Back when I was a kid, with the arrival of summer meant that my television watching days were over until it was time to return to school. With the exception of Saturday morning’s Cartoon Express and the occasional baseball game, I barely even glanced at the TV. Today, that seems to hardly be the case anymore.
Television is emerging from its cocoon, and blossoming into this beautiful butterfly, offering an array of choices in not only programming, but in platform and time. People are realizing that not everyone works the kind of schedule that television programming was built around in the early days of the infatuation with the boob tube. So, like many other things in the world, it is time for a revision of how we watch and what we watch.
No longer must we suffer through twelve plus weeks of reruns. Thanks to the internet and streaming subscription services like Netflix, Amazon Plus and Hulu, we are able to fill our time with shows we may have missed the first time around, as well as new programming that the networks may have never brought us. Not to mention that networks are starting to offer more new shows that air during the summer season to fill the gap.
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Most recently, Netflix has created smash hits Orange is the New Black and House of Cards, both of which have been lighting the TV industry on fire. For the first time in history, you don’t have to have a cable subscription to watch television. These shows, both of which boast some serious talent, have been winning awards, making people laugh, cry and cringe. Fresh and innovative story telling is keeping people continuing to tune in, and offering that programming at the touch of a finger, any time, any place – is making it King of all entertainment.
Since the internet came along and allowed people to connect in much easier, less stressful environment, fandoms have formed. Millions of dedicated people are creating communities, conventions, and in some cases, life long relationships. Their collective voices have caused networks to change their minds on the fate of a show. They’ve caused others networks to sit up and take notice, saving an axed program from oblivion (lookin’ your way Cougar Town).
It’s allowed people like myself, to find a new way to express my love for good storytelling. Being able to sit here and gush about some amazingly crafted hour of television, or rant about inconsistencies in the character arcs is what my dreams are made of. The best part is, I know that I am not alone.
So, the next time you think to yourself… “there is nothing on right now!” head to one of the other many platforms and explore what you may have missed. Look through your On Demand menu, fire up the computer and check out Netflix or Hulu. I guarantee you, something will catch your eye and you will be beyond glad you dove in.