TV

The Stages of Binge-Watching a Show on NetFlix

I don’t know about you but a perfectly enjoyable Friday night or Saturday involves me sitting on my couch watching NetFlix with all my favorite snacks around me.

NetFlix is slaying traditional television, turning the industry on its heads and getting major networks to step their games up. They take risks on their shows and it pays off in dividends because we’re all being rewarded with brilliant series like House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and their latest offering: Grace & Frankie (with Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Martin Sheen and Sam Waterston).

NetFlix original shows are winning Emmy’s because they’re funny, dramatic, complex, nuanced, diverse (not tokenized), layered, quirky and fresh. Thankfully, they are fresh.

Then, their selections of past seasons of old shows pulls us in for when we’re done with their shows. I brought you: The Stages of Twitter Grief of Celebrity Deaths | The Stages of Twitter Dealing with a Beyonce Event | The 12 Stages of Writing. Now, The Stages of Binge-Watching a NetFlix Show.

Stages of Binge-Watching Show NetFlix

Stage 1: You find out about this REALLY GOOD show

All your friends, neighbors and countrymen are talking about this one show. Everytime someone mentions it, they do that deep breath thing and their eyes bulge out and they say “OMG HAVE YOU WATCHED IT?!? IT IS SOOOOO GOOD.” And then you feel ashamed when you have to shake your head no.

I mean, it has been in your queue but you haven’t gotten to it yet. You’ve totally been meaning to see it.

Folks also let you know that it has your favorite actor in it or your favorite producer is the one in charge of it. Or the showrunner of that old show you still watch every night on syndication. Basically, NetFlix shows put 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon to shame because they dig in the crates and find the OGs.

For example: Jenji Kohan is the showrunner of Orange is the New Black. She is the sister of David Kohan, the creator of Will and Grace. Tina Fey (my shero, and 30 Rock creator) is one of the creators of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. Marta Kauffman created Friends and now Grace & Frankie.

Stage 1.5: You officially HAVE to watch it

You are told you HAVE to watch it. YOU JUST HAVE TO. They inform you that if you have a weekend free, just commit to it. Do it. Watch all of it. You had already moved it to the top of your queue anyway because you have FOMO (Fear of missing out) and you don’t want to be left out of the conversations at brunch. And you don’t want your friends to side-eye you anymore.

Stage 2: You watch episode 1 of the show

You have a couple of hours free so you decide to just watch episode 1 of the show to see what the hype is about. You press “play” and you chortle at the opening. The song is catchy as hell.

I own this t-shirt, for obvious reasons. It's from Tees in the Trap.

I own this t-shirt, for obvious reasons. It’s from Tees in the Trap.

If this is a NetFlix original, in episode 1, you will either see an ensemble with actors you know and love or this is an ensemble of people you’ve never seen before. Either the OGs or new faces. The fact that Claire Underwood (Robin Wright) was also Jennie in Forrest Gump will never stop shocking me. Actors be acting, man.

If it’s an old show (Breaking Bad, Community) that you’re just catching up with, odds are you already came in knowing a lot of things about it. You’re 5 years behind so you’ve seen memes, Facebook statuses and all that. But you wanna see what all this hype has been about.

Stage 3: You cancel all your plans

You are not sure when it happened but it happened. They got you. The characters drew you in, the quotables are countless, the conflict is escalating and you care about what happens next. Somehow you’re now on episode 5 and you cannot stop. All your plans must now be put on hold. You can go to that day party happening next weekend and you didn’t really feel like going to dinner (or putting on pants and a bra) anyway. You’re staying in to watch it.

watch tv all day

But what do you say to the person you’re canceling plans with? Surely it can’t just be “I’m ditching you for NetFlix.” or “Pennsatucky just got her ass whooped and I have to see watch season 2.” But you don’t want to lie so you might send a “Can we please reschedule?” text. Giving NO excuse is not a lie.

Sometimes, they beat you to it with a weak ass text about how they’re held up somewhere. Odds are, they’re at home on the couch too catching up with their queue. Heaven drops gifts in your lap from time-to-time, like when someone else cancels your plans before you do. SCORE.

Stage 3.5: What is sleep?

Anyway, your plans must be put on hold because now you must watch every single episodes. If it’s a new NetFlix original, then season 1 has 13 episodes. You will knock that out in 1 day, even if it means you don’t go to bed til 5am.

