Game of Thrones. Orange is the New Black. Gossip Girl.
There’s a good chance that you, the reader, at some point in your life, will binge watch a TV show. It may be one of the ones above (s/o to season three of OITNB, out June 12), but you will end up in your blue jeans at two am, bleary eyed and yet not yawning, ice cream stuck to your shirt, wondering where the hell the time went. And then you’ll look down at your computer, see that you’ve made it to season six of whatever you’re watching, and think, oh, that’s where the time went. Oh, indeed.
But there’s a certain art form to wasting an entire day on Netflix or Hulu+, and it’s not one you’re born with, like the ability to scramble eggs. No, binge watching is its own category for Special Skills, and it takes talent to truly binge watch.
For those amateurs out there, or people who fancy themselves television watching connoisseurs, here’s the correct method of binge watching a tv show, and it’s the only method guaranteed to keep the ice cream in your stomach and off your t-shirts.
1. Get food
This is as important, if not more than, the TV show you’re going to watch. If you don’t have proper sustenance, you could get dehydrated while sitting! Or worse, you could crave a food you didn’t bring with you. That’s why I always fall back on the Holy Grail of Binge Watching: sweet, salty, savory. While chocolate is one of my personal favorites for sweet, and the salty is easily satisfied by popcorn, the best choice for savory is something meaty, like beef jerky, something with enough snackbang to keep you full for a while.
2. Pick a show
The TV show you watch is, quite honestly, low on the bar of importance. After too many episodes of Grey’s Anatomy, everyone is invested in it. So pick a show you’ve been eyeballing, pick a show in a genre you don’t normally watch, pick a show you’ve seen before– it doesn’t even matter.
3. Find a comfy spot with an even comfier position
This determines your level of movement. A super comfy spot with an equally comfortable position with snacks within arm’s reach and a blanket in case you get cold can mean you don’t move for the next twelve hours. The couch, your bed, the floor– anything but that dining room table that makes your back ache just to look at it.
4. Stream the show
Netflix is the personal favorite, but Hulu+ or even just that shady website you don’t really trust– all are welcome in the binge watcher’s house.
5. Bonus points if Netflix does the countdown to the next episode and you don’t move. At all.
Movement when utilizing this feature should only occur when you need the bathroom or Netflix prompts you to click to continue watching. Because Netflix is just that kind and thoughtful.
6. Only move for bathroom breaks or more food
ONLY. MOVING FOR OTHER THINGS IS UNACCEPTABLE. NO MOVEMENT. NONE.
7. The sun should set
If you’re properly binge-watching then the sun should set and you shouldn’t have moved.
8. Move when you have actual obligations to prepare for
Like when you have an hour to get ready for work and you’re at a good stopping place in whatever you’re doing– that’s when you stop. If you’re not at a good stopping point, you just have to know if Dean survives demonic possession, then call in. You’ve got a case of Binge-watcher-itis.