the cogs and wheels for getting things out there

TV We've talked before about spoilers and it'll be a topic we'll return to again, I expect. I hate them, hate them, hate them, hate them. Like Moffat, I especially hate them when they come from fans, since for all the enthusiasm, there's the element of knowing something others don't and having the ability to ruin the experience for someone else so that they can retain the superiority because they were able to watch said episode without the preconceived notions.

Way back, I was given the opportunity to see a preview of the first episode of Torchwood, traipsing out to Manchester for an event at old The Filmworks. I wrote up a review as soon as I got home, this review in fact, but I didn't post it. I waited for the actual broadcast because as I said then "Because really after the ending of Everything Changes it would be like telling a four year old that there isn't a Father Christmas and there's a seventy percent chance they'll spend most of their life working in an office. It wouldn't be fair or right."

The ending saw apparent series regular Suzie being shot through the skull by a Captain Jack who we discover, along with Gwen is an immortal, the kind of thing which only works in the moment and led to gasps in the auditorium.  Such twists have become relatively common place now (see Outcasts) and arguably it was a spin-on the Faulkner deep fat fryer moment in Spooks, but the point is that each of these shows and episodes would have lost their impact if the viewer knew beforehand.

The problem is, and this has to be acknowledged by Moffat, it isn't just fans who do this. It's also the publicity machine, the cogs and wheels for getting things out there. Here's a list of everything which has been spoiled for me in Doctor Who by newspapers (often rereported online) or most insidiously official sources like licensed magazines, trailers or promo clips in television news programmes (with the source if I can remember it in brackets afterwards.

Ninth Doctor regenerates (The Sun and BBC publicity department confirming the story that Eccleston was leaving)
Human Hybrid in Daleks in Manhattan (Radio Times cover)
The Master in Utopia (The Sun)
Rose's return (take your pick)
Davros in Journey's End (The Sun)
David Morrisey isn't the new Doctor (interview)
Owen dies (Torchwood Magazine photo in the preview for the episode)
The Doctor's death in The Impossible Astronaut (publicity photos on the Dr Who website the night before)

Couple of whoppers in there and there are others but they pertain to things which haven't been on yet and I don't want to fall into the trap of outing spoilers whilst talking about spoilers.  I also know that a lot if the US publicity is giving away details for episode thirteen which isn't due to be broadcast until October.  I'm sure there were others. The following did come as something of a surprise:

The little girl in Day of the Moon.
Catherine Tate as the Bride.
Ianto's death.
Captain Jack is the Face of Boe.
The fauxgeneration at the close of The Stolen Earth.

Meagre pickings. The extreme latter did mean I had to spend a week fielding questions about whether he really was gone with the ensuing entertainment of convincing someone Paterson Joseph was the new Doctor.  Which is a kind of faux-spoiler I suppose.  But really, please everyone stop.  Someone on twitter suggested that the tabloids are fed loads of stuff by the BBC PR department, spoilers included.  Well, hum.

I'm desperate to know more about The Doctor's Wife, who she is, what it all means, but I want to find out whilst watching episode.  Luckily the officials seem to have been fairly circumspect (apart from a clip on Blue Peter unbelievably) but it's going to be a rough couple of days.  It's also why I'm not opening up the comments on this post, you scamps.

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