A very surprising article in Wired recently suggested that, when it comes to literature and perhaps movies, most people are not bothered by having plot details spoiled in advance. In fact, knowing the ending or a big secret can make the story more enjoyable. Do our readers agree with this? [Spoiler Alert: We’ll have a poll to find out!]
I’m of two minds about this. My first inclination is to say that if a movie or book can be “ruined” by hearing a plot spoiler, then it probably wasn’t very good in the first place. A strong story should be able to engross the audience whether they know where it’s going or not, and should be able to hold up to repeated readings/viewings.
On the other hand, there’s a real joy to discovering a story’s surprises for the first time. I also find it incredibly disheartening to watch a movie and realize that I’ve already seen every important story point in advance. I recently had that experience with the comedy ‘Tucker and Dale vs. Evil‘, the trailer for which gave away every single joke and plot twist from start to finish. By the time I watched it, I felt like I could already recite the whole script as it went. The only parts I hadn’t seen felt like filler.
These days, I’ve all but given up watching movie trailers entirely. I’ve refused to watch any more ads for Ridley Scott’s ‘Prometheus’ after reading a wave of complaints that its latest trailers tell practically the whole story.
What are your feelings about this?