If it’s a NEW season of a show and the episodes drop at midnight, just know that you will be going to sleep in the morning. If it’s an old show, with multiple seasons, you understand that your next 4 weekends are already accounted for.

Also, your hygiene has suffered in this binge-watching haze you’re in. You’re pretty sure you forgot to shower that day and it was supposed to be hair wash day. Ah well.

Need help

Stage 4: You finish all the episodes

If it’s a NetFlix show, you finish the first season and you’re now sad that you have to wait an entire year for new episodes. WHY MUST THEY DO THIS TO US?!?! I mean, you know why but still… WHYYY? It’s so unfair.

If it’s an old show that had about 5-10 seasons and it’s all over and now there will never be any more new episodes, a special type of sadness sets in. It’s like moving away and saying goodbye to neighbors you will never see again. You hit a giant *wall slide* because you’re really going to miss those characters.

But you call up your friends and tell them they were right. THIS IS THE BEST SHOW EVER.

Stage 4.5: You research and re-watch.

Now that it’s all over, you re-watch it to catch what you missed the first time. But you also scour the net for articles that have been written about the show. You read the IMDB page for the trivia, and you read the theories on how Breaking Bad used the color of the characters’ clothes to foreshadow plot points.

You are obsessed and it’s probably not healthy.

Stage 5: You tell other people they HAVE to watch it.

You are now the person telling everyone you know and have a conversation with that they HAVE to watch it. Your eyes bug out and you say “OMG HAVE YOU WATCHED IT?!? IT IS SOOOOO GOOD.” Then they feel ashamed when they have to say no. And you already know what happens next.

Treat Yo self gif

And then someone else tells you about a show you’ve been missing out on. And the cycle begins all over again for you.

* This is NOT a sponsored post, btw.

Anywho, what other shows (not listed here) do I need to add to my NetFlix queue? I JUST binge-watched Grace & Frankie’s entire season 1 yesterday and I am in love.

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62 Comments

  1. Sabrina
    May 31, 2015 at 2:57 pm

    1. Marco Polo – The costumes and cinematography are beautiful. I don’t know why it’s about Marco Polo because I’m found myself more interested in Ghengis Khan.
    2. Dance Academy – Australian drama about angsty teens at Sydney’s National Dance Academy. The show is 24 minutes long, once I started watching though…well you know how that goes…
    3. The Borgias – Either version

    • Sabrina
      May 31, 2015 at 4:27 pm

      Black Mirror!

    • MsZ
      May 31, 2015 at 8:00 pm

      Girl, I’ve watched the Borgias a few times! It never gets old because there’s always so much going on. Plus Cesare is FINE!!

    • dmcmillian72
      June 2, 2015 at 3:04 pm

      Dance Academy and the Borgias were both really good!

    • Ariel
      July 5, 2016 at 1:38 pm

      I am so glad somebody else loved Dance Academy!

  2. TNT
    May 31, 2015 at 3:01 pm

    Marco Polo, Borgia (not the Showtime version), Weeds, Californication and Arrested Development
    Also I love Netflix for documentaries – The Ken Burns documentaries (Civil War, Prohibition, the Dust Bowl, Baseball) are amazing!

    • TNT
      May 31, 2015 at 3:15 pm

      Also Peaky Blinders, Call the Midwife and Broadchurch

      • ametia
        May 31, 2015 at 4:29 pm

        DOC Martin! Totally into British shows.

        • Lanell
          June 1, 2015 at 3:15 am

          Have anyone watched My Mad Fat Diary, Misfits, etc? I’ve been addicted to British shows for years! British and Korean Dramas are my weaknesses. Korean dramas literally had me not doing anything but watch shows and eating food all day long for weeks at a time. I find myself wanting to watch every show I missed. lol

          • Dria
            June 1, 2015 at 6:01 am

            Yess!! I sit in on the corner of my couch and binge watch KDramas on Netflix. I do it on my tablet so that i don’t hog the t.v. and nobody can say ish to me. Lol

    • MsZ
      May 31, 2015 at 8:02 pm

      Have you watched Ken Burns ‘The West’?

  3. May 31, 2015 at 3:13 pm

    I recommend The Almighty Johnsons (about descendent of Norse gods living in New Zealand)

  4. May 31, 2015 at 4:01 pm

    The Fall.

