Netflix…how I love/hate thee
We live in an amazing time. It’s pretty awesome, when you think about it, that at a moment’s notice I can summon thousands of hours of entertainment on my TV. Well, my TV that is attached to my XBOX 360 that runs Netflix live streaming. Ah, yes…my 360. There’s another device that gets my love/hate. This could become a regular series.
Anyway, I love the fact that I can sit down and watch an entire television series uninterrupted. You know, the way God intended it. Not spoiled by having to sit through commercials or wait a week to see how our favorite characters get out of the crazy, kooky situation we last saw them in. Such a wonderful way to consume media. Back to back like a smoker chain smoking cigarettes; lighting the next with the dying embers of the previous. We don’t have to wait anymore! And we explain it away as convenience. Think of all the time that is saved. We can now plan activities throughout the week and are not held hostage by network programmers. We can watch the show on our time schedules. Yes, we have finally won!
But…have you ever done this? Have you ever decided, “Okay, this weekend, we are going to roll through 2 seasons of 24. We are going to have a lot of family time this weekend!” Seriously? You do understand that the whole niche behind 24 is that each season is comprised of 24 1-hour episodes, right? (Well, on Netflix, it’s 24 43-minute episodes.) So, at the end of the weekend, no one has spoken to anyone all weekend and everyone looks (and feels) like they just endured a Jack Bauer torture session.
Once again, I must state that I love this convenience. I have been able to find and enjoy wonderful shows that I missed during their original run. Now, I can watch the entire series in a matter of days. At first, if you’re like me, you may think, “I know, right? Isn’t it AWESOME!!!” To which I would reply with a resounding, “YES!!!”
But I caution you. If you have an addictive personality like I do, this is not good. I purposefully chose the “smoker” reference for a reason. The reason being that when I do find that “new, awesome” show, I treat it just like a smoker. I chain “watch” the heck out of that show until it’s done. I get so engrossed in the lives of the characters, that I literally have dreams about the show. And then, when the pack is empty, I go through withdrawals. I get angry that it’s over and wonder why the series had to end. I mean, c’mon, this was the greatest series ever written. Who would ever want to cancel such a show? What the heck happened to Starbuck? Where did she go? Why would Admiral Adama leave Lee when Laura was about to die? What’s going to happen to Riggins now that he has his land and is building his house? Is Coach Eric Taylor going to fit in okay in a non-SEC school?
See…it can be a bit consuming. You may be asking yourself, “What got him so worked up? What did he watch?” Well, this has happened to me twice. First time was a few months back, in the fall. A good friend recommended that I watch the Friday Night Lights television series. Which I did. I think it took me all of 10 days to watch a 5 season series. If that isn’t obsessed, I don’t know what is. Once again, I refer to my addictive personality. Next came when a friend posted a picture on Facebook that had a reference to a character named Starbuck. I didn’t know who that was, but a quick Google search returned the character’s origin; Battlestar Galactica. I had been meaning to take a glance at that series, but never got around to it. A quick search in Netflix, and voila, queued up in my Instant Streaming queue. (Yes, I love sci-fi and sports shows. Some people may call me weird, but I call it “being cultured.”) So, I just finished consuming that show, in less than 2 weeks. Both shows are fantastic and I encourage everyone to watch them…just take your time.
So, why is it a love/hate relationship with Netflix? Well, Netflix gives me everything I want when I want it. And as much of it as I want. It doesn’t take a genius to understand that this isn’t a healthy relationship. Sure…some of you may be able to say, “I can stop at anytime” or “I can handle it.” Well…I can’t. My only hope is that production companies start pumping out horrible television series. It’s the only way I won’t go on a bender.
But seriously, if you haven’t seen Friday Night Lights or Battlestar Galactica yet…run, don’t walk, to your nearest Netflix device and start watching. I cannot speak highly enough about these two shows. And if you need someone to watch them with, let me know. I could probably stand to watch them again. 🙂