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Better on DVD

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Sometimes, a film, series, webcomic, etc simply doesn't make a good first impression. Perhaps it has to do with Executive Meddling, such as airing the episodes Out of Order. Then again, the writers may not have written the episodes in chronological order anyway. It could be that the Act Breaks are a little soft. Or maybe there were too many commercial breaks, making the immersion less complete than it could have been. It probably has something to do with the fact that the writers live in the environment they have created for the characters 24/7, and the Previously on… segments just aren't enough to bring the viewer up to speed anymore. The fact remains that some series do not really work quite as well until you sit down for a marathon with the DVDs or on a streaming service.

Releasing an entire series at once, possibly in hopes of having this effect, is a Compilation Rerelease. The comic book equivalent is Writing for the Trade. Compare Vindicated by Cable where a film didn't sell at the box office but attains a following through repeats on television or a streaming service.

Note that this is not the same as Vindicated by Reruns: In that Trope, all that was required for a Series to get the recognition it deserved was increased/continued exposure over time in the same or a similar format/medium. With Better on DVD, the redeeming factor is the compilation of the series (with or without Bonus Material) allowing the viewer to evaluate the series as a united whole as opposed to one or two installments a week.note 

Also not to be confused with Enhanced on DVD, when the DVD release is better because the creators actively made it better, rather than anything to do when or how you watch the episodes.


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  • Many anime in general benefit from marathon sittings due to having ongoing plot threads between episodes. The trend toward the 12-Episode Anime makes binge-watching these series more manageable than with longer series. Binge-watching a 24-episode series in a day is also perfectly doable (though under most circumstances, it would take two or three).
  • This is probably a good part of the reason why English anime translations in the early days (as well as Norwegian, Swedish and Finnish languages), other than the few heavily Macekred for kids' TV, tended to be limited to films and OVAs. Collecting whole TV series on VHS would be impractical, and as far as the mainstream was concerned, the Animation Age Ghetto mentality (amongst other things) was still very much in place, so any anime that were adapted for TV would likely be heavily Bowdlerised or otherwise Macekred. The only choice for hardcore fans who wanted unedited material was VHS. Even OVAs which were part of a series likely had much shorter runs than TV series, so were more amenable to VHS release. However, Norway continued to limit the translations of anime to OVAs and films until The New '10s (by that decade, a new "anime boom" occurred in that country). The Eastern Bloc countries, as well as Yugoslavia, also suffered from this (especially until 1997), not due to the Animation Age Ghetto mentality, but because anime could not be exported to these countries due to the Iron Curtain and an embargo placed by the West, Japan and several other countries.
  • Ultra popular long-running Shōnen anime, such as Naruto, Bleach, and One Piece sort of zigzag this. On the one hand, it is far more satisfying to marathon and blow through a significant chunk of a story arc in a single day rather than just getting a tiny bit of story each week. On the other hand, because these shows air weekly and are usually not rerun, episode beginnings are often bogged down with several minutes of "Previously on…..." for people who may have missed episodes (which is why Marathon Mode options exist on some releases). The original manga chapters tend not to be quite as offensive in this regard, but even they will have a tendency to reference earlier scenes and repeat information if the need arises.
  • Realizing that many series in their catalog are better on DVD, Funimation has started giving some of their longer anime (Dragon Ball, One Piece, etc.) a special feature, "Marathon Mode", that plays all the episodes on a disc in sequence while skipping the ending credits, episode previews, and all but the initial opening theme.
    • There was a collection of old Robotech videotapes that did that too, presenting six episodes per tape as one extended story, but also cut out a few scenes of each episode.
    • Geneon, when it was still Pioneer, also did this with their VHS tapes. Their Tenchi Muyo! TV releases had only a single OP and ED ever played per tape.
    • The VHS tapes of Slayers from Central Park Media did this as well. This is why the next episode previews (and one postseason epilogue) were never dubbed.
  • AIR's plot is oddly impenetrable if not watched all at once.
  • FLCL, although only six episodes long, loses its magic if too much of a gap is left between each episode. This is mainly because you won't know what's going on, considering the random nature of the show. Well, you won't know what's going on either way, but if you don't watch them quickly it's easy to forget that it doesn't matter. What else do you expect from Gainax?
  • The fanbase of Yu-Gi-Oh! 5Ds is incredibly split when it comes to characters, so the anime tried to give even-time to every character. Since the show aired one episode a week, and was subbed the day after it aired, it angered fans when their favorite character doesn't get the spotlight. Watching the show on DVD isn't nearly as infuriating due to the wait, and the backstory episodes add some pleasant flavor to the surprisingly complicated universe.
  • It can be pretty damned difficult to follow Neon Genesis Evangelion if you're only watching an episode every week. It's easier to follow if you're watching a marathon of the entire thing in order, along with reading up of some explanatory material.
  • Naruto's UK distributor, Jetix, is on par with 4Kids with needless editing, and is also fond of switching the episode order around (last part of the Naruto vs. Neji fight, followed by the beginning of the Zabuza arc, to name one example).
    • The foreign dubs in general are based on the DVD version which cleans up the animation substantially, leading some to believe that the animation was changed for the dub.
    • In the uncut DVDs, the censorship on Lee's bottle of sake is removed, and the references to alcohol are restored.
  • The Geneon Sailor Moon S and Sailor Moon SuperS DVDs are uncut and feature both the Japanese and English versions, which is great. Also for fans of the original Japanese background music, the DVD versions of the three movies keep the Japanese music intact as opposed to the DiC music used in the VHS release and Toonami airings. Viz's Sailor Moon DVDs are even better with a great dub that cuts nothing out and keeps the original music.
  • In Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, the Upper-6 fight in the Red Light District arc, by far the longest antagonist fight in the series, until the very final fight dethroned it (by just one chapter), is much more enjoyable in collected volume form; some people who had to follow it weekly weren’t having a good time after a certain point, where cries of dragging on could be heard.
  • Code Geass, due to having most of its plot squished into the last ten or so episodes, makes a lot more sense if you watch all of R2 at once. The animation was also cleaned-up and improved overall.
  • The Tatami Galaxy has had very different reception from people who viewed it when airing and those who marathoned the whole thing in one go.
  • Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex is very arc-heavy. The first series is divided between "Standalone" (one-shot) and "Complex" (arc) episodes. This allows viewers to see the whole "Laughing Man" arc from start to finish without interruption if they wish. The two Compilation Movies of the series (The Laughing Man and Individual Eleven) serve this same purpose.
  • Haruhi Suzumiya:
    • While not specifically better, the anime adaptation is shown in chronological order on DVD, which can help the series make more sense. The anime was originally shown in a particular non-chronological sequence, and even on DVD one of the chronologically last episodes (episode 11/00, specifically) is used as a Non-Indicative First Episode. The anime arguably has much better pacing when viewed in its original order, and this is especially apparent at the end, where the intended last episode (chronologically occurring in the middle) is dramatic and world-changing, while the chronological last episode (originally shown in the middle) basically consists of everyone sitting around the club room on a typical day, which is quite disappointing as a season finale. Add in The Movie and the episode "Someday in the Rain" becomes much more significant, as it shows Kyon's little slice of normality (and a subtle hint of a certain girl's affection for him), a status quo that is abruptly punctured by the events of Disappearance. With that final piece in place, it is a perfectly constructed series when watched in any order.
    • The second season's infamous "Endless Eight" arc is much less frustrating when you aren't forced to watch it one episode a week for two months, not to mention that on DVD you can skip some episodes since nothing is really missed if you only watch the first, second, and last parts. Alternatively, for those few people who do enjoy watching all eight episodes through, it's almost necessary to do so at once to appreciate their arguable charm point of how almost nothing is exactly the same twice.
  • Similarly to Doctor Who (as noted in the "Live Action TV" folder), this is a very sharp double-edged sword for the 1984 TV adaptation of Fist of the North Star. While marathons can help one breeze through season one's massive block of filler episodes and allow the story's progression to come at a more natural pace, the amount of recaps the show uses (either as pre-episode narrations, flashbacks, or entire episodes) makes much of it seem quite redundant. This becomes especially true for the five interstadial episodes between seasons three and four, as all of them are recaps; the fact that one of them focuses on the fairly recent Souther arc just adds to the repetitiveness.
  • Baccano!'s anime adaptation makes infinitely more sense watched all at once. This goes for most other Anachronic Order shows as well.
  • If you're watching RideBack every week as it airs (or as FUNimation adds the episodes to their video player) you will probably forget everything that happened the previous week by the time the next episode(s) come out.
  • Since the episodes are only 5 minutes long, Hetalia: Axis Powers is usually better watched one after another on DVD.
  • Excel♡Saga. The crazy Parody/Deconstruction of anime in general is much easier (and more fun) to watch/understand in one go than if you were to try and watch it on TV one week at a time.
  • Literally anything by Studio SHAFT, what with the Unreadably Fast Text and Freeze-Frame Bonus prolific in their shows (Maria†Holic, Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei, Pani Poni Dash!, Bakemonogatari, and Hidamari Sketch are all egregious offenders). Puella Magi Madoka Magica counts as well, but for other reasons.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam Wing, due to having a heavy plot with tons of twists and a large cast who are Heel Face Revolving Doors. If you missed even a single episode, you were likely to be absolutely lost.
  • Tiger & Bunny was already a fantastic show on broadcast, but is much more pleasurable on disc, not only because of the fixed off-model or the easier digestion of the plot... but because after a certain point in the series, the Cliffhangers become sadistic.
  • Hajime no Ippo is far more satisfying when marathoned, with its character development and intense action. Multiple matches tend to last up to three episodes, but that is far more forgivable than seeing characters do nothing but talk and power up for three episodes.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood flows like an extra-long movie, and has plenty of cliffhangers. Because of this, it's far more satisfying to marathon the entire series.
  • Rosario + Vampire has the censor bats removed on DVD, something that was criticized as being obtrusive and distracting during its original broadcast.
  • Subverted with CLANNAD. The series has a lot of complex foreshadowing and tight story arcs that are ideal for binge-watching. The ending to ~After Story~ makes a lot more sense with Kotomi's theories about the Hidden World fairly fresh in your mind, but some fans find the series of Wham Episodes in the second half of ~After Story~ makes it too emotionally overwhelming for them to process in one sitting.
  • One of the most recurrent complaints about the Attack on Titan anime is its supposedly slow pacing. However, this complaint is way more common among those who watched the show in simulcast (and thus had to wait a whole week for each new episode) than among those who watched the whole thing in a few days.
  • Many Hunter × Hunter fans have found that the Chimera Ant arc in the 2011 anime, while glacial to watch weekly, is easier to follow and digest in extended viewing sessions.
  • Berserk (2016) had its heavily complained about CGI completely redone/improved for the home video release, in addition to it being uncensored.
  • Dragon Ball Z Kai still has a fairly lengthy Namek and Frieza arc, but the tighter editing means that the story is far more gripping and intense than it otherwise would be.
  • The Vision of Escaflowne is a very plot-dense and non-episodic anime. Despite being only 26 episodes long, fans who miss even one episode can easily be subject to Continuity Lockout. It's a much smoother and more enjoyable viewing experience when marathoning the episodes in their intended order.
  • The Ice Arc from Kaguya-sama: Love Is War is a prime example of this. While considered to be one of the highlights of the series, it is widely agreed among the fandom that it is best enjoyed in a single sitting due to how annoying the beginning can seem without later events providing context. Unsurprisingly, the anime chose to adapt it in movie format rather than spread the whole thing out over the course of 3-4 episodes.
  • Bo Bo Bo Bo Bo Bo Bo was victim of a couple faulty DVD releases that completely lacked an option for English subtitles for the Japanese version. This was until 2020 when Discotek Media re-released the entire series onto SD-Blu Ray and gave a properly subbed release at long last. This also couples with the fact that all the episodes are uncut, retaining all the scenes cut from the Toonami broadcast either for time or content.
  • According to some viewers, JoJo's Bizarre Adventure is the opposite from Part 3 onwards, since while Phantom Blood and Battle Tendency make for enjoyable binge-watching (due to their more straightforward, plot driven nature), every part afterwards has a Monster of the Week format with multi-part episodes involving characters battling one Stand User after another in their quest to find and defeat the Big Bad, a formula that makes for exciting and suspenseful weekly viewing, but can make for a tedious and repetitive viewing experience when binged all at once, despite the creativity of said battles. An issue that became all the more apparent with Netflix's batch release of Part 6, a decision widely hated by fans, due to killing much of the hype and community discussion that surrounded the show each week during previous parts.
    • The manga suffers from the opposite problem: Every fight is spread out across multiple chapters (the fight against Viviano Westwood, for instance, is spread out across seven chapters, or the equivalent of nearly two months), making following the manga as it is released a chore to keep track of. It's made worse with the switch to Ultra Jump, with new chapters being released monthly rather than weekly.
  • While new chapters of The Guy She Was Interested in Wasn't a Guy At All come out more frequently than most original doujins, the chapters of this series are only four pages long. As such, it can be easier to binge-read the story in the amount of time it takes to read a few standard-length manga chapters.