  5. Cellabella
    May 31, 2015 at 4:02 pm

    Lie To Me is really great if you like studying people. You are the side eye maven the main character is quite a side eye specialist. I started looking at people completely differently after watching ALL THREE SEASONS….and yes I’m sad there’s No Mo. 🙁 I’m hoping and praying that they create another season. You are totally on point with these stages though although I think the madness starts once you say…hey, lemme get that free month of Netflix and see what its saying. No turning back.

  6. Cellabella
    May 31, 2015 at 4:05 pm

    YES!!! The Borgias is definitely a must watch…oh the intrigue, the backstabbing, the shade is too real. I went an did research on the real Borgias after watching this…see good for really learning your history.

  7. selaney
    May 31, 2015 at 4:16 pm

    This is so me, once I got rid of cable!

  8. ametia
    May 31, 2015 at 4:25 pm

    LOL I’ll let Diana TELL IT

    Diana Ross – Love Hangover (Full Version)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=niEYaeYa72U

  9. Jennifer
    May 31, 2015 at 4:33 pm

    Dare Devil, Between, the 100, Terra Nova

  10. SIPort
    May 31, 2015 at 5:07 pm

    I also watch podcasts over at Afterbuzz TV. They have gotten into reviewing only one episode a week, and I stopped watching Daredevil in order to wait for them to catch up with me. Watching one episode is a killer.

    Daredevil – you must Luvvie.

    YOU MUST!!

    Vincent D’Onofrio was made for his role in this show. Best villain EVER in the Marvel Universe.

    I also started with Grace and Frankie. I love this show. I think I watched episodes 3 &4 several times before going on. I loved the dinner with the kids, and the emotional punch in the last 5 minutes of episode 4 really got me. Tomlin and Fonda together is genius.

    I’m trying to hold back and not binge, but I’ve been there. I understand the urge.

  11. SIPort
    May 31, 2015 at 5:11 pm

    Also putting in a vote for The Fall.

  12. misses Harris
    May 31, 2015 at 5:15 pm

    You must watch Between. It’s about a disease that killed all the people over age 22….. Don’t wanna say too much. Just watch!

  13. Alicia
    May 31, 2015 at 5:17 pm

    Daredevil Daredevil Daredevil 🙂

    • Lanell
      June 1, 2015 at 3:16 am

      YES! Watched it all in one sitting last week. So freaking addicting! I can’t believe I held off watching it.

  14. Elizabeth
    May 31, 2015 at 5:46 pm

    Drop Dead Diva and for light guilt pleasure watching- young and hungry!

  15. NiHi
    May 31, 2015 at 5:59 pm

    I have binged on Happy Valley, Wentworth, The Killing, The Forsythe Saga Downton Abbey, Mr. Selfridge, and Sons of Anarchy. If you really got it bad (and I do) watch Seasons 2 and 3 of Big Brother Canada on YouTube. I really need a life 🙁

  16. Lincoln
    May 31, 2015 at 8:40 pm

    Here’s what’s been binged at our house:
    Eureka: It’s science and funny and you HAVE to watch it. I have no idea how to explain it really.
    Bletchley Circle: Women breaking code during WWII come together after to solve crimes.

    • SIPort
      May 31, 2015 at 8:51 pm

      Another vote for the Bletchley Circle. Absolutely loved it

    • katori
      May 31, 2015 at 9:54 pm

      Yes to Bletchley Circle. Great actors. I watch it on PBS. I’ve noticed a few PBS series have been mentioned here including Call The Midwife which I also love. Great historical context. I have not ventured into Netflix: I’m fearful I may never leave the house. So I’m definitely among those dancing on the edge of Stage 1.

  17. Jamila
    May 31, 2015 at 8:51 pm

    Right now I’m binge watching The West Wing. Now I see why so many people were into this show when it was on 🙂

  18. May 31, 2015 at 11:25 pm

    How about binging on… radio? (Stay with me here.) Serialpodcast.org is an audio series– 12 one-hour episodes. Non-fiction. OMG, have you heard it? You HAVE to check it out. The first season is about a guy who is in jail for allegedly killing his ex-girlfriend, but his lawyer botched the case, his shady “friend” who told cops on him helped him bury the body, the person who found the body is a school janitor who has a record for streaking around Baltimore naked… (You’re Googling it already, ain’t cha?) These journalist kind of re-investigate the case…and, like a TV series, they leave you hanging at the end of every episode. It is impossible not to want to get to the end to see what happens. But: 12 HOURS! The only consolation is you can download it on your phone, shove in some headphones in and powerwalk while you listen. And it is free. Seriously listen to one episode and see if you don’t find yourself hushing, shushing and flat out pretending you don’t hear people talking to you.

