The Video Glutton’s 10 Rules To Binge TV ViewingSeptember 07, 2012

The Video Glutton’s 10 Rules To Binge TV Viewing

Photos Courtesy of HBO, FX, AMC & Showtime

Introducing The Video Glutton - On Demand Weekly's Guide To Binge TV Viewing. @OnDemandWeekly\'s Jean Tait will analyze whether a TV series is Binge TV Viewing worthy.


The Video Glutton’s 10 Rules To TV Binge Viewing
10 Steps To Better Binge TV Viewing

By Jean Tait

Rule No. 1
Plan ahead. Lack of planning can lead to empty refrigerators and Vitamin D deficiency. Stock up on something high in protein that isn’t too crunchy (I suggest ice cream). Crunchy food can make it difficult to hear and makes more crumbs than non-crunchy food. Ice cream can also be eaten without really looking at it, which is ideal for gluttony of the video or any other kind.

Rule No. 2
Start in the afternoon of a day on which you have no plans for the evening. If you start in the morning, this can lead to the it’s 7pm and I’ve still got my pajamas on from last night syndrome. Or worse: having to cancel your plans because you absolutely MUST see that next episode of “The Wire”. Weekends are best. If you plan on a major binge, such as all six seasons of “Lost” you will probably need to take a few days off of work.

Rule No. 3
Be aware of whether or not you are watching something with cliffhangers. If you are binging on a season of “Law & Order: SVU”, it’s easy to take breaks, but if you are watching a season of “Vampire Diaries”, well, just start with an empty bladder, because you won’t be able to stop in between. You will HAVE to know what happens next. So “Newsroom” can be broken into several nights, but not “Revenge.” (see Rule No. 2)

Rule No. 4
Turn off your phone’s ringer. If you are binging alone, you don’t have to worry about bothering other viewers, but seriously, if that phone rings just as Phillip Stroh (Billy Burke) is sneaking up on Brenda Lee (Kyra Sedgwick), you will NOT be happy.

Rule No. 5

Be prepared for side effects. After watching two seasons of “Dr. Who”, you may find yourself speaking with a weirdly affected British accent (think Madonna during her marriage to Guy Ritchie). Or after watching all eight Harry Potter films, you might start pointing pens at your husband and shouting, “Expeliarmus!” when you want him to put down the remote. Or you will start using catch phrases only other watchers of a certain show will understand. Your friends and family will not be amused. It is known.

Rule No. 6 

Shower beforehand. After a full season of “Boardwalk Empire”, you will feel dirty anyway, but still, it’s best to start clean.

Rule No. 7
Have eyedrops ready, especially if you wear contact lenses

Rule No. 8
Keep an iPad or laptop with IMDB handy. You WILL want to know what else Carla Gugino has done. Did you realize that was her in “The Buccaneers?” That was my last weekend’s binge. I was suffering from a lack of “Downton Abbey” (you can only watch two seasons so many times….), so when Netflix recommended “The Buccaneers,” I was happy to re-watch. Carla Gugino is so good, and yummy Greg Wise…sigh. It’s good to re-watch old favorites from back in the day when re-watching wasn’t easily available. (I’ll even admit I watched a whole season of “Poldark.” Hey, I had a new iPad and discovered I could stream/watch in bed just like reading a book! 70’s cheesefest with Cornish accents! Better than 50 Shades of Gray…)

Rule No. 9
Invite a friend. Long before Bridget Jones, my girlfriends and I could cheer ourselves up by popping in the A&E miniseries of “Pride and Prejudice” for a weekend of happily ever after without feeling like cheesy illiterates.

Rule No. 10
After a big binge, it’s good to go on a diet. I recommend grazing. Just watch some “Ren and Stimpy,” one episode at a time. Small doses + big laughs= easy to go to work the next day.



- Jean Tait


Jean Tait is a contributing writer to On Demand Weekly. Currently the Director of Programming for the Connecticut Film Festival, Jean has programmed for the Jacksonville Film Festival and Sundance Channel.

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