For the record, I am not one of those people who watches a movie and ruins the end for everyone else. However, I consistently wonder why there is such animosity to saying ‘well if you read the book…’ when discussing a film or TV show based on a novel. Anyone else receive those glares from passerby? It’s as if reading the predecessor somehow nullifies your argument or opinion.
How many of us simply choose to stay quiet for fear of judgement?
Now I’m not talking about spoiling everything for your friends. Take Game of Thrones for example. There was a reaction of epic proportions regarding the red wedding episode. Everyone remember how the internet practically imploded with tirades, YouTube reactions and related memes? I have never read any of the books that inspired the series simply because I was too young at their initial release and then didn’t want to ruin the show for myself once there were mutterings of the series being televised. However, as a lifelong history buff and fantasy reader, I was shocked that anyone found the episode to be shocking. Stunned in fact. When I chimed in on Game of Thrones discussions, my opinion was all but ignored simply because I am an avid reader, and I saw that I wasn’t the only one.
Is this fair? Not in the slightest. How many years do readers keep quiet while their friends and family finally come around to see the events which unfolded in the books?
So today I say no more. I will actively seek the opinions of other readers, and show at least my circle of friends why reactions are valid no matter if they are from book or screen. I won’t let people assume I’ll simply say the book was better. Instead, I’ll politely share pros and cons of both. I won’t judge them for not reading the book while encouraging others to not judge for the opposite. All in all, each discussion would be better if it is truly that- a discussion, not simply a one sided conversation.
What about you? Have you experienced the same thing? What do you do?