As a lifelong committed nerd, I have sacrificed literally years of my life consuming television and movies in the Science Fiction and Fantasy genre. I was present when Star Wars first appeared on screen in 1977, and was raised on reruns of the Original Star Trek which propelled me to the theater to see the Motion Picture in 1980. I was present for Battlestar Galactica and cried like a drunk little girl when E.T. died. My point being, I consider my childhood to be the golden age of the birth of truly culture defining scifi.
But we are entering a new phase of entertainment, one that is no longer constrained by TV networks’ impossible viewership standards and reliance upon commercials. With the explosion of internet based content distributors such as the 1000lb gorillas named Netflix, Amazon and Hulu, we are blessed with a never ending supply of excellent content.They are not constrained by self imposed “Standards and Practices” or time formats. They have the freedom to write and produce shows that move at their own pace and eschew the usual 5 act 1 hour drama formula that has plagued network television for decades. Shows are now edgy, artistic, outlandish, bizarre, and most of all, take chances the big boys were never able to.
And this model is working so well, they are practically printing money. And the networks have responded by beginning to change how they produce and show content. The pay tv networks such as HBO and Showtime have their own streaming apps that those without cable subscriptions can pay for separately. And they are beginning to realize that viewership is no longer tied to a schedule and is increasingly consuming more On-Demand content than live streamed content. Therefore their shows are being released as entire seasons instead of doling them out one episode at a time. They haven’t begun to move their entire catalog to this model, but some are trying it with select titles.
This original content has created a world in which we no longer have to lament not watching the latest hit show, because chances are, there are several dozen hit shows at any one time, with all episodes available just waiting for you to binge. I used to get anxious and worry I would miss out on what everyone else was so sure was the best thing since peanut butter cookies. Now, I am relaxed knowing that I no longer need a cable subscription. I have complete access to a library of awesome and amazing content. And really, a lot of it is amazing.
Shows I am watching and have added to my Queue, of which I may get to one year.
- Game Of Thrones
- Riverdale (Archie rules)
- The Man in the High Castle
- A Series of Unfortunate Events
- Jessica Jones
- Luke Cage
- Iron Fist