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Binge-watching is a new cultural phenomenon. So much so, the term is one of a handful Tech Jargon: Learn 10 New Words Recently Added To The Dictionary [Weird & Wonderful Web] Tech Jargon: Learn 10 New Words Recently Added To The Dictionary [Weird & Wonderful Web] Technology is the source for many new words. If you are a geek and a word lover, you will love these ten that were added to the online version of the Oxford English Dictionary. Read More newly inducted into the online version of the Oxford English Dictionary.

Sure, binge-watching existed when VHS was still in vogue, but DVDs, Blu-rays, and (especially) online streaming services 6 Of The Best Streaming Media Services Compared 6 Of The Best Streaming Media Services Compared Streaming media has become the way of the future for many consumers, and as a result there’s no shortage of services to pick from. Let’s compare five of the best streaming media services to see... Read More such as Netflix and Amazon Instant Video mean binge-watching television content is now commonplace.

What YOU want to know is which TV shows are worth binge-watching? A question to which WE have the answer, thanks to your fellow MakeUseOf readers.

Epic Episodic Entertainment

We asked you, What TV Shows Have You Binge-Watched The Most? We had a good number of responses, with enough of you answering the call to suggest TV shows worth binge-watching that we have been able to compile a long list you would do well to take notice of.

What follows are 25 of the television shows MakeUseOf readers have binge-watched and recommend you do too. There are plenty more included in the comments thread of the original post, so once you have exhausted this list you can always head there for more suggestions of what to binge-watch next.

  • The Big Bang Theory
  • Orange Is The New Black
  • True Blood
  • Game Of Thrones
  • Breaking Bad
  • The Sopranos
  • Stargate SG-1
  • How I Met Your Mother
  • True Detective
  • Fargo
  • Seinfeld
  • The West Wing
  • Orphan Black
  • American Horror Story
  • 24
  • Battlestar Galactica
  • Fringe
  • Dexter
  • The Wire
  • Weeds
  • Oz
  • Bones
  • Mad Men
  • Lost
  • Farscape

That little lot should keep you going for a while, but before you start watching any of the television shows listed above please do read our short guide to binge-watching A Short Guide To Binge-Watching [Weird & Wonderful Web] A Short Guide To Binge-Watching [Weird & Wonderful Web] Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video have turned binge-watching into a mainstay of the mainstream. Before you begin binge-watching TV you should arm yourself with some important information. This short guide helps. Read More . It’s not meant to be taken entirely seriously but you may find something useful there regardless.


Comment Of The Week

We received a lot of great comments, including those from Allison, Peter F, and Dan. Comment Of The Week goes to Katharine W, who won with this comment What TV Shows Have You Binge-Watched The Most? [We Ask You] What TV Shows Have You Binge-Watched The Most? [We Ask You] We want to know what television shows you have binge-watched the most, and what format you chose for your binge-watching marathons. Read More :

I watched three and a half seasons of Shameless (US version, Showtime) in about four days. At the time I was binging, they had aired up to about 4×05. It’s just really good and I could not stop watching. I um, “borrowed” the episodes to catch up.

Other things I’ve binge watched:
Doctor Who (still working on it, Netflix)
Orphan Black (two seasons in two weeks, Amazon Prime)
Orange Is The New Black (two seasons, 9 days, Netflix)
Bones (took me roughly 3 months to get through the first five seasons, Netflix)

Nowadays I binge watch a lot. It’s true that streaming services like Netflix and Amazon have made it much easier, but I’ve been doing it for years, ever since I learned how to “borrow” entire seasons of shows from the internet. Which I still do sometimes if someone recommends me a show that’s not available on streaming services, ie. shows from premium cable channels. I’m not going to pay $30 extra in cable a month for one show. The premium cable channels would be a lot better off just licensing their stuff to Netflix and Amazon, bc then at least they’d be getting some money, instead of nothing from people pirating it. HBO has kind of kicked this off with Amazon, but they don’t have a lot of stuff on there. I kind of understand delaying what goes on streaming, but HBO has gotta be losing out big time right now, since they could put S1 of GoT on Amazon and at least get some money from Amazon for it, rather than get cut out of the equation entirely by piracy.

We chose this comment because as well as listing a number of shows that are perfect for binge-watching and telling us the services she uses to watch them, Katharine also implores the cable companies to change their practices to better serve the ways which many of us now want to watch TV.

They won’t listen, but one day they will have to act or risk losing out altogether. It’s a matter of when, not if, so perhaps we should hold sweepstakes on when the cable companies will take cord-cutting seriously Cut That Cord! How To Ditch Cable Cut That Cord! How To Ditch Cable Have you been thinking about cutting your pay-TV cord? I want to show you some of the pros and cons of cord cutting: it's not all major sacrifices. Read More . Feel free to discuss this in the comments section below.

We Ask You is a weekly column in which you have your say about a particular subject. We ask you a question each week, with the results compiled and compressed into a follow-up article the following week. This column is nothing without your input, all of which is valued.

