Saturday, February 15, 2014

House Of Cards: Binge Watching

I never thought I'd do that. I never thought I'd binge watch, but that is exactly what I have been doing for the past few days. For as political as I am, my interest in House Of Cards comes from the tech, Netflix angle. Netflix is supposed to challenge the movie and TV industries at a most fundamental level, and it has with these episodes. I want more.

Washington, DC Is Officially OBSESSED With 'House Of Cards'
Rep. Donna Edwards, D-Md., who also appears in the video, won’t attend the premiere, but she said she does plan to binge-watch the series over the weekend...... With much of Washington snowed-in on Thursday, Cards fans inside the Beltway called for the early release of season two — but to no avail. “HBO made a brutal mistake by not timing the release of House of Cards with the snowstorm,” quipped Amanda Carpenter, an adviser to Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla.
I finished the first 13 episodes of Season 1 Thursday just in time for the release of Season 2, pure coincidence. I only started two days before. No, I did not have a subscription. I have had Netflix subscription before, but I let it pass. They don't have enough movies in the purely digital section.

A few days back I got a free month trial with my Hotmail account. I knew my Hotmail account would amount to something. Just kidding. Today both Yahoo Mail and Hotmail are competitive to Gmail, Yahoo Mail for offering a terabyte of free space, and Hotmail for having a much cleaner experience than both. But when Gmail is your default email, and it is still very good, you don't switch. You use Yahoo Mail for Dropbox like storage. And, well, on Hotmail I have turned on and off the switches such that unless I have saved your email address in my address book, you can't even reach me.

Kevin Spacey Goes All House-of-Cards on Hollywood (Video)
Kevin Spacey gave what is perhaps the most cogent call to arms for the entertainment industry to please get with this Internet thing. ...... Francis Underwood — the political nightmare Spacey plays with glee — said in the first lines of “House of Cards,” as he mercy-strangles a dog, hurt badly by a car: “There are two kinds of pain. The sort of pain that makes you strong, or useless pain. The sort of pain that’s only suffering. I have no patience for useless things. Moments like this require someone who will act, do the unpleasant thing, the necessary thing.”
I lost some respect for House Of Cards and for Hollywood for the sex and murder. I mean, come on, don't insult my intelligence. In this day and age you can not be so close to being Secretary of State or Vice President and be flinging a young reporter - granted she is pretty - and not have anyone find out. You certainly can't kill - twice - and be Vice President. You can't kill when you are maybe only a day away from being sworn in. I mean, like Michael Corleone says in Godfather, "Who is being naive, Kay?" Presidents and Vice Presidents do get people killed, lots of them, but they don't get involved in petty murder.

I have personally been party to political events - and I am talking small events - that the following day made it into news, and the distortions have blown my mind. I have been like, I was there, I know all the details. And this news report is so off. So media has its prisms, and Hollywood has to have sex and murder. But then perhaps Hollywood knows how to keep people interested. You throw in the sex and the murder and people will watch. It is not Hollywood to be blamed. People get what they want. It is the masses, collectively speaking.

But then what respect House Of Cards lost with the sex and murder it gained by covering the political process well. The give and take on the Education Bill? I mean, wow. Very well done. Also, lifting the age of retirement by a few years. Kevin Spacey did it before America will. That makes this sci-fi. I guess there is such a thing as political sci-fi. We do say Political Science, don't we? At one point I was a Political Science major.

I grew up knowing Hindi movies were almost three hours, English movies were shorter - two hours. Well, this thing goes on and on, but it does because it needs to. When the treatment of the material is fair, the length does not matter. This is not a movie, yes, I know that. But then this is not television either. It is just video content. I, for one, would like numerous 30 minute movies. Of course online, preferably for free on YouTube, supported by ads, or 10 cents to watch for pay. If you did not turn a profit, it was because you could not get enough people to watch you, and that is fair.

And you thought Ashton Kutcher was the movie star who is also a tech entrepreneur. No, it's Kevin Spacey.

Kevin Spacey takes 26 hours to become President Of The United States, talk about a plot spoiler. Barack Obama has or will watch all 26 episodes. I will bet you a hundred dollars he will.

I believe The Mahabharata is over 100 episodes and way more complex a plot, way more gripping.

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