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Friday open thread: (SPOILER: discussion of spoiler etiquette inside)

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Marvel Studios' Avengers: Infinity War Screening At Fox Theatre
SPOILER ALERT: Not Thanos
Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images for Avengers: Infinity War

I don’t know about you, but I liked last Friday’s open thread. So I decided that, at least for now, we should do this every Friday - with the season coming to an end, there’s not a lot of soccer quizzes that are all that relevant, and once the World Cup starts up we’ll be doing a bunch of open threads for those, so let’s flex those muscles!

Today I want to ask a question. The lovely mrs. pdb and I saw Infinity War last weekend; I don’t necessarily want to ask about that, but I want to ask about something about it. Without getting into the plot or anything, suffice it to say that you can’t talk about Infinity War without heavily leavening it with NO SPOILERS warnings, which brings up a question in my mind. This isn’t an original question, but it’s still kind of interesting - what, to you, is the statute of limitations on NO SPOILERS warnings, and on not discussing key plot points of a movie/tv show/whatever?

I don’t think there’s really a hard and fast rule around it, but for me, it also kind of varies depending on the thing. I mean, for story-arc driven TV shows, like your Games of Thronses and your Westworlds and the other prestige-type shows, for me, you get, at most, a season beyond the current one of protection. After a year, if you haven’t seen it, it’s kind of on you to either see it or realize that you’re not going to get to it any time soon so you should just sorta live with the possibility that someone might spoil the fact that St. Elsewhere (ask your parents, kids) was just an autistic kid’s mental image, or that Walter White dies at the end of Breaking Bad.

Movies are a bit different, and for me, a movie like Infinity War has a much briefer timeline. I mean, that movie has already made a billion damn dollars, meaning that almost literally everyone who wants to see it has seen it (at twelve bucks a head, that’s EIGHTY THREE MILLION PEOPLE if each person only sees it once). It’s two weeks out from release at this point, so for me, given the numbers it’s done up to this point, another couple weeks and you shouldn’t feel like it will be automatic to get spoiler protection any more. Non-comic-book/tent-pole-series movies have a little longer timeline - a year or two - but even then it shouldn’t be taken for granted that the key plot point of a five year old movie will be hidden behind NO SPOILER alerts.

Now! This is not to say I’m going to be the guy to actively spoil a movie or TV show if it’s past some arbitrary deadline (or even before it does). I’m not a dick. I understand how the magic of these things works, and I won’t go out of my way to ruin a thing for anyone.

Let’s say we get to the holiday season this year, though, and for some reason in an off week for Arsenal I post a comment about something pivotal that happens in Infinity War, as a conversation starter. At that point, I’m not going to preface it with NO SPOILERS, because by then it will have been seven months and pretty much anyone on the entire planet who was wanting to and able to will have seen it, so if you haven’t seen it yet, the burden of avoiding “spoilers” has kind of shifted onto you.

What about you? What is your time horizon for not spoiling a movie or a TV show? Are you one who goes out of their way to avoid reading something that might be spoiler-y, or do you not care one way or the other?

And speaking of movies, we’re going to see A Quiet Place this weekend, and I’m really looking forward to that. Any movies you’re particularly looking forward to seeing? If you’re not a movie person, any other cultural thing you’re excited about?

Also, talk about whatever! It’s Friday! What’s going on this weekend for you? Doing anything for your mom for Mother’s Day (HINT: if your mother is still extant, you should be doing something for your mom for Mother’s Day)?

It’s an open thread...Let’s chat!