When did spoilers become such a big deal (no spoilers)

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Jun 7, 2004
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305 'til I die
#1
Title says it all. The mere fact that I had to note that there are no spoilers in here is very telling. When did spoilers become such a big deal?

It used to be that you would get spoiled watching news or just reading any old website. I had endings for movies spoiled, surprises in games spoiled...even sports spoilers. I never sat around crying about it. However, I'm seeing people complaining left and right about the Dark Knight, the Olympics...even Breaking Bad. I remember people going apeshit when you dared discuss the preview for the upcoming episodes of 24...eventhough they ran those commercials on every Fox-related network all day long.

Why are people so sensitive about spoilers, and when did this rash of lameness start infecting the internet? Does a spoiler really ruin your movie/show-watching experience that much? If a movie is good, and you decide to watch it repeatedly, is it any less good because you know what happens?

IMO, the experience is where I get my enjoyment. Most movies and shows are predictable enough you should have some clue what's coming before it happens anyway. If you can't suspend disbelief despite knowing the results, then you've got problems. That's my opinion. Blast away. Please don't post spoilers in here...even if they're from 2 decades ago. I've seen people bitch about spoilers for Aliens or Empire Strikes Back, so I don't want anyone getting banned over sillyness. PEACE.
 
Nov 16, 2010
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#6
Since forever?

When someone invests time in a story, the climax or key story beats remaining unspoiled is quite important as it helps build tension. Even if something is likely, or unlikely, having no certainty allows the person to remain engaged and filled with suspense. This in turn allows the story to be more effective as the storyteller's execution is not wasted since the audience knows the inevitable outcome.

Quite frankly, suspending disbelief when you know the outcome is far sillier than suspending disbelief when you don't know the outcome. The former could rob the tension of any serious scenes in a story. The latter is what any storyteller hinges their writing on, and it affects the impact of their execution.

I'll give you a simple example:

An author decides a character is going to die. He writes the character in such a way that the audience will emotionally invest in him and increasingly like him. His death will be a key turning point, but will also affect the audience more profoundly because of their investment in him and his character arc.

Now, if someone knows that character is going to die, the dramatic levity is instantly lost as they will keep that emotional investment from getting too deep due to the inevitable outcome. This, in turn, ruins the experience the storyteller was trying to provide with the character's arc.
 
Jun 1, 2011
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#8
...Are you really asking why people don't like spoilers? Isn't that obvious?

A huge amount of the fun in any given story is the sense of suspense or surprise a sudden change in the plot can give. Maybe an important character dies, or there's a dramatic change in the setting. Knowing about that ahead of time ruins that completely. Is that really so hard to comprehend?
 

Freshmaker

I am Korean.
Jul 29, 2005
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#12
Mostly it's watching the story unfold without knowing what is going to happen. Like, if you were watching season four of Doctor Who and someone told you who River Song really was, it would color the next couple of seasons in a much different way for you. Why would you want to ruin the story instead of experiencing it?
Because the result is meaningless without the details. It's a shallow, shallow, shallow way to approach any work of fiction.
 
Aug 10, 2010
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#21
Also I was going to make a thread the exact opposite of this the other day. Just about how people don't respect other's approaches to experiencing things. If you don't care about it, that's cool. But know that others do. You should respect that.
 
#22
Why are people so sensitive about spoilers, and when did this rash of lameness start infecting the internet? Does a spoiler really ruin your movie/show-watching experience that much? If a movie is good, and you decide to watch it repeatedly, is it any less good because you know what happens?
You can only do something for the first time once. Experiening a story for the first time, not knowing where it can go, who will live, who will die, how it happens, why it happens, will they or won't they...that's a huge part of the appeal of a new story. Rewatching old favorites is one thing, but a new viewing is stepping into another world, into people's lives you don't know but you can get to know. You don't know exactly what's gonna happen next, but you're interested or entertained enough that you want to stick around.

Then some jackass comes along and tells you that a certain character dies in Season 2. Now that first-time experience is cheapen with forward knowledge. You see that character and think, "Well, he's not in any danger here, it's not even Season 2 yet!" or "Ok, this might be the episode he dies". There's less surprise or suspense or intrigue or tension, there's less attachment(or at least, the right kind) because you know the character is on a certain time limit, and he cannot be changed from no matter what's going on in the current episode.

So no, the movies or TV shows don't get suddenly less "good" because you've seen them before. But a first-time experience or viewing is very different from rewatching, and any and all knowledge about the contents you haven't seen yet leaves that much less to discover on your own.
 
Jul 31, 2007
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#23
When annoying manchildren decided it would be funny to spoil anticipated movies, and books.

Now it's more than a little stupid to get pissy over spoilers on a podcast or I'd even say a videogame (their stories don't matter), but if I'd been waiting for a movie and some childish dipshit spoiled it for their own really asinine enjoyment... I'd want their asses kicked well and good.
 
Aug 24, 2007
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#26
When annoying manchildren decided it would be funny to spoil anticipated movies, and books.

Now it's more than a little stupid to get pissy over spoilers on a podcast or I'd even say a videogame (their stories don't matter), but if I'd been waiting for a movie and some childish dipshit spoiled it for their own really asinine enjoyment... I'd want their asses kicked well and good.
Exactly. Perfect. I would add that it is since the internet allowed people to spoil shit en masse. If I was waiting line for ESB and someone walked out spoiling that shit, they would have been beat.
 
