Yeah, it’s a mind suck isn’t it?
Automatic. The default position.
If you have become a binge-watcher, the Play Next Episode is made for you.
This new way of staring at our televisions is more than just watching a season of Law & Order, Mad Men or Breaking Bad (though the last two taught us the merits of binge-watching)
No, now we have streaming shows which have a different formula then the old three-act half hour or hour weeklies. Those were written with commercial breaks at the end of each act or climax to keep you tuned in.
Streaming series are now delivered like a novel. You get the whole book and decide your watching schedule based on your free time. I love it! I hate being tied to a weekly time slot for watching or recording.
Network TV always considers Fridays and weekends the “death-slot”. Only Sunday nights build audiences. Not so for new streaming releases. They are released, like movies –before the weekend– for binge-watchers.
The first experiment in this type of “hook” was Roots. But, it was only released a week at a time. It was an event. Other events, like Thorn Birds and Shogun did the same.
Arguing whether to watch in time binges or a week at time to absorb it more slowly is an unwinnable argument. I read in the NYT that argument is the same as deciding if you want to helicopter over the Grand Canyon or take it in step by step.
Binge-watching comedy series is great fun, too. Without the silly three-step writing that networks do, a real substantive story can be told. And then the “play next episode” automatically sucks you in.
Amazon = Catastrophe, Mozart in The Jungle, Transparent, Hand of God, Bosch, Alpha House.
Netflix = House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, Daredevil, Jessica Jones. Grace and Frankie, Master of None, Bob & David, Lilyhammer.
Who’s got time for old fashioned TV?
Ok, sports is a whole nutha’ thing.