There’s very little about Black Friday that isn’t adversarial and financially, physically, and emotionally taxing. Make no mistake, store clerks hate you for making the choice to join the scavenging masses and there isn’t another customer there who wouldn’t decimate you with a well-placed elbow if you were standing in-between them and the $4 DVD that they just realized that they need. It’s all really quite terrible. Which is why many dismiss the deluge as a materialism soaked exploitation of our more gluttonous instincts. But this isn’t that kind of article.
Recognizing the chaos and embracing it despite the fact that it is a woeful pox upon humanity may, ultimately, mean that you’re a hypocrite, but gifts need getting. And after a year of hard work and putting up with the stresses of daily life, we all deserve a few nice things and a moment where our hard-earned dollar stretches a bit further. But you can limit the damage if you go into Black Friday with eyes wide open. Below is a power ranking of six major retailers — Target, Best Buy, Wal-Mart, Staples, and Gamestop — with link to their ads and a description of how they stack up in terms of their deals on TVs, DVD/Blu-Rays, phones, wearables, video games, and laptops. We hope that by using this list as a guide your Black Friday experience will be as fruitful, quick, and painless as possible.
Count out GameStop and Staples as they don’t traffic in television deals. Wal-Mart and Target are neck and neck for second place and both offer a couple of good options on the 1080p and 4K front. These stores are the value play if you’re plan is to choose one store and get your TV while stocking up on clothes, those big popcorn tins that nobody really wants, and necklaces that your mom is going to wind up returning. Target, in particular, has an intriguing 55″ Samsung 4K UHD with a curved display for $697.99 (down from $1099.99). There’s also a $70 Target gift card in the mix for that one.
Additionally, Target has a 32″ Polaroid made LED TV for $85 and a 43″ Element 4K Smart TV for $199.
Best Buy gets the top spot in our rankings, though. Their front page features doorbuster deals on a 55″ Samsung 4K Ultra HD Smart TV for $479, a Toshiba 49″ with the same bells and whistles (though, this one has built-in Chromecast) for just $199, and a 60″ LG for $599. More than those three, though, it’s Best Buy’s variety that gives them the edge. If you need a mega 4K TV (Samsung 65″ SUHD 4K smart TV with High Dynamic Range and a 240 motion rate for $1497) or a mid to large-sized 1080p (a 55″ Sharp with Roku for $249 as an 8AM Friday morning doorbuster), then they’ve got options for you. And options are a good thing as everyone else will almost certainly be grabbing at the TV that you had your heart set on.