For science fiction fans, the future can't arrrive fast enough. That's why we crave spoilers. This past year, spoilers gave us early glimpses of some crazy developments... and sometimes, steered us wrong. Here the greatest and wrongest spoilers of 2009.
Oh, and it almost goes without saying, there are some spoilers here — including spoilers for stuff that hasn't come out yet.
The Biggest Spoilers Of 2009:
Isabel Lucas is a Desexycon. One of the weirdest moments in Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen comes when the sexy coed who's gone partying with Sam gets him alone... and suddenly has robo-tentacles and stuff. WTF? Turns out she's a robot in disguise. And she's come to try and grab Sam for what he knows about the shard of whatever. Fans were guessing Isabel's actual role early on, but in early January, set video of her stalking across campus as people fled the destruction clinched it. (I honestly can't remember right now which commenter came up with the term Desexycon to describe Lucas, but please let me know who you are, and I'll credit you.)
Oh, and last year we listed "Megatron's coming back in Transformers 2" as one of the wrongest spoilers of the year, because Michael Bay emphatically denied Megatron would be back in the new film. Oh well.
Timothy Dalton is a Time Lord. This one was being rumored on Outpost Gallifrey and other fan forums for months and months... and in mid-June, we got confirmation, in the form of an exclusive leaked picture showing David Tennant, John Simm and Dalton goofing off together. (This was also the first confirmation that Simm was back as the Master.) You can tell the three Time Lords had fun filming these episodes.
We also had a gallery of glimpses inside Matt Smith's TARDIS, and glimpses of the Daleks and Winston Churchill, and set pics of River Song returning. We also had oodles (sorry) of "Waters Of Mars" set pics, including revealing pics of the last scene.
Meanwhile, I still don't know what to make of the set pics we posted, showing David Tennant visiting a bookstore where Verity Newman (Jessica Hynes, the love interest from "Human Nature) is selling a tell-all book about the Doctor. I'm assuming that's in "The End Of Time Part 2," but when? It's a little baffling. Unless this is a deleted scene? See also these set pics, showing Joshua Naismith running out of his house, falling to his knees and looking at the sky in horror. From Part 2, I'm guessing. Also, Donna in a wedding dress, Billie Piper's cameo, Sarah Jane cameo, and appearances by Captain Jack, a Graske, red-and-white aliens, and Midshipman Frame.
Young Scott Summers is in Wolverine. This one's worth mentioning because we labeled it one of the wrongest spoilers of 2008 last year. We were pretty sure it was false, because Fox/Marvel wouldn't be silly enough to overstuff their film with that many irrelevant guest stars... would they? We also had a super-accurate early synopsis of the film. As one commenter wrote, "I want to kick someone in the knuts after reading that."
Yeoman Rand could be in Star Trek 2. At least, we got Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman to talk about the likelihood that there'll be more strong female characters in the second Trek. They said a version of Janice Rand turning up was a definite possibility, since they're going back and re-watching all the old episodes. And maybe Uhura will be more than just a love interest too? We also reported the future destruction of Romulus and past destruction of Vulcan.
Ianto Jones dies in Torchwood, "Children Of Earth". We labeled this a "wild rumor" and said it shouldn't be taken seriously. Shows what we know. We still wish we'd been right.
Juliet dies on Lost. To be fair, it was the bookies that figured that one out. Also, Locke is definitely dead for good. We've also had oodles of details about the filming of season six in morning spoilers lately — almost every post has had new set pics or details of the alternate universe where Flight 815 landed safely.
Arnold Schwarzenegger gets a cameo in Terminator Salvation. But only as a CG face, and not in the flesh. Also, toy pics revealed pretty early that Marcus Wright was a cyborg. It's also worth mentioning that this was the movie where spoilers saved us from a terrible ending — in which John Connor dies and has his face transplanted onto Marcus Wright. After that ending leaked, they changed it to a slightly less terrible one.
Alan Tudyk is Alpha. Fansites were reporting that Tudyk was playing Dollhouse's mysterious villain/savior for months, and then a photo finally confirmed it. And yay. Although we got confused and thought Tudyk was in the same season finale as Felicia Day — they were actually in two different season finales, one which aired and one which didn't. Also, an "April Fools" video gave away early that Paul Ballard goes from FBI agent to Echo's handler.
We may already have met Iron Man's arch-enemy. The jury's still out on this one, but Faran Tahir, who played Raza in the first movie, started hinting last Spring that his character could turn into the Mandarin, the supervillain with ten rings who's the bane of Tony Stark's existence.
