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November 02 2003

Giving Away The Ending. Why it's hard to be totally unspoiled thanks to "detailed movie previews and reviews, blabby book blurbs, teasing TV promos and fan sites that deliver entire scripts".

There are times when I read spoilers and then I think "urghh I wish I had never read that".

But anyway seeing as it's a Sunday (so bugger all news) any of you lot been inadvertently spoiled for Buffy or Angel and are you a spoiler whore or a pure unspoiled soul?

Spoiler whore.

Because it doesn't matter how many times I read what'll happen...seeing it play out is way different. I read the script for the finale of Buffy and still cried when I actually watched it.
pure unspoiled soul

i actually read about tara getting shot in S6, it still came as a surprise since it was like the last second in the epi. but still i believe the emotional impact would've been stronger if i hadn't read about it. that was my only time, and i'll never do it again (oh man take that out of context, it sounds weird!).

anyways, imagine if we knew that angel would turn evil when he and buffy slept together, "surprise" would've been, i think, less powerful than it is. or "the body"...but then that episode was too powerful to be spoiled even for spoiler whores.

and besides didn't drew goddard promise to french kiss any unspoiled souls for btvs S7...i'm still waiting!
I don't freak out if I accidentally come across a spoiler, but I don't voluntarily go out and search for them. I read the finale script and that just sort of runied it for me, so ever since then I've been somewhat spoil free.

[ edited by vamRIPire on 2003-11-02 20:09 ]
I try to stay as spoiler free as possible. Which isn't all that easy, given the vast amount of info on the internet. I'm not horribly heartbroken if I do run across something, but I think it does kill just a bit of the surprise in any episode.

And I have to agree that even if you read the spoilers, it's completely different seeing it on screen. It may not be as great had you not known what was going to happen, but basic spoilers can't ruin an episode. When Tara died, the only spoiler I heard was that 'someone' was going to die. So expecting something vague like that just had my mind running like mad trying to figure out who it was going to be. No one was safe. That's obvious when the star of the show dies. Twice. Expecting death, I was still shocked when Tara was shot. I can't imagine how much surprise there would have been had I not heard something in advance.
Personally, I think there's a huge difference between unavoidable movie trailers that reveal plots and endings, and seeking out what happens on television shows. Despite my involvement in fandom, I rarely find myself spoiled for upcoming episodes, as I'm careful to avoid areas where they might be discussed. But it's hard to avoid being spoiled for movies, when all I want to know is themes and tones.

"I think there's frequently tension between the producers' desire to want to withhold as many plot twists as possible so that the viewing experience is as satisfying as possible (and) the marketing department doing everything they can to recruit as big an audience as possible."

Heck, this is part of the reason why the board I'm on considers trailers for the episodes to be spoilers. Last years BtVS marketing team were notorious for giving away the whole episode, although they were continually misleading about the tone itself.
I still say Spike and Harmony being on Angel season 5 should have been a complete secret. Was there anyone who didn't know they were going to be on the show? I can understand WB's and Mutant Enemy's reasons for publicising them but it would have been great to watch 'Conviction' and then go "whooahh" at the end.

The last time I went "whooahh" was Spike getting his soul back at the end of BtVS season 6, kept myself unspoiled for that finale. Season 7, on the other hand, I was completely spoiled for. Anyone notice how more spoiled for Angel we are compared to other seasons?
I hate spoilers and I've pretty much given up reading 95% of whedonverse websites due to idiots posting them without warning (and thinking they are SO clever for doing so, ARRGHH!).

Straw that broke the Camel's back - a poster at another site. Moron.

