in March 2004, a spoiler leaked in the Buffy fandom that someone “big” was going to die in the season four finale.
everybody got worried, the different sides of fandom tried to run theories on how it could be their favorites and how to exclude them. the fandom struggled through a late hiatus, and then a script leaked - a script that detailed a full action-packed finale, ending with the death of Oz (Seth Green).
fandom. went. batshit. Oz was the one character that was both freshly redundant (with the introduction of Tara), and also the character that everybody adored. he was beloved across fandom, despite what ship you were in. people were crying, swearing off the show, some were threatening to hurt themselves.
the pre-finale and finale came around and nobody died. the spoiler was about a recurring character that nobody cared about, who died in the episode before the finale.
i was shocked as shit, because not only was that finale script realistic in its appearance and presentation - the writing was so believably Joss Whedon’s style that it blew my mind.
the point of this is that sometimes spoilers are legit and it sucks. especially if they’re the worst spoilers you can imagine, and we’ve all been there.
but sometimes, if you’re lucky, spoilers that look perfectly legit, that look proven, are just elaborate fakes created for no reason other than to watch people get upset.