When to stop and when to not. When you’re not sure I guess it’s better to stop. But at the bottom of the pit, it really doesn’t matter if you’re going to stop or not. That’s how addictive TV serials can be. After binge-watching three serials with the same actor back-to-back, I think I have a problem. Apart from becoming the first thing that pops up in my Google search and my YouTube recommendations only showing his videos, even Netflix is trying to find me similar serials feeding this disastrous addiction. Now that his next appearance will only be at the end of this year, I am literally grappling at strings to hold on to this obsession.
I know this sounds terrible and unhealthy but I can’t help myself. Why is no other serial comparing? I still can’t get over how good this actor is, he looks younger than me while being about ten years older than me and it’s very troubling. But it’s the characters he plays that I am obsessed with not him per say. Now that I’ve got that out of my system I feel slightly better. Obsessions have never ended well for me. I read Harry Potter 21 times, watched the movies over and over, read all the comic relief books Rowling published then Cursed Child came along and now I am still trying to move on from Harry Potter and I can’t. It’s like I have a very bad hangover.
My obsessions can run into years if it’s unchecked. I just grow out of them or the world conspires to separate me form it through circumstances. I guess the reality check comes every time there are no more episodes or pages left in a book. I guess I invest my emotions in these stories for whatever reason. I hurt when the characters hurt, I smile when the characters smile, I feel everything they feel. So when it says ‘The End’ I can’t accept it. Maybe that’s why love has been hard for me too because I give too much.
I never know when to stop, and I’ll take it till the end, I never miss a bit and I’ll rewatch and reread. I get to know the actors behind the characters, watch all their interviews, try to brush up on their background and when there’s nothing left all I can do is wait. I know the only way through this is to move away from the characters, or move on to something new. It’s never easy. I know it’s going to take me a while and everybody around me has to put up with this. They’ll watch me get obsessed all over again from scratch and they will tell me it’s not worth it but I’ll still go ahead.
We think the lines are blurred but that’s an excuse. We know exactly when to stop but we think we can handle it and plow forward then we treat it as a misjudgement. We allow ourselves to get obsessed and we open the dam, when it floods and we’re literally drowning we wonder why exactly we opened Pandora’s box in the first place? Was it really necessary? So when I watched the serial I knew where it was heading, by the second serial I still felt in control, the third was my stupidity and there was no turning back. Now I’ll console myself that at least he’s a singer and I can watch his videos on YouTube.
Next time I’ll do the same thing. It’s pretty much like drinking, you think you’re absolutely fine and then you read the messages you wrote to your friends in the morning that make you look like you failed English in the first grade. We’re too proud to admit that we’re not in control. So despite warning me, my Mum has to listen to me constantly talking about these serials and stories from an actor’s life who she absolutely doesn’t care about. She smiles knowingly, she’s seen this happen before. When I was obsessed with Harry Potter it was before one of my important exams, she locked the books in the cupboard and threatened to burn them.
She’s seen me in this situation countless times, over and over again. Now she just sighs and smiles and tells me that his hairstyle isn’t great to my outrage only to irk me. But she gets it, in a strange motherly way but she and I both know I’ve lost it. As my mother, she still has to love me despite me being annoying. She has watched all three serials with me and she now knows him as well as I do, despite not wanting to. It’s like this every time from Harry Potter to all my crushes. We both know I make the same mistakes over and over again. I might be smart otherwise but not in love, not in my obsessions.
I know right now the lines are blurred because I want them to be. I am going to take a while to stand up and watch that serial without feeling like an excited 15-year old. I will find a new serial, I’ll find a new character. I’ll do it from scratch until the lines are blurred and I’ll pretend not to see the fall coming. I’ll pretend that it doesn’t affect me. This isn’t the first but it is definitely not the last. Who cares? Netflix I’m coming for you.