    Fan Works 
  • Many Abridged Series are helped by this trope, since episodes can take months to complete, whether due to writing in jokes, editing the animations, or maybe some error that prevented the episodes from being completed in a faster timeframe. Dragon Ball Z Abridged, for instance, is much better to watch after the seasons are over, like the original series, so you can catch all of the ongoing plots and jokes, as well as the occasional Call-Back, especially since the writing allowed for those starting in Season 2. Yugioh The Abridged Series is helped even further, mostly because the episodes in the later half of Season 3, after the Virtual World arc, are really fast-paced for some reason (though, thankfully, the show returned to its former pace afterwards). The show's big amount of Running Gags and Continuity Nods also make this a great way to watch it after the seasons are done, especially when the seasons can take years to get done, due to Little Kuriboh's schedule with getting the episodes out. Seeing as how Abridged Series' are mostly adapted from Anime shows, this is a natural extension of it. Plus, the shows reduce a lot of the filler in said shows, most of the time greatly benefiting the pace of the material adapted.

    Films — Animation 
  • Coco premiered in theaters preceded by the featurette Olaf's Frozen Adventure, testing the patience of viewers displeased with sitting through such a long and irrelevant "short" before the movie. When Coco reached home video, it didn't include Olaf's Frozen Adventure, which Disney instead sells separately, as part of a compilation of winter-themed shorts. This made Coco Pixar's first movie since Toy Story 2 to reach Blu-Ray without the "short" that accompanied it in theaters.
  • While Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse's art style is amazing, it's so detailed that it can be a bit overwhelming and distracting on a big screen. Watching it on a smaller screen at home makes the art not seem as stylized and can make it easier to focus on the movie itself.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In general, the introduction of DVD kicked off the release of movies to home video in widescreen. While there were a few widescreen VHS tapes released in the 90's, they were usually considered a specialty item that was often very difficult to find in stores (and even harder to find rental). There were also many widescreen laserdiscs (as they were the serious film collector's format), but it wasn't until the DVD format came out that widescreen home video started to grow in popularity, and even then it took the introduction of widescreen televisions to finally begin to kill off pan-&-scan. (However, it is still common to find stores selling the "fullscreen" version of a film, especially if it was intended for children, an open matte version of a film, or in extreme cases with older films, the fullscreen version is the only one that still even exists, the widescreen version likely being lost.)
  • Another general example is that several film series with a bad case of sequelitis can form a coherent story when watched at once.
  • A Wedding (1978): The large number of characters and subplots to keep track of mean that the film can seem better on repeat viewings.
  • Clue is a rare film with Multiple Endings. The DVD allows watching one of the three endings at random, or watching all three in successions, allowing the audience to better compare them, and notice the parallels (such as the repeated lines) between each of them. Certainly more practical than hunting for three movie theaters showing three different versions of the movie (although outside North America (and when the movie came out on VHS in 1986), Paramount released the movie with all three endings in a row)!
  • Transformers Film Series: Some people have found it to be easier to follow the action on a smaller screen because there was so much detail on the robots that would distract you from the important stuff.
  • A Knight's Tale. The commentary track with Brian Helgeland and Paul Bettany was hilarious. (No one told them Queen wasn't historically accurate!).
  • Paranormal Activity: Due to the concept of the film, it is arguably much scarier watching it home alone (preferably at night) than when watching it in a theatre.
  • The Fourth Kind is probably scarier when watched home alone.
  • The Gladiator DVD includes several deleted scenes that add to the story, such as a scene where we learn that Commodus is selling off Rome's grain stores to pay for the games, and another scene where Commodus has two innocent praetorians executed because Maximus is still alive (explaining why Quintus refused to give him a sword during the climactic battle).
  • Roger Ebert once commented that Moulin Rouge! works much better on the small screen than the big screen, citing that the rapid cuts and visual overload dragged the film down in theaters.
  • If you watched all the Harry Potter films in theatres, but never rewatched the previous entries on DVD (or read the books, for that matter), you probably ended up being very confused. It's much easier to follow the storyline when there isn't a year or two between each installment, and by the end of the series you aren't struggling to remember stuff from a movie you last saw ten years ago. Though the series does still suffer from some things from the books just being plopped into the films that were set up in a prior story with no explanation, or half adapt something where the explanation was filmed, but cut for whatever reason. The Freeform airings of the movies also often restore deleted scenes for their ongoing Harry Potter marathons, allowing for a much more enjoyable experience when binging the movies that way.
  • Cloud Atlas received polarizing reviews upon release due to its premise of following six plots set in different historical periods, and failed to surpass its production budget during its theatrical run. But it went on to debut as number 1 in Home Video sales, suggesting that thanks to the available control over the lengthy and ambitious epic movie which allows rewinding some parts, people could notice all the Rewatch Bonuses and appreciate how each story is interconnected, leading to a better reception over time.
  • Due to the highly serialized nature of the Saw franchise, the general consensus is that it's best to watch the movies back-to-back on home video, which makes the increasingly convoluted plot much easier to follow.
  • While Star Wars: The Last Jedi is still a divisive movie, many have expressed the opinion that the film works much better if you treat it and The Force Awakens as one long movie; not only is Jedi an Immediate Sequel, but watching it right after Awakens makes both feel much more coherent with each other, as well as making the Ending Fatigue more bearable. In fact, some critics have argued that this trope was actually the source of all the controversy and drama Jedi faced; there was a two year gap between it and Awakens, meaning fans had more time than usual to build up expectations and Fanon, leading to disappointment and confusion when the film finally came out and proved to be very different from what people had come to expect/hope for. This problem obviously doesn't exist if you just watch the films back-to-back.
  • In some cases, details become more prominent on small screens, especially in HD. One example is A.I.: Artificial Intelligence. On the Blu Ray, it's much more obvious that the creatures at the end are robots and not aliens. It's easier to see the bright lights and circuitry inside of them and there are flashing lights on their heads when they talk. This apparently wasn't too obvious for people at theatres.
  • Many of Quentin Tarantino's films work better when viewed at home due to their anachronistic order. The biggest example though is definitely the Kill Bill movies, which almost require to be viewed back to back.
  • Back to the Future Part II and III make more sense when they're watched back-to-back, as you catch elements of foreshadowing better than watching them months apart.
  • The DVD release of Memento allows viewers to watch the film in the story's internal chronological order, rather than the theatrical release's anachronistic order. This makes the plot (not to mention the character interactions) much more understandable.
  • (500) Days of Summer has the movie unfold in Anachronic Order, as you know from the beginning that Tom and Summer won't work out. It jumps around to various stages in their relationship, which on DVD is easier to keep track of. You can rewind and fast forward to certain points to pick up on information you might have missed out on.
  • The same logic of binge-watching TV series also applies to film series. It's a lot more fun to watch installments in franchises such as James Bond movies, The Lord of the Rings, Star Wars or Harry Potter back-to-back without having to wait up to several years between releases in theaters. Before the rise of Netflix and TV on DVD, this was the most common type of binge-watching way back in the days of VHS.
  • Unfriended is a very specific example where it's Better When Watched on a Computer. (Specifically, an Apple Macintosh from the mid-2010s, as that's the computer used in the film.) The gimmick of the film is that it takes place entirely on the protagonist's computer screen, and so, as she goes through various websites and programs along with her Skype call, the viewer is watching the story — and Laura's hauntings — unfold on their own computer screen as opposed to a TV or a theater screen.
  • The Trainspotting DVD gives you the option of splicing the Deleted Scenes into the film, including several taken from the book.

  • Literature is probably the oldest example of this trope, since if a book series is serialized, reading all of the books in it can give you a better idea of the bigger picture the authors were trying to give with their stories and characters.
  • Harry Potter, much like the movies, is a series that's much better to read in a short timeframe, especially after the fourth book really kicked the overarching plot into high gear, though the three books before it were no slouches at setting up plot threads and characters that would become much more important later on.
  • Percy Jackson and the Olympians is similar to Harry Potter, as the ongoing arc is set up from day one and expanded upon in later books, something the films didn't realize, even though the film series had started the year the fifth and final book in the initial series came out. It also helps to have read these stories when going into the sequel series, The Heroes of Olympus, since it features characters from the first. And since Rick Riordan, the series' author, likes to do crossover stories, it's probably a good idea to give The Kane Chronicles and Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard a read too, since they take place in the same universe.

    Live-Action TV 
  • A lot of shows cancelled after just a season or so, such as Jericho (2006) (which at least got a second) and FlashForward (2009), feel a lot better on DVD, leading some to be frustrated at the end of the series. Watching one episode after another commercial-free makes the story feel much tighter.

