Honors College

Document Type

Honors Thesis


Media Studies


Michael Grillo

Committee Members

Robert Glover, Judith Rosenbaum, Clinton Spaulding, Jennie Woodard

Graduation Year

May 2020

Publication Date

Spring 5-2020


Spoilers research has produced contradictory findings when it comes to the impact they have on enjoyment (Eden, Johnson, Udvardi, & Rosenbaum, 2019). The relationship varies based on viewers’ personality traits, the medium, as well as the genre. To answer these research questions, this study uses a naturalistic study featuring a horror film from 2003 called Gothika. The study used a convenience sampling of college-aged students, a population that commonly watches horror movies (Eden, Johnson, Udvardi, & Rosenbaum, 2019). I designed the study to consider different groups watching Gothika. The individuals were divided into two categories: those who read neutral spoiled reviews and those who read neutral unspoiled reviews. There was a maximum of four participants in each group. Just before screening the movie, each group read a selected review. After watching the film, I interviewed participants about how spoilers impacted their thinking and how they impacted their enjoyment. After ten groups the findings showed that unspoiled review groups enjoyed the film more than the spoiled groups.