[ edited by Simon on 2003-11-03 00:37 ]
Spoilers suck. They're called "spoilers" for a reason. You read one and the whole damn episode just isn't as good.
I caught one at another Whedon site, which isn't NEARLY as picky about spoiler warnings (which is why I don't go there anymore), and accidentally discovered who Connor and Cordy's daughter would be. Completely ruined the next 3 weeks' worth of Angel.
Henceforth, all spoiler warnings are heeded!
Yorky, I edited your post to remove that poster's name and the website.
I respect other's need to be unspoiled, but I cannot stress enough how much I NEED to know what's gonna happen! :)

I'm a huge spoiler sniffer-outer and will be forever. It so adds to my enjoyment of the actual airing!
I hate spoilers and have unfortunately accidentally read some myself without warning, like Tara getting shot. I also agree that it would've been better if the WB hadn't annouced that Spike would be joining Angel. I felt it greatly took away from the sacrifice on Buffy knowing he'd be back anyway next season on Angel. I can only imagine the shock it would've been to be watching Angel and have Spike appear at the end like he did and not have known it was coming. That would've been the ultimate surprise and it would've had the Buffyverse buzzing for months on a twist like that.
I remember watching "The Wrath of Khan" and having NO IDEA Spock was going to die and being completely stunned. I also know how the ending of "Afterlife" hit me unspoiled, and the end of OMWF, and the end of "Deep Down" and "Becoming" and "Sleep Tight." Those were killers without spoilers. But i couldn't help myself and read the spoiler for "seeing red" and it just wasn't the same watching it. I'm drawn to reading spoilers, but i have more fun without them.
Pure unspoiled soul here. I love getting shocked, heh. Still remember the "OMG" feeling when Darla got sired by Drusilla. Good times...=P

I think it's a lot more fun when you don't know what's going to happen. I accidentally got spoiled about Spike's death in "Chosen", and that made a big difference on how much I enjoyed it...
about spike in chosen...see the thing is when i heard that he was goin to be on AtS S5, i strongly doubted the accidentally read spoilers re: his death.
i mean i for one KNEW for a fact spike wouldn't die, how was that possible with his post/ buffy contract?
so, my simple mind was shocked when he did die in the finale.
i agree though conviction would've rocked w/o knowing about spike's return.
Unspoiled here, though it is hard to stay 100% spoiler free being on the Internet and all. I try not to watch the trailers at all either because they can give away major things sometimes, if only in indirect ways (I knew Tara was going to die only because of the 'Seeing Red' preview. Willow was crying and her eyes were red. It read 'something's happened to Tara' all over it.)
I also try to stay away from speculation- another Season 6 surprise that didn't surprise me a bit was Spike getting his soul back. I read someone's speculation that he wasn't going to get the chip out at all but was going to become human- not the same thing exactly, but close enough. I was waiting for it the whole time. Would've liked to have been shocked, or at least to have figured they weren't actually going for chip removal on my own, so now I stear clear of insightful peoples' insights. ;)
I've seen some spoiler-whores argue that when they know what's going to happen they don't spend all episode worrying about it and can just settle down and enjoy how it happens. Some argue that good stories aren't about surprises. I agree to an extent, but I find that when I already know how a story is going to unfold before I see it, I'm taken out of it. It's harder for me to become truly immersed in it.
There are certain exceptions, such as 'The Body.' That's something that you could have described to me in detail and it wouldn't have lessened it's impact on me. But that's because 'The Body' isn't about it's plot. The thing that the characters are reacting to and dealing with has already happened before the episode begins. Other more plot-heavy stories require you to be there with the characters, experiencing events as they happen. Those are the ones that are ruined for me by spoilers.
It seems to me that the spoiler whores are usually the people that take the show more seriously than others, they have to prepare themselves for what is to come. I try to avoid spoilers simply because I'm just looking for entertainment. If a story involves something that I don't agree with, I might be a little disappointed, but I'm not going to spend the rest of the week worrying about it.
What's worse than spoilers, which I mostly avoid, for me are speculations about future episodes that are passed off as spoilers that turn out to be wrong. I read something last year about Xander losing his eye, which was bad enough, but there was also something about him getting mystic powers as a result of it as well, which I was watching for the rest of the season.

