That might be a good argument for not providing a TOC.
Not really. With a large cast, readers wouldn't know if one of the main characters died or not, as the story could conceivably continue without the one figure. Plus, "fatal confrontation" could imply anyone. Or, conversely, the "fatal" might apply to either the hero's or villains plans. The phrase is generic enough, it's open to many interpretations.
Though your point gets back to my initial question: might it not be better eliminating chapter titles altogether (at which point to TOC which says only
is pretty pointless.
Just a quick question, though. For all those 'older books' without chapter titles, is it possible the stories were taken from magazines or magazine serials (a chapter a month), where titles might not have been required or overly helpful?