For future reference, I wanted to make a quick post to clarify my position on spoilers in reviews.
Generally I tend to avoid writing spoilers in all my reviews. I try to treat my reviews as a professional would, like something that could be published by a newspaper for those deciding whether or not to see a movie or read a book. The purpose of reviews is to have someone reading it who trusts my opinion be able to make an informed decision about whatever it is I’m reviewing without compromising his experience. Spoilers are still occasionally necessary to fully evaluate a work, and therefore I try my best to warn the reader beforehand. There are three levels of spoilers that I will use as disclaimers in my reviews, detailed below:
- Minor spoilers: These spoilers reveal minor elements of the story’s plot as vaguely as possible. Usually they’re included in order to address something about the story’s structure or format without trying to address particular plot points. I do my best to make the spoiler as inconsequential as possible so that one who is reading the review will not feel anything important about the work has been revealed beforehand.
- Example review: The House of the Scorpion
- Spoilers: Spoilers without any qualifying adjectives warns the reader to proceed at his own risk. While I still try my best to try and keep the most intimate details of the story out of the review, I will address particular plot points and possibly the ending of the story. I try to only use spoilers if I think that the majority of people reading the review will have already seen the work or that the work is so bad that spoiling the story won’t matter.
- Example review: Charlotte
- Major spoilers: With this review, I am explicitly writing for those who have seen the work already. There will be no attempt to disguise specifics of the story or characters. I usually try to only use major spoilers in secondary reviews (supplements of reviews I’ve already done).
- Example review: Puella Magi Madoka Magica Movie 3: Second Review
There are two last bits of spoilers that I will address here, late arrival spoilers and It was His Sled. I do make a conscious effort to avoid using these, especially when referring to anime as what is considered “fair game” in that community is not generally known outside of it. All I can say about these kind of spoilers is that they’re inevitable to the reading experience, and if it isn’t me who spoils the well known twist for you, it’ll be someone else eventually. In general, be warned that these kind of spoilers will be unmarked.