SPOILER ALERT! See, how hard was that?
Last night I stayed awake long enough to finish the new episode of Dexter. Season 4 was ruined for my husband; we didn’t have Showtime yet and someone revealed the ending of the season to him. If you’re familiar with the show, you know exactly how much of a shock that ending was and how it would have affected watching the season with the knowledge that it would end how it did. After that, we have been on a mission of sorts to never let that happen again. We’ve even stopped watching the previews for next week’s episode for every show we watch because they always seem to give away too many details and kill the surprise; the premiere of House was meant to surprise us with the reveal of the new Dean of Medicine, but the previews had given it away weeks prior. I’ve decided not to see Dream House in the theaters as well after watching trailers that tell you the exact dilemma that you’re meant to figure out with the characters as the film progresses. It’s like [SPOILER] watching the Sixth Sense and knowing Bruce Willis is dead the whole time; it’s borderline pointless.
At this exact moment in time, I have 164 people on Twitter vaguely reading the nonsense I say throughout the day. I have a couple dozen people visiting this site each day and skimming through my rants and raves. I’m not exactly reaching out to a large audience here, but I still either post a spoiler alert or keep my comments vague when commenting on television shows and movies. I don’t want to be the asshole who ruins the surprise for someone and I do my best to keep from doing so. Those people out there who have a significantly larger amount of eyes on them than I do should take even more care to keep buttoned up or to warn people prior to revealing details on a new episode that just aired or a new film that was just released. I’m talking about you, Kevin Smith.
My husband warned me last night that we should watch The Walking Dead’s premiere episode for season 2 because someone was bound to say something. Unfortunately, I’ve been fighting an illness for weeks now and I just didn’t have the energy. This morning, Kevin posted on his twitter account that he loved a particular scene in the Walking Dead, then 10 minutes later posted details of another scene, and finally followed it up with “Um… Spoilers, I guess.” Unfortunately, with the way Twitter is set up and with the way he worded his first tweet, I didn’t realize I was reading something about the Walking Dead until the scene was already described and pretty much ruined for me.
I’m not the world’s biggest Kevin Smith fan; he’s been a huge influence and I love his work, but I’m not one of those who’ve crossed the line into obsession and over-following his work and every day activities. I’m one of the 1.8 million who follow him on Twitter because it’s easy to stay up to date on his new projects and it’s nice to hear about what’s going on in his life without having to make much of an effort. He’s been talking extensively about his latest movie, Red State, and has given away details but nothing that reveals too much about the movie. I assume he has done this because he would rather have people like me who haven’t seen it yet actually buy the DVD rather than have the details spoiled and not think the movie is worth watching. So WHY, Mr. Smith, why did you think it was okay to reveal two scenes that sound pretty powerful and important less than 12 hours after the episode aired? Would it have been so difficult to simply say “Loved last night’s episode of The Walking Dead” or “SPOILER, Loved watching ____ ____ ____ and ____ on The Walking Dead?” The smart ass spoiler comment after the fact unfortunately doesn’t change the fact that I already read your previous comment and now know what to expect when I turn on the DVR later tonight to watch the episode that I now wish I had forced myself to watch last night.
As a filmmaker, I would think Kevin Smith would know enough to not tweet details like this, especially on a season premiere episode the morning after it aired. I get that he doesn’t have to censor himself and he has every right in the world to say whatever he feels like saying on Twitter or elsewhere. But come on now, if someone as unimportant as myself can manage to refrain from tossing out spoilers left and right without a word of warning, can’t he manage it as well? As someone who seems to pride himself on keeping communication open with fans, wouldn’t you also be someone who would have enough respect for said fans to throw out a spoiler alert and NOT a smart ass remark after the fact?
I acknowledge that I am overreacting a bit and that perhaps this is my fault as well for not turning away from that tweet immediately before the damage was done. But I guarantee that Mr. Smith wouldn’t be a happy camper himself if I had the ability to simultaneously reach 1.8 million people and I revealed dramatic scenes of Red State before most of the general public had a chance to see it for themselves. Next time, how about you give those 1,897,192 people who follow your Twitter account a chance to fucking turn away before you kill the surprise and shock and give away details of a television show (or anything for that matter) before most of us have a full fucking day to watch it.