael Foster
Credit: Byron Cohen/NBC
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Last night’s episode of Parenthood left off on a pretty horrific note, with Amber (Mae Whitman) and her Attractive Bad Influence (Scott Michael Foster) getting into a severe-looking car crash.

I’ll preface by saying that there’s no way Amber is dying. Not. A. Chance. It’d be bad decision considering how much her off-beat character resonates with audiences (especially Parenthood‘s younger viewers.) And she’s awesome. Foster, however, is a newbie, and in the scope of the show, it’d be a good opportunity to have a character turn into a cautionary tale. And if you’re familiar with the tradition of family dramas, the Attractive Bad Influence is often used to teach moral lessons — and usually that means they need to die. But in this case, I plead: Don’t kill Gary!

I understand wanting to give into the temptation to make this seemingly disposable character into a statistic to prove a point (drinking and distractions while driving = bad). But maybe he doesn’t have to be disposable! Gary has definite possibilities. If he dies now, we won’t be able to explore why he’s so damaged, he’ll never be redeemed for making Amber into a devil teen, and most importantly, I won’t see Foster on Parenthood ever again. Perhaps I’m still mourning Greek, but I think these are all fine points for keeping him around.

Agree, PopWatchers? Should the show keep Gary alive? Or is he best used as a lesson for trouble-seeking teens?

Also, three cheers for Lauren Graham’s performance last night. Her fight with Amber (not to mention Drew’s protective demeanor during it all) had me near tears. Intense!

Follow Sandra on Twitter: @EWSandraG

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