Fan favorites removal from Netflix creates opportunity

Julia Marriott, asst. a&e editor

Happy New Year from Netflix! A month into 2021 and the streaming service removed many fan-favorite TV shows, including Gossip Girl, The Office and hundreds of others due to their licenses expiring, leaving some viewers (like myself) with a sense of idleness.

But honestly, this might be a blessing in disguise for many of us. This is one of the best New Year’s presents Netflix could possibly give their viewers.

If you are anything like me, Netflix has been your close companion throughout the pandemic. At the onset of the lockdown, online streaming services saw  a colossal increase in the time their clients spent using their service, with adults having spent nearly six-and-a-half hours a day watching television, according to BBC News. That is roughly 45 hours a week.

Now, I wouldn’t go as far as to say that I spend half of my waking hours watching television, but like many students who may watch streaming services to escape their reality, I have  favorite shows that I watch consistently.

My relationship with my favorite TV shows bears a resemblance to a clingy couple. You know, when one person is too attached to their significant other? Once I get hooked on a new show, I become so invested in it that I find myself rewatching a series two or three times, making it difficult for me to “break-up” with it and move on to something different.

We’ve all been there: you find a good show, you are hooked and become super engaged and connected with all the characters. You may even live vicariously through the main character’s life or you may call your friends about the show simply because you cannot help yourself. But once you finally finish the series, you decide to rewatch it again because you believe that no show can compare. Sound familiar?

With many fan-favorite television series being removed, I am sure many feel a void in their life. This is also the case for me as I see my go-to shows being removed from the streaming platform—I am left with an abundance of new shows but zero motivation to start one.

And now, I am finally starting to understand why it is so hard for me to get over a show and begin a new one: it is because of change.

Change is a common fear; my change just happens to reside in a TV series. With Netflix removing fan-favorite television shows, viewers are encouraged to watch various new additions to the streaming site and “Netflix Originals.” And honestly, branching out to new things is probably what is best for many of us right now.

I think the silver lining of your favorite television show being removed from streaming services is that you now have the opportunity to branch out. Try something new. You might actually like a new series or movie just as much, or even more, than your previous show.

Now, this doesn’t have to apply to TV, Netflix or any streaming service for that matter. Trying new things is healthy, and it’s good for you. So, take a shot at something new. You might surprise yourself.

With the pandemic’s persistence, it’s easy to get stuck in a repetitive routine. So, now is the perfect opportunity to broaden your horizons.

Maybe work on art, start cooking or even challenge yourself to something outside of your comfort zone: change and exploration leads to growth.

So, let’s all say thank you to Netflix for removing fan-favorite shows because it encourages all of us to begin trying something new.