There was of course the difficulty that on one occasion the show itself was determined to provide spoilers in the form of preview clips. The end of Fallen Idols showed preview clips from the following three (three!) episodes. Nothing to be done about that except refuse to watch them more than the once, when they passed by in a bit of a blur.
All this restraint on my part was very different from the way I did things in Season 4. I found Supernatural during the Season 4 hiatus and worked through DVDs and downloads of three and a half seasons in little more than a month. I then came up against the immovable barrier of the weekly broadcast schedule. Let me tell you, for the second half of Season 4 I devoured every spoiler there was: all the preview clips and anything else I could find. Impatient? Me? Tell me at once why you would think that. But I still had to wait for the episode to be broadcast. And once I did watch an episode, I found that at the start of the episode I was concentrating on ticking off everything I already knew. That's the preview clip! There's the credit for so-and-so! I didn't know that other so-and-so would be in this episode! That's another preview clip! How does that bit of action fit into the episode description? OK, that's the last preview clip over, now I can settle down and watch.
This all had a certain nerdish charm to it. But I'm not a nerd. (Stop that silence at the front. Also stop that sniggering at the back.) It had a big drawback, though, which is that it got in the way of appreciating the episode for itself, and I knew that while I would probably watch each episode lots of times, I'd only get one chance to see each episode for the first time. Also, none of it made Thursdays come any sooner. So I resolved during last summer's hiatus to stay away from spoilers for Season 5. I'm happy with the way it's worked out, even though it meant that I was pretty much absent from here for about three weeks over the showing of the last two episodes. (Work-related issues took me away from my personal internet access, and I saw the last two episodes a week after all the rest of you saw the final episode. No, I was not amused by this delay, why do you ask?)
During Season 6, I'm going to try to take the same approach to avoiding spoilers, once the season starts. It should be doable, even though I'm aware I'm missing out on the fun the rest of you have swapping speculations about upcoming episodes. But I've come up against a problem I didn't expect to have this soon: there are already spoilers out for Season 6 and I'm not sure what to do about them. I don't mind that I already know that Misha will be back, as the sight of Dean and Sam's little nerdy angel friend is always a happy one. But what about that Season 6 synopsis from the CW? To read or not to read? Can I really stay away from something everyone else will know, with all its attendant speculation and meta, for the whole of hellatus? I doubt it, although I haven't given in just yet. If I give in on that, what else will I give in on? One day at a time, right?
Now I know that Alice gallantly deals with spoilers on our behalf, putting up casting news and preview clips, with all the appropriate warnings. I appreciate the sacrifice she makes on behalf of the site. Sometimes she has even seen whole episodes almost a week before the rest of us. What kind of sacrifice is that?
But what about the rest of you? Do you read the episode description and watch the preview clips? Search out every nugget of advance information available on the internet? What is a spoiler for you: the official episode description, preview clips, casting information or plot information? Do you think you enjoy an episode more or less because of spoilers? What if the spoilers you get are wrong or misleading, as were some of the spoilers for the Swap Meat episode?
And are you going to spoil yourself for and during Season 6? (Have you already spoiled yourself for Season 6?) Does the information in the CW synopsis for Season 6 constitute a spoiler anyway? And just how do you comment on an article about spoilers without giving away any spoilers?
One of my Tru Blood fancying mates is so hardcore she won't even watch trailers for next week's episode, which seems a bit extreme to me as the anticipation is half the fun in my book and the show's not going to blow their own cover with any huge reveals. I don't actually go looking off the path for spoilers as Redbird is right, too much too soon spoils the fun!
But hmm, it would be interesting to go without spoilers for a week. I may try it. I won't try it with the premiere because that will be anticipated for weeks, but maybe the second epsiode in the season? and if I like it, maybe I'll try it again!
I think the network is fairly honest, if you don't read too much into them, and of course, Alice is very up on the correct stuff. Really hope she does a spoiler page some day. That I would consider very reliable.
Congratulations! Moi aussi =)
I didn't even watch most of the promos, much less the preview clips... *sigh* it was SO hard... But, you know, sometimes when my hands just wouldn't stop shaking and my eyes just wouldn't stop twitching, I'd watch the clips with the sound turned off... lol
Oh btw, I didn't even read your article completely because I'm scared there will be spoilers (even teeny, tiny ones) =D
In the middle of the season 4 I was really spoilered, I always read the spoilers and later got angry with myself and this season I read all kind of spoilers synopsis and watched pictures and sneak peeks.
I remember before middle of season 4 I wasn't spoilered and not because I was traying to avoid them, was because I wasn't in the fandom I loved the show but I didn't know like for example there were clips for nexts episodes, and in my country WB usually don't do a promo or trailer for the next episode.