Of course I'm the same jackass who was told that Julia Roberts died at the end of Pretty Woman. I remember watching Richard Gere ride down the street in the limo with the flowers in his hand, and thinking to myself, "So is she going to fall out of the fire escape to her death, or what?"

Yeah, it's funny NOW.
I have to disagree with Tycho's comment about spoiler whores "are usually the people that take the show more seriously than others, they have to prepare themselves for what is to come". I have been addicted to both Buffy and Angel since their debuts and I take both shows extremely seriously and read up on as much as I possibly can but I do try to avoid spoilers. I feel those of us who try to avoid the spoilers want to experience the show as the writers want us to see it. They want us to be stunned and shocked by the surprises and I respect that and take it very seriously. In my opinion I feel the spoiler whores like the idea of feeling that they know something someone else might not know and that is why a lot of them let "slip" spoilers on posting boards without giving warning to the other readers. They don't really care that they might be wrecking it for someone else and to me that is not taking it seriously.

[ edited by blwessels on 2003-11-03 21:29 ]
"In my opinion I feel the spoiler whores like the idea of feeling that they know something someone else might not know and that is why a lot of them let "slip" spoilers on posting boards without giving warning to the other readers. They don't really care that they might be wrecking it for someone else and to me that is not taking it seriously."

Okay, I'll comment on that one. I'm a spoiler whore myself, and I have been my whole life. I'm not really sure what causes other people to become whores, but personally my driving motivation has nothing whatsoever to do with knowing something someone else might not know. And I'm pretty darned careful NOT to let anything slip (my wife if completely UNspoiled and we get along just fine). If and when I DO slip, that's exactly what it is... a slip. An accident.

Being "spoiled", whether it's for a television show or a film or whatever, has never once ruined my enjoyment of the show. Not once. One the rare occasion I admit that being unspoiled might make a shocking moment or revelation more shocking or revelatory, but it never destroys my enjoyment of the story... unless of course the entire "hook" of the story, the only thing the story has going for it is the shock value. But if that's the case my enjoyment of the story, even if I stay unspoiled and manage to have the crap shocked out of me, is fleeting at best. Shocking for the sake of shocking is a gimmick.

I suppose my being a whore has something to do with growing up a rabid reader of anything and everything, the deeper and more complex the better. I find that I enjoy things that I can dissect and discuss with others more than something that just scrolls on past me. It's easier to dissect and discuss Whedon's shows (or maybe not easier, but perhaps more convenient) if I am spoiled. Knowing what's going to happen ahead of time doesn't spoile anything for me. Instead it gives me more opportunity to examine the story.

And besides, spoilers for the Whedonverse aren't necessarily reliable anyways.

(Hope I didn't give anything away)
Sorry Haunt, didn't mean to imply that all "spoiler whores" like to give things away - it's just that there has been many times when I've been on a posting board and someone just blurts out something major. Then everyone on the board reacts and gets upset that someone did that. It happens quite often, unfortunately, and usually the person doing it knows how others feel yet do it anyways. I have myself found out things accidentally and I have shared with other people what I've heard but only after asking first. For me personally, I feel it takes away from the enjoyment of the show. If for others, that is not the case, then keep seeking out the spoilers. Honestly, who hasn't skipped ahead to the back of the book at least once to find out what was going to happen?
"Honestly, who hasn't skipped ahead to the back of the book at least once to find out what was going to happen?"

I'm pretty sure I've never done that. :)
Honestly, who hasn't skipped ahead to the back of the book at least once to find out what was going to happen?

I don't even read the author's bio anymore after one book last year. The bio included some comment about how the author was going in to hiding from his fans for what happened at the end of the book, which drove me crazy until I finished it. Then I agreed, it was best he went in to hiding.

I was a big spoiler-whore, but I've been holding back the past two seasons. I've found I do enjoy it a lot more.

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