  • Owing to South Africa's apartheid policies, the British actor's union Equity started a boycott of programme sales to South Africa, which, combined with a similar boycott of releases of programs by Australia, so this is a good reason why South Africa saw very little of non-American imported programming before the end of the Apartheid. Collecting whole TV series on VHS for South Africa would be impractical. In the early 1980s, an American anime licencing company tried to even open a subsidiary in South Africa (mainly for the purposes of dubbing Magical Girl anime into South African English, so that this makes a distinction that the Super Robot anime be aired in the United States and the magical girl anime be aired in South Africa), but this did not happen for the same reason.
  • 24, because its real-time format allows for full-day marathons (though the shows are actually 48 minutes, giving you, at least, some time to use the bathroom – unlike the characters).
  • Alias. Nearly every episode ended with a cliffhanger, which is made far easier to endure when the next episode is only the push of a button away.
  • The general consensus on Angel is that Season 4 qualifies, mostly due to the love triangle between the title character, Cordelia, and Angel's son who Likes Older Women. Much of this season isn't even essential to the plot, as Season 5 magically Reset Buttons all of the past year's events.
  • Arrested Development. The show is packed with Call Backs and Foreshadowing, mostly in one-liners that make little sense on their own, but are hilarious when viewed as a part of the show as a whole. Pretty much Lost if it were a comedy.
  • Babylon 5: B5 was deliberately written as a "novel for television" that would play out one long story over the course of five seasons. Things will move very fast, though; it was written to be watched over years, with each season generally taking place over a year. The telepath arc in Season 5 is also much more bearable.
  • Band of Brothers, and by extension, The Pacific since they're essentially 10 hour long War Movies split into individual episodes. In fact, both were specifically filmed with the DVD release in mind. The cast usually refer to it as "a movie" rather than a miniseries.
  • Battlestar Galactica (2003). All those cliffhangers will be much easier when you can watch the entire show on DVD. Not to mention dispensing with week-long breaks between setup episodes and payoff episodes, and that seven episodes exist in their full form only on DVD, having been truncated for airing.
  • Bliss: At least compared to the American TV edit on Oxygen, if you wanted to see the nudity and other adult content anyways.
  • Breaking Bad has been referred to as arguably the best binge-watching series of all time, as the show is one continuous plot arc and nearly every episode ends on a cliffhanger. Watching the show on DVD or Netflix lets you enjoy the show without the horrible feeling fans got at the end of each episode when they had to wait another week to see what happened next, in addition to spotting all of the Foreshadowing and symbolism. In fact, Vince Gilligan himself gives Netflix, and binge watching in general, major credit for seeing the show's massive jump in viewers in its final year.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer, especially seasons 3, 4, and 5, when there were meaningful arcs. Season 5 lets you see that every single episode, no matter how much it seemed like filler at first, leads toward something important in the big Season Finale. The season sets available in retail stores in America have 'previously' for only one episode, "When She Was Bad".
  • Carnivàle. The story (especially in season one) is much more coherent and the whole thing looks amazing.
  • The second series of Chuck:
    • If you're not American, is better on DVD for the simple reason that the episode Chuck Vs. The Third Dimension wasn't aired in 3D in countries that didn't have the Super Bowl event. The DVD release contains the 3D version and a pair of glasses to view it with, so you can finally see Yvonne Strahovski's negligee popping out of the screen as the gods intended. (It's quite the opposite in Britain - the 3D version was aired on TV, and the DVD release didn't contain the glasses.)
    • For those annoyed by the constant will-they-won't-they, not having to wait a week between Chuck and Sarah mishearing/mis-seeing/suddenly having an old flame pop in allows the episodes to be viewed as one whole story as opposed to 'how will Chuck and Sarah break up this week?'
  • The Dead Zone, due to its arc-heavy storyline.
  • Dexter, despite making extensive use of "Previously on…..." for every single episode, fits this trope due to pacing issues later in the series. For seasons that did not receive near-universal acclaim, a primary factor in determining whether a fan enjoyed it can often be whether the individual watched it week-to-week (thus exacerbating a slow start) or all at once (practically eliminating such problems).
  • Doctor Who:
    • While most stories were fully self-contained, the classic series occasionally had a lot of Call Backs and Continuity Nods. Old story elements, enemies and allies could be brought back again several years later and since reruns were rare (or, in the case of several black-and-white episodes, nonexistent) you couldn't possibly keep track of everything unless you'd been watching since the beginning and had an exceptional memory (don't forget the series ran continuously for 26 years). Watching them on DVD allows you to keep better track of the continuity and be able to appreciate the details and references to previous stories more. In particular, it makes the many continuity-heavy stories of The '80s, widely criticized at the time for their Continuity Lockout status, much more enjoyable. On the other hand, the serial format and (typically) slow pace of the classic stories translates poorly to DVD marathoning, as it creates a lot of pacing issues with repetitive "companion in peril" cliffhangers at the end of each episode.
    • Bob Baker and Dave Martin stories particularly suffer as being worse on DVD, as they tend to approach each episode as being a standalone episode within an overall arc. When marathoned they come across as disjointed due to the volume of new concepts introduced in each part, or full of characters escaping and getting captured again.
    • "The Sea Devils" has a really long cliffhanger recap of a comical, over-the-top sword-fight between the Doctor and the Master. It goes without saying that what on first viewing is Refuge in Audacity becomes insufferable, gratuitous and full of Fridge Logic watched twice in quick succession. Best to have a little break between those two parts, if you can.
    • "The Android Invasion" is a particularly extreme case, because a major plot point concerns a throwaway exchange about thirty seconds into the first episode (the Doctor casually offering Sarah a sip of his drink and Sarah turning it down). It's easy enough to remember that Sarah doesn't like ginger pop if you watched the whole thing in one sitting, but most viewers who weren't anorak-level Sarah fans would have been lost after waiting a week between episodes.
    • The "E-Space Trilogy" is much better when viewed as a collective, despite the varying tone of the stories: "Full Circle" introduces Adric and E-Space, "State of Decay" has him stowing away on the TARDIS, and "Warriors' Gate" has Romana leaving the TARDIS with K9 to stay in E-Space.
    • The revival series benefits from this trope too. Each season has an individual Story Arc, which from Series 2 onward eventually adds up to one giant arc for The Nth Doctor of the moment, resolved in his sendoff story: Ten coming to terms with being the Last of the Time Lords, Eleven dealing with an organization misguidedly trying to destroy him, Twelve's Character Development from a Grumpy Old Man unsure of his goodness to perhaps the kindest, most loving iteration of the Doctor up to that point. Series 1-4 rely mostly on Arc Words. From Series 5 onward, while many stories work just fine as standalone adventures, closer attention is needed to keep track of arc and Character Development — particularly in Series 6 (due to an unusually complex arc) and Series 9 (which is mostly two or three-part stories). In addition, many of the biggest plot developments such as the Doctor's regenerations often don't happen within actual seasons but in the Christmas Episodes and extra-length specials aired between/during them, several of which are often skipped in TV rerun rotations. Finally, at least in the U.S. Series 1, the Ninth Doctor's single season, is no longer rerun on television despite establishing many key elements and players of the Tenth Doctor's era and the spinoff Torchwood (i.e. Rose and her loved ones, Captain Jack Harkness, Harriet Jones, the time-space rift in Cardiff, etc.).
  • Dollhouse, partly because shows by Tim Minear and Joss Whedon already tend to do this anyway, partly because it's a dense, fast-paced Myth Arc-heavy show with steady plot and character arc progression from one episode to the next, and partly because watching the episodes more than once means you catch more of the little things.
  • Emergency! is better on DVD, even though the releases of seasons four and five (outside of the fourth-season finale "905-WILD," an unsold spinoff pilot) exhibit heavy film damage and artifacts (this is true of much of season three as well); this is so because the reruns on MeTV and Cozi TV have quite a few commercials, and as such, those reruns are cut for time (that latter part negates the fact that seasons three, four and five are remastered for those reruns); it depends on how you want to see it, though (the sixth and final season and the post-series movies from 1978 and 1979 are, however, remastered on DVD).
  • The military sitcom Enlisted works better on DVD if for no other reason than FOX broadcast the episodes ridiculously out of order. Watching in production order undoes continuity SNAFUs both great (Derrick ending his relationship with the bartender before he meets her) and small (Lt. Schneeberger introducing himself after having already been in an episode). It also allows for the appreciation of Pete's PTSD storyline, cited by some veterans as the most authentic portrayal of the condition they had ever seen.
  • Farscape The four-season plot line (well, seasons 2-4, the miniseries, the last five episodes of season 1) play much better in marathon format.
  • Firefly: Especially since the episodes were originally aired Out of Order. And had month-long spaces in between some. And weren't advertised. And in some cases weren't aired at all.
  • Frasier It's very self-referential, but in a subtle way that is much more easily picked up on if you watch several episodes in a row. This mostly applies to the later seasons that succumbed to Seasonal Rot, and, oddly enough, Cerebus Syndrome.
  • Friends flows better on DVD overall as you can get through things like Rachel and Ross's "will they or won't they" romance much quicker without having to wait 'til next week to see what happens next. Plus many of the episodes on DVD are longer than the TV versions (the producers started deliberately making the episodes too long for TV so they could include it on home video releases), in some cases you see entire subplots that were cut from the TV airings (I.E. One episode on the Blu-Ray set has the original unaired subplot of Chandler and Monica getting questioned by airport security due to Chandler making jokes about bombs, which was cut due to 9/11.)
  • Watching Fringe on DVD can feel awfully repetitive during the procedural heavy first half of the show's first season, but once the long term plot developments really kick into gear, it's much more preferable to watch this show non-stop (especially after season two).
