Binge-Watching

Posted by Lord Bearkeeper OBE DASc on
Category: Film & Television16 Comments

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Each year we see a list of new words that have been added to the Oxford-English Dictionary and sometimes it brings a smile to our faces but mostly goes by unnoticed. This year, however, they have hit the nail on the head with the new word of “binge-watching”. This is something we know all about here at Jammy Toast because we are so guilty of the act that it is unreal. Binge-watching, also called binge-viewing, is the practice of watching television for longer time spans than usual, usually of a single television show.

In a survey conducted by Netflix in February 2014, 73% of people define binge-watching as “watching between 2-6 episodes of the same TV show in one sitting.” Binge-watching as an observed cultural phenomenon has become popular with the rise of online media services such as Netflix, or in our case; Sky’s TV Box Sets where you can watch entire series of the latest and greatest TV shows whenever you want.

The idea of assembling several consecutive episodes of a television series in order and watching them in rapid succession originated with the marathon, in which the television stations themselves programmed several hours’ worth of reruns of a single series. This practice began in the 1980s and is still popular among subscription television outlets in the 2010s.

The usage of the word “binge-watch” can be traced as far back as the late 1990s, when it was used by circles of television fandoms. It consisted of watching several episodes of a particular show in a row via DVD sets. Although theoretically possible with home-video, very few television shows released episodes to home viewers in the tape format. The word’s usage was popularized with the advent of on-demand viewing and online streaming. In 2013, the word “exploded” into mainstream use when Netflix started releasing episodes of its serial programming simultaneously.

It is hard to count the number of sleepless nights followed by regret mornings that binge-watching causes. However, if you are anything like us here at Jammy Toast you just can’t stop watching after you find a programme you like and so you start what we call the “Binge-Watch Cycle”…

  1. You start watching the pilot episode to see if you will like it.
  2. You find yourself intrigued after the pilot so you go ahead and watch the next one.
  3. After the third episode, you’ve already convinced yourself that it is a great show so you go and watch another one because you just have to.
  4. Then comes the episode that’s really, really great and you know you just need to watch more.
  5. You look at the clock as it strikes 1am so you promise yourself just one more episode and you’re done.
  6. But then the most unexpected thing happens and you know you just have to watch just one more to find out what happens next so you go ahead and watch another one.
  7. Your eyelids are falling and you’ve been yawning so many times but that episode was so good you just want to talk about it but everyone’s sleeping so you go ahead and watch another one.
  8. Now you’re starting to be less sleepy and you avoid looking at the clock because you know you’ll totally regret it in the morning but still you go ahead and watch more episodes.
  9. Long before you know it, the sun is rising and you just watched the finale episode. It feels like you’ve accomplished sometime but then you find out that the next season won’t be out until next year.
  10. By this time, you probably need help because you just want to binge-watch again but there’s nothing to watch anymore so you turn off your TV but then you can’t sleep because damn that was a good show and you just want to binge-watch some more.

A great advantage of binge-watching is the lack of adverts. If you watch Criminal Minds on Sky’s Box Sets then each episode lasts for approximately 41 minutes. If you watch it live on Sky it lasts for an hour because of the adverts. What a waste of time adverts really are and it becomes so annoying having to fast-forward at x30 through them.

Also, most of the shows end in a cliff-hanger and you can’t wait for the next episode – that isn’t a problem if you’re binge-watching!

All we need now here at Jammy Toast, is a device that will pause Sky Box Sets if you fall asleep!


About the Author

Lord Bearkeeper OBE DASc

A sad and lonely old man who used to have a life but it has now been taken over by his dedication to the cause of saving Renault Bears, running Jammy Toast and searching eBay, car boot sales, charity shops, lofts and even under beds for his beloved bears. He has even now taken in Flat Eric to save him from homelessness – his life is no longer his own!


16 Comments on “Binge-Watching”

  1. I definitely binge watch. I watched the entire series of Breaking Bad over 3-4 days and loved it, though I’m not so sure I would have felt the same way if I’d started with it at the beginning and went through the seasons with it. Same thing with Game of Thrones, I’m up to date now and frustrated that I have to wait for the new season.

  2. All the shows I’ve enjoyed the most are the ones I’ve binge watched: Lost, 24, Criminal Minds. There’s something especially luxurious and fun about having a whole season of a really good show to watch.

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