Thursday, February 28, 2013

Random Shots: On Spoilers

  • I've been spending my evenings recently rewatching Community. I thought it was hilarious the first time through, but I wondered if it held up. I've been through the first two seasons and started the third. It's still clever and I'm enjoying watching it, but I haven't laughed once. Not even a snicker. As much as I love the show, knowing every joke ahead of time meant that I could only appreciate the writing. In effect, watching the show the first time has spoiled any future viewing for me.

  • A couple of years ago, a study was performed (and reported on Wired.com) that spoilers actually improve one's experience. The theory is that going into a film or book knowing how it turns out free you from the tension of not knowing how the story will turn out. This sounds to me like the most self justifying bullshit I've read in a while.

  • When I was younger, I would reread the Dragonlance Chronicles every year. Every couple of years, I go back and rewatch Sports Night from end to end. It is like revisiting an old friend. I'm comfortable with those stories. There is no surprises to be had, so instead I analyze them. I try to figure out how they work. I look for things I might have missed before. I see connections that weren't readily apparent.

  • I think that's the stage that people who like spoilers are trying to skip to. But for someone like me, spoilers rob me of one possible experience. I'm going to get to that analysis stage eventually. Sometimes quickly when I restart something that I just finished. But spoilers deny me the chance to have that experience.

  • But since I believe that people should be free to discuss what they want with whomever they want, the burden is on me to avoid the kind of places where spoilers will be discussed. I know that I can't read reviews, troll forums, or watch certain videos if I want to avoid being spoiled. I'm not one of those for whom "SPOILERS" is some sort of battle cry. I'll just be quietly keeping to myself, until I can join the conversation.

© 2013 Marty Runyon. All rights reserved.

1 comment:

  1. Personally I detest spoilers and people who spoil, or don't at least have the decency to warn people, it's polite to say you are posting spoilers if you are doing so. I am still bitter over the fact some n00bface spoiled the identity of Gossip Girl before I had a chance to find it out for myself.

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