  • The creators of Game of Thrones have specifically said that they are making the show to be watched 'like an 80-hour movie'.
  • The DVD of Garth Marenghis Darkplace adds a documentary, commentary track, and featurettes, all of which are done in character adding further to the Show Within a Show nature of the series.
  • With Heroes, it goes both ways. While watching it on DVD allows the slower bits to move much faster (as you do not have to wait weeks for a plot point to be resolved) and generally does improve later volumes, it also makes a lot of plot holes and aborted arcs more apparent, especially during the second and third volumes.
  • How I Met Your Mother, while an episodic sitcom, has a lot of Running Gags, Brick Jokes, Call Backs and Continuity Nods, as well as occasional hints to the identity of the future mother. Watching it in close succession will help you catch a lot more of the jokes.
  • JAG gets even better when watching in a marathon because of story arcs, subtle character development and continuity nods.
  • Life on Mars, as each season is only eight episodes long, is feasibly possible to watch in its entirety in a day or two. The last two episodes are much easier to understand when one still remembers what happened in the first season. Also, the emotional impact of the final episode is intense when you've just spent two days non-stop with this character.
  • Lost. Trust us, the twists and turns the plot takes are much easier when you know you can watch the next episode immediately.
  • While the other Marvel Cinematic Universe Disney+ series managed to work out well their traditional episodic releases (one or two chapters upfront, the others weekly), Moon Knight (2022) was halfway through receiving complaints that the story seemed more fit for binging, if not done as a two and a half hour movie.
  • The DVD releases for M*A*S*H gave the viewer the ability to watch each episode without any of the canned laughter on a separate English language track. The DVD sets also boasted the untrimmed versions of each episode, since they didn't have to fit into a half-hour block for broadcast.
  • The audience ratings of Money Heist when it first aired in Spain had a steep decline towards the end of Season 1 and beginning of Season 2, mostly due to some arguable dragging in the narrative that apparently tested the patience of audiences who watched the show one episode per week. In this sense, the show benefited immensely from the streaming format once it was acquired by Netflix, which allows the viewer to get through the story at a faster pace, thus making its pacing issues easier to overlook.
  • Orphan Black is yet another show that benefits from binge-watching on DVD and/or streaming, since each episode picks up basically exactly where the previous one left off and there is strong continuity between episodes. The show gives "Previously" segments that help with continuity somewhat, but it's really even better when you can just watch them all in one go.
  • Oz, due to being better able to notice the continuity.
  • Some seasons of Power Rangers are serialized and, as such, greatly benefit from rewatch on DVD or streaming rather than the weekly airings, especially the Neo Saban Era, which, due to Nickelodeon's ridiculous airing schedule forcing only 20 episodes a year to be produced, as well as the long breaks after the first 8-10 episodes of each season. The first 4 years of the era also benefits from this, since those seasons are serialized to a degree of ongoing plot threads, as a result of them being rather close to their Sentai source materials for their storytellings, especially Samurai, whose second season pretty much takes place immediately after the first. Though this can backfire, since, given how fast the pacing of both seasons of Megaforce are paced overall, by the time the second season comes, and the teacher at the school mentions it's been a year since the start of the first, it doesn't feel like it and only makes sense in the context of the fact that it aired roughly a year since the first. Luckily, the newer writing staff seems to be easing this a bit, as Dino Charge ends on a note of finality, then the second season of it picks up months after.
    • As Linkara notes in his History of Power Rangers video series, though, the way time works in Power Rangers might not be consistent with the way it does in real life, as previous seasons feel like they take place later than they appear to, and sometimes what feels like greater amounts of time can come between episodes than is stated.
    • Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers. Some of Rita Repulsa's schemes (Super Putty, for instance) go from one episode to another, without a "Part I".
  • Prison Break, due to its fondness for Xanatos Speed Chess plots.
  • The Red Dwarf special "Back to Earth" was originally broadcast in 2009 as three episodes of 25 minutes each; the DVD release edits them together into a single "Director's Cut" with a runtime of about 60 minutes. "Back to Earth" was originally planned to be only two episodes long, but had to be extended to three due to a scheduling foul-up — the Director's Cut fixes the ensuing pacing problems by cutting out 15 minutes of chaff, and the end result flows a lot better.
  • Schitt's Creek exploded in popularity after it was released on Netflix in 2017. The Canadian sitcom's episodes run about twenty-minutes long and contain witty dialogue, strong Character Development, more than one Genius Bonus and an ongoing Screwball Comedy storyline that makes it completely bingeable.
  • Stargate Universe was very poorly received by both fans and critics during its original run. It was widely considered to blame for ending the Stargate franchise. It was heavily arc driven with a notably more subdued and slower pace (especially in the beginning), which wasn't helped by each season being split in two, airing 10 episodes, and then waiting 6 months to air the remaining 10. Watching the seasons on DVD helps compensate for the slower episodes and some of the original fans have come around to seeing the series in a much better light than the franchise killer it was viewed as before.
  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: While executives sometimes recognize this fact when rerunning it and start by showing it in order, they inevitably lose patience before the run is complete, or perhaps simply assume that they'll fail to attract new viewers over time this way.
  • Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles: the audio commentaries often feature the actors and crew joking about how long the "Previously on…..." segment at the start of the episodes is getting, especially in season two.
  • Top Gear:
    • BBC Worldwide were apparently aware of the sizable portion of its fanbase that just watches the show for the antics of its presenters (as opposed to the reviews and more serious segments), releasing six DVD compilations of just challenges.
    • Most of the specials were given extended cuts when released on DVD/Blu-ray.
    • The Africa/Burma/Patagonia specials were aired in two parts, but were essentially two-hour challenges with no natural break. The episodes specials feel a lot more complete when viewed together, and Africa/Burma are even presented on Netflix in Compilation Movie format.
    • Averted with many of the 'Complete Series #' releases, which are the Edited for Syndication versions with a whole ten minutes removed from each episode.
  • Twin Peaks, the 90s prestige series that existed before the concept of a prestige series. Being able to binge makes it much easier to get through the post-Laura Palmer episodes in the middle of season two, easily the weakest part of the whole show; it was this run of episodes that caused the biggest bleed in viewers during the show's initial broadcast, leading to its cancellation. The Return was specifically written by Mark Frost and David Lynch as an "18-hour movie" rather than a traditional season of television, one which moves at a rather slow pace for most of its runtime. As a result, it's much more comprehensible when blown through in one sitting, which greatly helps to alleviate the instances of Leave the Camera Running, unexplained plot points that reappear several episodes later and generally baffling weirdness.
  • The Unit: The show is split into two halves. One half is an intense military drama involving a special forces team doing all sorts of interesting missions. The other half is interminable "home front" soap opera involving the wives & children of the soldiers, who are all annoying, boring or hypocritical. Almost every plot involving the wives is irrelevant to the military side of things and they often destroy the pacing of the military action. It is far better to read the synopsis of an episode then fast forward through anything involving the women's subplots.
  • Veronica Mars, especially season three, if only because the Aerie Girls and obnoxious CW teases were nowhere to be found.
  • The Walking Dead is much more enjoyable when you don't have to wait weeks (or months) for cliffhangers to be resolved, or to find out what's going on with a certain character.
  • Oddly enough, The West Wing. There's a lot of subtle references to previous episodes in the first few years that are easy to miss when watching the show on air. Moreover, the enormous amounts of acronyms, abbreviations and slang they use when referring to the political situation in Washington at any given moment, combined with the sheer speed at which the characters talk a lot of the time, make the ability to turn on subtitles often vital to understanding what the hell is going on. The ability to cram a few Google study sessions on the more esoteric areas of the American government systems in the middle of an episode with the pause button is useful too.
  • Westworld: Watching the show, particularly with Season 2, in a binge-watching format can make you appreciate and understand the story and the timelines much better than watching it on a weekly basis. Jonathan Nolan even admits this show requires a lot of attention from viewers in order to spot on the details.
  • The Wire does not hold your hand at all when it comes to referencing previous plot points and characters, so seeing them in rapid succession can really help you catch everything. The DVD menus also configured it so you don't have to watch the Previously on… segments unless you want to.
  • The X-Files, one of the first popular American shows outside of soap operas to be built around a series-spanning Myth Arc (it's the Trope Namer for that term, even) rather than an episodic structure, naturally fell into this. It's been said that the rise of streaming and binge-watching was largely responsible for the show's Popularity Polynomial in the '10s (such that it got a Mini Series revival in 2016), as viewers could follow its storyline from beginning to end.
    • It could be argued this trope is zig-zagged, however, in the idea that binge-watching the series on DVD makes the Chris Carter Effect more apparent than watching serially.
  • The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, much like most of George Lucas' work, has been victim to furious re-editing for its DVD release. However, in this case, this is actually considered a good thing. The episodes, originally aired in Anachronic Order with episodes between his childhood and teen years alternating back and forth, were placed in a much more chronological order as two-hour movies, and the much disliked Framing Device of a possibly-senile 90-year-old Indy telling the stories to anybody who'd listen was gone. The only real complaints were that some of the linking footage to put the episodes together was pretty poor and one episode, "Transylvania, 1918", which the Framing Device implied was a fictional "ghost story" told at Halloween, was then presented as fact, turning it into a Bizarro Episode.

