Honestly, if someone snottily recommends that you need to ”quit whining and stop watching trailers”, then all they are doing is cowering away from an adult conversation. They are spiteful and closed-minded little keyboard warriors, who feel the need to condescendingly disregard anything that doesn’t line up with their own point of view. What’s more, they cannot even formulate a proper retort, hence they’re childish attempts at heckling. The worst thing however, is that they are basically acting as enablers, by attempting to silence legitimate criticism so that studios can continue to trample all over the hard work of their employees.
These smarmy gits aren’t even particularly clever or original either. As we’ll soon address, their argument barely holds water in any real world scenario and even if it did, it would still be a load of anti-consumer shite! You see, what these people fail to comprehend is that demanding better from the entertainment industry is an inherently positive thing, and it is certainly not the same as being entitled or snobbish. We all give these companies our money and in return we have the right to critique their practices. Believe it or not this applies to advertising too, as surely we ought to complain if poor promotion is damaging the merchandise we’re paying for.
As you can probably tell, I find this pervasive attitude somewhat bemusing. I can’t wrap my head around the idea that fellow audience members are taking it upon themselves to enforce such an ultimatum: ”stop watching trailers or risk having everything ruined for you”. Nor do I understand why they are so insistent that we be put in this position, when we could just have trailers that aren’t spoilery instead. That makes sense right? I’m not using zany Wonderland logic.
Then again, these toadies are so quick to extinguish any criticism of their precious studios, that it’s like listening to the feeble excuse-making of an abused spouse. Indeed, there’s an uncanny resemblance between what these people are suggesting and the rhetoric that is deployed by a housewife when she is covering up suspicious bruises. You know the type: ”It’s my fault really. I shouldn’t get in the way of his fist!’ All you have to do is swap the last word in that sentence for ”marketing”.
They’re so bloody quick to deflect any flack levelled at the industry, oblivious to the fact that these feelings are not reciprocated in the slightest. Newsflash dickheads, the studios don’t give a crap about you, only your wallet. You don’t have to run to their aid every time something negative is said about them.
The simple fact of the matter is sometimes trailers suck. Granted that’s not always the case, but it is a growing concern for many and pointing that out shouldn’t be met with derision, persecution or lame attempts at debunking. Contrary to what you might think, when us pundits ask for less revealing trailers, we’re not being miserable buzzkills looking for an outlet to winge. In fact, that couldn’t be further from the truth. We desperately want to enjoy films and long for the thrill of seeing an awesome set-piece or disarming twist, without already knowing about it from the previews. We’re not trying to ruin movies you hypersensitive douche-bags, we’re trying to get the most out of them.
Moreover, where do you even draw the line with this ”just ignore it” school of thought? I mean, does it go on to invalidate the very notion of criticism itself? If someone doesn’t like a new song, can you simply demand that they not listen to it? Or if you encounter a pundit who doesn’t approve of the latest political decision, do you suggest they stop engaging in democracy? It’s such an easy stance to take isn’t it? Because it doesn’t require any of that strenuous mental effort or critical thinking nonsense. You just have to say ”I don’t like what you said, so fuck you!” and then you’re golden.
Tell me, if it’s such an air-tight argument, then can I start using it to justify my own work? If so, then when people take umbrage with what I’ve written here, I’m just going offhandedly dismiss their complaints by telling them they shouldn’t have read my article. If you don’t like it, don’t read it. ‘Nuff said. Apparently.
And before you ask, yes I am petty enough to do that.
On principle alone this entire argument can be bluntly rejected as the petulant crap that it is. But it then deteriorates even further when you consider it from a logistical perspective. As aforementioned, if you actually try to follow through on the ”stop watching” command, then you’ll soon realise that it’s fundamentally unfeasible.
It’s all well and good instructing me not to watch spoilery promotions, but how do you propose I actually fulfil this obligation? For a start, I’m not clairvoyant, so I don’t know which trailers are going to ruin things until after I’ve already seen them. After all, if I were capable of predicting which adverts were going to give too much away, then of course I would avoid them.
Presumably then I’m expected to steer clear of all adverts in general, just for the sake of eluding the bad ones. Which is a ludicrous suggestion and you know it. This might come as a surprise to the basement dwellers among you, but trailers aren’t exclusively housed on YouTube, where you have to consentingly opt-in to watching them. No, they’re everywhere. They’ll appear on TV without warning, they automatically start as you scroll through Facebook, and they sometimes play on bus timetables. You’re guaranteed to encounter them, whether you’re online, within the comfort of your own home, or even outside (you know that bright place with the sun and the clouds and other people). So unless I become a tinfoil hat wearing loon, then there’s very little chance of me successfully dodge them all.
And then of course we have the simple fact that trailers are an intrinsic part of the cinema-going experience. Following the ample promotions for alcohol, banking and 4 door saloons, there’s always going to be approximately 20 solid minutes of trailers. As a result, if you’re passionate about film, then chances are you’re going to be exposed to previews on a regular basis. How, pray tell, am I supposed to avoid these promotions, other than by giving up on the cinema altogether (a course of action that commenters have recently forbidden me from)?
I suppose I could just leave the screening for the duration of the trailers, but how would I know when it’s safe to return? If I leave it too long and interrupt the actual film, then I’ll be derailing the experience for everyone else, thereby violating my own principles on cinema etiquette. It’s a lose-lose situation, either I see the trailers, or I go to such ridiculous lengths to avoid them, that I inadvertently become the villain. And now we’re getting into a whole Nietzschean thing about me turning into what I hate and I really don’t have the energy for that.
Furthemore, I resent the notion that I should impose exile upon myself just because spoilers have become grossly unchecked. I shouldn’t have to hide as soon as the trailers start in the movie theatre, nor should I have to go out of my way to avoid marketing of any kind. Putting that responsibility on consumers is royally screwed up. You can deny it all you want, but there’s clearly a problem if that’s the paltry workaround we’ve chosen to enforce.
So here’s what I propose as an alternative: stop excusing shit trailers all the time. Otherwise, you’ll just have to come to terms with the fact that people are gonna keep complaining about them.
Alright, I’m finished. My well of vitriol has been fully drained. But before I go, permit me to reiterate something. If you had a problem with anything that I said above- like the allusions to domestic violence, the individual reasonings, or the generally hostile tone of the piece – then all I can say to you is this:
You shouldn’t have read it.