Image Credit: Gordon via Flickr

  1. Tanvir C
    September 1, 2014 at 3:55 pm

    Come on! No Suites on the list I am shocked

  2. Satyan B
    August 30, 2014 at 10:32 am

    Now this comes exactly at the right time for me.

  3. Raymond M
    August 28, 2014 at 9:31 am

    Boardwalk Empire should be on the list. I can't wait for the new and final season to start. Also Hell On Wheels and Deadwood are excellent to binge watch.

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 4:29 pm

      Ooh, good shouts. Deadwood is one I keep meaning to watch, as I never watched it when it originally aired.

  4. Don T
    August 28, 2014 at 1:07 am

    How could you miss 10 years of "Grey's Anatomy"?

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 4:27 pm

      I only had limited space but yes, there's definitely a place for Grey's Anatomy on the extended list.

  5. Jen K
    August 27, 2014 at 10:58 pm

    My Name Is Earl
    I know it's kind of white trash'ish and perhaps a bit corny slap stick humor, but I like it :)

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 4:27 pm

      Oh, good show. Didn't it get cancelled before reaching an ultimate conclusion though? Either that I I never saw the last episode.

  6. DJ Concentus
    August 27, 2014 at 8:28 pm

    No mention of Babylon 5? I am disappointed.

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:44 pm

      I could have listed hundreds, but I had to cut the list off somewhere! Thanks to you mentioning it people can now add it to their lists though :)

  7. Patrick S
    August 27, 2014 at 5:31 pm

    Nothing kills my appreciation of a series more than binge watching. I'd rather space episodes out over a period of months. It gives me something to loom forward to.

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:42 pm

      I definitely think that works with some shows, or when a show is new and being aired once a week, but older shows are made for binge watching IMO.

  8. Matt
    August 27, 2014 at 5:21 pm

    I didn't see Northern Exposure on this list, either...

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:41 pm

      Good call. I can't say it was on my radar seeing as it ended 20 years ago, but definitely good to add to the list.

  9. Mitch
    August 27, 2014 at 5:21 pm

    I've been binge-watching The Tudors, The Borgias, Mad Men, Vikings and Game of Thrones and I highly suggest binging on Justified and Orphan Black !

  10. Frank Leyba
    August 27, 2014 at 5:03 pm

    I can't believe House of Cards isn't that list. Another good one, especially for old-timers like me who lived through the 80s is The Americans. I think I went through two seasons in about 4 or 5 days, and now I can't wait for more. The first season is on Amazon Prime, but I had to "borrow" the second season.

  11. Abrownt
    August 27, 2014 at 4:40 pm

    What, no Doctor Who? Everyone needs to go binge watch every episode right now! Also Merlin and Sherlock while they're at it.

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:36 pm

      I didn't include Doctor Who purely because I couldn't imagine anyone watching them going back 50 years! Perhaps I was wrong.

  12. Mark O'Neill
    August 27, 2014 at 2:08 pm

    I am currently binge watching "Mission: Impossible" - the 1966 TV show version with Martin Landau and Barbara Bain. I don't normally like shows made and set in the 1960's, but this show is quite simply fantastic and highly addictive. I highly recommend it.

    Once you start watching them, you will realise what a travesty the Tom Cruise movies were. I read that Greg Morris (one of the actors in the 1966 show) went to see the movie and he walked out halfway through, calling it an "abomination".

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:35 pm

      The movies are different, sure, but that doesn't make them bad. That guy obviously wanted to see it portrayed a certain way and when it wasn't he threw his toys out of his pram.

      The movies and the TV shows are made for two very different audiences, but I think both are highly watchable.

  13. Kaye
    August 27, 2014 at 1:31 pm

    I love bing watching shows. I agree with whoever posted who wants to wait 7 days or longer to watch the next episode. I love the way Netflix does their original shows by putting out all the episodes for one season. I wish we could cut cable out all together but my husband loves to watch live sports. I don't know anyway around that - I would love suggestions if anyone has any.

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:25 pm

      The only way to watch live sports without a cable subscription is to venture into the murky world of live streaming, which is borderline illegal. The bigger problem is finding legitimate sources that don't instantly fill your computer with malware. So tread carefully!

  14. Dwayne
    August 27, 2014 at 12:29 pm

    Two that seem to be missed: Dexter and Arrested Development. Honorable mention to Burn Notice

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:24 pm

      Dexter is on there, but Arrested Development is an obvious (and shameful) exclusion. Must. Try. Harder.

  15. Richard
    August 27, 2014 at 12:24 pm

    I just recently saw an article saying that more people have internet only and no cable service now. Don't you think they would start worrying about this?? No. Instead of doing the sensible thing... they throttle users and make them think that streaming video is clunky in hopes that they will pay for crap cable service again. I get offers weekly from my cable company saying I will get $500 back and $15 a month if I will just go back to cable! I toss those notices in the trash where they belong!

