In the post-graduation, unemployed, freelance stage of my life, I had taken to watching a lot of TV series and films. The way the festive season is looking, I might just fall back into old habits. Anyone who indulges in their favourite shows or takes the time out to discover new ones will know that there is a pattern one tends to follow when bingeing on a new season of a show.
Personally, when I choose to watch a show that is surrounded by hype or has received rave reviews from my peers, I expect the worst and hope for the best. Take Love and Hip Hop Hollywood for instance – its Atlanta counterpart is infamous for being ratchet but entertaining. So when I began watching it, I thought it was going to be utter trash. I wasn’t wrong to think that but it is entertaining trash, trash that grew on me after I went through a few noticeable stages after watching the first season.
So, in the first stage, I piece together all the bits of info I have about the show and I preempt how I am going to feel about it based on that info. Thus I don’t expect too much but often I end up pleasantly surprised and later, mildly addicted.
In the second stage, I watch the first episode and I try my best to remember as much information as I can about the show; who is who, who they’re linked to or dating and what part they play in the plot. This is usually an exercise in futility because the producers are obviously not going to put it all in the first episode.
The third stage involves moving on to the next episode for curiosity’s sake. This is when I get hooked and I suddenly need to know more.
At this stage, the length of the show’s episodes is an important factor. If each episode is 20 – 30 minutes long, I try to squeeze in as many episodes as I can before I sleep. But, if the episodes are longer, I take it easy because before I know it, it’s 6am and I am at an episode where (like a junkie) I am craving my next fix – of information, drama, intrigue and scandal.
In the fourth stage, real life beckons. A job, school, friends and family all demand my attention and eventually I have to leave my room and actually talk to people. So I find myself spending hours looking forward to watching the next episode, discovering more secrets and seeing things that prompt me to tweet my thoughts.
By the fifth stage (usually around three days in), I have finished the show and am left with a void that needs filling. I am not the kid that gets all the latest episodes, nor do I watch them online, so waiting for my next media exchange session with a friend is torturous.
Luckily, I have good friends, generous acquaintances, tons of books and magazines and the occasional TV show (on an actual TV) to keep me occupied while I wait. If you want to be a productive member of society, I do not suggest binge watching any kind of show. Not a new show or even one that you’re already following.
But if, like me, you have a lot of time to kill and a curious mind, then feel free to carve some time out of your life, stock up on snacks, get comfortable, press play and get stuck in. Which is what I look forward to doing over the next few weeks with shows like:
– The Walking Dead (finally!)
– Game of Thrones (long overdue!)
– The Vampire Diaries season 5 (I ended somewhere in the middle earlier this year)
– The Vampire Diaries season 6
– The Originals season 2
– Scandal season 4
– The Blacklist season 2
– Love and Hip Hop Hollywood season 1
– American Horror Story season 4 and lastly
– The rest of Masters of Sex season 2
What shows and movies are you going to be watching for the rest of the summer? Tweet us @LiveMagSA
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