Netflix Is Ruining Television

My love for Netflix has done considerable damage to my television viewing expectations and experience. Learn why at blissfullemon.com

I have been a Netflix subscriber off and on (more on than off) for pretty much as long as their streaming service has existed. I’m even happy to admit that I have grown to love it more over the years as their list of offerings, especially original content, has exploded in size. With that said, I have come to realize that my love for Netflix has done considerable damage to my television viewing expectations and experience.

Related: Cut The Cord: The Best Television Streaming Services

I’m Not As Excited For Movies

My favorite Netflix series is Marvel’s Jessica Jones. I love all the Marvel series, but Jessica Jones edges out the others by just a hair. And one of the greatest things about it is that there are 13 episodes, each just under 1 hour, that tell a full story with as much detail, grit, and drama as possible. That’s more than 10 hours of content that wouldn’t have existed if Marvel had chosen to make a Jessica Jones movie instead of a television series. The movie would be too fast paced, not nearly as impactful, and lack most, if not all, of the tiny details that make you love Jessica Jones’ character. Why? Because you can only tell so much in a 2 hour movie.

It is this realization that has made me leery about spending my money or time watching any movie that isn’t a romantic comedy or something with an overly simplistic plot. That’s not to say I don’t still love some movies, but I find myself wishing that some had been created as a series instead. Not only does it give you more creative freedom to say/do what you want, but it allows more time for some of those sped up action scenes that always leave me shaking my head, wondering what in the world just happened.

When you watch a television series, it feels more like you are being thrust into the world of a character. Movies, in contrast, feel like Instagram stories. You only see the best little bits that are deemed the best/most exciting, while everything else is hidden neatly away for you to wonder about. I would much rather see more “uneventful” content and feel like I am more fully submersed.

I Am A Spoiled Baby (And I’m Losing My Patience)

It’s Sunday, which has very quickly become one of my favorite nights of the week with the return of The Walking Dead and Talking Dead. That in itself is not a terrible thing. However, I have become so accustomed to binge watching my favorite shows that it has made the 166 hour wait between episodes almost unbearable.

I realize that this is very much a first-world problem and I really have no business complaining about it at all. But it’s very much an “issue” that I have to bring up if I am discussing the ways that Netflix has ruined television for me. They have spoiled me beyond hope.

That is especially true with the added benefits of not having to watch commercials and, with the addition of one of their newest features, no longer having to watch the 10-30 second introduction for my favorite shows. As much as I love Family Guy, I can only sit through so many iterations of the opening song before I start to go a little batty.

I’m sure that in time, I will discover even more reasons to love Netflix and hate normal television. In the meantime, there are just a few hours left until The Walking Dead, and I am going to go finish watching something that Netflix doesn’t yet provide – live sports.

#SaveTheCrew

10 Comments

  1. Netflix definitely has changed the viewing habits. I can not remember when I last watched live tv. Heck we even unsubscribed from all networks. If they don’t stream yet or offer on demand- tough luck. The only thing I will watch on tv is olympics and world championships just because no other options. Crazy huh? I remember a time when we didn’t even had a tv and every time we turned it on it was like Christmas…

    • It’s funny that you mentioned that because I also remember a time when only “rich people” had any type of DVR service and if you weren’t able to catch something live you had to record it onto a VHS and hope you didn’t have to record over something else you hadn’t been able to watch yet. Now I am a spoiled baby, mad because I don’t want to have to wait a week to watch my high-def TV, which automatically adds the show to my DVR and the on-demand list to be streamed whenever I get around to finally watching it. And I am complaining. That puts things into perspective!

  2. I totally agree! I think it’s great to have so much more time to get to know the characters in a TV series and there’s only so much you can learn in film. I’m currently watching Ozark, which I worried would be too much like Breaking Bad but so far I’m enjoying it. It’s not one to binge-watch though as it’s pretty dark and intense!

    • I haven’t watched that yet. I’ve been on a bit of a British baking/cooking binge lately and will have to add Ozark to my list for when I come out of this trance. I loved Breaking Bad, but never actually made it through all 5 seasons to be honest. Maybe I should revisit that as well. 😉

  3. Television needed to be ruined, IMHO. Gave up cable a while ago. Everything comes to me via the Interwebs now. Sure I miss a few things (like Saturday Night Live). But I can watch it the next day through a TV app on my iPad. I never watched sports or the news so nothing for me to miss there. I find the quality of writing for Netflix or Amazon Prime to be much higher than for TV shows too. Except for Disjointed. Watching the first couple of episodes of that show made me feel like I was watching a regular TV sitcom again. C’mon Netflix, you can do better than that!!!
    Thanks for posting this Aimie!

    • Oh, you’re absolutely right – it needed to be ruined a long time ago. I think Netflix allows some shows like Disjointed to be made just to remind us that they can’t all be winners. 😀

  4. There is something to be said for binge watching, but there is also something not so good about it too. I go back and forth on Netflix as well, but we are a slave to FiOS (if only for the internet).

    • You can waste a lot of time binge watching something. It’s funny because sometimes I will start to binge a show, get almost to the end, and have to force myself to just stop and take the last few episodes at a more leisurely pace.

  5. I have to admit, I am still watching a lot of normal TV… mostly news and documentaries. I’ve had a Netflix subscription for as long as I can remember, but I am usually just going there for movies (esp. during the holidays). I agree though, I know many people who have completely switched to Netflix.

    • What types of documentaries do you like? I watch a bit of “normal” tv as well, generally live sports or shows like Expedition Unknown and Impractical Jokers, which I get via Playstation Vue. I doubt I’ll ever be able to switch completely, but I do hope normal television broadcast companies and movie production studios will start to follow Netflix’s lead and allow more creative freedom, longer series instead of movies, and fewer commercials during shows.

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