Micro-Shock Archives: Spoiler Alert: Confession of an Unapologetic Spoiler

Recently I wrote and review of A Serbian Film which got passed around the internet because some people thought that it was a well written review (clearly, these people are very ill and need help desperately). After a few hundred people viewed it, someone complained that I ruined the ending and should have put a spoiler warning.Of course, this being the internet, people seem to think that it needs to cater to them and that we should all operate within the confines of what they think is proper courtesy. If we all got what we wanted from the internet, I wouldn’t be besieged with pop-up banners for Adult Friend Finder and Party Poker whenever I wanted to exercise my God given right to masturbate to free internet porn.At any rate, for those of you who have just discovered the internet today (welcome, by the way) and are not sure what a spoiler warning is then allow me to explain: When someone in my position is reviewing, or summarizing things for someone else to read… Say, I was reviewing a film, or say I was writing a summary for a comic book…. People expect that you at least not reveal the ending. Some very anal retentive people think that you should not even reveal specific plot twists that would be considered surprising if you were going in blind. Finally, the expect that if you’re going to abandon all common decency and blab about the whole thing like some gossipy school girl, then at least give them some fair warning by writing SPOILER ALERT somewhere that they can easily see.  I believe the internet courtesy is to set up a big flashing sign with a pyrotechnic display. Or something.

Pictured: Typical Spoiler Alert

This is so, internet whiners and cry babies don’t have to have an unwatched episode of the Walking Dead spoiled by reading a synopsis about it on the internet first.So this person was upset that I spoiled the ending to the movie in my review, and complained that wasn’t the whole point of reviewing a movie to entice people to go and see it? That by explaining the ending people would be less inclined to go and see it?Clearly, we have a difference of opinion.When it comes to revealing the ending of a movie or not in a review, for me, I tend to flip flop. some of my reviews I do reveal the endings to a film, other times I do not. It all really depends on a number of things (one of them being sobriety).  I generally take a look at how long ago a movie was released, how popular it is (read: how much press it’s getting) and what sort of production it is (independent, Hollywood, Croatian Snuff etc.) before I write about how a movie ends. Also, it helps if I liked it or not.Age:If the movie was made decades ago, I’m not too worried about how people feel when I spoil an ending. If for some reason you haven’t seen it by this point, it’s not my fault. Plus, someone probably already beat me to it a long time ago, so I shouldn’t feel guilty about revealing an ending of a film that came out when Regan was President.

ROSEBUD WAS A FUCKING SLED!

We here at Micro-Shock are nostalgic, and the last thing I want to worry about when I’m writing a retrospective of the Back to the Future Trilogy is if you know that it ends with a time travelling steam engine or not. Or if you didn’t know that they killed Freddy Krueger at the end of Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare.

Now there's a movie poster that needs a Spoiler Warning

Personally, I don’t care if you haven’t seen Frogs, or Bleeders, or Jack-O, or not. If you haven’t seen them they’ve been around for so long I don’t care if I ruin the ending for you or not. Also, I find that it’s usually common among people who read reviews of older movies, especially when it comes to old horror films, that you want to know what it’s all about. Beginning to end. Nothing sucks worse than popping in a dusty VHS tape of some forgotten horror film to find out that while there was a nice pair of boobs five minutes in and you had to sit through all sorts of bullshit filler to find out at the end of the movie the killer was a fucking sled.

By the way: THE KILLER WAS A SLED!

