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10 Shows That Are Better When Viewed As One Long Lazy Marathon

By Joanna Robinson | Lists | April 30, 2012 |

By Joanna Robinson | Lists | April 30, 2012 |

It was announced this week that NBC will be airing the last three episodes of “Community” on one night. Over on Warming Glow Dustin asked if you can handle that much Troy, Abed & Co. B*tch, please, that’s amateur hour (and a half). In an age of Hulu, Netflix Instant and On Demand television, we’re quite accustomed to watching shows in huge greedy chunks. “Just one more” is the rallying cry of the serious TV watcher. And despite the fact that the weather is nicer and Mother Nature is beckoning, summer is one of my favorite times to marathon a new show or rewatch an old favorite. Here are a few suggestions on how to spend your warm summer nights. No, before you ask, these are not just my favorite shows. They’re also not just shows that you should see, though, of course, you should. They’re shows that engage in the kind of storytelling that really is improved when watched marathon-style. So grab your friends, a themed beverage and some snacks and settle in for a long winter’s summer’s watch.

10. “Buffy The Vampire Slayer”: I think you know how I feel about this one.

9. “Mad Men”: The biggest complaint that people have about this fantastic AMC series is that “nothing happens.” I think you’ll find, if you watch several episodes in a row, that not only has plenty happened, but you’ve witnessed some of the best character development out there. “Mad Men” is truly one of the finest shows on any channel right now and you’re doing yourself a disservice by skipping it.

8. “Justified”: This show is such an interesting blend of perfectly fine stand alone episodes and meatier, season long arc episodes that watching it a season at a time is really the way to go.

7. “Band Of Brothers”: Listen, I don’t want to sound racist, but all those white dudes in uniform look the same to me. The only way I was able to track them was by giving them all nicknames and watching this mini-series in one go. Same goes for the inferior (but still enjoyable) The Pacific.

6. “Game of Thrones”: Once again,not to sound racist, but white dudes in furs and beards are difficult enough to tell apart. This series employs so many characters (with hard to track names) that the most helpful way to watch is all at once. P.S. Everyone has told you about the nudity and the violence, but did they mention puppies? Cause there are puppies.

5. “The Wire”: I know a lot of you haven’t seen this yet. Even though you know you are supposed to. It seems heavy and daunting, doesn’t it? I’ll also acknowledge that it takes a few episodes each season for the storyline (and new characters) to really grab you. If you marathon and power through, you’ll find you won’t be able to stop.

4. “Doctor Who”: I’m not sure I really understand the hold-outs surrounding this much-beloved series. There’s some weird sort of obstinate, hipster hate for the “Who.” That’s your prerogative, I’m not going to force you. But seriously, you’re missing out on loads of goofy fun. The special effects are terrible, so just close your eyes and think of England and eventually you’ll find you won’t notice that the “scariest monster in all of space and time” is actually a trash can.

3. “Downton Abbey”: If “Doctor Who” is like a jaunty British biscuit, then “Downton Abbey” is straight up British crack. You could try to watch it in moderation, but I wouldn’t advise it.

2. “Battlestar Galactica”: If it’s your first time watching BSG, you have to marathon in order to stay in front of all the friends and loved ones who will try to spoil it for you. Turn off your phone, ignore the internet, and watch like the wind, my friends. You won’t regret it…much.

1. “Firefly”: Bar-none the most delightful show to marathon. Given its brief run (*sob* *wail*), this is a manageable 14 hours. Child’s play. Just don’t attempt to play the drinking game while you do.