Spoilt?

Something the Web 2.0 era has made worse is the potential for things to get spoilt – by which I mean the plots of TV shows/films etc as opposed to vegetables. Generally, if you’ve got home late on a Sunday night and don’t want to know the result of X Factor or Strictly, then you’re best staying off Facebook and Twitter until you’ve caught up on the show. (People who go on those sites and then complain that it’s been spoiled are, quite frankly, idiots.)

However, there must come a point by which it should be generally accepted that the information or plot-line is common knowledge. In the case of the above example, I reckon this would be Tuesday morning – I have no patience with TV or radio shows who reveal the result first thing Monday morning without first giving warning that they’re about to do so. But what about films and TV dramas or even books?

[WARNING: Potential Harry Potter spoiler.]
The topic’s been discussed on Wittertainment regularly (incidentally, am super excited that I’ve got a ticket to their Christmas show next week – whoop!) with the good Doctors getting into trouble recently for referring to the death of a key character in the latest Harry Potter film. Apparently they also got into hot water for mentioning Dumbledore’s death when reviewing the previous¬†instalment. Thing is, most of the world have read the books and HP6 has now been out 18months – so surely this shouldn’t be a massive spoiler?

What about films that are well and truly in the public domain and whose plot twists are public knowledge? The Sixth Sense would be a classic example – is there anyone who doesn’t know what happened? I had to watch The Usual Suspects already knowing who did it, thanks to some E4 film chart programme, but wasn’t particularly upset about this, given that a good decade or so had passed since its release.

[WARNING: Potential ER spoiler.]
A couple of weeks ago I upset a friend by revealing a key ER plotline that I thought everyone knew. They were at the start of season 8, and I, rather helpfully responded to this piece of information with “oh, isn’t that the one where Dr Greene dies at the end?”¬†[it is]. Apparently, this was an unwelcome nugget of ER trivia, owing to the fact that they’d completely stopped watching the series by this point when it originally aired. I, on the other hand, was a firm ER fan until around season 10 and had tear stained cheeks for days after the dear doctor’s demise. But honestly, it was shown over seven years ago! Surely I can’t be blamed for my spoiler?

[WARNING: Potential Band of Brothers spoiler.]
Then of course, there are those of us who like to spoil things for ourself. I got into awful trouble a few years ago when I looked up Band of Brothers on wikipedia midway through a marathon watching of the series with a friend. He’d mentioned that I’d particularly like one episode coming up, so I thought I’d look it up – discovering it was to do with the discovery of a concentration camp. When he found out what I’d done (I innocently asked “is this the episode about the Holocaust” as it began), I was very nearly banned from watching any further episodes (I definitely wasn’t allowed a glass of wine that evening), was severely reprimanded and instructed never to wikipedia films before watching them again. [I try not to, but sometimes I just can’t help myself.]

Actually, you might learn a thing or two from this friend. So obsessed is he with potential spoilers, that he never lets you read the back of the DVD box when choosing films – I’m allowed to check running length, as long as I cover the text with my hand. Sometimes you even have to shut your eyes during the menu screen, because the image reveals some key element of the plot. That, my friends, is dedication to the cause…

Question:

What did I see on TV this afternoon that had me shouting (for joy) at the TV and then swooning?*

Put simply, the Channel 4 trailer for the special ER coming up, in which no lesser person than Dr Doug Ross makes a return to County General.

I’ve been lazy (or otherwise occupied) and haven’t done a good job of keeping up with this latest (and final) season, but am very excited at the prospect of a classic ensemble’s reunion. Despite the initial rumours, Carol Hathaway’s back too. It’s like 1996 all over again.

Just for the record, I would also like to state that I am not a die-hard Clooney fan. Instead, I’m a fan of Dr Ross (when he’s being all sensitive and Doctor-y, as opposed to a downright cad), and quite frankly, feel ER lost a little of its edge when he left.

Welcome back Doug, all is forgiven.

*And when I say “swooning”, clearly not literally. There were a few “ahhhs” and “yays”, but I didn’t actually fall to the ground. I’m not living in the 19th century, or a Jane Austen novel.

Some good news on an otherwise dull Monday

The BBC has reported that although Julianne Margulies has turned down the opportunity of reprising her role as Carol in the final season of ER, other ex-stars including Anthony Edwards, Noah Wyle and Eriq La Salle have agreed to return.

Perhaps most excitingly: ‘The show’s producers have also said they hope to bring Clooney back for a guest appearance.’

Sad news that there will be no further Doug & Carol escapades, but if they get Clooney back I will be one very happy ER viewer.

Incidentally, how are they intending to bring back a very dead Dr Mark Green?

And finally, just how pathetically boring is my life right now that this piece of news gets me excited?!