Opinion: Who Cares About Spoilers?

Opinion: Who Cares About Spoilers?

Yesterday was a tough day for my inner-geek. I love comic book movies and Game Of Thrones, and had plans to spend my long-awaited holiday leave to catch up on the adventures in Westeros and the new Captain America movie. Yesterday I had both of these “spoiled” for me, either by my co-workers, commenters or the internet at large. And you know what? I don’t care, and neither should you. Nobody should care about spoilers any more.

For the record, this is a spoiler-free post.

The concern over spoilers seems to have reached fever pitch in our media-obsessed society. We work in an open plan office here at Gizmodo which we share with other publications under the Allure Media banner like Lifehacker, Kotaku, Business Insider and POPSUGAR.

Every now and then, someone somewhere in the office will cry out before jamming their fingers in their ears and repeating “LALALALALALALA” at the top of their voice until the conversation either stops or moves away from them. They don’t want to be “spoiled”.

Giving someone a “spoiler” is when you reveal important plot information about a show or a film to someone who hasn’t already watched it. You spoil the surprise for them finding it out for themselves.

In a world of Netflix where shows like House Of Cards are dropped in their entirety from day one; a world of week-long delays between shows airing in the US and in Australia; a world where Twitter, Facebook and other news sites are saturated with people talking about important plot points; and a world where pirates take to the ‘net to get their show or movie fix the moment it hits screens elsewhere in the world, how are we meant to defend against spoilers?

It’s simple. We don’t.

In the space of an hour yesterday in the course of doing my job, I had the last two episodes of Game Of Thrones “spoiled”, as well as the ending to Captain America: The Winter Soldier. In stark contrast to people who would throw things at those who spoiled it for them, I’m actually ok with it.

People try to implement rules on how long their friends should go without talking about something so that others won’t get spoiled. I’ve heard friends ask me not to mention what happened in a show that aired years ago because they still haven’t watched it yet, and that’s BS. There’s just too much to hide from these days.

The wave of things you have to shut out to defend yourself from a harmless little spoiler these days means you might as well flee to a Tibetan monastery to avoid finding out about the plot of Game Of Thrones after a few days.

The thing is, just because I had Game Of Thrones and Captain America: The Winter Soldier “spoiled” for me won’t stop me watching them for myself during my time off.

Game Of Thrones is a technical masterpiece for one, as well as an elegant tale of revenge, love, lust and leadership. Why should knowing one aspect of the storyline ruin the enjoyment I get out of watching the rest of the show?

Same goes for Captain America: The Winter Soldier. It’s being touted as the best Marvel movie to date, and in a post-Avengers world, that’s high praise indeed. It presents an interesting story about the nature of the surveillance state we find ourselves in, and tells said story against the backdrop of an ass-kicking superhero. Why should the fact that I know how it ends ruin all the shield-throwing fun?

Stop shutting yourself out of spoilers. Stop running away from your friends and co-workers when they start talking about what happened on your favourite show. Let the spoilers wash over you, and relax. Perhaps by knowing how something ends, you’ll enjoy it that much more.

What do you think? Should we stop trying to dodge spoilers?

Image: Tantrum by Ryan Boren, CC 2.0