Roughly a million years ago when I was five, my parents took us to see a movie, a musical. You know—singing, dancing, a love story.
It began with flashy color and edgy music. There were boys dancing in alleyways and suave Puerto Ricans doing the mambo. Sassy girls swished their brightly colored skirts. And to top it off, there was this girl named Maria and this boy named Tony. And they fell in love—just like that! I was lost in a magical world of color and music and romance.
Then suddenly on-screen two boys, Riff and Bernardo, were stabbed and died bloody deaths. I barely had time to get over my horror when Tony was shot. Not Maria’s Tony! Maria sang softly to him as he died in her arms. He couldn’t be dead! I didn’t want to believe it!
The movie ended. I was devastated.
West Side Story won ten Academy Awards, including Best Picture, that year. Watching West Side Story at the age of five taught me that I really didn’t like bad surprises or sad endings. In fact, I think it got embedded into my DNA that day.
As a result, I read the last pages of a novel if I suspect I’m being set up for something bad. I like books with optimistic endings. And I read spoilers. :)
My family HATES that I read spoilers! My kids have been known to plug their ears and sing “lalalala” as loudly as they can if they think I’m talking about something that might give away an ending.
What about you? Are you someone who likes spoilers, or do you like to be surprised? Is your enjoyment ruined if you learn the final score before watching the big game? Do you curse RealitySteve if you learn who gets the Final Rose on The Bachelorette before the season’s halfway over, or do you pour over his website spoilers before the first show even airs?
All I know is, for me, the relief in knowing I can handle the outcome offsets any thrill I may have received in being surprised. Crazy? Maybe. Blame it on West Side Story.
(Guest post written for my Reality Check blog tour and posted on the Bookworm Lisa blog.)