But you know, I think, well for me, I enjoy more and episode without spoilers cause for example for the episode 100th I watched the 3 sneak peeks the photos read the synopsis watched the 2 promos and the "space promo" :roll::
So, I think for season 6 I'm going to avoid the spoilers.. or try well at least the sneak peeks, but after the 1st episode
I use to check out the spoilers, but for season 5, I decided to try and go without any spoilers. I liked the element of surprise. My station that aired the show never previewed the next weeks episode, so that helped. I was maybe about 90% successful but I was content. Iâ€™m going to try again for season 6.
The teasers don't scare me and I read episode descriptions, as they normally don't feature spoilers that might ruin the experience.
I am pretty sensitive with essential parts, though. When a friend told me about one sequence of a movie this ruined the whole thing for me and I was furious. But that hasn't happened so far with this show, as everyone who might know something usually is tight-lipped.
And when I can't watch an episode the next morning, because my internet provider gives me trouble, anything I can watch instead of the episode will help me survive, as pathetic as that may sound.
Cheers, dear, Jas
I don't go insanely looking for spoilers, but I will read them and I do read SpoilerTV.
Even though I don't avoid spoilers, I still was surprised when Castiel showed up at the end of "Lazarus Rising" and announced he was an angel of the Lord. And I was happily surprised when Dean gave that wink and ganked ol' Zack.
Did suffer a lot though knowing a beloved character would die in "Swan Song" and thinking it would be Cas, Bobby or the Impala and was surprised it was Sam after all. Those sneaky sneaky writers!
I would need a place there, too, I guess
you're friendly, slightly insane neighbourhood shrinky
Being in Australia, i don't get to watch the episodes until everybody else has anyway, which means I'm completely spoiled before even watching the episode. I don't mind though, it still doesn't affect my opinion of the episode. It just means i know exactly what to expect.
Jasminka, I love your couch - I could have sworn it used to be pink and now it's red?! Is my mind playing tricks on me or did Alice change the colour?
You are fun to read! I too pondered this very issue before and like you spent a period of time where I indulged in everything available (most all of the lead up into Season 4 and most of Season 4) including sides, and pics taken while filming with fans behind the scenes and all that.
Season 5 (and last year's hellatus) I vowed to avoid all sides...and that was easy as none were available anywhere (at least not on Supernaturaltv) so it wasn't hard at all (still, I pat myself on the back)
I don't consider the press releases to be spoilers (I'm not a purist b/c surely they qualify as spoilers) so anything futoncritic or cw puts up or even spoilertv since those are just cw press releases or tv guide or futon critic take your pick so I happily read those. Also, if there are picks released I usually click on them same with videos that are officially released.
Am I spoiling? Sure. Does it destroy my enjoyment? Nope. I don't mind speculation and read others' and write my own with full knowledge that very few know anything definitive and as for myself, I know nothing, it's pure speculation. I take nuggets from Ausiello and Kirsten with a huge grain of salt (several if I'm munching popcorn) and I read a little speculation from buddytv and supernatural tv but usually it's to skim it 'cause too often it's whiny and things never turn out as disastrous as those who whine about how Anna will ruin things, or Ruby is Sam's lover or all that nuttiness.
I love a little spoiling, I'll watch regardless and I have to say it makes the time go by a little faster and has yet to ruin a single episode for me. I'll still be hoping that at this year's comic con there's a little teaser given and someone posts it on YouTube...I do enjoy those.
Am I counting down the weeks...yup, not the hours or days yet but that'll come soon enough.
Gentlesoul, I didn't put any spoilers in my article that aren't already up on the front page of this site. And there have been no spoilers at all in any of the comments: that's a high level of restraint from the spoilerholics and I'm grateful.
I'll try not to be a holier-than-tho ugh reformed spoilerholic myself, and I'm sure I'll be spending some time looking wistfully over the fence at the fun that's being had in the run up to each new episode of Season 6.
Although i will be watching season 6 on the net (Because September is to long to wait, nevermind next year when it will aired on Living TV)
I dont think i can help myself with spoilers, I may try for season 6..maybe, That isnt a promise
AMEN, Faellie! After blowing through the first four seasons by DVD & webstream, watching season 5 live KILLED me. I try to avoid spoilers, I love being surprised by the show, and you're right, you can only watch an episode for the first time once. Sometimes I'm just too weak, though, and break down. I avoid reading the episode description, and try not even to know which writer penned the episode so it doesn't color my expectations . . . but I have a serious weakness for the "sneak peek" preview clips, I have never been able to resist these for more than a day, and I'll watch them over and over until the episode arrives
I do think Dawn has a point in that sometimes it's nice to be prepared for bad news, though... I did encounter the spoiler that we'd probably lose Ellen & Jo in AAH, which was actually a good thing I needed the warning! Loved them both, and the ep was plenty upsetting anyway.
Great article, and so interesting to see everyone's points of view, spoilerphobes and spoilerholics and everyone in between. Thanks!