“Hello, my name is Keir, and I’m a binge-watcher.”
And so begins another meeting of Binge-Watchers Anonymous.
“If I think about it, I got my first taste of binge-watching 12 years ago, shortly after the birth of our first son. Few things properly accompany cradling one’s child for hours on end as well as murderous mobsters do. Somehow Hilary and I had managed to miss The Sopranos train. Fortunately for us, Netflix (our first “dealer,” in retrospect) happily stuffed our skinny mailbox with season after season of DVDs.
Odd to play “Baby Einstein” in one room, and hear Tony and Paulie cut down Big Pussy in a hail of bullets in another room? Indeed. And that’s how I got hooked.
Once we made it out of the new baby/nesting phase, we kicked the habit. For a time. We returned to mainstream society, watching our weekly shows as they aired. Curb Your Enthusiasm. The Ali G. Show. Grey’s Anatomy. One week at a time, one episode at the time, for the most part. But the habit had already taken hold, poised to rear its ugly head at the first opportunity.
Then came Breaking Bad. The irony of binge-watching a show about methamphetamine was not lost on me. But I couldn’t help myself. In Jessie’s strung out periods, I saw myself. His floor was littered with drug paraphernalia. Mine was littered with iPhone and iPad charger cords, twisted with earbud cords. Both of us junkies. Mercifully, the show’s producers released their hold on me. Walter White kicked the bucket.
The Game of Thrones producers show no such mercy. They have delivered unto me a substance more addictive than anything I’ve experienced before. So mind-bending as to render me senseless, ending my sentences with prepositions, even.
The “Red Wedding”? Fuhgetaboutit. I was in a funk for a week.
Somehow, I pulled myself together, took a breather after the end of last season. Got back on the wagon. Cleaned up.
But now I see that the new Game of Thrones season premieres this weekend. I glimpse each new piece of advertising–Facebook posts, tweets, YouTube trailers–knowing that I won’t be able to resist the urge to binge once more. Fortunately for me, I’m all caught up on GOT. I have resolved to blend in with the “normal people,” watching the Imp and Littlefinger in bite-sized pieces. One episode at a time.
But I know that sooner or later, my binge-watching will get the better of me. Winter is coming.”
[Sound of clapping as my fellow addicts applaud my honesty, and bring another meeting of Binge-Watchers Anonymous to a close.]
Thanks for reading.