Savor vs. Devour: Netflix Announces Their “Binge Scale”

TV News Netflix

The concept of binge-watching is a relatively new phenomenon, one we can attribute to the recent, tremendous popularity of online streaming services like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime that allow viewers to consume as many episodes in one sitting as they wish. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that everyone enjoys watching television differently, with some relishing the suspense or preferring to dissect more nuanced shows, waiting days or weeks to complete a series, and others watching as many consecutive episodes as possible before passing out for the night. However, it seems that specific genres lend themselves more easily to each type of consumption, and now we can observe how other viewers favor watching certain types of shows and compare the stats to our own TV-watching habits. With Netflix’s newly-announced ‘Binge Scale,” the data is in.

The Netflix Binge Scale, an innovative way of measuring how quickly certain series are most often watched by viewers, provides a spectrum between two extremes: “savor” and “devour.” The scale uses a barometer of two hours per day, with shows that viewers consume for less than two hours in a day being “savored” and shows watched for over that amount being “devoured.”

Thriller and horror series, like American Horror Story, Breaking Bad, Dexter and The Walking Dead, tend to be binge-watched most frequently, with cliffhangers and adrenaline-pumping storylines urging viewers to watch “just one more episode.” Dramatic comedies like Nurse Jackie, Grace and Frankie and Orange is the New Black also clock in on the “devour” end of the scale, with a blend of suspense and humor making the episodes seem to fly by.

More layered, less action-packed shows like House of Cards and period dramas like Mad Men tend to be savored more often, with watchers appreciating the intricacy and complexity of the personal relationships, romances and betrayals that take a front seat in these series. Irreverent comedies like Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Arrested Development and BoJack Horseman, surprisingly, also fall on the “savor” end of the spectrum, perhaps because of the subtle profundity and social commentary hidden beneath quick wordplay and blink-and-you’ll-miss-them visual gags.

“As The Binge Scale indicates, the viewing experience of a series can range from the emotional to the thought-provoking,” said Cindy Holland, Vice President of Original Content at Netflix. “Netflix helps you to find a series to binge no matter your mood or occasion, and the freedom to watch that series at your own pace—whether that’s to appreciate the drama of Bloodline or power through Orange is the New Black.”

Check out the graphic below (which you can click to enlarge) to see where your favorite Netflix shows fall on the Binge Scale.

Binge Scale_Graphic_US.png

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