  19. Noelle Green
    June 1, 2015 at 2:37 am

    Wentworth!
    Wentworth!
    Wentworth!

    Makes ‘Orange Is the New Black’ look like a preschool!!

    • Charez
      June 18, 2015 at 11:24 pm

      Yesssss!!!!

  20. Cherie in the F
    June 1, 2015 at 6:26 am

    The Fall. If you have not seen Sons Of Anarchy on cable, you betta get you some on Netflix right away!

  21. Cicely
    June 1, 2015 at 9:26 am

    Well damb im feeling some type of way because I don’t have Netflix anymore. I got the Hulu, and the Amazon Instant Video. But no Netflix. I guess I’ll be reopening my account then.

    I miss House Of Cards anyway…

  22. Jessica Williams
    June 1, 2015 at 10:49 am

    Man y’all give me some ideas! I didn’t started OITNB and House of Cards but the language and stuff were too much for me. I need TV-14 suggestions! Lol Some shows I’ve watched were One Tree Hill, Gossip Girl, Chuck (where was I when these shows were on tv) and I’m finishing up Revenge now. Oh and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is the best!

    • aj
      June 1, 2015 at 7:00 pm

      Arrow. It’s Tv 14 and so good. Also the West Wing if you didn’t see it the first time around. Sherlock, the BBC series, it’s really good and not too out there. I absolutely loved Chuck, it’s in my top five favorite shows ever.

  23. June 1, 2015 at 11:39 am

    I’ve just started binge-watching the first two seasons of Graceland starring Daniel Sunjata who is FINE. FINE. FINE. Did I say that enough times? Since I’m a cord-cutter and don’t have cable, I had no idea it existed until it popped up in my Netflix recommendations. Apparently the 3rd season is starting this month on USA, so I’m going to be upset that I’m missing it after I finish watching Season 2.

  24. Veronica
    June 1, 2015 at 12:27 pm

    Spartacus. It is well-acted, and the sex scenes make the ones from “Game of Thrones” look like over-the-sweater teenage makeout sessions. Only downer: the fine-as-wine lead actor from Season 1 died of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and had to be replaced.

    • June 1, 2015 at 12:35 pm

      Ooooh, Yes! Love Crixus and Naevia!

  25. Jasmine
    June 1, 2015 at 1:31 pm

    You all must watch the Netflix Original Series Bloodlines!!! ITS SUCH A GOOD SHOW!!! My mouth hung open all weekend!!

    And the West Wing if you love House of Cards.. Binge on Parks and Rec if you love Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

    There are quite a few.. But Bloodlines!!! WHEEW!!!

  26. Charlotte
    June 1, 2015 at 1:41 pm

    You are so right. Did the same. Binge-watched entire season of Grace and Frankie. Now I’m mad! WhaddayameantheresNOSEASON2YET?????!!!!!!! Slackers! Ugh! Lol

  27. paintgurl40
    June 1, 2015 at 2:36 pm

    I’m reading the comments and writing down shows to check out. I’m struggling through House of Cards, but I like:
    The Killing
    Breaking Bad (what in the hell was I smoking to not watch this show?!?)
    Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
    I’m also going to check out Sons of Anarchy, Wentworth, Bletchley Circle, Borgias, Grace and Frankie, and Peaky Blinders.
    Also waiting for the next season of OITNB

  28. Cher
    June 1, 2015 at 9:36 pm

    I luv luv luv the unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. I thought it was going to b all stupid and white girly but it is absolutely hilarious. Binged watched it one rainy day to freaking funny.

  29. Kel
    June 1, 2015 at 11:25 pm

    Chile, every since The Ruiner of Movies released that abomination of a trailer for the new Jem and The Holograms movie I’ve been watching the OLD cartoon series on Netflix. I’m about to seriously look for the entire discography because 8 year old me wants to beat the shit out of John Chu while singing all of The Misfits songs.

    Also, I need to send an email to the higher-ups at Netflix.I need some Dynasty in my life. Alexis Colby-Carrington is my spirit animal and she is beckoning me.

