It might have been interesting if there'd been more shake-up in the VOY cast, but it bugs me when people insist that the deaths must have some sort of meaning. I'm not against the concept in general terms, but the reality is Death doesn't work that way and I think there's a lot to be said for exploring the concept that sometimes it just happens and doesn't have a higher purpose.
One thing I liked about Lost is that, IMO, they did a good balance of the deaths that meant something versus ones that were random and pointless.
What was Voyager's casualty rate, anyway?
Remember how upset the Tasha Yar fans were at her first death? I know I was upset, since Tasha was my favorite TNG character.
There would have a hell of a fuss made if Spock hadn't died heroically in TWOK (not that they wanted him to die at all, just if he had to, let it be for a purpose).
Most of the times the Doctor has died/regenerated, it's because he's given his current life to save others, whether a Companion, or the entire Universe. Sure, TPTB could have had him need to regenerate after being run over by a bus in traffic, but where's the heroism in that?
Why does every death have to be heroic? To please the fans? Because if that's the rationale, then there are fans who are displeased by that theory.
I don't really remember anyone being upset by Yar's death, though the internet back then wasn't what it is today.
Anyway, so what if some fans are upset? There's nothing TPTB can do that's going to please everyone, especially if they want to take significant risks, and in my opinion they should focus less on pleasing the fans and more on writing good stories, and if a good story necessitates a character suffering a pointless death, then so be it. I certainly have a lot more respect for a Pointless Death then a Miraculous Survival.
Hell, if the happiness of fans was the overriding priority then the last two movies wouldn't have happened...and say whatever you want about them, at least they made Star Trek something people talk about again.
I think it can easily be argued that one of the best episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer involved the pointless death of a major character.