Reviews like these are commonly a public service I think, to stand as a warning to others that to wade through certain cinematic disasters that could lead to possible death, or worse. Usually people ignore these warnings and watch a film anyway. Of course, this makes them compelled to write a review as well. This is what we call Bloggers-Abuse. It’s a vicious cycle that never ends.  But that’s a subject for another time…Popularity:If a movie is part of a popular franchise, then I care even less about if I spoil the ending or not. As far as franchises go, they follow a formula, and if they’ve been around long enough someone else has been bound to have let the cat out of the bag right away. In fact, there are entire wiki’s devoted to single topics about Star Trek and Star Wars that I should be so low on the radar in the realm of spoilering that I’m surprised you even came to my web site for a review first (Guess you’re not coming back are you?)Plus the more popular something is, the more people want to spoil it for you. I’m just writing this shit down on the internet, while slightly buzzed on cheap box wine and chomping on anti-depressants like they’re fucking Flintstone vitamins.There are people way more devoted to ruining it for you than I am.Also on that note, if you weren’t there on opening night then my opinion is that the movies ending wasn’t that important to you. Why are you reading my review when you should be camping out in front of the damn movie theater? If the ending to Tron: Legacy is all that goddamn important to you, either stand in line and see it on opening night or stop reading about it on the internet.

A line up of children wait anxiously to see "Around the World in 80 Days" , until the ending was spoiled by a greaser passing by in his '57 chevy with a bullhorn.

Picture the movie you are considering seeing a hot bangable girl that you are  dating, now picture the internet like every other guy in the world. The less committed you are, the more one of those other guys is going to spoil it for you. Nothing sucks more than getting sloppy seconds.Hollywood/Independent/Croatian Snuff Film?The next question I usually have is, what sort of production is it? Is it a big budget Hollywood film? Is the latest smash hit out of India? Or is it an independent film made by the blood, sweat, and tears of a true artist?At the end of the day, I will not reveal the ending of an independent film, whereas a Hollywood movie, I will spoil the fuck out of it. Why? Because I have a bitter resentment to Hollywood because I don’t know what the modern movie goer likes. Plus I owe Hollywood nothing. I pay exorbitant prices  to see their shitty fucking movies, I’m going to put it pasture so that those of us out there that aren’t part of the mouth breathing masses can heed my words of warning and caution about a film so they don’t have to waste their time seeing it.I do owe it to the independent community to not reveal the ending to a movie. Especially one I like. Because this is where the real creativity is. This is where a good review with a spoiler might make people less interested in a film.The only time that I spoil an ending with an independent film is if the movie is an utter pile of shit. Because, really, there is a lot of that out there. If you’re taking a camera out into the world and your movie is the cinematic equivalent to finger painting with dog shit, then I’m going to lambaste your film. I am going to utterly rip it to shreds from beginning to end. See my reviews of Hillbilly Bob Zombie, Vampires VS Zombies, or Tainted to get a good idea of what I mean.So when it came to my review of A Serbian Film, I knew the movie had a lot of press. It’s been reviewed by almost every horror site, it made the cover of the November 2010 issue of Rue Morgue Magazine, and has played all over the independent film circuit.That and really it’s one of those films that you know is not going to have a happy ending. Enough about the movie is already circulating around. Hell, even Wikipediaspoils the ending to this movie.Plus my review of the film was analyzing the context of the film. To be able to fully understand what the movie is really about I wanted to convey my interpretation of the film. Honestly, were people that excited to learn how this movie ended?

He raped his son's sled.

All and all, the internet has been in public use for almost 20 years, if you’re complaining about something being spoiled for you, then you’re effectively a whiner. Unless you’re mentioning it on principle (you know you didn’t really care one way or another) in which case you should extract the sand from your butt hole.At the end of the day, if you read a spoiler, it’s no different than when I click on a link to see Asian women shooting baby eels out of their assholes. It’s your own damn fault for clicking on the link. (Also let it be known that I don’t warn people of NSFW stuff either, so if you clicked on that link, congratulations on your recent unemployment).If you don’t want to have the ending to something you want to see spoiled, don’t read anything about it and just go out and see the damn thing. You know. Live a little.

Nick Peron

Stand-Up Comedian from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. He has been writing articles about popular culture on the internet for almost 20 years. He has written for destroythebrain.com, as well as the now defunct micro-shock.com and bthroughz.com. More recently, he had been a fan contributor at www.fandom.com and has been an active contributor to the Marvel Comics Database for over a decade. He also had a bit role in the film Sexsquatch. His biggest claim to fame however is the fact that he has been banned in China.