Thursday, February 27, 2014

The Binge Watcher

Remember in the olden days when you would just hang out all week for the next telly episode of Love Boat on Sunday night? How quaint! Fast forward to the ugly future of binge watching. Horrifying confession: I just binge watched five years of The Wire in two weeks. (No, no please don't tell me about House of Cards; with those Machiavellian suit wearers, you are really tempting me!)

Don't you be tempting me with Kevin Spacey and Ronin Wright in House of Cards

The Wire is about drug dealers in Baltimore and must be one the most addictive series ever made (besides bizarrely the first two of Downton Abbey) The genius of the show is that everyone is portrayed as a whole person, good and bad; the drug dealers, the teachers, the politicians, the corner boys, the journalists, the cops.

Binge watching The Wire with Teddy

Diary of a binge day:
7am: wonder if I can skip dropping off the youngest two at school and use that valuable time.

3.30pm: Cy, 10, arrives home.
Call down: I'll be with you shortly, just make yourself at home...

6pm. Tap tap on the bedroom door.  Tallulah's voice: Mama? What's for dinner?
Cereal tonight kids, Mama's gotta finish up Season Three.

2am:( Tapping veins) Just one more, one more.

For those two weeks I just spoke Wire....True that, A'ight? and You come at the king, you best not miss.

I reckon one of the best of the one-liners (mofo alert on these links) here and here was the simplest: "You want it to be one way, but it's another" delivered by the gimlet-eyed kingpin Marlo Stanfield. I used it on all the kids and it has to be said they slightly deviated from their normal trifecta of expressions - blank stare, eye roll, eye bulge. There was actually a definite glimmer there...

Cheese, Bubbles and Proposition Joe, I miss you but I had to return to school lunches, work and walking the dog. I know. You want it be be one way but it's another.

What's your telly watching technique - old school one week at a time or binge?








67 comments:

  1. I just did 5 seasons of Damages!!! I am still scared of Patty Hewes so I wont say a bad word about her. But wasn't the Wire just amazing - I went to a talk that David Simon did in London and he said that working for it makes it better and that he wouldn't explain everything to accomodate - he is so badass. I miss all of them but I had a thing for Omar...

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    1. Love Omar!! Felt that last scene with him was not believable. Did you know that Omar was a real person and actually helped with the writing et. He was a consultant to the show. So jealous you got to hear David Simon.

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  2. I'm an unaplogetic binger. Tudors, House of Cards both American and the even better British original, and every BBC costume drama that Netflix has evrr made avail for streaming.

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    1. Maybe when I come out of binge rehab I can settle into Brit version of House of Cards

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    2. GSL, I am total anglophile when comes to telly even did Call The Midwife despite that childbirth and talking about it makes me feel v, queasy. it was average and saved by the glorious Chummy, that woman should be in every historical concoction.

      http://www.pbs.org/call-the-midwife/home/

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  3. Glad to hear/read I'm not the only one who feels Downton has become terrible. Don't get me wrong, as long as it is still beautiful and Maggie Smith's character is alive, I will still watch!
    I am a major binger. The worst part is the depression after it is all over!

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    1. Total depression. I miss Omar...and kinda Patty and the Countess..

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    2. I'm into US House of Cards and am watching Friday Night Lights as I missed it the first time around. I'm stretching out my viewing of both, which is highly uncharacteristic of me!

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    3. Yes! Someone else told me about Friday Night Lights - plus as you know I like a bit of red headed spotting and Connie Britton is the ultimate - don't you think her hair should get some sort of award too - it's awesome!

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    4. Omg I started HoC (US) this weekend and it is amazing. I had the most fab time yesterday...my rule was one glass of wine per episode. Ashamed to say I drank 8 glasses of wine haha

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  4. Binge...my daughter started me on Scandal...highly addictive.

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    1. Have read so much about that and just love the style of the main actress Kerry Washington

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  5. Love to binge watch! Remember The Soprano's? How much fun did we have binge watching that, we would cozy up in our bedroom with lots of red wine and baked ziti, it's true! I was so sad when we finished watching and I'd be madly jealous of anyone who hadn't watched it.
    Downton is so so boring now, except for the clothes and Maggie as Stephen Andrew so wisely points out.
    I haven't seen The Wire, do you think I should begin? Might be a way to get through the rest of this hideous cold winter.

