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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Saturday, June 22, 2024

Coming to a close

As this semester comes to a close, I want to take time to reflect on television as a whole and the binge-watching I accomplished. At the beginning of the semester, many weeks ago, I started off writing this column to gain insight into whether or not it’s really better to watch a show staggered or all at once in a binge. The phenomenon of binging is becoming more prevalent as more streaming services like Netflix and Hulu come into play, and I wanted to be at the forefront of binge exploration.

At the beginning of the semester, I was interested in whether binge-watching more deeply immerses the viewer in a show’s plot and characters, because the characters’ lives are intertwined with the viewers’. After many weeks of seeing how this relationship affected my own life, I have come to the conclusion that the benefits of binge-watching are really difficult to judge in the college setting and that I’m still unsure. In college, everyone is so busy that it’s hard to be fully immersed in television, or to categorize periods of time with television. I think this is because I binge-watched so many television shows in such a short time. I think maybe this would have been easier if I had allowed for one television show over a period of two weeks, rather than one television show per week. I think it was also difficult to get a sense of whether or not binge-watching actually makes the plot of a show better. One of my tools for judging this was to binge-watch shows I had already watched before. For example, I watched "Gilmore Girls" (2000-2007) when I was a lot younger and then again as part of binge-watching. I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s honestly difficult to know whether binge-watching, in this case, actually helped me enjoy the plot more. In a lot of ways, it’s almost better to savor the plot of a show that you really enjoy rather than binge-watching it in a manner of days. I found that when I watched a show in such a condensed period of time, I actually started forgetting pieces of the plot because there was so much information being thrown at me at one time. I liked not having to wait for a show to air each week, but at the same time, having the power to watch television whenever I wanted took away from the basic enjoyment of watching the show.

Overall, I hope I gave my readers at least some insight into the trials and tribulations of binge-watching, as well as a better understanding of how the experience of watching a show can be improved or degraded by binge-watching. In the end, I also hope that I recommended good TV shows and explained why I loved and/or hated them.

I really enjoyed watching these television shows and analyzing them for the column each week. It truly has been a semester of Netflix, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Peace, Love, Television,

Maya Blackstone

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