Although Legacies season 4 fumbled Josie’s big exit, the show did at least admit this with a sharp line from Hope in a recent episode. It is not easy for shows with large ensemble casts like Legacies to explain away the absence of supporting stars like Kaylee Bryant or write them out of shows. Sometimes, actors are recast, while other series don’t bother to explain their lack of screen time at all, instead biding their time until the actor in question can make another appearance.
However, the difficulty of writing around an actor’s availability is no excuse for the hoary cliché of “putting them on a bus.” A television writing convention so ubiquitous that it has a TV Tropes page in its honor, the “Put on a Bus” trope occurs when a character suddenly skips town, conveniently leaving when their actor decides to exit a series. While Legacies season 4 committed this cardinal sin with Josie’s exit, the series did at least acknowledge the weakness of the story in a later outing.
When her actor Kaylee Bryant opted to leave Legacies in season 4, the character of Josie was put on a bus at a vital point in the season despite this being a classic tactic to awkwardly write out a central character when their actor becomes unavailable for shooting mid-season. Legacies did, however, admit this when Lizzie compared her losses to those of Hope, and Hope cut her off with a biting, “Your sister went on vacation. And your dad is still alive.” The fact that Legacies attempted to make Josie’s exit dramatic while also leaving the door open to her actor’s return fell flat for many fans, making the villainous Tribrid Hope’s retort a fitting encapsulation of many real-life viewers’ thoughts on the matter.
Hope’s Line Proves How Badly Legacies Handled Josie’s Exit
Lizzie’s comparison was never likely to move Hope since the former Legacies heroine turned off her humanity after becoming the Tribrid and hasn’t felt any emotions since. However, the conversation did give Legacies season 4 a chance to acknowledge the fact that Kaylee Bryant simply leaving the Salvatore School on a bus was not as momentous an occurrence as the episode made it out to be, particularly when Lizzie died (albeit temporarily) in the same episode. While Hope was unmoved by the attempts that Lizzie made to compare their situations, the comparison was still one that the occasionally self-centered Lizzie would make, and Hope’s response was both fittingly mean and vindicating for a vocal portion of the Legacies fanbase.
While emotional appeals didn’t work, Lizzie breaking her sire bond with Hope managed to stop the Tribrid from torturing Aurora to death. This did mean that Legacies season 4 cut one of its most promising subplots short, but the preceding confrontation between the duo was still valuable since it gave Legacies season 4 a chance to admit how poorly Josie’s exit was handled by the show.
Why Josie Won’t Be Back On Legacies
Legacies season 4 has reached its end, and Josie has not reentered the picture yet — nor will she ever. Kaylee Bryant’s exit wasn’t handled well by the show, and while the season 4 finale didn’t provide much closure, Josie won’t be back on Legacies because the show has been canceled. Despite being the least popular series within The Vampire Diaries universe, low ratings aren’t what caused the show to stop running. Rather, it was the acquisition of the network CW that meant the series got the ax. Legacies wasn’t the only doomed TV production on the roster, as the canceled Batwoman, Dynasty, and Charmed shows were also affected. Therefore, no one will get to see Kaylee Bryant’s Josie or any other Legacies characters finish out their stories. The series was, for want of a better ending, “put on a bus.”