Sunday, November 9, 2014

Spoiler Waring!! Lincoln dies at the theater

When is the time limit that you have to observe if you are going to talk about something in the media? Is it a few months, a few years? I have had conversations with people and I say something about a movie that was two years ago and I get scolded for not giving a spoiler warning.
The best moment for me was when I was talking about The Historical film called Lincoln. And I started to talk about the theatre scene. I was quickly shushed and was told if someone important dies I shouldn’t give it away.

I wish I could make this kind of stuff up.
I started to chuckle and then realized that she wasn’t kidding.

What do you think? Should Television shows also be included? Has the invention of streaming seasons of shows made the rules different? I remember watching Dexter once it was on Netflix and I remember that someone at work told me…Spoiler warning! Dexter’s wife had been killed and their son was sitting like he was when his mother died.
I was only on season two. So she gave away some of the future bits. Did she spoil it for me, sure a little. I have no right to have the world be put on Hold until I catch up. At the very least I should have explained what season I am on.

Kevin Smith had a show called Spoilers. If you are watching that show with that title you can’t be mad at him, he gave you fair warning. That show only had one season but I think it was a great idea. The audience would have been a very slim few. People who love Kevin Smith fall into two categories. The ones who love him and don’t care if they get spoilers, and those who do but only watch the episodes of films they have seen or don’t care to see.  The other people who don't know him are probably going to avoid this because they don't want to see spoilers.

Movie reviewers do tend to give things away in their review but I always try and keep my comments to what you can see in the trailer when I break into my synopsis. I used to have a section for spoilers that you had to click on to see. It was a lot of work for very little pay off so I stopped.

So here are my rules on Spoilers.
  • If a movie is historically accurate and about a very famous person that has or /should have a common history for everyone, spoiler warnings are not required on anything that happened as a result of the historical events.
  • Television shows that have been on for longer than two seasons, however, you have to calibrate where each of you are in the series.
  • Books will also fall under this umbrella for the same time frames as television shows.
  • Any work that has been added to the public domain can’t have spoiler warnings.
  • Any movie that has been out so long you can now find it in the $5.00 bin at the supermarket will not have any spoiler warning. To be fair if it’s in the bin right after release from the theatres it’s not of quality that would warrant spoiling.
What should I add or remove from the Spoiler rules?


  1. I think you're on point. As with milk or any processed foods, there should be a standard, acknowledged, reasonable time before movie/TV programs are fair game for general conversation spoilers. But there also has to be common courtesy of not jumping the gun and blurting out surprises, twists, critical plot points without first asking if the person has seen the show, film or read the book first. For example I think it is highly innappropriate when someone says "I just started watching the Harry Potter series" and someone responds, "Wow, I couldn't believe Snape killed...." or "I was really surprised that Harry was the last.... that ...... created."
    The other spoilers that are completely unacceptable are ones shared on social media the same damn day the television show is aired or even shortly afterward. If you want to discuss a program or movie there are forums for that. Not your Facebook timeline!
    End of rant.

  2. Too true, there is a calibration i do before I talk about a movie in detail. It's like walking deads three questions rule to accept a person into the community. 1) have you seen the film? 2) Are you going to watch it? 3) Do you mind if I talk about it?

    And facebook and twitter should be spoiler free.