Not all shows are equally binge-able.
Binge-watching has become the norm these days—why watch an episode or two when you can watch a season or two? It’s not unusual to spend your whole Saturday or Sunday (or both) starting and finishing the latest installment of House of Cards or Orange Is the New Black. But does this addictive quality apply to every genre of show? Netflix recently sought to answer that question.
The streaming site surveyed how users in more than 190 countries watched 100 serialized TV series between October 2015 and May 2016. Netflix researchers examined how long it took for a member to complete the first season of a series. They found that the median days to complete a season was five, and that the median hours per binge season was two hours and 10 minutes.
It turns out we tend to “devour” thriller, horror, and sci-fi shows—like The Fall, Breaking Bad, Hemlock Grove, American Horror Story, Sense8, and Orphan Black—spending more than two hours a day watching them. On the flip side, we “savor” and spend fewer than two hours a day viewing irreverent comedies, political dramas, and historical dramas, like BoJack Horseman, House of Cards, Homeland, Mad Men, and Narcos. Netflix reasons that the “devour-able” shows “grab you, assault your senses, and make it hard to pull away,” or “go straight for the gut.” The “savor-able” shows might be more intricate and detailed, so you’d need to take your time with them. The comedies often have societal and layered messages that are best viewed at a slower pace.
Take a look at the scale below: