Simi Olurin ’19
I found myself sitting down at my desk with my history textbook lying open to chapter nine, my notebook primed and ready and a pencil in my hand. In a sense, I was ready to start subjecting myself to the ever-popular task of Sunday night: rushed, tear-inducing homework. Of course, the level of pressure could most likely be attributed to my lack of motivation and conveniently timed naps. As a student, however, I believe that the reasons for certain events are always much deeper than that those right in front of our eyes. That simplistic explanation of “laziness” is nothing more than a weak-minded creature’s excuse for what’s really going on. Of course, in order to elaborate on my findings, I had to put my homework on the back burner, because, science.
I believe that television writers are the reason that I am unable to get any work done, not just over the weekends, but during the week. At first glance, it may appear that I am just easily distracted and that I was looking for an excuse to not do my homework in the first place, but that is not what’s going on here, not in the slightest. The whole thing is a conspiracy concocted by writers and their all-so-powerful agent: Netflix.
Over the past decade and a half or so, writers have been churning out the best material in history. From Breaking Bad to Game of Thrones, American Horror Story to the timeless classic The Office, the writers simply will not quit (aside from in 2007, when they nearly did just that). But the game has changed. Due to the emergence of various non-broadcast networks such as HBO, Amazon Prime, and Netflix, writers are partial to edgier content reach greater audiences.
Netflix. At this point in history, the online streaming company has become almost synonymous with our generation, even spawning the wretchedly overused phrase “Netflix and Chill”. Sadly, it is now a staple in our culture, and that is something that we all have to live with, because it’s our own faults.
This, ladies and gentlemen, is where the conspiracy comes in. Because the writers are busting their chops to produce incredible content; they know that they have drawn viewers into the point where they feel as though, if they miss an episode, or a single scene of that show, then the world will fall to a heap of ashes. Like it or not, Hollywood has us wrapped around their bedazzled, french-manicured finger. They have come to the realization that they can dismantle the work ethic of their loyal viewers by utilizing their own. The first thing I check up on the second that I walk into the doors of my home is whether or not my favorite show just came out with a new episode. School work ceases to exist when my favorite show comes into the picture.
Netflix is an equal accomplice in all of this. They have cultivated a dangerous phenomenon widely known as “binge watching”. For the few of you pure, innocent, lucky souls who are not familiar with this sickness, it is a condition where you bust out the sweatpants, plug-in the headphones, and basically forget the world outside the screen. Netflix has made it so easy for unsuspecting people to happen upon hundreds of new shows with multiple seasons, all readily available. The vortex is opened with one click and doesn’t require any more mouse mobility, for autoplay has eradicated all need for your fine motor skills. In junction with the writers, Netflix has annihilated any prospect of getting any real work done in this day and age.
The question still remains, why would they do this to us?
For personal gain. Because they are destroying our ability to get our work done. In the process, they are effectively derailing our intelligence, which means that less writers will be produced in the future. Less writers mean that the ones currently in Hollywood will have a monopoly on the industry and continue to make money and win Emmys while we all continue to buy into their product. Netflix, in turn, receives money directly from the victims, for one would never consider cancelling their subscription once they have entered the wormhole of binge watching.