Monday, August 22, 2005

spoiled rotten

WARNING: clicking on any links in this blog entry could reveal Harry Potter spoilers

Friday morning we did a radio prank that got some people riled up. I wrote a fake ending to the latest Harry Potter book and read it aloud on Star 102.1. Listeners who haven't read the book (mostly adults) were upset at us for spoiling the ending. Those who have read the book (mostly kids) got the joke right away. You can read my fake ending by clicking here. Although some lines are copied verbatim, I made sure to steer readers away from what actually happens in the book. Those who heard the bit and have yet to read the book should still be surprised.

The whole bit was partly inspired by my frustration with the Harry Potter spoilers that are out there. A couple of weeks ago, I wrote that most critics were keeping the ending of the sixth book a secret. Since then, several clues have popped up.

A popular online t-shirt shop sells a shirt that gives away a major plot point and then says "I just saved you 4 hours and $30."

Within a couple of weeks of the book's release, the geniuses at one of our radio showprep services posted a domain name in big, bold print as their daily "Site For Sore Eyes." The domain name allows you to figure out the same major plot point.

Entertainment Weekly devoted two whole pages to discussing the ending of the "Half Blood Prince" but they put big spoiler warnings on the pages.

One of my favorite TV shows even got in on the spoiling action. "Best Week Ever" had a joke by Doug Benson in which they bleeped the name of one character involved in the climactic scene but they didn't bleep the other name.

Is there a better way to avoid spoilers?

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Anonymous Brad said...

I like the version of the ending you wrote. Very well done! It sticks with the story and completely throws off anyone who hasn't finished the book. I agree that too many people spoil the fun of others by giving away the real facts way too early. I also like the guys website (even though the name gives it away )

Anonymous rich said...

Is it a spoiler if you just guess and it turns out correct?

Because here are my predictions:

1. Harry is really....
2. Harry's parents are....
3. Hermione is the love child of Hagrid and Professor McGonagall
4. Ron Weasley is Valdemorte reincarnated. His clumsiness is an act.
5. Hermione and Malfoy begin a twisted relationship involving magic wands, whipped cream, and two very special books from the library.

I've blanked the first two, because I'm probably right and Frank would hurt me.

BTW, listening to the show Monday, I was amazed to hear East Tennessee rednecks (don't get offended, I'm one too)talking about reading the Harry Potter books.

That's pretty potent magic right there.


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