RECORD STORE TALES #960: Spoilers?
How do you like to enjoy a movie? Do you prefer to go in stone cold with no spoilers? Or do you like to be hot with anticipation, awaiting every mega-moment that you have seen leaked on Reddit?
Spoiler alert: I like spoilers.
Gimme them spoilers! Movies today are so predictable anyway. But I have zero tolerance for jagoffs who post this stuff in public. It’s inconsiderate. Therefore, this will be a spoiler-free chapter about spoilers.
We’ve all seen the classic Simpsons episode, am I right? Homer walks out of The Empire Strikes Back, saying aloud, “Who’d have thought Darth Vader was Luke Skywalker’s father!” Everyone in line was furious at him for revealing the big one. More recently came a douchebag who spoiled a Harry Potter book for all the faithful waiting in line to buy it. “Snape kills Dumbledore!” he yelled from the safety of his car as he drove by like a true coward.
I think it’s safe to say that whether you are pro or anti spoiler in your personal lives, nobody likes an asshole like that who goes out of their way to ruin an experience for everybody. Go back home to mommy’s basement, spoiler-troll.
When we were kids, we never went to see movies in their first weeks. Our family waited until things had died down a bit. By then we’d already bought the Marvel Comics adaptations. The Empire Strikes Back was the last Star Wars movie I saw that wasn’t spoiled. My dad bought the Marvel comic adaptation while we waited in the lobby. It was just the two of us. The big reveal had less an affect on me — I simply assumed Vader was lying, as did most of us kids. We’d already seen him lie to Lando. Then, starting with Return of the Jedi, pretty much every Star Wars movie I saw was spoiled in some way. I discovered this didn’t hamper my enjoyment of the films at all. In fact it made me want to see them even more, and savour the moments when they came.
Phantom Menace? Spoiled by Lucasfilm themselves, on the soundtrack CD to the movie. Attack of the Clones? By this time, Ain’t It Cool News was getting regular clicks. I just can’t resist the allure of spoilers! The internet has made it hard to keep a movie secret in any way.
Look at Spiderman: No Way Home. The film’s not even out yet. Pretty much everything has already been up on YouTube before Sony could take them down. (And taking them down, they are!) So I’ve seen everything. I’ve seen all the villains. I’ve seen the end credit scenes (both). The heroes, the cameos, the big moments. All filmed on some shitty, shaking cell phone where you can barely hear the dialogue.
My sister has rules about spoilers. She doesn’t want to know anything that isn’t in the official trailers. I think that’s a sensible policy. For her.
These glimpses don’t spoil movies for me. I still got the shakes, watching the terrible YouTube videos. My tear ducts got a little wet when I saw…nevermind. And based on past experience, it’ll happen again when I finally see No Way Home in theaters. Whenever that will be.
See, that’s currently the problem. With the latest Covid variants, who knows when I’ll be back in the theaters. Originally I planned to see Spiderman during Christmas holidays. Now I’m not so sure. I have to play it by ear. My grandmother (age 97) is in the hospital right now, and seeing her is more important than seeing Tom Holland and his new friends on the big screen.
So, yeah, spoil me! Spoil me rotten — but ask me first.