Why Buy TV Shows On Amazon?

Senior Contributor
09.25.12 28 Comments

One question I get a lot, as somebody who’s cut the cord, is “Why do you pay for TV shows? You do know torrents exist, right?” Sure, I know torrents exist. But the reason I buy TV shows is because I also know how Hollywood works.

I’ll break it down a few ways:

I Don’t Actually Buy That Many TV Shows

To be honest, the shows I buy are pretty limited because the vast majority of TV I just don’t care about. Seriously, it’s a short list. It’s not like I’m going around buying crap like Partners. Once you rule out the stuff available on Netflix and Hulu, which is actually a surprisingly deep list of episodes and shows between the two of them, I generally buy one or two seasons.

Since I don’t buy cable, it actually works out to be a lot cheaper in the end.

It’s Actually Surprisingly Cheap

Break down the costs of entertainment and an episode of TV is dirt cheap. Generally it runs between $1.50 and $1.89 from Amazon. In other words, almost the cost of two songs, or two apps, or one third the cost of a freaking magazine.

Really, by any standard, that’s a pretty fair price.

It Actually Shows Support For the Shows I Care About

Ask our own Dustin Rowles: The Neilsens, the foundation of all television financing and mediator of what is popular to Americans, is a fat load of crap. Unfortunately, this fat load of crap is literally the only thing telling networks what’s popular and what isn’t.

Until now.

That’s really the thing: There’s literally nothing like putting your money behind the shows you love. It’s probably the most direct way to say “Hey, keep this on the air!” It’s a metric shows have never had before and it’s a pretty compelling one. If you’re Sony, and you know that the cost of, say, Breaking Bad or Community is covered before you even stick an episode on the air? That’s a great way to have them keep making episodes.

Of course, it’s not great for networks, but hey, every situation needs a loser.

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