Projects · TV

The Quest to Find The One Perfect Binge Begins

What is the most perfectly bingeable TV show ever? We aim to find out with our new series and bracket project.
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By  · Published on March 26th, 2020

This article is part of our One Perfect Binge bracket project. Follow along with here for updates and on Twitter, keep tabs with #OnePerfectBinge.

It’s no secret that many of the world’s humans are going to be stuck inside for a while. Surely you’ve heard the news. It’s perfectly okay to be anxious about things in 2020, but as anxiety about the fate of society settles and we begin to come to terms with our collective near-future reality, there’s an important question that we must answer: What the hell are we all going to watch while we’re stuck inside?

In the era of streaming, the list of potential answers feels infinite and overwhelming. Like you, we’ve also spent time on the couch aimlessly scrolling through Netflix, then Hulu, then Prime, then back to Netflix, desperately trying to find the perfect movie, the perfect show, the perfect release. And while we, the team behind One Perfect Shot, are confident in our ability to make good recommendations — which we’ve done several times in the past few weeks — we also believe in both data and fun. So we’ve devised a bracket project to identify the most perfectly bingeable show ever, starting with 32 shows from a variety of genres and time periods selected by our team.

Let’s get started.

Defining “One Perfect Binge”

First, we have to explain what we mean when we say that we’re looking to find the “One Perfect Binge.” It’s not just about identifying the best show of the group. There are other considerations, including:

To further explore the nuance at play in this project, here are some responses from members of our team when asked what qualities they look for in a perfectly bingeable show:

Anna Swanson: “My One Perfect Binge has to be consistently good. If I have to sit through 3 bad seasons in the middle I’m going to lose interest.”

Aurora Amidon: “My One Perfect Binge has to have characters that I want to spend even more time with than my friends/family.”

Brad Gullickson: “My One Perfect Binge has to be addictive. If I’m choosing sleep, work, movies, comics, family, or any other form of socialization outside of the series than the show is simply not doing its job.”

Christina Smith: “My One Perfect Binge clocks in at a manageable length. Sure, part of me wants to see my favorite stories go on forever, but I also don’t want to feel so overwhelmed by the idea of a series that I hesitate to take the plunge.”

Ciara Wardlow: “My One Perfect Binge has to have a satisfying conclusion—if I’m dedicating my time to a marathon I don’t want to be disappointed by the finish line.”

Kieran Fisher: “My One Perfect Binge has to make me lose sleep because I need to see what happens in the next episode, all the way to the very end.”

Jacob Trussell: “My One Perfect Binge is a show that offers equal parts entertainment and inspiration, something that you can arguably feel smarter for watching.”

Liz Baessler: “My One Perfect Binge has a strong thread of continuity that rewards me for watching so fast – I get that reference to three seasons ago because for me it just happened this morning.”

Luke Hicks: “My One Perfect Binge is an emotional rollercoaster. I need to laugh, cry, and marvel in equal measure, as if I’ve lived another life entirely by the time the finale strikes.”

The Method

Here’s how this bracket is going to go down:

The Bracket

Here’s the bracket. Clicking it makes it larger. These 32 shows were chosen based on a number of factors, including those outlined above — overall length, consistency of quality, and the personal preferences of the One Perfect Shot team. While it’s possible that your favorite show didn’t make it, we hope that everyone finds at least a few shows to root for as voting gets underway.

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Neil Miller is the persistently-bearded Publisher of Film School Rejects, Nonfics, and One Perfect Shot. He's also the Executive Producer of the One Perfect Shot TV show (currently streaming on HBO Max) and the co-host of Trial By Content on The Ringer Podcast Network. He can be found on Twitter here: @rejects (He/Him)