Thursday, April 16, 2015

Spoiler Alert: My "Advice" Email to Another "Professional Critic".....

I have been working as a critic since September of 2007, and even before I was a "working" critic, I shared my opinions and thoughts about films with people, and one thing I have always respected is critics who don't spoil plot twists and information. I am glad that "Spoilers" has become a common and understood term for the masses when it used to be just an inside thing for huge nerds.

I also follow TV as well and am into a number of shows. Not sleeping much at night gives me a little more free time than the next person, so I tend to stay more caught up on shows. Being a comic book fan all my life and loving a bunch of the superhero movies can be tricky sometimes. I love comic book movies, but I usually know more of the plot twists and turns for the movies or TV shows.

On the most current episode of CW's The Flash, a show that I am having a fun time with, there were a lot of fun plot developments and new information that is setting the stage for some of the other characters to go down certain paths. I won't say which characters, or anything else for that matter, but it's going to be fun.

I like to check out the website every other day or so and catch up on video game, comic book, movie and TV news and reviews. I like reading other reviewers after I have formed my own opinions and feelings about things I have seen or read and written about so that I am not like probably 90 % of the people online who form their opinions based on other people's opinions without seeing or reading something for themselves. I have stated a hundred times at least that I hate "Fanboys" and consider the term the entertainment industry's "Fair Weather Fan" phrase due to those supposed "fans" hating anything that isn't what they picture in a sequel, remake, or prequel. 

Anyway, sorry for the "Fanboy" tangent.

I went onto IGN to read their review of the current episode of The Flash, which was a very favorable review, and he was nice enough to put the phrase "Full Episode Spoilers Follow" before his review started. In the review, he talked about the events that happened in the end of the EPISODE, which was fine, because he warned that he would talk about them, but then he went and mentioned spoilers for THE COMICS. 

Now, being versed in comic books, I knew the fate of certain characters, but there are millions of people who don't know comic books like I do. As a film critic, I have read a ton of books that have been adapted to movies, and I read them before the films come out. I have a wise bumper sticker that says "Don't Judge a Book By It's Movie", and it's true. That's why I try to read before I watch. Since comic book movies and TV are doing so well, as well as more than 25 more comic book films coming out in the next five years, not mentioning all of the Marvel and DC TV shows that are planned, I have been getting super well versed in comics even more than I was. 

I have talked to some friends who read the review on IGN and were super mad that the reviewer didn't mention that he was going to talk spoilers in the comic books as well. I have friends who have never cracked a comic book before, but have started reading The Flash due to them liking the TV show so much, and they were really disappointed and upset that they read the review where the reviewer said everything. Below is the email I sent the reviewer in response to everything.

"I have to say, one professional critic to another, if you make a note saying "full episode spoilers follow", DON'T mention comic book spoilers in the review without stating that as well. As a film critic, I read a lot of books before I see films based on them, but never mention future details in series as told in the books because not everyone is as well versed in some books, and in this case, comic books, as the reviewer. 

I already knew of the Flash characters that become future villains or heroes/sidekicks, but for the sake of a lot of other people who have been having this TV show as their first experience, at least warn them before they read spoilers for the other medium in the middle of a paragraph. 

I have a lot of friends who are fans of the show that really aren't into reading comics, and they had read this review and were very upset and disappointed. Not only does it spoil potential twists in the show that is helping them get into comics, at least a little bit, but it just makes it seem like you are throwing those bits of information in to make it seem like you know more than people, or are trying to look good for die hard comic fans. 

This show is fun, and what makes it fun for a lot of people is not knowing what is to come, and now you have given those people less to look forward to or discover on their own. It might be your job to know more about the subject, but that isn't the case with a lot of viewers. Next time, be courteous to your readers and warn them of comic spoilers as well as episode spoilers.  

Thanks for your time,  Fellow critic, Nathan Unck"

Anyway, if I get a response, I will post another blog about it and see what he says. I doubt he will with the amount of people that comment and probably email as well to a larger site like IGN that gets hundreds of thousands of hits a day, but maybe with me stating my name and that I am a critic will make him more inclined to respond. I don't care if he does or not. I just hope that he reads the dang thing and makes a note of it.

I usually give some story details in my reviews to set up the plot, but never give details or outcomes. I usually write something to the effect of "I won't say anything else, but it's worth checking out." or "I won't say anything here to give too much away, you will just have to see it for yourself."

Hope this post was fun to read. Have a great day and I will,,, well, I won't say anything else. I wouldn't want to spoil the surprise.

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