Spoilery question about the book "John Dies at the End"
November 11, 2012 10:18 AM   Subscribe

Spoilery question about the novel John Dies at the End inside.

Soooooo....why is it called "John Dies at the End" when it's actually Dave who dies (sort of)? Just the narrator being a dick (which would fit)? Or did I miss something more subtle?
posted by Lentrohamsanin to Media & Arts (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I think it's the same reason the sequel is called This Book is Full of Spiders: Seriously, Dude, Don't Touch It. Just as John doesn't die at the end, the book isn't full of spiders, and it's OK to touch it. It's a meta joke about the function of a title, which is to be consonant with a book's themes while being a little enigmatic and not giving too much away, and these are on theme in a lot of ways: death, spiders, and most importantly humor that sort of winks at the reader.

Parsing it as the narrator teasing and/or being a dick is also fine.
posted by Monsieur Caution at 10:35 AM on November 11, 2012 [1 favorite]

I sorta liked that the one thing you're pretty sure you know about the book the whole way through just turns out to be pure misdirection. You could regard it as a reminder not to necessarily trust the narrator.
posted by Sing Or Swim at 10:52 AM on November 11, 2012

Can't judge a book by its cover?
posted by Sassyfras at 11:04 AM on November 11, 2012

I agree with the other answers and I think it's also functioning as a comment about the notion of 'the spolier'. The book was originally written as an unfolding serial online, so you get this feeling of quite fast-paced forward momentum towards a plot end-point which has supposedly been given away, seemingly rendering that propulsion meaningless. The 'spoliery' nature of the title is also referenced in the new trailer for the move adaptation: "But whatever you do.....don't spoil the ending!"
posted by hydatius at 1:07 PM on November 11, 2012

Thanks everyone. I thought that was basically it, but with all the doubles and possessions and parallel universes and whatnot I wanted to check that I hadn't missed something tricksy.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 2:28 PM on November 11, 2012

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