It appears I crossed some invisible line of propriety last night.
Fans have been eagerly awaiting the American showing of Downton Abbey Season 3 since last Spring. As with many series from the UK, it is shown there first and then we get it 6-12 months later. Whatever.
After last night’s show, I posted:
I didn’t identify the show, so only those who know the names would have recognized it. I didn’t give away any essential details or any of the drama. It sounds no more revealing than the blurbs in a TV schedule listing — it doesn’t say how the servants are sabotaging each other, it doesn’t reveal the plotting for rescuing the Downton Abbey from closure or WHY Cora’s mother decides not to help. And I didn’t mention a particularly troublesome health concern among one of the cast members (and the one person who mentioned it only mentioned the name without revealing the cause for concern).
Apparently that was too much. Some people seemed bothered that I should post spoilers, or at least mildly perturbed.
I understand about first-release movies, and I understand not everyone flocks to the theaters immediately, so people don’t give it away until the movie has been out a while and those who want to see it have seen it. People tend to be sure others have seen it before discussing it among themselves.
And I get that, I really do. But for a television program, it is watched when it is first shown. It is sometimes repeated 2-3 times during the next week. I’m not responsible for other people’s time zones or whether they watch it at first run or a subsequent re-run, and I am definitely not responsible for people recording shows and watching them on their own schedule. That is certainly their right to do so, and I won’t deny them that, but I won’t be sworn to silence until everyone in every time zone and media venue has had a chance to see it on their own terms.
Can you imagine a TV, movie, or theater critic unable to write until everyone has seen the production?
Especially not for Downton Abbey — it’s been available online and on DVD for a long while, even before the “official” release on PBS stations, and people in the UK and elsewhere have already seen the entire season.