Jun 7, 2004
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305 'til I die
#27
Mostly it's watching the story unfold without knowing what is going to happen. Like, if you were watching season four of Doctor Who and someone told you who River Song really was, it would color the next couple of seasons in a much different way for you. Why would you want to ruin the story instead of experiencing it?
Because I usually figure things out long before they happen. I figured out the end to The Village about halfway through it. I told my sister and she was stunned when it came true. I figured out Shutter Island within the first half hour. Had a strong hunch about Sixth Sense's reveal in the last 30 minutes.

About the only movie that totally took me by surprise was Usual Suspects. However, that movie taught me to look for little hints and clues in movies, and I've made it a habit of trying to guess the surprise in movies since then. It doesn't diminish the reveal at all, as a movie is more than one surprising moment. I'm hoping the rest of the 1.5-3 hour movie was worth sitting through, anyway. If not, that reveal is not gonna compensate for the wasted time. For me, I enjoy the full journey, whether I know the end or not.

As an example, I knew Blair Witch wasn't real long before I went to see it in the theaters, but it had me legitimately scared at times just because it was shot in such a suspenseful manner. I guess I don't put so much weight in little things. PEACE.
 
Aug 10, 2010
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#30
Because I usually figure things out long before they happen. I figured out the end to The Village about halfway through it. I told my sister and she was stunned when it came true. I figured out Shutter Island within the first half hour. Had a strong hunch about Sixth Sense's reveal in the last 30 minutes.

About the only movie that totally took me by surprise was Usual Suspects. However, that movie taught me to look for little hints and clues in movies, and I've made it a habit of trying to guess the surprise in movies since then. It doesn't diminish the reveal at all, as a movie is more than one surprising moment. I'm hoping the rest of the 1.5-3 hour movie was worth sitting through, anyway. If not, that reveal is not gonna compensate for the wasted time. For me, I enjoy the full journey, whether I know the end or not.

As an example, I knew Blair Witch wasn't real long before I went to see it in the theaters, but it had me legitimately scared at times just because it was shot in such a suspenseful manner. I guess I don't put so much weight in little things. PEACE.
i'm so glad you are a super genius when watching bad movies
 
Nov 16, 2010
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#31
If you've seen Batman: TAS or read the comics, the primary "twist" is not surprising.

Anything else is already covered in the trailer.
Which the majority of the audience for those movies will not have seen.

And nothing else is covered in the trailer. The end of the character journey of Bruce Wayne has a simple question, and the answer to that is a big spoiler for the movie's ending. Something, I imagine most people would want to find out first hand for themselves.

Especially considering the movie builds to that question itself.

Yes, it does, for some people. For others, it doesn't. It also depends on the type of fiction.

Hence, the idea of experiencing fiction meaning different things to different people. And different pieces of fiction aiming for different goals.
 
Sep 22, 2006
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#36
Time investment. For example... 200 episode serials.

Backlogs.

Increase in quality.

If Anything, don't be a dick and spoil tv shows that have large time investments.
 
Jun 7, 2004
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305 'til I die
#38
Great, so post any given important plot point or twist here from the movie. Go ahead.
If you're of a certain age, the Batman and Bane story was spoiled on the news a long time ago. If it's anywhere near faithful to the story, then you already know a lot of what's gonna happen. I still haven't seen the movie, but I'm not watching it for any surprise. I want to see it to see Batman kick some ass in glorious surround sound. I'm gonna go out on a limb and assume Batman gets in some fights and something good or bad happens to him.

With any story, there are a set number of branches that the plot can take from the beginning. As the story progresses, you can eliminate branches until you're left with a few likely branches towards the end, and then you either weight them or justt guess. However, your brain is probably working towards what becomes the outcome the entire time...

...or maybe it's just me? PEACE.
 
May 5, 2007
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Winter Park
#39
People have always wanted to keep sports scores hidden. If I know who wins a race or a game it's never as fun and sometimes I just quit watching. I don't really care about spoilers overall though. I get movies, games, shows, etc... spoiled all the time and it doesn't really bother me.

If it's a huge spoiler though, it does piss me off. Like the end of a series.
 

MisterHero

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Jul 24, 2007
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#40
Certain groups like journalists can be legally bound not to reveal details of books, movies, etc.

Spoilers aren't a big deal when it's consumer-level, but there's a lot of trust placed between creators, editors, publicists, etc.
 
Jun 16, 2012
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#44
as with many things in life, i remember being introduced to the concept of spoilers by the simpsons:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=neuMyI8M5fc


the first time i remember actually seeing spoiler warnings on websites was during the production of the lord of the rings movies. which i always thought was bizarre, considering that the entire story was, of course, already published in book form.
 

Freshmaker

I am Korean.
Jul 29, 2005
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#46
Which the majority of the audience for those movies will not have seen.

And nothing else is covered in the trailer. The end of the character journey of Bruce Wayne has a simple question, and the answer to that is a big spoiler for the movie's ending. Something, I imagine most people would want to find out first hand for themselves.

Especially considering the movie builds to that question itself.
Not very well. I ended up being impressed at Batman's thundering stupidity.

(But then I thought the second movie was insultingly pointless.)

Yes, it does, for some people. For others, it doesn't. It also depends on the type of fiction.

Hence, the idea of experiencing fiction meaning different things to different people. And different pieces of fiction aiming for different goals.
Sure. You can be shallow and think one sentence destroys immersion in a schlockly summer blockbuster.

"The Avengers assemble? Great. Now I have no reason to watch that movie! Thanks bastardy movie poster!"

Or you can wonder how it actually comes to pass and enjoy the movie regardless.
 
Jul 16, 2012
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#47
I don't know to be honest, I don't really care if a movie or book or whatever is spoiled to me, doesn't take away from my enjoyment or lack thereof
 
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