Avatar is Dances With Wolves in space. James Cameron came out and admitted it was true, back in August.
Leonard Nimoy is William Bell. (Yay!) But his storyline will be scaled back drastically to accomodate Nimoy's schedule. (Boo.)
Someone commits suicide on Stargate Universe. Robert Carlyle inadvertently gave away the "murder mystery" in episode six, "Justice," several months early.
The Wrongest Spoilers Of 2009:
The Decepticons try to conquer the universe. If only. A fan reported that a phone survey asked them how they'd respond to a possible storyline for Transformers 2, and it included Starscream raising a giant Decepticon army and setting off to conquer the universe, with only the handful of Autobots to stop them. I'd watch that. Also, Michael Bay said the robots have more personality this time, and you'll be able to tell what's going on in the action scenes.
Also, someone leaked a supposed screenplay for Transformers 3, which was pretty obviously fake. Insert your own joke about how there can't be an early script because Michael Bay films first and writes the script afterwards.
The TNG cast all turn up in Star Trek. We had a strong inkling this was wrong — but one of the writers of the IDW prequel comic (which does feature TNG characters) hinted strongly that the Next Gen crew make a brief appearance in the movie, when we learn about the future that Spock traveled back from. As nice as it would have been to see Picard again, it's probably just as well this movie didn't overdo the cameos. Also, Sulu is the Enterprise's counselor. What?
Brian Blessed is ODIN! BY THE SKY BEARD! I'm still sad about this one. I mean, I love Anthony Hopkins, but you know he's going to phone it in, just like John Malkovich does whenever he's in a genre movie. And Brian Blessed never phones anything in — he brings a megaphone, stands next to your head, and SHOUTS IT IN. Is it too late to have a campaign?
We'll revisit the scary piano basement. Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles' Brian Austin Green promised that we would get some answers about what on Earth was happening with Derek in the future, with the scary basement with the piano music. And unless I totally missed it, we never went there. (Was Charlie Fischer in the scary basement? Except that didn't happen to "our" Derek.) We need basement answers! We also misinterpreted some comments from Garret Dillahunt to mean John Henry was definitely Skynet. Oh well.
Batman 3's script leaks! Thank goodness, we were pretty sure this was a fake from the beginning. It features "Joker gangs" rampaging across a benighted Gotham which is suffering from power brown-outs, and the police call in their special consultant, Edward Nigma, who speaks in riddles.
Spider-Man 4 features Carnage AND Electro. We really, really hope this one is false. It sounds like it's not happening, based on recent statements by Sam Raimi. But a synopsis for the fourth film, posted by an Australian cinema chain, claimed that both of these villains would be vamping their way through another overstuffed sequel.
Kate's Getting Killed Off On Lost. Rumors were flying that Evangeline Lilly was leaving the island-castaway drama a year early, and the actor was auditioning for new TV pilots. Also dying? Sawyer. These rumors obviously referred to a different timeline, in which the hydrogen bomb went off in someone's car or something. Also, we'll meet Aaron all grown up, on the island, in 2030. (Although this could still happen, I suppose.)
Neil Gaiman is writing for Doctor Who. The same message-board sources who said Timothy Dalton was a Time Lord also said the Coraline author would join the Who writing staff in 2010. Also, Britain's most reliable tabloid, the Sun, reported that 2010's episodes will include a storyline in a museum where the Doctor battles Hitler's stormtroopers, plus rampaging monsters, and an episode based on Mark Gatiss' novel Nightshade. Pretty sure that's not true. Also, we reported a rumor that the specials would include Ice Warriors, fish people and the Doctor's daughter. No, wait. I mean "The End Of Time" will include the Sontarans and the Tractators. Oh, and "The End Of Time" part one ends with the Time Lords arresting the Master, and Donna's eyes burning.
Dominic Monaghan plays Beak in Wolverine. I'm not actually sure whom he played, but it wasn't Beak.
Claire's bio-mom is alive on Heroes. Actor Jessalyn Gilsig said she didn't actually die in that big Primatech fire, and hinted her character would probably be back. And for once, someone actually stayed dead on this show. We also reported Daphne wasn't really dying.
Venkman will be a ghost in Ghostbusters 3. The rumor came directly from Sigourney Weaver, but it's been pretty widely debunked.
Walter plays matchmaker on Fringe. Walter will be trying to get Olivia and Peter together — but they may turn out to be brother and sister. Huh?
The squid is definitely in Watchmen. Okay, so this was a spoiler we reported in 2008, not 2009. We're still annoyed, though.
Additional reporting by Mary Ratliff.