Give Us a Shuffle Button, Netflix

Give Us a Shuffle Button, Netflix

Like everyone, I spend the majority of my weeknight evenings in front of the boob tube. In between watching live sports and my favorite movie, I’ll fire up Netflix and binge watch some of the best original programming to ever exist. Netflix has seemingly provided a solution to all of our attention span issues with thousands of original programs and movies to select from at the touch of a button.

Except there’s one issue they haven’t solved yet.

Once or twice a week I’ll find myself keeled over on the extended part of my sectional couch. The clock will read sometime between Holy Shit It’s Late and Holy Shit It’s Early. I’m unable to move due to my feet being comfortably stretched via my toe separators (look them up, then buy them) and my hands are wrist deep in a brown bag of assorted candies.

Here is where I face my dilemma. It’s too late to start a full-length feature film and I’m too relaxed to pay attention to a gripping hour-long serialized drama. I want something I can watch with one unfocused eye as the other stares blankly at my cell phone’s home screen. And I’ll be damned if I have to decide what to watch on my own.

This is where Netflix can swoop in and solve this very important issue by creating a Shuffle feature. Give me a button I can press that will randomly select an episode of one of their 5000 shows so I don’t have to. I want to be able to watch 30 to 45 seconds of an episode of The Office before I remember if I’d seen it recently. If Steve Carrell doesn’t appear in that first minute then I know it’s from season 8 or 9 and I should hit Shuffle again.

In addition to shuffling by program title, expand the button to be available by film genre and show category as well. Example: I feel like watching a dumb action movie. Picking one is too much responsibility, so it’s up to the Shuffle button to find my way randomly to Mortal Combat. Or what if I want to watch something animated the next time I’m “really relaxed”? Give me an Animation Shuffle button that throws Family Guy, Archer & Futurama at me all at once.

Netflix, you’re one of the most powerful tech companies in Silicon Valley. You’re essentially printing money due to the fact that you don’t report any ratings or viewing numbers and you’re creating programming from thin air to build up your library. They call you a “disrupter” but all I can think is that you’re disrupting me in the middle of the night when I’m too lazy to pick out a show to watch. Do the work for me and let me deal with the results.

And since you’re handing out TV series like chewing gum, your boy’s available. If not I can settle for a comedy special.

* * *

This week on Don’t Take It From Us, Jenna Crowley and I are joined by a very special cohost as we break down the best possible photos for your dating profile. We also grade more dating profiles with our segment Bumblebraggin and, of course, answer your DMs! New episodes will be released every Wednesday, so check it out on Soundcloud below or on iTunes!

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JR Hickey

Stand up comedian and writer from Chicago who now resides on the West Coast. JR can be seen performing at Cobbs Comedy Club in San Francisco and Zanies Comedy Clubs in Chicago. His work has been published in the Chicago Tribune and recently he was a part of SF Sketchfest 2015. JR's also the host of the PGP dating podcast Don't Take It From Us. He loves you very, very much.

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