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:22 pm

      Oh yeah, cord-cutting is a growing trend, but the cable companies seem to be content with sticking their heads in the sand until it becomes a problem too huge to ignore.

  16. CMM
    August 27, 2014 at 11:50 am

    I've been been watching Korean TV dramas on DramaFever, Viki, Netflix. Some shows are a bit sappy, but I like that they're not so trashy as American TV. Hey, I grew up on Leave it to Beaver and Andy Griffith, what can I say? If you want to try one, start with City Hunter, 49 Days or The Great Doctor (aka Faith).

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:21 pm

      I'll try and check these out. I have liked some Korean films in the past so these could be right up my street.

  17. Jen K
    August 27, 2014 at 10:31 am

    Being Human (The U.S.A. version, not the U.K. version!) A Netflix Original Series.
    Under the Dome (I am waiting for Season 3 to come out)
    Two and a Half Men
    Two Broke Girls

    Instead of forking out cash to subscription services, download XBMC and install your add-ons, and you're ready to watch !

    • Jen K
      August 27, 2014 at 10:47 am

      Oh scratch the part about xbmc.

      How could I forget?
      W i L f R e D (The most awesome series, in a very, very long time!)


      Lucky Louie (Only aired for one season on HBO and there was a huge outpouring of support for Louis CK, who wrote, produced, starred in the series. But, alas, HBO never brought back Lucky Louie!)

    • Richard
      August 27, 2014 at 12:28 pm

      We prefer to keep XBMC under the radar ;)

      As long as its not completely user friendly, it should be ok.

    • Raf
      August 27, 2014 at 12:46 pm

      Who watches the USA version of Being Human it took everything that made the show good and removed it. It took interesting characters and turned them into dumb attractive boring americans. The UK version is hands down the winner. Side note: I am American I though it was relevant

  18. Saikat B
    August 27, 2014 at 10:28 am

    "Binge Watching" made it to the Oxford Dictionary this year didn't it? I guess it took a decade. Bing watching is now so popular that there are regular guides on them from the various media websites.

  19. Kay F
    August 27, 2014 at 7:41 am

    Blue Mountain State

  20. Kimberly S
    August 27, 2014 at 6:45 am

    I have Netflix, Amazon Prime & Xfinity. I usually do some work while watching it in the background. Maximum efficiency.

    Currently: Ugly Betty (Yes, just getting around to it.)
    Battlestar Galactica

    Planning to binge on:
    Criminal Minds
    True Blood
    Orange is the New Black
    Mad Men
    Once Upon a Time
    Freaks & Geeks
    Party Down
    American Horror Story
    Downton Abbey
    Modern Family

    Binged on:
    Doctor Who
    Veronica Mars (Plus the movie)
    Firefly (Plus Serenity)
    House M.D.
    Community (super easy to get through)
    Buffy the Vampire Slayer (all during the summer)
    Big Bang Theory (stopped in the last few seasons)
    Pretty Little Liars
    Game of Thrones (only after reading the novels)
    Hemlock Grove
    How I Met Your Mother
    Faking It
    Teen Wolf

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:20 pm

      Wow, that's an awesome list. I can absolutely recommend Mad Men. But don't expect instant gratification because most of the storylines take all season to play out.

  21. Jessica C
    August 27, 2014 at 6:23 am

    Regarding the cable companies adapting to the way we watch TV, while they may not take the initiative themselves, at least in Canada the CRTC is considering "pick & pay" so consumers don't have to pay to pay for too many unwanted channels, when you do want a bit of TV.

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:19 pm

      That is the future, surely. I just cannot see the American cable companies doing a similar thing until the majority of their customers demand it with threats to cancel their whole service if it isn't forthcoming.

  22. me
    August 27, 2014 at 5:56 am

    So I should watch Game of Thrones 2X?

    • Dave P
      August 27, 2014 at 6:16 am

      Is it good enough to warrant doing so... but yeah, we messed up. Thanks for pointing out the duplication. Will swap it out for another show ASAP.

  23. StoJa9
    August 27, 2014 at 3:44 am

    Short answer - binge watch EVERYTHING. Who has time to sit down every week and watch a series? WHo wants to wait 7 days for the next episode?

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:18 pm

      I'm not sure I agree with that. I mean, I came to Game of Thrones late and binge-watched all four seasons, but part of me wishes I had spaced them out. A bigger part of me wishes I had watched them as they originally aired in order to share the shock of the deaths with others online.

  24. William H Grant
    August 27, 2014 at 2:53 am

    You missed a great program called The Artful Detective on Ovation. It has repeat episodes during the week and new episodes on Saturdays at 5:00.

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:12 pm

      That isn't a show I have ever heard of. To be honest I have never heard of the channel either. I'll check it out though, and hopefully other people in this thread will too.

  25. Katharine W
    August 27, 2014 at 2:38 am

    Thanks for choosing my comment as comment of the week! :)

    • Dave P
      September 1, 2014 at 3:09 pm

      You're absolutely welcome. It was much deserved!

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