Outside of the Bush Administration that is, which doesn’t want anyone to know about anything that they do. I’ve never read any of the “Harry Potter” books, but I have enjoyed all of the movies so far (though I have yet to see the newest), but I do know the twists of the fifth and sixth installments, though I’ve been fortunate so far to avoid hearing about the true ending.
The same, unfortunately, cannot be said for the identity of this year’s winner of the Main Event of the World Series of Poker. For some reason, ESPN doesn’t get around to broadcasting its coverage of those events until months after the winner claims the top prize, which he or she did last week. So far, I’d been lucky to avoid learning the winner’s name, but it got spoiled in an unexpected way as I was innocently reading the quote page of the latest edition of Newsweek and there in the quotes, where I wasn’t even thinking about it, was one from the winner. So, now I know who’s going to walk away with the $8.5 million prize.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always made a simple request to friends who were about to become new parents: Do everything in your power to keep knowledge of the movie “Psycho” away from your children until they are old enough to see it for the first time. I can only imagine what it must have been like to see Alfred Hitchcock’s classic back when it originally was released in 1960 without knowing that shower scene was coming. What a shock it must have been for the viewer to follow along the story which seemed to be ostensibly about Janet Leigh’s Marion Crane only to have her exit the film early and in such a shocking way.
“Psycho” was ruined for me by, of all things, an old episode of “Saturday Night Live” hosted by Anthony Perkins which I saw before the movie and had the skit about the Norman Bates School of Motel Management. I remember how grateful I was back in 1992 when I saw “The Crying Game” before all the hype about the “twist” took over so that its surprise truly was a surprise for me.
The worst cases are when people reveal things without any warning. I remember reading a review of “Fight Club” where the critic David Thomson gave away its twist without any warning in just a matter of fact way before I even saw the film. Fortunately, “Fight Club” was still great with that ruined and it added a new layer to the viewing experience. I also knew about the twist in “The Sixth Sense” before I saw that, but I think I would have figured that one out anyway. “Fight Club” I don’t think I would have.
Since our world has become so saturated by pop culture (We live in a universe where CNN considers the arrival of the Beckhams in L.A. as “breaking news”), secrets will be harder and harder to keep, so artists need to work hard to make sure that their works are strong enough to stand up even if we know what’s coming.
— Scott Schuldt, Staff Writer