Thursday, December 4, 2014

Embracing the Dark Side: One Fan’s Attempt To Go Spoiler-Free On STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS

Editor: This is a guest post by my friend, Nick, in what will hopefully be a series of posts about his struggles to stay as spoiler-free as possible for THE FORCE AWAKENS while being active on the internet and how hard that can be. 

Star Wars, we've had an interesting ride, you and I. You have been the blanket to my Linus for years now. You’ve been there for me through both good and bad. You've also broken my heart, specifically with the prequels; well, after I came to grips and acknowledged them as bad films. It’s been over 9 years since Revenge of the Sith, clearly the best of the prequels, and you've since been through some hard times. You've been over-saturated, fucked with in service of half-assed Blu Ray releases and sold off to the House of Mouse. When I heard J.J. Abrams was tapped for Episode VII, I was cautiously optimistic. I mean, could it get any worse? I loved ALIAS, LOST and his first STAR TREK film. On the other hand, I  didn't like the laziness of Star Trek: Into Darkness’s third act, but I blame Orci & Kurtzman for that. STAR TREK had so much of the Star Wars feel that I think it unintentionally put some purists off of Trek, but not me. Fast forward to 2014, and I am numb to the prospect of a new Star Wars film. Disney had street cred with me since taking over Marvel, but I still wonder what a post-RETURN OF THE JEDI Star Wars movie could be.

Then, it hit me. Why not try and give this thing a chance? What if I tried to go into the theater as cold as possible? This would entail not reading spoilers, movie blogs (present company excluded of course), (editor's note: awwww, shucks!) Toy Fair announcements, toy packages, etc. In this day and age, that’s harder than hitting a target no bigger than two meters without using a targeting computer. Even as I write this, I am not sure I’ll be able to do it! With the advent of Twitter, Facebook, etc. spoilers are in your face whether you like it or not. People live to spoil shit. They get off on it. I have a challenge ahead of me. I want to rekindle that old feeling of SW love, and this is a test of my mettle. I just want to see if I can do it, so I've tasked myself not to seek out spoilers of any kind.

When the teaser trailer dropped, it came in like a hurricane. I’d heard rumblings there may be a trailer coming out, but somehow it still wasn't real. About a week out from its release, I was at an impasse. Do I watch it? Is this technically a spoiler? I need to know for myself and considering how Abrams was about his “Mystery Box,” I figured the trailer would be mostly safe. On Black Friday, I was at work trying desperately not to watch the teaser online. On my Twitter feed, there was a flood of snark, awe and a general consensus of positivity. My interest was at an all time high. Suddenly, the reality of wanting to experience the trailer in a proper setting was palpable. I had to find a way to view this in a theater. All day long, I avoided viewing it online; I had to see for myself and judge the trailer on it’s own merits. So, I found a theater in Minneapolis and decided I had to go.

Ultimately, I was pleased. It was a great teaser, just enough to scratch the itch while combining something new with something familiar. It was 88 seconds of pure, unadulterated Star Wars. The teaser showed me weird droids, new characters and familiar iconic imagery. This thing was firing on all cylinders! For what it’s worth, I didn't walk out of there feeling the slightest bit of compromise. My resolve was intact, and I think my expectations have been set.


  1. And this quest of yours has made me reconsider my every utterance of this movie on Twitter because I respect what you're doing. By god, I'd read the script tomorrow if it was dropped on my warm, welcoming lap. But I won't tell you what's in it. Never.

    1. I remember thinking "How can I not spoil Nick and tweet about the teaser"? Best of luck to him!

  2. You guys are too kind, and I appreciate the fact that you're being sensitive in my goofy quest. EXCELSIOR!