  30. Purple Dove
    June 2, 2015 at 8:45 pm

    United States of Tara. Nothing else like it.

  31. foxxxtalltrees
    June 2, 2015 at 10:26 pm

    I got an APPLE TV as a birthday gift (BEST GIFT EVAH!!!!!!). I was home sick x2weeks and binged on SONS OF ANARCHY! Now that’s a good show! Kimmy Schmidt was awesome, DAREDEVIL was so fierce I that I cannot put it into words! The Almighty Johnsons is cool.
    Check out SCROTAL RECALL (not a typo) and Crossing Lines.
    I can’t wait to try some of the suggestions.
    I have to say I messed up though, I have HBONOW & got hooked on GOT (finally) and zThe Newsroom is a must see. This will hold me until the new season of TEEN WOLF begins (man, I really wished you did recaps on this)
    I

  32. Jean
    June 3, 2015 at 9:40 pm

    Re-watching A Different World, started on season two when Debbie Allen took over. Love Orange Is the New Black. Tried getting into House Of Cards, despite thinking Kevin Spacey can be a little hammy. Great acting ( Kevin too), great writing but I just couldn’t get into it. Daredevil is wonderful, a little violent but I just fast forward those parts.

  33. Ccede
    June 6, 2015 at 12:22 pm

    The U.S. version of the show “Shameless” is awesome! I’m not sure if its on Netflix but season 6 is due to start in January. One of the best shows EVER!

    • purple_rain1984
      June 17, 2015 at 7:36 pm

      Shameless is one of the best and shocking shows EVER!! They only have the British version on Netflix though.

  34. Ms. Q
    June 9, 2015 at 12:09 pm

    UGH! I guess I need to get Netflix again because I don’t know anything about any of these shows. I was in the hair shop sitting for 6 hours and watched a show on Netflix about medical examiners but I can’t remember the name of the show… help please? You guys may have mentioned it already, but if not, when we figure out the name, it’s really good!

  35. Reese
    June 17, 2015 at 3:07 pm

    My sis told me about Grace and Frankie, first thing I asked her was if it was old people humor. OMG when I saw I am now a believer in old people humor! When they were talking about the yams….I just can’t. All I could think was I hope my Nanny didn’t talk like this, but looking at her kids and grandkids, she probably did. Can’t wait until the next season. I get so in my feels when I watch the last episode of a series.

  36. Asha
    June 17, 2015 at 5:06 pm

    Dexter! The Killing! Broadchurch! Luther!

  37. […] The Stages of Binge-Watching a Show on NetFlix | Awesomely Luvvie. […]

  38. Meisha
    June 17, 2015 at 7:11 pm

    Daredevil and Sense8. Thank me later!

  39. purple_rain1984
    June 17, 2015 at 7:32 pm

    The only reason why I started watching OITNB is because I heard it was created by the same person that created one of my most favorite shows on Showtime…Weeds starring Mary Louise Parker, Kevin Nealon, and Guillermo Diaz! If you haven’t watched it get to Netflix now and binge!

  40. MzNicky
    June 18, 2015 at 9:57 am

    Mad Men. Mad Men, over and over again. Binge-ing straight through it for the 2nd time. I can’t get enough of that mid-century lifestyle: the martinis, the cigarettes, the swell interior decor. And I just cannot quit Don Draper. Can not.

  41. Gins
    June 23, 2015 at 9:10 pm

    I just started Game of Thrones yesterday (hbo go), but on Netflix:
    OitNB
    Starcrossed
    Arrested Development
    Kimmy Schmidt

  42. July 31, 2015 at 10:05 am

    […] – Dwight Shrute via Netflix binge […]

  43. Barbara
    August 17, 2015 at 2:41 pm

    I’m going with Freaks and Geeks and My So-Called Life. I loved both of these shows when they first came out. I made my niece watch them with me again and she loved them and cried when I told her that was all there was. She blamed us (my generation) for ruining good series for now watching them. I have to agree with her.

  44. August 17, 2015 at 4:08 pm

    Grand Hotel. If you don’t mind reading Spanish and being outraged all the time. Ditto on many of these. Anything serial and British I’ve watched, especially crime drama. Even Dr. Who. Lawd. I live and will re watch binge too. You don’t judge me! 😉

  45. September 11, 2016 at 5:51 pm

    […] The Stages of Binge-Watching a Show on NetFlix […]