Netflix Binge Scale Reveals Which Shows Turn Us Into Unmoving Couch Potatoes

We’ve all got them, those shows that have the power to keep us glued to our couches, in front of a screen, watching each and every episode available until it feels like nothing else exists. Netflix knows it too, and has released a new Binge Scale that it says reveals which programs we’re most likely to sacrifice our social lives to.

Because not every show lends itself to plopping down in front of the TV for hours upon hours of watching until you’ve finished it all, Netflix released new numbers on the way we watch, putting content on a scale that ranges from “shows to savor” to “shows to devour.”

For example, shows like Breaking Bad and The Walking Dead were often taken down in true binge style, while viewers dawdled longer over shows like Homeland and House of Cards. Those customers who do decide to watch an entire TV season finish it on average in just a week, watching a little more than two hours per day.

To accomplish this, Netflix examined global viewing of more than 100 serialized TV series across more than 190 countries between October 2015 and May 2016. The research looked at member completion of the first season for all series, and only included data for accounts that fully completed the season. None of those, “I’m not done with season three of House of Cards yet” slowpokes counted here.

It then organized series against that binge benchmark — finishing an entire season in a week when you put your mind to it — and found that interesting patterns emerged, “ranging from high energy narratives that are devoured to thought-provoking dramas that are savored.”

Netflix goes on to break it down by genre within the “Savor” and “Devour” categories, listing the most popular Irreverent Comedies, Historical Dramas, and whathaveyou.

“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, who went on to mention two Netflix original series, naturally. “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.”

This isn’t the first time Netflix has dipped into the binge-watching pool for information about how we watch what we watch: last year the company revealed that it knows the exact moment when you get hooked on a show, and start that quick ascent into binge madness.

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.