If I watch one TV episode of a series that looks interesting, I will go through a series of stages before committing myself to that series. I always hear about these shows from someone else, because I don't trust myself to find a good show with all the crap that's out there.
I do have rules about this. NO reality shows whether humorous, dramatic, fix-your-house, game-show or otherwise, NO. This doesn't mean I don't want to be on those shows, however. I would love to be on Wipeout. It looks dang fun.
If I decide that I liked the episode, I will actually have to start watching the entire series. Not just the season that is currently on TV, but every season before that one. I will have to watch the deleted scenes. The gag reel. The "next season" promos. The actor interviews. (I skip the commentary. I'm not that dedicated.) However, if the show has a formula where you can walk in and out like a revolving door, then I can just watch an episode here and there like a fair weather friend who eats the sausages off your pizza slice.
Now, since I haven't had a TV for 11 years, and TV on the internet and on DVD is a new phenomenon, this can lead up to a lot of commitment.
You're thinking, yeah, she does have a commitment problem. An addiction problem.
But PEOPLE. I haven't even told you the problem yet.
The real problem is that I actually feel guilty if I decide not to watch that series.
Like, if the series isn't that good, or it's crass, or sort of weak on interesting characters, or has cheesy music, I tell myself that 7 seasons is way too much to commit to.
But then I worry about it. I think, well, maybe I didn't really give it a chance. Or, so-'n-so liked it. Or, if it has 7 seasons it must be good. Won't the series feel bad if I just walk away now? What if it thinks there's something wrong with it? Is it fair of me to give an opinion after only one episode?
I also go through this if I have been previously committed to a show but we start having a series of episodes where they killed the main love interest or introduced an annoying new lead character, and I start becoming overwhelmed by the reality of watching 3 more seasons to catch up to the current, so I wonder if I was only having a fling instead of a committed polygamist relationship. This makes me feel dirty, and cheap.
Then I drop the show, but when it comes up in conversations where someone is telling me that they love this show, I immediately feel guilty. I clumsily mumble, "Ohhhh, yeah. I watched that once. It was pretty good." And soon I'm wondering if I should revisit my earlier rash decision.
So my new tactic is "don't start." I've had several shows on my list of "to check out" because of recommendations I've had lately. I'm sorry if you told me to watch something within the last month because I really really really am not going to watch it. Because I am really really really not wanting to start another show. Even though I really really really want to see that vampire show that Sarah recommended. And that "Psych" show that my students told me about (okay, so maybe I watched an episode of that). And I want to watch all the food network episodes they have on Hulu. It is totally eating me up.
But even more so, I just don't have time to watch a new show and that's because I have to watch the 3rd season of Friday Night Lights (recommended by Amy Palmer). Good thing there are only three. So far.
It must be good. Jake's been watching it with me. I give it my whole-hearted recommendation if you're looking for something to fill that slot you have open.