It’s that time of year again; snow is on the ground, Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas is You” is playing on just about every radio station and there’s a new Star Wars in theaters.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is out, and it’s hard to contain our excitement about it. It’s all I want to talk about with co-workers, friends and my friendly neighborhood Lyft driver, but a new Star Wars movie also means it’s time to revisit proper post-movie etiquette. I saw the movie at around 10 p.m. on Thursday preview night, so by the time I got out around 12:30 a.m., there was barely anyone in the theater. Still, as I went to shout about one of my favorite scenes, a co-worker reminded me that some of the theater employees lingering around the empty lobby hadn’t seen the movie yet.
I get it: It’s really hard to not talk about the movie you’ve just seen, especially if it’s Star Wars and doubly so if it’s a good Star Wars movie. It’s important that we remember to abide by the rules handed down to us by The Simpsons, and keep our mouths shut until we’re in the safety of our own cars, apartments, houses or underground bunkers.
I’m not pointing fingers at anyone. I had to apologize profusely to my wonderful cab driver last night after spending the 20-minute drive home talking animatedly about almost every scene in The Last Jedi. He was very understanding and kept reiterating that it’s okay, but it’s not. His Star Wars viewing experience shouldn’t have to be ruined because one overzealous fan can’t keep talk about anything else — like the absurd traffic on Manhattan streets at one in the morning — for less than half an hour.
Going forward, I’m going to abide by Twitter rules that I set in place for myself. I’m not going to mention anything about The Last Jedi in public, just like I wouldn’t talk about The Last Jedi on Twitter. Unless it’s an obvious jokes that everyone is in on, it’s easier and more respectful just to avoid talking about Star Wars for now.
The question is how long this moratorium on Star Wars conversations should be in place? I’ll abide by my own rules until the New Year. That gives people enough time to watch it. At Polygon, we’ll keep spoilers out of headlines and social posts for a much longer period of time. It all comes back to respect for our audience and people in general.
As testimonies begin to hit Reddit and Twitter, with theater employees and random passer-bys complaining about hearing spoilers before they’ve had a chance to see it for themselves. As one Reddit user pointed out, “a lot of people from my 7 p.m. showing spoiled it for the 10:30 p.m. showing people.”
We all love Star Wars, and we want to discuss every scene that flashed before our wide-eyed faces as it washed over us. That’s good! Conversation about movies is always good. Just remember to be aware of your surroundings and keep Homer Simpson’s mistakes in the back of your mind at all times.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is now in theaters.