Thursday, May 26, 2011

Netflix Instant Streaming, or What it means to truly feel love

All Netflix employees go to heaven, too. Just sayin'.

Two posts in one evening. Be still thy beating heart, dear reader! Fear not, this is simply a rabid burst of productivity, and normal service will resume promptly. We have our top men working on dragging me down, so simply enjoy this content overkill whilst it lasts.

I want to write many, many words here, but it simply must be stated: Netflix Instant Streaming is probably the most amazing advancement in modern home entertainment. There, I said it. When I think of Netflix Instant Streaming, I want to write sonnets about it. I want to take it out to dinner, and laugh at all its jokes. I want to sit with it in the evenings, and hold it close while it reminisces with me about that time we watched Johnny Mnemonic but it turned out to be terrible and so we had to go to bed without finishing it. In short, I never want to be without Netflix Instant Streaming.

Unfortunately, for now, this is not possible. In the United Kingdom, Netflix hasn’t ever really made any inroads, for reasons that are not entirely clear to me. The main competitor to Netflix over here is, which is owned by Amazon. Furthering my hatred of Lovefilm is that they offer a similar service to Netflix Instant Streaming, but only on the PS3. This means that I have to boycott Lovefilm, because I cannot encourage a service that discriminates one device over the other. I am pretty sure, but cannot guarantee it, that the PS3 has Netflix in the US. Correct me if I’m wrong, of course.

The sheer amount of choice on the service is mind-boggling, and it’s no surprise that people now affectionately (or not) refer to browsing it as playing ‘Netflix Hero’, a sub-genre of ‘Menu Hero’, which is what happens when you sit and scroll for twenty minutes trying to find the perfect song in your chosen music rhythm game. Top tip: That song is always Electric Six’s Gay Bar. Always.

There are certainly missing items on the service; it is by no means perfect. The most evident examples that I spotted (or didn’t) were HBO shows, which must be tied to HBO’s Go service, which just recently launched on the iPad. Despite the missing elements, though, you are hard-pressed to find something that you do not want to watch at any given moment. Further to that, the more that you watch, the more that the service begins to tailor itself to your chosen interests. By the end of my seven-day stint with it, I was being proposed all films that fell into the (frankly excellent) category of ‘Cerebral Indie Movies’. That would almost be me just set for life, right there.

That’s a short post, but as I said at the beginning, this whole thing is so good that words actually fail me. Netflix, I love you, and you’re not bringing me down.

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