Spoiler Alert: My thoughts on spoilers inside!

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I don’t think spoilers are that big of a deal.  I just ruined the end of this post for you, but I hope you keep reading.

I understand why they bother a lot of people – they want to be surprised by the twists and turns of a movie when they see it. Especially if they’ve just forked over $15 for a ticket and popcorn, they want ever danged nickle’s worth of possible value.  But honestly, does much that comes out of Hollywood really surprise us anymore?  Can you not guess the major plot points of most major movies, especially with the trend to putting out trailers that give half the movie away three months in advance?

That’s just me being snarky, though. The reason spoilers don’t bother me much is that I appreciate good storytelling even if I know where it is going. Do you have movies you’ve seen multiple times?  You already know every plot point, so why do you do it?  You like the tale. I’ve seen Fight Club, Star Wars, American Beauty, Shawshank Redemption, and a slew of other movies dozens of times, yet I enjoy them just the same. If a movie is good, knowing points about the first viewing won’t change your experience, or make it a lower quality film.

Even though I disagree, I try to respect the whole “no spoilers” idea for the most part, but sometimes it’s silly.  If someone gives away the ending of The Sixth Sense at this point (Hint: HE’S DEAD THE WHOLE TIME) it’s not a spoiler – you’re just lazy. That movie has been out for ages.  People saying No Spoilers around the Lord of the Rings movies were also driving me batshit. The books came out in the 1950’s. I refused to reign in my discussions about the movies (which I loved) because someone couldn’t get around in the last half century to reading them. Tbbbttt…

Personally, I wish people would relax more and enjoy the storytelling for an experience, and not as a revelation of secrets. Who knows… maybe if people put less stock into first time revelations it might encourage Hollywood to put more effort into solid storytelling that stands up no matter what you know about the plot.

SPOILER: It won’t work, but I’m a stubborn dreamer.

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About Jeff Moriarty

A dabbler in many arts, from Ignite Phoenix to Improv, and from Information Security to Screenwriting. Jeff loves creating new things, and tries his hand at many forms of writing from screenplays to prose. He pontificates on his personal blog, and helps authors get their works online.


  1. If you didn’t figure out he was dead the entire time – then you are an idiot.

    Sometimes it takes so much effort to put the twist in the end that writers go out of there way to make the end come from way out of nowhere. Some authors can pull that off — but for most, it just looks like a cheap attempt to make a gottcha.

    The same can be said for when we know who the killer is — and in the end they work hard with car chases and whatnot to get the killer. Or the great CSI — through technology we found a fiber that links the killer that was only bought at a small shop in eastern Afghanistan.

    It is the story telling that is the art– it isn’t the ending– it is the enjoyment of the novel– the development of the character– the work they put into finding it – the angst they feel.

    But many follow a tired timeline— cop knows who did it– its an important political figure — cop loses job and works hard to both get his job back, nail the killer– and get the girl. Oh spare me.

    Fresh, interesting story telling– good character development – writing that is crisp and clean —
    that, never goes out of style

    • Preach it!

      Stretching and striving for the surprise ending turns many potentially great stories to mush. If knowing a gimmicks or gotcha was enough to ruin a whole story, it wasn’t worth much to start with.

  2. Spoilers are cool. Sometimes I even search them out.

    Knowing the ending allows for a different interaction with the story. You can see where the author is giving you hints or misdirecting you. It’s like taking the case of the gizmo to see how it works. Some authors do it well and you appreciate the reread. Others don’t and a reread would be painful.

    What sucks is to be told a spoiler without warning. Fortunately, CSS can help. Here’s my feeble attempt to warn of and hide spoilers. Yeah, I know–it doesn’t work for touch interfaces.
    .-= Brent Logan´s last blog ..Wireless Power Transmission, Part VI [Project] =-.

    • I sometimes search them out, too, but that’s a whole higher (more refined!) level of spoiler appreciation. I can understand people who don’t seek them out, but those who flip their bacon if anything is revealed? Just too sensitive.

  3. I wish someone had told me the spoiler for the Crying Game. That was a gimmick surprise that ruined the story for me.