Netflix sucks, why does it have no good movies?Twenty years ago, Netflix launched the world’s first online rental service, and that changed our lives. Then, nine years later, the company introduced us to the world of streaming. And our consumption of online media went from spending hour upon hour downloading terrible-quality torrents to blowing through a near-endless supply of DVD-quality films and TV shows with little to no wait time. Like it or not, Netflix is responsible for shaping the way we consume entertainment these days. But not necessarily for the better. So here are all the reasons why Netflix sucks and, actually, is totally screwing us over.
Binge culture has destroyed the way we watch TV
There was a time when we used to have seven days to fully digest the stuff we watched. TV shows were more nuanced, because they could afford to be. People would pay attention to every little detail, because it was literally all we had. Now we just consume episode after episode like goddam monsters, in between the constant refreshing of our Instagram feed.
And our social lives are suffering because of it
Maybe you’re not old enough to remember the time before Netflix streaming. But trust us, it was a beautiful time. A time of meeting up with friends at school the morning after a new episode of Buffy aired and picking apart every minute detail of Joss Whedon’s work. A time before we refused to move from the sofa for 16 hours, save to use the bathroom or let Netflix know that yes, we are indeed still watching after every third episode.
But unless you’re into binging, the price isn’t really worth it
It isn’t like you’re getting up to date content with Netflix, outside of its original programming. So if you’re one of those casual TV watchers who’s only down for an hour or two a day (seriously though, what is wrong with you?), why would you ever want to throw down more than $10/month for 20-year-old TV? You’re better off finding free streams online. Or, you know, reading a book.
Especially when the price is jacked up on the reg
Netflix was cool when both streaming and DVD rentals were a single price. But when the company split up its service packages in 2011, things started to go downhill. In a matter of a few years, the cost of watching unlimited streaming has gone up. And up. And there’s a good chance it’s going to go up again soon. Because original programming is expensive, we guess?
It’s banned VPNs
Did you know that Netflix changes the stuff you can view based on the country you’re in? Well it does, and up until 2016, you could actually access its entire catalogue if you used a VPN. Of course, Netflix has banned VPNs, so if you do use one (even if it’s just to keep Big Brother from spying on your internet search history), it’s next to impossible to stream any Netflix shit, from any country in the world.
Subscribers can easily hit data caps
You may be fortunate enough to not have to deal with actual data caps, but some of us poor folk actually do have limits. It’s not that big of a deal if you’re watching shit at low quality, but who the f— wants to do that? High quality streaming will probably get you about 100 hours, which is basically nothing if you’re doing anything else on the internet.
That is, if you even have enough bandwidth
There are still areas in the US that don’t have access to high speed internet. FIOS? Yeah, probably not going to be making its way out to the boonies of West Virginia anytime soon, which translates to tons of people who won’t have the opportunity to catch up on the latest season of Monster Fish.
Unless it’s a Netflix original, chances are it’s out of date
It’s like 99% of the stuff that’s added to Netflix’s “New Releases” category is a Netflix original production. This would be fine (we get that the company is looking to expand its presence in the industry) if it weren’t for the fact that it’s given a giant middle finger to anything it hasn’t produced. You can pretty much forget seeing any actual new releases in this category these days.
And they’re pumping out originals to the extent that everything is kind of the same
The Titan, Orbiter 9, The Cloverfield Paradox, Mute… all Netflix originals. All highly stylized sci-fi movies. Everything looks like it was run through a high contrast filter now, and the plots are all slightly different riffs on the same story. You could watch one and have seen them all, and none would have been memorable.
Their focus on TV has made their movie selection completely blow
Take a quick scroll through Netflix’s movie collection, and you’ll find yourself wondering what a good majority of them even are. Did they actually have a theatrical release? Or were they direct to video? Are some of these student projects? It’s too hard to tell.
Which means you can only rent them as actual DVDs
Which also means that subscription fee is about to double. Because if you want access to anything other than an original production or cheap ripoff of a big studio release, you’re going to have to pay up. Honestly, you’re better off just hitting up Redbox on the reg.
Movies and TV shows are constantly cycled out
Oh, did you want to get through the entire nine-season run of The Office at a nice, leisurely viewing pace? Well, good f—ing luck. At the rate Netflix cycles through its selection, you’ll be lucky to even make it as far as “Casino Night.”
Categories are poorly organized
Can someone explain the difference between “Popular on Netflix” and “Trending Now?” And how is it that every other category is based off a single thing from your viewing history? “Because you watched…” Even that kind of organization is total bullshit. Because you watched Peaky Blinders, here, how about 10 seasons of Friends. No, Netflix. No.
Foreign language titles aren’t labeled as such
Not that we have a problem watching movies with subtitles, but it’d be nice to know that we’re going to have to actually give our screens 100% of our attention before heading into something. Sometimes (most times), we’re turning it on to half watch anyway. We’re not looking to read and also check Twitter.
Their rating system is total garbage now
Recommendations were better tailored when we had the option of rating something between 1 and 5 stars. We could not hate something and still not want to watch it again. But now, it’s either a thumbs up or thumbs down, and 90% of the time, it’s impossible to choose. So we don’t choose. And Netflix just keeps on making terrible suggestions for us.
And shit gets added to your recommendations even if you turn something off after five minutes
Obviously, if we could only get through the first few minutes of some piece of garbage movie, it means we hated said movie and have zero desire to watch anything related to it. According to Netflix, though, it means all we want to watch are things that are almost identical to said movie. In every category. Until we die.
TV shows don’t actually get cancelled anymore
Anytime something gets cancelled on network TV now, fans go through wild speculation regarding whether or not Netflix is going to pick it up. Arrested Development came back in 2013, seven years after its initial cancellation. Longmire didn’t even have a hiatus before making it to streaming. Netflix has become the dog under the dinner table, waiting for scraps.
Or they do, but eventually just come back as Netflix reboots anyway
Fuller House, anyone? Which, we guess is technically a reboot, but can we all just agree that it’s really the exact same show as Full House, only with a gender swap premise? Seriously, though, how have we not gotten a new Firefly yet? (Cue the nerd rage)
It’s killing theater culture
It used to be that movies were released in theaters, and if you had any hope of seeing it before its sequel came out, you’d have to go to a theater to do it. Months would pass before it was available at home. Now though, stuff is released simultaneously in theaters, on DVD, and on streaming, presumably so you can watch it however you feel most comfortable. But as far as we’re concerned, if we’re not crammed in a crowded venue, feet stuck to the floor in dried soda, eating 12-hour-old popcorn, it just isn’t worth it.
That video rental nostalgia
There’s just something about walking around a video store and picking up individual titles with your actual hands that scrolling through page after page of a virtual movie catalogue will never live up to. Need snacks? Blockbuster (or Hollywood Video) had them by the register. Does your kitchen have snacks? Maybe, but they sure as hell aren’t packaged in cellophane for absolute freshness.