Oh my gosh. This is the news we’ve all been waiting for. And it’s actual news backed up by science!
If you’re starting to feel a little guilty about the amount of time you spend in front of the TV clicking ‘Next Episode,’ then don’t. A new study (published in a recent copy of Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity and the Arts) has confirmed what we’ve been trying to convince people of for years: Netflix binges are good for you. And it’s official.
OK, we might be exaggerating a little bit. Because there is a little bit of a catch: it only counts if you’re watching high-quality television dramas. Think Mad Men, The West Wing, House of Cards, Breaking Bad. Unfortunately, we’re not sure watching five hours of RuPaul’s Drag Race will cut it on this occasion.
So why are Netflix binges good for you?
The study claims that watching TV dramas like these can help to increase your emotional intelligence and levels of empathy. Experiments have even been done, so that’s how we know we’re perfectly justified in our long stretches on the sofa. 100 people were asked to first watch a TV drama or a nonfiction programme (like How The Universe Works). Afterwards, they were shown 36 pairs of eyes and asked to name the emotion they displayed. The results? Those who had watched the fictionalised TV dramas did way better than those who watched the nonfiction programmes. Amazing.
To be fair, the results aren’t overly surprising. Watching an episode of something like House M.D. encourages the viewer to really pay attention to the characters. There’s a lot of gaps that need to be filled in order to make sense of what’s going on. And, of course, we all love paying attention to characters as we try to come up with our own theories.
But I’ll stop there. Because we don’t really need to try to explain the study. All we need to take away from this is that Netflix binges are good for you. And what better timing, now that the days are getting shorter and colder? See you next summer.
Enjoyed this article rejoicing over the fact that Netflix binges are good for you? Then we’d probably be good friends. Also, you might like some some of RiseFeed’s other articles, including What Should I Watch on Netflix?, You’ll No Longer Be Able To Watch The Office on Netflix UK and This Is How Six of Our Favourite Kids TV Shows Ended.