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    1. Yes! I know, its totally the opposite of Downton, but start on The Wire - today. The ones where they focus on the corner boys and the dealers are the best.

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    2. But Dani, if you are doing the accompanying food theme, I'm not sure what I would recommend, Googly tells me Natty Boh cookies and put a marshmellow on your snowball. http://www.baltimoresun.com/entertainment/dining/bal-100-foodies-pg1202,0,5822554.photogallery?index=bal-fo.takeout09p120091202061455.
      Baltimorians (is that right??) could you please weigh in here?

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  6. Must binge watch House of Cards - hoping for a rainy Saturday so I can lock myself away and splurge. Scandal tonight finally back - the Do Not Disturb sign will be up for that as well. I have Episodes on the DVR - which is hilarious and I watched 3 last weekend. Mad Men starting in April - doesn't get much better than that.

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    1. Big rains promised for this weekend here, but am resisting for a couple of weeks to get stuff done

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  7. haha I binged watched season 2 of house of cards the weekend it came out. My best binge watching was 10 seasons of stargate sg1 in a little over 20 days. Done it with everything from 24 to the x-files, so much better.

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  8. Already watched a few years of The Wire, so maybe I'll finish it this week. Need something since I just finished the US version of House of Cards. Fabulous, very nearly as good as the British. British has a stunning ending - but that can't happen with the US version. As ruthless as the American Claire Underwood has been portrayed by Robin Wright, at this point, nothing she could do would be a surprise.

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    1. Wow, love Robin Wright in anything except very dreadful movie called Adore with Naomi Watts which was the most boring yet off-putting movie ever, lots of salad tossing and wine drinking and beautiful homes and beaches, but both women were having affairs with each other's 20 year old sons! Yuk!!!

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    2. I saw this movie so you don't have to, but Robin Wright ad the most incredible bikini bod ever!

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  9. Love this post and the comments and replies are so much fun. I think I might have to watch the Wire, Damages, and the British House of Cards. And you should def watch Friday Night Lights. Maybe with your daughter. My girl and I had such a fab bonding experience watching it.

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    1. Hi there, Tallulah and I watched Monk together about a guy who was obsessive compulsive which to be honest might have been a bit unsuitable for a 12 year old girl but it was set in San Fran about guy with a lot of human frailty so it was great watching.

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  10. Love Robin's hair!
    My son watches "house of cards"....says that I would think it was rude!
    Well.....I can't watch nudity......that is a given!
    Have you watched Doc Martin? Another PBS series.....love it!
    Enjoy your weekend...
    We will be on the road home......Saturday morning. :o(
    Do hope you will follow me when I get home.....

    Cheers!
    Linda :o)

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    1. Oh gosh Linda, Doc Martin? Totally binge watched that! Loved it! Then went onto the detective show Doc's girlfriend was in..now can't remember name. Looking out for you when you get home

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    2. Scott & Bailey is another excellent one....oh....I could go on and on!
      But.....I won't!
      Sun is out......yahoo!

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    3. I have not heard of Scott and Bailey??

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  11. I did something like that when I discovered the Wire as well...kept saying...'oh one more episode' and we kept saying lines of the show. I think I still need to see the last season of it, can't remember. But, it's quite good. I hope you keep enjoying. Not seen House of Cards...am trying to catch up with Sons of Anarchy as I just discovered that one & I'm about 3 or 4 seasons behind America yet!! But, it's good :)

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  12. My DB has been binge-watching Breaking Bad. At his place. I can't download stuff with my crap internet connection so I have never binge-watched a thing, and as I'm out all day, I'm not sure if what I could actually do could be called binge-watching, or just catching up with the boxed set. :)

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  13. We binge watched the Wire too! And now we're binge watching 'les revenants' and 'Real humans'. Les Revenants is amazing... Very compelling watching.
    Back in the day I binge watched Twin Peaks while chain smoking. Fond memories.

