Review: ‘Spoiler Alert’ tells a down-to-earth love story that will pull your heartstrings
For a long time, LGBTQ+ characters were less likely to receive positive representation in the media. Fortunately, times are changing. We’re now seeing more queer stories that feel relatable and don’t always follow through with the stereotypes and TV tropes. The same can be said for the film Spoiler Alert – a romantic drama based on a memoir of the same name. On the surface, it’s a story of a gay couple. But their tale is just like everyone else’s, filled with ups, downs, and complications everyone else deals with in everyday life.
Spoiler Alert stars The Big Bang Theory‘s Jim Parsons and The Bible‘s Ben Aldridge, who play entertainment journalist Michael Ausiello and photographer, Kit Cowan. The narrative begins with is on a hospital bed during his final hours, with his family surrounding him. Ausiello narrates the story of the couple’s 14-year relationship, starting with how they met in a gay nightclub in Manhattan, and other events that will eventually lead to its tragic end.
Throughout, we see their relationship develop. From when they first fell in love, to when Michael met Kit’s parents for the first time. We also got to see them move in together and have their first Christmas, while also being confronted with fallout, separation, and eventually the revelation of Kit’s cancer.
Spoiler Alert remains very honest and down to earth, but at the same time, it does add a bit of comedy to break the tension. Viewers will feel like they’re part of Michael and Kit’s lives as the story goes on, and would want to root for them to make the relationship work. However, you also have to admit that relationships take a bit of work and they will not always go as planned.
Something unique about Spoiler Alert‘s storytelling is the incorporation of a “sitcom-style” accompaniment whenever Micheal feels unsure of himself or feels like something’s wrong. He managed to transform bits of his childhood memory like it was part of a TV show, using them to seek advice whenever something was wrong. Unfortunately, these “sitcom-like” childhood flashbacks aren’t maximized as well as they should be.
Speaking of sitcoms, Parsons’ narration in Spoiler Alert might be intrusive depending on who you are. As someone who watched Young Sheldon, a Big Bang Theory spin-off about Sheldon’s younger years, the narration felt somewhat reminiscent of the TV show, and one may criticize that it somewhat breaks the storytelling rule of “show, don’t tell.” Parsons narrates almost throughout the entire film, especially when time passes by or when he shares his thoughts on certain situations.
While the narration might feel interruptive in some cases, it’s later revealed that it’s part of his eulogy during Kit’s funeral, which somewhat explains why the film started in the hospital. In a way, it’s all connected, but there were some parts of the storytelling that felt like actual narration more than a eulogy, so the lines feel somewhat blurred.
Spoiler Alert feels like any other sad and tragic love story, only this time it’s about two gay men, but that doesn’t matter because these people feel relatable. Michael and Kit’s relationship isn’t perfect; it was turbulent, yet also heartbreaking. You want to root for them, but due to how the narrative started, you know there is no happy ending. You know what’s going to happen, yet you’re dragged along this amazing love story that you wish there is still hope for the future.
In the end, Spoiler Alert isn’t just a “love story between two guys,” but a story about about a romance that’s down-to-earth with its up and downs.
'Spoiler Alert' is a film that tells a story of a not-so-perfect relationship that will make you laugh, cry, and feel like you're part of Michael and Kit's life.