DVDs: NetFlix or Purchase

This thread talked about why one would watch a TV series on DVD instead of real time. Lots of good reasons were given. I wondered about the difference between purchasing a season and getting it a disk at a time from Netflix.

I’ve been converted to Netflix. I found that when I was given a set, it would take me upwards of a year to finish watching it, since everything else had priority. Netflix sends stuff in nice easy bites.
It’s true that I can imagine stuff I’d like to own - but I can either put the disks back on my queue or run out and buy them.

It isn’t the money so much, or even the space, but rather that I can mix several series, and I get through them faster.

Anyone else rather rent?

Since we’ve had our baby we’ve rented most of the TV series. They are pricey to buy and we’d only watch them once. Now we can get a disk and watch one show at a time over a week or so and send them back. Plus it gives us a chance to check out shows, we couldn’t stand The Wire or Deadwood, so it saves money that way as well.

I rent most of mine from Netflix. I don’t buy very many DVDs, but I do like to have a few that I own. I’ve received a couple of complete tv series as gifts. I’ll tend to watch them if I’m sick or over a holiday when I don’t have much from Netflix because of slow mail delivery.

Netflix by a large margin. We’ve had DVD since Christmas of 2002 and it was given to us along with 6 or 7 DVD’s. We joined the 3-at-a-time Netflix plan that same month and since January 03 we have rented anywhere from none to maybe 10 per month. We have 250 in our current queue but I can’t spot the count for the total we have rented but it would be at least 300 I suspect.

Since we got the DVD player we have purchased only 12-15 additional sets, with a few of them multi-disc box sets. But the movie (or series) has to be extra special for us to want to own it. Of the ones we own, I can’t think of any of them that we have watched more than maybe three times. Owning DVD’s when you can rent is mostly an ego thing, I submit. Unless you’re one of those people who can watch the same movie multiple times and enjoy it each time, I suggest renting!

I only buy DVDs of my very favorite movies or shows, the ones that I think I will watch repeatedly. Otherwise I get them from Netflix.

I know several people who buy DVDs all the time, and never rent anything. It puzzles me, but then I buy all of my books instead of getting them from the library, so I guess that’s the same sort of thing.

I “rent” all my DVDs from the public library. It doesn’t cost me anything.

We get a lot of TV series through Netflix. We buy DVDs for shows we really love and know we will want to watch again and/or regularly lend to friends to hook them. We just finished watching Farscape, wich was new to me. We started getting it through Netflix, but by the end of the last season, I’d bought all the DVDs because I knew I wanted to own them.

We’re watching The Wire through Netflix now. While it’s astonishingly good, I don’t feel like I’ll need to watch it over and over. It’s not something I’d pop in for background noise or to rewatch halfassed while I’m walking on the treadmill. Buffy is great for that – I’ve seen them a million times, know them very well, but still find it entertaining enough that it’s a good diversion while I’m otherwise occupied with something boring.

We’ve watched a number of series through NetFlix. If we particularly enjoy one and think we’ll want to watch the whole thing again, *then *we go out and buy it.

I don’t buy DVD’s.

Ok, that’s a lie - I occasionally buy a DVD if it’s something that’s likely to go out of print very quickly (like the recent Jodorowsky boxed set or Matthew Barney’s Cremaster DVD) or if it’s a really small company for whom the sales of this DVD might very well determine whether they’re even around this time next year (like whoever put out the Pinky Violence boxed set).

But other than that, there’s no need to own DVD’s. You might watch them once a year, if that often, and that’s a good $15-20 - often more - that you’ve tied up for no real reason. Why not just rent it/get it from Netflix when you want to see it?

I’ve been working hard to break my mind out of the whole American “if you like something, buy it” mentality, instead defaulting to behaviors like renting and borrowing first, buying second-hand, and finally buying new as a last resort.

Another option: rent them from your local independent video store, instead of sending all your money to the giant company that’s putting them all out of business.

Netflix- I’m of the opinion that its silly to watch any movie multiple times, unless you have no other option, when there are tens of thousands of movies that you’ve never seen once.

I’m with cbawlmer: I rent way more DVDs than I buy, and I rent lots of TV shows that are new to me or that I’ll only want to watch every now and then. For example, I loved Seinfeld and am currently working my way through the series, but I don’t feel the need to own any of the seasons. I also tend to be an “all or nothing” person when it comes to TV shows on DVD: I own one season of The West Wing (though I might get others eventually) and Quantum Leap, and a “best of” for the first season of Farscape (because I haven’t gotten around to buying the whole series yet), but otherwise the TV shows I have or want on DVD are full series – or at least, the seasons that have been released: Buffy, Firefly, Fame, Sports Night, The Pretender, Black Books, St. Elsewhere, and House. If repeats of MASH* ever stop being shown on TV (unlikely!), that might be when I buy that series. :slight_smile:

I’d have to go 13 miles to find anything other than Blockbuster (with the exception of one lone Hollywood Video), and then it’s an adult video store. Not all of us live near local independent anythings. :frowning:

Sometimes I’d rather watch something that I know I like than take the chance on something unknown. I don’t feel compelled to see every movie that’s ever been released. Plus, I don’t always catch every single detail of every single movie the first time I watch it. To each their own.

I’m in the same boat. Since using Netflix, I’ve become very picky about which DVDs I buy. Interestingly, cbawlmer, The Wire is a series I Netflixed first and then bought. It’s so dense and complex, I’ve definitely picked up more on the rewatch. It’s like rereading a novel–I catch more character moments and foreshadowing.

No offense- I know I’m in the very small minority on this. :slight_smile:

Because sometimes - quite often in fact - I feel like putting on a movie I already like. And then it needs to be on my shelf and ready to play. Don’t get me wrong, I use the shit out of the local equivalent of Netflix, but some movies/series I just want to own.

Agreed. When I come down with a cold or something, I need the TV equivalent of comfort available right away.

We have a three year old child. Getting her to bed in time to watch real time TV is somewhat unreliable.

Our current set up:

The very basic-est of the basic cable packages. About 30 channels for about 18 bucks a month.

The two disc unlimited Netflix plan for about 14 bucks a month.

We watch a few shows in real time (or with the VCR) and get everything else via Netflix. We may be a little behind on some shows, but we don’t have time to watch a ton of TV anyway. Eventually we can watch just about everything - plus movies - and it costs us less than most normal cable packages.

Edited to Add: And if we find something we think we’ll watch again and again, then we buy.

Unless its a film or series I know I’ll want to buy even before it comes out on DVD, I’ll go for Netflix first. I also use Netflix to review things I haven’t seen before or haven’t seen in a very long time, and make a decision on whether or not to buy my own copy.

Netflix has a superior business model. It has a vastly superior selection, no late fees, plus you can take your DVD’s with you on vacation. Unfortunately, even our beloved eclectic and eccentric local video store will probably go out of business, which is the reality of economics. I’d consider signing up for the Blockbuster plan if I had one in walking distance, but I don’t, and I always hated that damn store.