If you are a fan of spoilers, or are the kind of person that enjoys spoiling other’s enjoyment, then this blog probably isn’t for you. So bugger off.
Still here? Ok!
spoil·er (ˈspoilər), noun. plural noun: spoilers
- a person or thing that spoils something.
- a flap on the wing of an aircraft or glider that can be projected in order to create drag and so reduce speed.
In this case, we’ll be talking about the former, a person (or thing, because some of these people could be considered “things”) who spoils something. These days, it usually refers to movies and TV shows, when something big or unexpected happens and someone can’t hold their wad and tells other people.
Recently, I had two run-ins with the idea of people “spoiling” something…
The other day at work, after a co-worker got pissy about doing something he had offered to help me with, he threatened (comically geeky threaten) to see “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2” at a premiere and tell me everything about it. I laughed him off and told him, and I quote, “That shot don’t bother me.” I’ll explain why a little later.
A day or so afterwards, I read a posting on Facebook about a show, revealing a major surprise. Sadly, one of the people connected to the posting hadn’t seen the episode in question and had the surprise ruined for him.
Sadly, there are people out there who like to spoil things for others. They often try to cover their asses by saying “Spoiler Alert”. But I’ve noticed there seems to be this mentality among a few people who MUST be the first to see something, know something, and share that something, whether we want to hear it or not.
I don;t know why people feel the need to do this. Maybe they have similar problems in other aspects of their life. Maybe they’re premature ejaculators. Maybe they weren’t breast-fed enough. Maybe they just can’t hold their shit together long enough and be satisfied with the knowledge that they know something before others. Personally, I think it’s a mix of lack of discipline, restraint, or some childish impulse to one-up everyone else.
There are ways to deal with spoilers. Here are two examples I have thought of…
1. Not care. When I told that guy “That shit don’t bother me.”, I meant it. I’ll still see a movie, especially a highly anticipated movie like GotG Vol 2, even if someone tells me everything about it. Why? Because one putz telling me about a movie, and seeing it, are two very different things. And I’ll still enjoy the thing that got spoiled because I’ll see how everything came together to make the big twist or surprise. In fact, the University of California did a study on spoilers and how they affect people’s enjoyment of a movie, according to UC San Diego psychology professor Nicholas Christenfeld. He said that…
“If you know the ending as you watch it, you can understand what the filmmaker is doing. You get to see this broader view, and essentially understand the story more fluently. There’s lots of evidence that sort of this fluent processing of information is pleasurable; that is, some familiarity with a work of art enables you to enjoy it more.”
There are other studies revealing the same thing, so spoilers may not be that bad. But I can understand the deisre of some to not know, and that is their right.
As for me, even if I’m told a spoiler from a TV show or movie, and I don’t see that show or movie for a while, I’ll forget about the spoiler. And even as I remember, I look forward to what will happen. I also tend to forget/ ignore things said to me by people who are acting disagreeable.
2. Avoid mouthy, spoiler spewers like the plague. Not easily done in this social media world, but it can be done. But it is a lot of hard work.
There is a 3rd option, but it involves killing, so skip that one.
People will spoil cool things for you. That’s a fact. We just have to deal with them as best we can, or not deal with them at all.
As for the spoilers themselves, if you must tell people about something, keep it simple, be vague, leave hints, and most importantly, don’t ruin stuff for people.
In fact, just keep your mouth shut.