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  14. Always binge watch!! Last weekend watched Silk, british series - love Martha. Binge watched the wire a few years ago. very addictive series. only realised years later that the character Snoop was a female.
    Janey

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    1. Yes Snoop, I actually then binged on the Googling. She was a rapper in real life, a former user and had a very hard childhood like the kids in the series. After the series she was put in prison for dealing, Wiki says. Also Proposition Joe was an interesting character, he coached all the kids (two of the boys were cousins) and encourage not to overuse expressions on their face, to feel it. Think he had a heart attack and died (best check that). Apparently locals said Proposition Joe had the best Baltimore accent. pretty amazing that JImmy was British and he was the actor I recently saw playing Richard Burton, now that's a good actor!

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  15. I'm the worst with a tv series. I loose interest half way through when I have to wait for it once a week. Especially when they stop it to do a recap/ break for school holidays/ some special sports event. The only thing I stick with is Mad Men. All others - Downton, West Wing, etc etc I can't watch.

    Actually the only other one I watched and loved and stuck with was The Hour. Have you seen it? Set in the BBC in the 50's with a tv show that's a bit like 60 minutes (except high brow). Lots of political intrigue, adultery, good fashion and very strong plot lines. Absolutely loved it. You must watch it if you haven't already.

    The husband binge watches - he downloads series before one of his overseas flights. Then he comes home and tells me I'd love house of cards etc etc. But he's already up to series 3 or whatever, and I just can't be bothered catching up. xx

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    1. Funnily enough with old school watching, I always do that (never finished even Sopranos) except with Homeland. When my interest wanes I'm actually relieved because it gives me some relief from the ObsComp.

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  16. my have show ever is the Sopranos but I don't like a binge- week to week for me. Just watched H of C with Mr FF x

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    1. Old Skool. Growing up in NZ we only had only channel - how about in Australia?

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  17. Oh, binge all the way! I got hooked on The Sopranos, went on to breaking bad and am currently working my way through the "Nordic Noir" genre (Borgen can't be recommended highly enough!)

    I have a long flight coming up soon but i have a tablet and The Wire in my arsenal so I think I'll be quite happy!

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  18. Love bingeing, I watched Breaking Bad like that, Big Love, Weeds, 4/5 hours at a time,
    I'm surprised I didn't get a blood clot.

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    1. I don't even want to think about how many hours I've done back to back. Well as above, I've done whole days and nights.

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  19. I LOVE binge watching. I am binge watching Game of Thrones right now. Total awesomness. I have seen seasons 1-3 of The Wire so far, I still need to watch the last two.

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  20. Watching House of Cards too and the new True Detective on Netflix.
    Not a binge watcher per say...but have been known to watch two episodes at one sitting. Saw the Wire a few years ago, loved The Soprano's and still am enjoying Downton Abbey. That Love Boat show was so cheesy....

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    1. Def can't watch it now. Poor old Julie ended up being a terrible alky apparently...sad

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  21. Uggh--- I am so guilty of binge watching certain programs. Typically it is my husbands fault--- somehow it always start when he is sick and stuck on the couch!
    Currently we are behind on all our fav US programming (that's the way it goes here in Singapore) so we've taken advantage of lots of Hulu (courtesy of my vpn) and enjoyed several episodes of some of our favs!

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  22. Jealous of you doing this.. Got to one day as my kids will appreciate me more perhaps.. I have a few downloaded, but not watched - Mr Selfridge and Call the Midwife.. Got to check these others out.. Also late to Parks and Rec and the whole family just discovered and we binge on it now. One of my very favorites, but the first season is crud..Gets much better.

    Happy weekend! Stay dry Jody!! xx

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    1. Call the Midwife is great when Chummy comes into it, she the tall gangly posh one and is just hilarious

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  23. I enjoy a series binge. Sadly, Foxtel doesn't accommodate this easily, but I do love a marathon. Looking forward to a Game of Thrones binge. Waiting a whole week for the next episode doesn't sit well for me.

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  24. Yup, thought it was fantastic - the second series has just aired in the UK and that was great too. Or 'bra', as Saga Noreen Malmo County Police would probably say.