  • Music is probably one of the oldest examples of this outside of literature, as you can get a better sense of what an artist or band was trying to do or say on an album rather than just hearing one or two singles from said album. It also allows you to get a good grasp on an artist or band's changes throughout their years as recording artists. With modern digital music distribution, it's as easy to binge-listen to Pink Floyd, Prince, or The Beatles as easily as you can binge-watch Breaking Bad.
  • Green Day is a good band to listen to for this, since, if you're familiar with their later works, some things Billie Joe Armstrong used in songs as throwaway lines or words, like the name Jimmy, can be interesting to hear when they crop up before American Idiot named its central character that. Additionally, their 2012 trilogy, since it was written and produced in the same span of time, has Arc Words, Call Backs, and such within itself that either become full songs, or are just reused phrases in other songs. Listening to the their album, ¡Tre! right before the next album after it, Revolution Radio, can also be interesting, as some ideas from the former were greatly expanded on in the latter, such as the phrase "too dumb to die" appearing in ¡Tre!'s song, 'Sex, Drugs, & Violence' before getting its own song explaining what exactly that phrase is supposed to mean on Revolution Radio. You'll also get a bit of continuity between albums with Billie Joe growing older and either figuring some things out, or wondering about different things. Hearing 'Forever Now', 'Still Breathing,' and maybe some others from Revolution Radio can be really uplifting after hearing prior albums, since he's apparently finally figured out a lot of things in his later years that confounded him in earlier ones.
  • The Beatles is also a great group to do this with, since they sometimes made songs that either included small snippets of other songs' lyrics, or directly referred to them directly. John Lennon continued this trend after the band split up on his solo albums every so often.
  • The most famous singles from Marilyn Manson are all from Concept Albums. Not only that, but the majority of those are specifically from three interconnected concept albums which take place in the opposite order of their release. As such, while the singles themselves explore some level of the concepts of those albums, their full meaning is best understood in the context of the album they're on. This is especially true for the lead single of Mechanical Animals, "The Dope Show", which has a serious Misaimed Fandom as a Drugs Are Good anthem when it's actually dripping in sarcasm, as the song in the context of the album itself is an in-universe work by the drug addict alien musician Omēga whom is used to produce such stuff by his label to specifically keep the people drugged and dumb. The albums give the songs context, but then there's the Triptych, the three album story. It's pretty hard to figure out how the story even works when listening to the albums in release order, as the first released ends with the destruction of the universe. The reverse order makes it much easier to figure out just how the three protagonists are connected.
  • Pink Floyd concentrated on making albums, rarely releasing singles at all. Many of their albums were concept albums, with coherent themes.
  • With some exceptions, BTS' music is often released as concept albums, which in turn are often parts or chapters of a bigger seriesnote  that sometimes culminates in a Compilation Rerelease. Since the members write and plan their music based on their experiences and thoughts at the time, themes and ideas such as youth, love and the place of dreams in society are explored and revisited through Call Backs and occasional Sequel Songs throughout their discography (even in their solo releases), to the point that you can find a whole Coming of Age Story in their work. Album singles such as "DNA", "FAKE LOVE", "IDOL" or "Boy With Luv" are therefore the songs that best represent the overall themes of each release, but are best understood in the context of their respective albums and their previous work.

