This weekend AMC will air the series finale of "Breaking Bad," and for fans who don’t catch the first airing at 6 p.m. Pacific on Sunday night, there’s something even more terrifying than Heisenberg’s wrath: The Spoiler.
You could always stay off Facebook and Twitter. But let’s be reasonable.
Fortunately, someone has come up with a solution: Spoiler Shield, an app that blocks The Spoiler. More on that later.
According to ratings company Nielsen, more than half of Smartphone and tablet users surf social media while watching TV. One-fifth are reading discussions about the show they’re watching.
Networks like AMC have fully embraced the second-screen experience, getting actors like Aaron Paul to live-tweet episodes.
But miss a first airing – which is easy to do especially on the West Coast – and you risk having a key plot twist spoiled.
Josh Solt is an avid "Game of Thrones" fans, who couldn’t catch the pivotal “Red Wedding” episode when it first aired in June.
“Everyone was talking about it on Twitter," Solt recalls. "I had to record it. I was at my cousin’s birthday. I came home and the show was just not quite the same after seeing those spoilers.”
And that’s when Solt, a West Hollywood-based app designer, got to work developing Spoiler Shield.
"We like to record Dodgers and NFL games or our favorite TV shows," said Solt. "It was really frustrating when people would spoil the final score or the plot twists in the shows.”
Spoiler Shield is free and was launched this week. It works by blocking thousands of key words on Twitter and Facebook: not just "Breaking Bad," but also the names of characters like "Jesse Pinkman" and "Skyler."
It supports more than 30 TV shows, as well as NFL and Major League Baseball games. Solt says more TV shows and sports will be added soon.
Netflix launches Spoiler Foiler
Spoiler Shield will face competition from Netflix, which is launching the similarly named SpoilerFoiler.com.
The site will allow you to see a "Breaking Bad"-free Twitter feed Sunday night, something that would normally be about as likely as the show ending happily ever after.
But for now, SpoilerFoiler only works for "Breaking Bad."
For those following social media on a browser, there's also help for that. There are also Google Chrome add-ons for those who prefer to specify exactly what keywords they want blocked, including Silencer and Twivo, which was developed by a 17-year-old girl earlier this year.