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  25. I did have a little mad men binge but had to come back to the reality of my life I preferred my dream mad men life to grocery shopping, ironing , cooking and chores.

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    1. yes they were all good friends to me too.

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  26. HOUSE OF CARDS is all I can say. Won't let myself truly binge watch because I don't want to be finished before there are more episodes (Netflix). I allow myself no more than 2 per night. Fun to remember how we used to have to wait a week. In elementary school, I loved Friday nights because there was Brady Bunch and Partridge Family. If they were ever pre-empted, it was such a bummer!

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    1. Hi there - Partridge Family...life singing on the road. Shirley, what happened to her. Think Keith - was that the eldest boys name now a bit of an It Girl in LA> Did you read that Alison thingy novel about a girl in Wales having crush on David Cassidy?

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  27. We are soooooo slow at watching boxsets. We can only manage two episodes at a time, once or twice a week, so it takes years to get through them.
    Have the family been fed yet?

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    1. Oh ...what? The family??? Fed?oh I knew there was some rustling in the background...

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  28. House of Cards is brilliant but there is nothing, I mean NOTHING to surpass The Wire. Not even Breaking Bad. The Shah wanted to call our Cats Bunk and Omar - that's how obsessed we were!

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    1. CQ, we had many discussions about who were the best actors in Teh Wire - it was so hard to choose! Maybe in the end for me in was the kids - but for sure Bunk and Omar were next. Agree, think its the best show ever written

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  29. Haha, so entertaining you bring up binge watching and I know what you mean when it used to be special for the night your fave show was on. Now it's so tempting when you hear of a great series to watch it, get hooked and need to see every season. I did that like 5 years ago with Nip/Tuck lol. Anyway, this was very entertaining and I've heard so much about the Wire so I need to give it a shot. I keep hearing about House of Cards too.

    xoDale
    www.savvyspice.com

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    1. Dale, I know people who loved Nip Tick, Thingy richardson is good actress, but I could not stand the gore. Does it put you off doing PS? (plastic surgery/)

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  30. Binge watching. Included how many bottles of wine? Well, no mater; you enjoyed yourself.

    The Wire. Downtown Abbey. House of Cards, Game of Thrones. Mad Men. Breaking Bad. Heard about them; haven't seen any. Have I truly been deprived?

    Blessings and Bear hugs!

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    1. No wine, just watching. (yes amazing!) The themes would be great for sermons actually

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  31. Binge!! I am a bit of a softy when it comes to TV and films though - cannot watch anything more exciting than Jungle Book without having nightmares. So at the moment it's 'Samantha Who' on end, plus Mr Selfridge which is available on itv player. Awesome :)

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    1. OOh just had to google Mr Selfridge with Jeremy Piven looks a goody.

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  32. I just confessed all of my binge watching and think the comment was lost just now, thank god! Glad to know I'm not alone!

    xo Mary Jo

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  33. How cute that you have watched all of those episodes in such a short period of time! I haven't seen this series but you have peaked my interest.

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  34. first, i'm binge READing all your old posts and having a good laugh as usual - you are SO funny jody and just a pleasure to read. you always manage to leave me with the feeling that the world is a little smaller, which is a nice feeling. i binge watched all but the most recent season of downton abbey then lost interest? watched all but the last season of mad men in 3 weeks. saw what all the fuss was about but quickly forgot about it. my husband was binge watching sons of anarchy (violent, bikers and also starring rachel from mad men!) on his ipad while i watched mad men. i watched one episode and got completely hooked. doesn't hurt that the show has this impossibly hot guy as the star. and yeah we are doing the same, picking up the show's biker lingo 'cause it's fun.

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    1. Hi Ursula! How great to hear from youI know...I just dropped off Downton too, what happened there, needed Maggie and that eldest one was annoying love Rachel from Mad Men, she was such a fascinating character. Have got a bit disgusted with Don and probably can only do one more season with him - and I hope he knows it too! (There is only one more season so just as well)

      I won't even mention Sons of Anarchy to kevin as we will be instantly down that rabbit hole of time-sink.

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