    Video Games 
  • The Cliffhanger of Halo 2 is a lot less frustrating when the Master Chief Collection allows gamers to play Halo 3 right after.
  • Cliffhangers, secret endings, and tiny plot details the games expect you to remember made it all the more confusing if you played each Kingdom Hearts title on release. Fortunately with the two Kingdom Hearts HD collections you don't have to, containing all the main games playable back to back, and two side games available as movies. Plus the later third collection allowing you to get geared right up for the third major installment in the series, since the games made after the second really set up for those major developments that were capitalized on in Kingdom Hearts III.
  • The Mass Effect is a really enjoyable series if you wait and buy the entire trilogy and their DLC before starting the first game. Playing them all in succession prevents you from forgetting your choices by the time you see their consequences. The Legendary Edition will capitalize this by providing old and new players the opportunity to do just that on new-generation systems.
  • Far Cry 5's hotly contested ending, in which all your work taking down the Project at Eden's Gate is rewarded with a sudden nuclear attack on America, all your friends seemingly dying, and you trapped in a bunker with the Big Bad, can be a much easier pill to swallow now that you can play Far Cry: New Dawn right after for proper closure for the setting and characters.
  • Telltale Games' The Wolf Among Us, as a rather plot-heavy mystery story, was more than a little hard-to-follow when played in its original episodic format, especially considering the Schedule Slip that meant that it took nearly a year for all five episodes to be released. It's a much tighter experience when the episodes are played back-to-back.
  • The Trails Series (aka Kiseki) is an ongoing series of interconnected video games. By the end of 2021 there were over a dozen games either announced or released and the series' creators indicated the entire saga was only about 2/3 complete, suggesting there will be almost 20 games in the series by the time it draws to a close. Problem is, while the story is subdivided into arcs, all of those arcs build on one another and characters from previous arcs frequently show up in future ones and reference events from previous games. In order to make sense of the at-times complicated plot and get a full view of the series' overall story, you need to recall not only the game you're playing, but frequently refer back to the plots of previous games. Oh, and the first of those games was released all the way back in 2004 (2011 outside of Japan), with releases spaced out a year or two apart, and each game can easily take 100+ hours to complete if you're going for 100% completion. Not surprisingly, it is much easier to keep track of the plot and all the goings on if you can binge all of the games from start to finish with minimal downtime in between.
  • The story mode of Fire Emblem Heroes has five-part chapters released every month, with thirteen chapters comprising a story arc, or Book. Because its story is released in episodes, many people enjoy it most when they can do all of a Book back-to-back without breaks.

