The second season of “Daredevil” was just released last weekend on Netflix. Unlike with earlier Marvel series I wasn’t home to watch the entire thing, having been speaking on panels at Wizard World Las Vegas and begging people not to tell me what happened. So, while immersed in geek culture, there was one part of it that I couldn’t talk about — which led to a discussion about spoilers.
We’ve all been spoiled for some show or film. I actually remember the first spoiler I ever encountered. When I was on the playground, I was told that Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia were brother and sister. In the midst of being squicked out, I was pretty pissed off. The movie had opened the night before and now I knew a huge plot point. Not cool, fellow first graders. Not cool!
Here’s the thing about spoilers: Some are accidental, but there are unofficial rules. First, journalists, don’t post who died in the title. Don’t put a picture of the person who died on your front page, at least for a week. I know the first four lines of my Legion of Leia articles show up on people’s feeds, so all spoilers go below that with a warning. You get a week with movies, too. That said, don’t post them everywhere.
But wait! I saw the film. I should be able to tweet about the fact that so-and-so was killed in the new “Star Wars” movie. Yes, you can — but no, you should not. Before the Internet, who the killer was in a book was a spoiler. You know that jerk at the water cooler who told everyone? Yeah, we all hated him, too. It’s strange that so many people think that it’s totally OK to be that same jerk on the Internet because “free speech, you guys.” Sure, you have the right to say it. You’re an ass, but you have the right.
For the non-asses, here’s the deal: one spoiler-free week for movies and shows. Don’t be a jerk, or I swear I’ll tell you who died in that show you’re not caught up on.
And studios, don’t put your film’s conflict resolution in the trailer. (I’m looking at you, “Batman v Superman” and “Terminator Genysis.”) Whether you’re the studio making the film or show, the journalists writing about it or the guy at the water cooler, in the words of Wil Wheaton: Don’t be a dick.