Public editor

Spoiler alert!

Updated: 2013-12-11T00:30:42Z

By Derek Donovan

The Kansas City Star

I got email from a rather perturbed reader about “The Week That Was” in Saturday’s FYI section. That’s a feature that runs every week looking at various pop culture moments from the past seven days, along with quips and jabs.

“Please convey my ‘thanks’ to David Frese and Hector Casanova for letting us know the ending of ‘The Walking Dead’s’ season in this morning’s ‘Week That Was,’” he wrote. “I am glad they got to see and enjoy the episode before many others of us who now will not have to suffer the excitement of seeing which characters are killed off.”

This poses a dilemma worth discussing: How should journalists cover fictional entertainment?

Readers have identified many times when they thought especially a movie review revealed too much of a plot, and that’s an objection I can certainly understand. “Citizen Kane” wouldn’t be nearly as captivating if the view goes into it knowing the identity of Rosebud.

Episodic TV is a bit of a different story, though. “The Walking Dead” is an exceptionally popular show, and the midseason finale that aired the Sunday before the Saturday “Week That Was” killed off the series’ biggest bad guy.

I’d say it’s virtually impossible to discuss the show without disclosing that detail. But as my emailer noted, many people record TV to watch on their own schedules — and this is happening more often every day.

His opinion is that six days wasn’t enough here. I don’t think everyone would agree with that, but it’s a valid point of view.

To reach Derek Donovan, call 816-234-4487 weekday mornings or send email to publiceditor@kcstar.com. Follow him at Twitter.com/KCStarPublic.

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