Simple hacks to enhance your binge-watching experience.
It's getting colder and darker here in the northern hemisphere. After returning home from work, nothing beats jumping into sweatpants and enjoying a couple of episodes of a TV show, right? Binge watching has a dress code, too.
You open your browser or turn on the TV and then... there is a problem. Which show to watch? Stranger Things? Peaky Blinders? Maybe a rewatch of some of the first ‘Game of Thrones’ episodes?
Some say that we’ve reached the ‘Peak TV’ phase. According to FX Networks research, there were 412 scripted shows on air in 2015. The number of TV series almost doubled since 2009 (211). Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon are one of the reasons, but cable networks also decided to produce more content.
There is a downside that comes with this: there are just too many shows. One just can’t watch them all. And even if you try to watch a handful of them, you’d struggle with finishing any of them because the new ones come thick and fast.
So… what to do?
1. Create your TV show schedule.
Decide which shows you want to watch and put them on your calendar. That way you’ll progress in all series at the same rate.
To create a TV show schedule, you can try our TV Series Duration Calculator which will tell you how much time you’ll spend watching your favorite shows.
With a schedule, you can avoid scrolling through your show library and decide what to watch for eternity. If you stick to it, of course.
2. Watch it faster. Or slower
In June 2016, Jeff Guo wrote in Washington Post a long piece on how to watch TV more efficiently. It’s simple: watch them at 1.5x or even 2x speed. You can do it in your video player, or you can download a Google Chrome plugin that gives you that option.
It’s controversial, TV shows purists will condemn the idea, but pragmatists will love it. 30 minutes of ‘House of Cards’ instead of a full hour? That way you can watch the entire season in one afternoon.
I did it for some time when catching up with ‘Game of Thrones’, but if I don’t have such amount of content to watch, I still do it old-school style. The story has a certain pace for a reason, after all.
Guo compared watching TV series to reading a book. Sometimes you read every word carefully, and sometimes you just skim through pages. ‘Accelerated speeds make it easier to perceive the structure of a story; slower speeds allow me to savor the details of the filmmaking,' he wrote.
Watching at a faster speed will help you get through the series you need to catch up on that all your friends are familiar with and can’t stop talking about them.
3. Avoid distractions
We live in times when it’s very difficult to concentrate on a single task. Now and then we tend to check our phones because someone wrote us on Messenger or some other apps notified us of something urgent.
It doesn’t help the experience. If you tend to pick up your phone every few minutes, you might miss something important in the series. Or, if you pause every time you do it, an hour-long episode will take you two hours to watch.
But most importantly, you probably won’t enjoy it watching the show. That way, it doesn’t make sense.
With those three simple hacks, you will make your watching sessions a pleasure, not a duty. Are you ready to tune in?