    Visual Novels 
  • The Great Ace Attorney, unusually for a mystery series where each game tends to be self-contained, ended its first instalment, "Adventures", with a big Sequel Hook and many unsolved mysteries. This caused a frosty reception at the time of release that partially led to the game under-performing, slashing the budget of the planned sequel. Said sequel, "Resolve", was generally agreed to be among the best in the franchise, but the duology ended up an Acclaimed Flop regardless. The shock announcement of an official localization in 2021 turned out to be packaging both games together as The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles, and most agree this is a far better way to experience the duology, as the loose ends in "Adventures" are less frustrating when one can start "Revolve" right afterwards, and the games are best treated as one story in two parts.
  • The When They Cry visual novels tend to be considered this way. The main stories of both Higurashi and Umineko consist of eight different visual novels, centring around murder mysteries. The first four novels set up the mystery and provide hints as to the truth, while the last four start revealing the answers. Given the sheer length of the story, as well as its use of Unreliable Narrators, trying to make sense of the story one novel at a time is a challenge, particularly when the novels (or their translations) were released years apart. Reading them all at once, without lengthy pauses in between each one, makes the story much clearer and easier to follow.

    Web Animation 
  • There are several advantages to watching Broken Saints on DVD rather than online. 1) It's easier to pause, rewind, and fast-forward (although the inability to pause in the middle of a chapter was part of the creator's design for the series) and 2) A voice-over track!
  • Red vs. Blue. On their own, each episode is generally five minutes long and you need to wait an entire week for the next five minutes of story. On DVD, they're all edited together so each season runs as a feature length Compilation Movie. It's notable that although the show is released episodically, each season is written more or less like a movie to begin with, which occasionally means a sequence that seems to drag on forever in the episodes ends up having much better pacing when the season is taken as a whole.
  • RWBY. Some fans have eschewed watching new episodes entirely, saying; "Well, it's a good series, but I'll just buy the DVD when it comes out." Volume 1 and Volume 4 suffered heavily because of this - Volume 1 had terrible pacing problems since it was just starting out (most notably a set of four episodes in a row about the character Jaune Arc: tolerable when you can just watch the next episode right away, but painful when you had to wait until next week) and Volume 4 heavily employs Four Lines, All Waiting, meaning storylines would take weeks to get through because it bounced around a lot, compared to just mere minutes on DVD. The alternative is to wait until the end of the season and find a YouTube playlist with the entire season. You still have to watch the ads almost every video, though.

  • Generally applies to almost any long-form webcomic that doesn't adhere to a gag-a-day format, especially those with flaky update "schedules." Reading them as they come out is like reading only two or three pages of a book per week; often this is literally what you're doing. Archive Binge can solve this problem about as well as print editions.
  • Collar 6. While not exactly on DVD, the strips are so short that waiting can get a bit frustrating, but reading them in a marathon can be a lot of fun.
  • The Order of the Stick is even better in the print collections, starting around strip 150, when they moved more into ongoing stories and away from one-off gags.
    • Each book also includes multiple bonus strips, as well as creator notes at the beginning of each chapter, which function similar to a DVD commentary. Certain art mistakes are also corrected, and the earliest strips had their jagged borders removed, after Rich Burlew decided they were ugly.
  • MegaTokyo is very much this, due to Fred Gallagher's notoriously inconsistent updating schedule, the often confusing plot, and its many characters.
    • He also tends to include extra strips, sketches, and commentary in the printed books.
    • Even on a completely consistent week, he's only likely to get three pages up. And those pages might be a one-off gag or a Shirt Guy Dom day. The printed editions have all the story relevant pages up at the front, then have different section for SGD and one-off strips.
  • Girl Genius has such long arcs (they were in Castle Heterodyne for four years) that it can be easy to forget fairly important plot points when it only updates three times a week. An Archive Binge makes the plot feel much more cohesive.
  • Housepets! has been criticized for its long arcs dragging on, especially with its finale, which lasted three entire years and barely focused on the original protagonists. At it's completion, however, reading it in one go makes it flow far better than it did when waiting a week for a new comic (and multiple hiatuses) at its time of running.
  • Sluggy Freelance (which unlike most webcomics updates every weekday) directly invoked this trope back in 2007 upon the conclusion of the "Oceans Unmoving" Arc, a major departure from formula that contained almost none of the main characters and took over a year real-time to finish (this time included a "Where Are They" interlude with the main characters). Fans were extremely upset and essentially forced creator Pete Abrams to write a mea culpa where he simultaneously apologized for the arc but still stood by it, arguing that he thought it would work much better as a graphic novel.
    • And the strip really is better in print, due to Pete's habit of including extra stories made exclusively for the books (most don't even appear on the website!) that often feature characters who are fan-favourites but can't be in the main comic.

    Web Original 

    Web Videos 
  • Matrix Month from The Nostalgia Critic has got Vindicated by History from rewatch, as all together the meta and foreshadowing moments become more clear.
  • Let's Plays, while they can be enjoyed from day-to-day when they're uploaded, also have the benefit of being completely available to watch start to finish, especially when they have commentary and the person/people who recorded them did so in several-hour sessions, leading to various call backs and/or running gags.

