Thursday 17 January 2013

Talking Point: Spoilers

I know some people don't care about spoilers. Unfortunately I am not one of them. They're ony of my biggest pet peeves, and I get really annoyed with people who reveal them with no warning. I nearly disowned my own nanna when she told me the ending of The Sixth Sense five minutes into the movie. If you put spoilers in a review and don't tag them, it's the fastest way to get me to unfollow you. That may sound harsh, but IMO spoilers without warning are really inconsiderate. I don't mind spoilers if there's a warning - then I can choose whether to view them or not. After all, sometimes I do want to see spoilers. They can help me decide whether I actually want to read/watch something or if it would be a waste of time.

But the worst kinds of spoilers are those that assault my eyes when I'm just doing some casual browsing. They come out of nowhere and forever ruin my ability to experience the emotions and enjoyment of a first-time viewing for that particular book or movie. And it really pisses me off.

Spoilers have been on my mind lately because, well, I can't go on Tumblr without a Les Misérables spoiler jumping from my dash. Now, I know a lot of people believe spoilers have an expiration date. Some say if you haven't read a book/seen a movie within 50 years of its release, then it's your problem. Others give it a bit more time - a century or two at least. The thing is, while Les Misérables may have been around for 150 years, I haven't. I've only had my limited lifetime - and reading time - to become acquainted with it. So there's no reason to assume I - or anyone else - knows all the details. We aren't all born with an inherent knowledge of the classics. We have to read them and learn them.

TL;DR version: spoilers are lame.

I'm really interested in seeing if anyone has a pro-spoiler view and can persuade me otherwise. Or if other people hate them as much as I do. So tell me, dear readers, do you hate spoilers too, or are they OK in your book? Do you think there's an expiration date on spoilers? Sound off in the comments.


  1. It's unfortunate that unsolicitied spoilers are probably here to stay, but I'm with you on this one, Belle! I think especially when it comes to blogging and professional reviews, a warning is always welcomed and preferred. It's just common courtesy. Some people want to know while others don't and that's all there is to it.

    And you are SO right about the classics. How can you expect to know them if you're not taking the time to learn them? It's just like anything else. We're not born inherently knowing.

    1. Totally - I remember one that really annoyed me was Catching Fire. I was just reading a normal review and then a big fat spoiler was right in the middle and it made me really mad.

  2. I loathe spoilers. Burns my britches.

    1. Ha that is a great saying that I haven't heard in awhile :)

  3. I hate spoilers for new releases, and in any time of reviewing capacity they should be warned, but I do have to say I get the spoiler expiration date. I'm not always a fan, but at some point, things that have invaded pop culture so much(or classical culture), just become almost spoilerless. . . as in they can't be spoiled any more than they already have. Maybe this is my english-y major background, but I know the ending to TONS of classic novels like Les Mis that I haven't read, and I'm expected to know them.

    1. I know what you mean about them infiltrating our culture, but I dunno... I have an English lit degree but I still don't know the story of every single classic - especially those I didn't study, like Les Mis.

  4. I loathe spoilers. And people need to learn that if they put the word spoiler and then the actual spoiler in the same font in the same headline, the damage is done!! (Daily Mail, I'm talking to you.)

    1. Yes, a spoiler alert is totally useless in those cases!

  5. Oh, Belle, I'm with you.
    I used to be super pro-spoiler. Sometimes, when I'm not really wanting to read a book, but I want to know what everyone's talking about, I LONG for them. Sometimes, I just... I don't know. I have an irresistible urge to know. It's like when someone posts 'I LOVE THIS BOOK', and everyone responds saying 'WHICH BOOK?' it's that need to know.

    Read: I'm impatient.

    BUT. The more I read, the more I don't want them. I'm all for appropriately tagged and concealed spoilers on Goodreads.

    If you ruin a book I'm excited to read? OH. Seriously.
    Someone posted an EPIC spoiler in the form of a quote from one of last year's biggest books and I was FURIOUS.

    I'd been dying to read the book. I OWN TWO COPIES.
    And it killed my excitement.
    I was pissed.

    It's a similar thing as smoking. Look. If you want to smoke, regardless of my thoughts on the matter, it's your business. Go for it. But if you start breathing second hand smoke in my place, throwing your butts all over the place, it's a different story altogether.

    I'm going to stop ranting. I'M SORRY! But seriously. I feel you ^__^

    1. Spoilers can definitely be useful sometimes - but the key is choosing to seek them out as opposed to having them forced upon you.
      Now I'm curious about what book you had spoiled :)

    2. The Fault in Our Stars :(

      Everyone keeps saying it's obvious by halfway through the book, anyway, but... HALFWAY THROUGH THE BOOK O__O

    3. I had an inkling it was that one! I think I've seen spoilers for that too but I'm in denial. I still haven't read it.

    4. I still haven't, either. My MUM read it last week, and meanwhile, I, who own TWO COPIES OF IT, still haven't turned a page.

      There's this one quote from a scene towards the end that people seem to love, but is... it's just a HUGE spoiler. I was very dissapointed. Ah well. I'll get there ;D

  6. Thank you! So true about spoilers without true!

  7. I despise spoilers. I really want to be able to experience a thing for what it is and form my own opinions about it without that being colored by knowing a plot twist or how important a character will end up being or how it ends.

    I liked J.J. Abrams remarks about why it's so important for him to not let any spoilers out about his movies ( I totally agree with him - I don't want to know how a thing is made or know all the pieces of it before I see it for what it is. I get that some people do but I respect his chose to keep his movies under wraps.

    And I appreciate it when people warn about spoilers. Like you said, that gives me the choice. I totally agree that spoilers without warning are inconsiderate.

    1. Thanks for the link, that's really interesting. I feel much the same about books - a lot of the time I don't even properly read the blurb before starting a book, just kind of skim it to see if it has elements I'll like, but I don't want too much detail most of the time. I like to experience things fresh.

  8. I'm one of those people who think spoilers have an expiration date. On Tumblr, it's impossible to not see a spoiler but for movies/shows that came out a year or two ago? I don't think it's fair to say "OMG YOU PUT A SPOILER". I don't *like* being spoiled but there's less of a chance that I'll say anything. This is pretty much just pertaining to Tumblr though. I do not feel this works in say, a conversation.

    I do however like to have a warning before I see a major spoiler (I ruined the ending of Sherlock BBC Season 2 because of some spoilers that had no warning to go with).

    That's just my two cents on the issue. Basically, I hate spoilers but expect to find them on social sites.

    1. Fair enough. Some days I try to avoid Tumblr if I don't want to see particular spoilers, but I'm so addicted I find myself on there without even realising!

  9. I'm OK with spoilers BUT only if I've accepted them.

    For example, there's a film podcast I often listen to which has a spoiler section at the end I'll usually listen because it's very rare that a spoiler actually spoils the fun/excitement/interest of the movie/book for me.

    But if I'm reading a review, and they just blurt out that an integral character dies without warning for spoilers then I love my mind. Not because it'll effect the experience for me, but because it's rude and unthinking.

    That said, someone told me that they think even mentioning that there's a twist at the end (no more detail than that) is a spoiler - so I don't think you can ever please everyone!

    1. I know what you mean. It's so rude, I think that's why it makes me so mad. I hate rudeness.
      I kind of understand the whole twist thing - because as soon as you find out there's a twist, you start to guess what it might be (what, just me?). But I think it is taking it a bit far to say that's a spoiler. Sometimes it's good to know that there is a twist - that might actually make me want to read a book. I love a good twist.


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