UPDATE: It was a troll. There's no Westworld Season 2 spoiler video. The explanatory video the showrunners teased turned out to be a prank. Check it out above.
If you watched the first season of HBO's Westworld, you know it was built on the back of some huge, mind-boggling reveals and twists. Between figuring out which scene went where in the larger timeline and who was secretly a host in the park, fans spent hours every week piecing together clues and theories. Many of the theories turned out to be spoilers in the end, though, and because of this, creators and executive producers Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy say their approach to Season 2 is going to be vastly different.
In a Reddit AMA Monday, Nolan and Joy created a twist of their own by announcing they would be posting a video detailing the entire plot of Season 2 (spoilers included) in an attempt to prevent speculation and spoilers from reaching fans who don't want to be spoiled.
"We thought about this long and hard, and came to a difficult (and potentially highly controversial) decision," Nolan and Joy wrote. "If you guys agree, we're going to post a video that lays out the plot (and twists and turns) of season 2. Everything. The whole sordid thing. Up front. That way the members of the community here who want the season spoiled for them can watch ahead, and then protect the rest of the community, and help to distinguish between what's 'theory' and what's spoiler."
Wait a second... they're going to post spoilers to avoid spoiling people?!
It may sound odd, but if this is true, this could turn out to be a genius move on their part. Fans have an easier time avoiding spoilers when they know exactly where they are and whether or not they're true. The same thing can't be said of rampant speculation that all too often turns out to be right on the money thanks to leaked spoilers, thereby killing the magic of speculating at all. People don't use the same caution when sharing theories and speculation with other fans, but when they know that what they're sharing is definitely a spoiler, they're more careful with the information.
If you're wondering whether HBO will be on board with these two spilling all the deets about the show, that's a pretty fair question. Why tune in if you can find it all out in advance, right? TV Guide reached out to HBO for comment, and the network had the following to say: "This is an initiative from the Westworld showrunners. We suggest you stay tuned to Reddit for their next move."
As Nolan and Joy tell it, guesswork in general is to blame for how accessible spoilers become.
"Theories' can actually be spoilers, and the line between the two is confusing. It's something we've been thinking about since last season. The fans of Game of Thrones, for instance, rallied around and protected the secrets of the narrative in part because they already knew those secrets (through season 5)," Nolan and Joy wrote.
From their point of view, it sounds like this video will act in much the same way as the source material for a novel-turned-TV show would. If fans want to seek out the original publication full of spoilers, they can, but if not, they can just as easily avoid it. As for fans, when they know spoilers are real and not speculation, they'll act as a sort of self-policing watchdog, eager to keep those spoilers out of the way of people who don't want to see them.
This strategy obviously sets a huge precedent, since it's the first time TV writers will choose to proactively spoil their own work. But it could revolutionize the way we watch television and the way fans interact online. On the other hand, this could all be a very silly bluff, and we're all about to get majorly Rickrolled when they do post this "spoiler video."
If it's going to happen at all, though, the post in question will have to receive more upvotes than downvotes, since Nolan and Joy have said they'll let the fans decide whether they want a complete spoiler video to go live or not.
Westworld Season 2 premieres Sunday, April 22 at 9/8c on HBO.