    Western Animation 
  • Koch outdid themselves on the Adventures of the Galaxy Rangers DVD set. It has some (but not all) episodes of the series assembled in continuity order (which wasn't done when the series was on the air), which actually shows off the primitive Myth Arc the show had going. The addition of the soundtrack and booklet with notes about the characters and technology also helps.
  • Aqua Teen Hunger Force: When watched every episode of Season 3 one after the other in order, the Spacecataz shorts at the beginning of every episode form a coherent story. Not surprising since this was a failed pilot for another show.
  • Archer: The later seasons episode have a lot of Running Gag and Call-Back humor, so it really helps to see the earlier episodes beforehand.
    • Really, any show made by 70/30 Productions (Sealab 2021, Frisky Dingo).
      • Especially Season 2 of Sealab, which has a DVD Commentary track on all episodes that turns into a totally unrelated story the creators tell over the span of many episodes.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender is already a great series on TV, but watching it on DVD, with the episodes back to back (instead of months separated at times) really lets the viewer catch the nuances of character development over the course of the seasons.
    • The individual seasons of the sequel series, The Legend of Korra, are like extended movies. Watching a season in one or two sittings is preferable to the painful wait between single episodes. This is especially the case for Season 2, which is considered the Sophomore Slump of the series.
  • Clone High: The original series was a fairly serialized comedy show a decade too early for the streaming era to make it both popular and more easily consumable. As a result, the DVD had been the best way for it to be consumed, as it allowed viewers to keep better track of developing plotlines.
  • Averted with the Doctor Who animated series "The Infinite Quest". Designed to be consumed by audiences in 8-minute segments over a matter of weeks, the show fuses together into a roughly 45-minute filmette which, mainly due to having the characters summarize the plot every 8 minutes, has serious pacing issues.
  • Drawn Together on DVD is uncensored and extended for the most part. Censorship is generally kept in only when it's the basis for a joke (such as Princess Clara not realizing that Foxxy Love is flipping her off until she does it in return). Due to the heavy amount of censorship for offensive, disgusting, and outright insane content they could not air on Comedy Central, the DVD set is the only way to experience the series for what it truly was: with all of the mind-raping, childhood-molesting, emotion-murdering, and animal-raping that was too hot for basic cable. Not only that, many scenes and lines were added that were cut for time or content (mostly content), and played the "real" version of some other watered down scenes. They left nothing out, not even the mutilated penises, fat jokes, nudity (both fanservice-y and otherwise) or the incestuous romance plots.
  • A few scenes from DuckTales (1987) involving such violent scenes as guns being fired and power cords being broken or ripped (wouldn't want to give kids ideas that this is okay to do without showing the realistic consequences), which were cut from the show's cable reruns, are reinstated on the show's DVD sets. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for other The Disney Afternoon shows that got DVD releases.
  • The DVD versions of Family Guy and American Dad! include a lot of scenes that have been rejected by FOX and Cartoon Network censors. This is especially true of Family Guy, which, unlike the other shows on FOX, isn't initially written to conform with broadcast censorship standards. It's only after five to six rewrites (maybe more) that a typical Family Guy episode is considered suitable for broadcast. This, however, does not stop Seth MacFarlane from making an alternate cut that either goes to Cartoon Network before ending up on DVD or just goes straight to DVD. On top of that, episodes that rarely air or have been banned (i.e., "Fore Father," "When You Wish Upon a Weinstein," "Screams of Silence: The Story of Brenda Q.," "Turban Cowboy," and "Partial Terms of Endearment") get to be shown on DVD for those who either like the episode or have a Bile Fascination for it.
    • The DVD sales and [adult swim] fandom were actually enough to get Family Guy revived (much to either the joy — or utter disdain — of the show's fanbase). That alone just goes to show you how powerful this trope can be.
    • The Netflix version of Family Guy is a mixed bag. While a large percentage of episodes shown are the "edited for first-run FOX broadcast" version (even the early episodes, like "Brian in Love" and "Road to Rhode Island" are the edited versions), all of the season ten episodes are the "uncut, uncensored DVD" versions, which means you get to hear Peter's Cluster F Bombs when he falls down the stairs in "The Blind Side," all the middle fingers flipped off in defiance aren't blurred, you get to see how bloody Wilford Brimley blasting teen girls at the Teen Choice Awards really is in "Quagmire and Meg," and you get to see parts that were cut for time rather than content. But when Netflix removed the later seasons (seasons four to fourteen; and later the series itself), those are now exclusive to DVD.
  • Futurama had its original two runs broadcast out of order and at erratic intervals (to the point that there are actually five broadcast seasons made up of four production seasons, and broadcast season six and seven were both cut in half, creating four Comedy Central seasons); furthermore, the version syndicated on Comedy Central edits the episodes for time at the expense of many jokes. The DVDs thankfully allow you to watch the series as it was originally intended.
  • Garfield and Friends was still in syndication when it got a DVD release. While the syndication run only aired one quickie per episode and only used the "We're Ready To Party!" intro, the DVDs restored the "Friends Are There" intro for the earlier episodes and most of the quickies, though some of them went missing.
  • Averted with the original Rhino release of Jem. It missed several episodes and worst of all Pizzazz's hair was deeply muted from its normal bright, lime green color. The Shout! Factory DVDs are the full series with correct colors though. It's best to watch two-parter episodes in one go instead of separately.
  • The Looney Tunes DVDs are rather nicely made, and unedited as well (though some cartoon shorts run with scenes that are missing, not because they were cut from TV, but because they were lost to time or never made). Given that every American channel has aired, edited, and stopped airing the Warner Brothers cartoons from the mid-1960s to the early 2000s (including Cartoon Network — though Cartoon Network has brought the shorts back when The Looney Tunes Show premiered), DVD, and later Blu-Ray and digital HD, is probably the only way anyone can see the shorts uncut and uncensored (ditto the Popeye cartoons and the MGM shorts, except for Tom and Jerry. See below).
    • The Laserdisc "Tom & Jerry" box sets have all of the original cartoons intact and uncut, except for the episode "His Mouse Friday", which still muted the voices.
  • Fans of My Little Pony Tales often found themselves appreciating the series more after a Complete Series DVD release. Since the DVD allowed for the show to be watched straight through rather than viewing episodes independently, it became much easier to pick up on the show’s Continuity Nods and notice consistent details across episodes.
  • Oddly enough, Robot Chicken. Taken individually, the episodes seem to rely too much on Breathless Non Sequitur, but when watched in sequence, enough patterns start to emerge that the non sequiturs become season-long Running Gags and Brick Jokes.
    • From the same production team, Titan Maximum. The series premiere is a half-hour special, but the next 9 episodes (the entire first season) are only half that (with commercials and credits); theoretically, it could be spliced together and watched as a movie.
  • Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles takes place during seven separate campaigns consisting of five episodes each (save for a few stand-alone episodes). On DVD the episodes for each campaign are edited so that they run together like full length films.
  • Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated is best watched in a marathon, as you can more easily remember and keep track of the clues and continuity to the overarching plot than you can when there are breaks. According to Word of God, this was exactly what they intended to happen when they were making the show.
    • The DVD and Blu-Ray releases of Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! are a noticeable step up from regular TV airings, with stunning HD restorations and including a few scenes cut from syndicated reruns, along with retaining the Laugh Track and the original Hanna-Barbera Vanity Plate logos (the latter typically being replaced with newer H-B logos on TV airings). But the first two episodes that originally used an Instrumental Theme Tune replace it with the regular vocal theme song.
  • The Simpsons: Not only are they shown on DVD uncut with most of the scenes that were thought to be lost when the show was Edited for Syndication, but the extras have a glut of deleted scenes (some of which, if added, would have either made the episode funnier or would have filled a much-noticed plot hole in the story).note 
  • Star Wars: Clone Wars: While the original 19 episodes were only 4 minutes long and had very little plot between them, the DVD releases just strung the episodes together, sans the in-between title sequences and end credits. The whole series flowed like two hour-long movies.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars is also notably better on DVD, since being able to choose the episode you watch plays into the show's anachronic presentation. Alternately, you can figure out and watch the chronological order of the various arcs, making some call-backs and call-forwards much clearer. This extends to the Sequel Series, Star Wars Rebels; watching the two shows back-to-back as one long epic enhances both of them and tells a much more complete story, as well as making all the call-backs and continuity bits easier to follow.
  • Steven Universe: When watched from the beginning, the show's well-written character growth and dynamics become a lot more rewarding, with the same applying to the ability to spot its many background details and tight continuity in episodes that could easily be considered filler if watched week-to-week. It's also the only way to properly follow its deep Myth Arc.
  • Sym-Bionic Titan certainly fits this trope to a T. Unless you DVRed several episodes or have an exceptional memory, you'd be hard pressed to follow the show's Continuity Porn. The series makes a lot more sense if you buy a digital release of it.
  • ThunderCats (2011) has a story so plot-heavy it's prone to Continuity Lock-Out. Some episodes don't really end as much as they just stop, only to pick up right in the same place at the beginning of next episode. This is much easier to follow on DVD.note 
  • Transformers:
    • Beast Machines is a relatively short (26 episodes) series with a very tight continuity and an ever-expanding (if at times very slow) plot. Some Transformers fans claim it holds up much better when viewed in just a couple of sittings, while others say they have given up on it when it originally aired on TV purely because of this. The fact that it has many multi-episode stories has to be a factor.
    • Likewise, Transformers: Prime is even better on DVD or video streaming, as you'll have an easier time keeping track of what's going on when all the continuity bits are still fresh in your head. This gets especially true in the final season, when all the guns in the Chekhov's Armoury start getting pulled out in force.
  • Individual episodes of The Venture Brothers seem too short on their own. When watched all-together, the jokes layer on top of each other, the epic stuff gets more epic, and the "aren't we pathetic" stuff gets time to breathe.
    • Additionally, watching on DVD allows viewers to have a better chance of catching the Brick Jokes, and the creator commentary fleshes out several details that fell through the cracks of the show's "show-don't-tell" storytelling.
  • Young Justice (2010), given its fatal combination of being constantly put on hiatus, never reran, and ongoing plot threads and character arcs, is much, much easier to stomach when you can binge episodes all at once. The series was particularly frustrating for younger fans even when it was running weekly, due to its habit of having a character or faction do something strange or questionable or evil, then ignoring it for an episode, and only then having a cathartic payoff in the episode after that. The series was canceled right around the time Netflix really got into its groove with its "dump every episode of a season all at once for binging purposes" model. When the show was Un-Canceled as part of the DC Universe streaming service, one of the initial interviews pointed out that YJ was actually ahead of its time in this regard, as it's the perfect mystery show for binging all at once in the Netflix format.