How Do You Watch TV?

I admit it: I enjoy watching TV. It kind of has a stigma about it, like I should be doing something more worthwhile with my time. But the truth is, I’ve always liked movies, and these days, many TV shows have movie-like quality. And at the end of the day, most days, it’s all I can do to flake on the couch in front of an episode of Grey’s Anatomy before dragging myself off to bed.

(Dammit, I told myself I wasn’t going to be defensive and apologetic about it. I LIKE TV, so there.)

Lately however, there has been a real change in the how of watching TV for me. We’ve been PVR addicted for years, often stockpiling a whole season’s worth of a low priority TV show for binge watching over the summer, but usually trying to keep up with things on a week to week basis (and some shows, like The Good Wife, get watched live, because OMG, SO GOOD).

Meanwhile, the kids were seriously into Disney Jr., and when they had some TV time they’d turn it on and watch whatever was currently airing, which was most likely an episode of Jessie or A.N.T. Farm that they’d seen about 100 times already.

Then this summer we got Netflix (totally not a sponsored post, just explaining what’s been happening) and now suddenly, we are all, as a family, about the on-demand watching. Sir Monkeypants and I have been binge watching a whole bunch of shows, one each night. The kids are doing the same – they’ve been through three seasons of The Last Airbender (highly recommended), four seasons of iCarly (tolerable fluff for the tweenage set), and are now working on Avengers Assemble, an animated TV show that SOME adults in this house like just as much as the kids (*cough* Sir Monkeypants *cough*).

So now when the kids want to watch something – there’s an endless array of shows available to them, in complete seasons, and they can always find something new. Meanwhile, Sir Monkeypants and I are delving deep into certain titles, and having to wait week by week for a new show seems…quaint and old fashioned.

Sir Monkeypants has been talking a lot lately about ditching our sattelite service, and at first I panicked, because Disney Jr.! And the Home Network! And the Game Show Network!

But he’d be getting us some sort of antenna, which would allow us to get the basic networks (The Good Wife and Grey’s Anatomy would be safe) – and even if we weren’t doing that, you can watch them online for free at GlobalTV and CTV’s websites (as long as you watch the week the episode aired – no back episodes are kept around).

And we’d have Netflix to keep us warm, along with our AppleTV that gives us access to dozens of movies and other channels I haven’t even explored yet.

So…is this what the death of cable looks like? I have to admit, I never thought I’d be one to walk away – my TV is my lifeline to pop culture. But we’re watching the live stuff less and less, and this year EW’s annual TV preview didn’t convince me to add any new shows to my roster so…we’re recording five things, maybe, tops, from the big networks.

It’s just amazing to me how quickly things are changing, how the whole entertainment industry, from books to movies to TV shows, is undergoing some sort of revolution. It’s kind of cool to watch it all happen from a front row seat.

7 thoughts on “How Do You Watch TV?

  1. Totally agree! I keep bugging my husband to cut cable but … sports … Still, the main sport he likes is rugby, and coverage of that is pretty dismal by traditional TV, so they may have lost their last tie for our family.

    Netflix has changed my laundry folding time. I now look forward to spending twenty minutes folding laundry every night because I watch whatever Netflix series I’m currently on while I do it. I’m sad on the nights I don’t have laundry to fold! Netflix even keeps your place so you can start right back where you folded that last t-shirt from.

    Netflix gave me Friday Night Lights, and I’ll be forever grateful for that. It’s also made my kids Dr. Who mad and, while Dr. Who creeped me out as a kid (the old bizarre episodes on CBC), Christopher Eccleston and David Tennant rock as newer doctors.

    And, as an author, Amazon’s “Netflix for books” – Kindle Unlimited, is making me some nice money on borrows of my books.

  2. Pingback: Horrible, terrible, no-good, very bad… | Javaline

  3. We’d love netflix, but we live in the sticks where finding high speed unlimited internet is not as easy as it sounds. Right now we have a bandwidth cap of 20 gigs….. that’s almost inhumane! We borrow whole seasons from the library and binge watch. We actually watch very little regular TV. Just survivor and Big Bang. We have discussed ditch our satellite if we can find an unlimited internet company that can get a reliable signal at our house.

  4. We originally got Netflix for the kids, but now I’m hooked. Last month I binged alternately on Glee and Downton Abbey…and for the first time ever in the history of the Internet got a message from Rogers that we were close to our monthly max. Oops. Gotta keep an eye on usage!

  5. We’re basic cable kinda people. Even considered canceling the entire shebang. THEN I got hooked on AMC and its Movies and the Walking Dead and we just happened to get that channel for free for a bit and then poof, it disappeared. So we upgraded to the next package, only because winter is coming and I’m going to need some heavy distraction when not at the rink. But it’s outrageous how much more they charge for the couple of channels I want. I end up getting many channels i don’t want for that price. After moving or renovating (don’t ask) we plan on going antenna I think, or something. SIGH. But yes, Netflix is awesome isn’t it. I got to go all the way back to the beginning of the Walking Dead because of Netflix. 🙂

  6. smothermother

    I LOVE TV!! just thought i would put it out there.

    we got rid of cable a few years ago. we have netflix and hulu. and download other stuff we want. still comes out way cheaper than cable. and the hubby buys streaming sports packages for various sporting seasons. again, way cheaper than the monthly cable bill.

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