Netflix and Chill–The Vintage Way

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SAN FRANCISCO - MARCH 30: Red Netflix envelopes sit in a bin of mail at the U.S. Post Office sort center March 30, 2010 in San Francisco, California. If the U.S. Postal Service wins its bid to drop Saturday delivery service, customers of the popular online video rental company Netflix could see gaps in DVD delivery and will have to do without Saturday delivery, a popular day to receive movies. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

I remember the first time I stepped into my now boyfriend, Michael’s, apartment. He was having our friends and coworkers over to play cornhole on his roof. There was football on the flat screen in his living room. I wandered up to the T.V. to catch the score. That’s when I saw them—for the first time in almost ten years. The red and white envelopes on his entertainment unit stood out like pimples that have scarred and just won’t go away no matter how many times you try to pop them.

To be fair, there’s a bit of an age difference between Michael and me, so when I inquired about the artifacts I found, I halfway expected his answer to be something about refusing to give in to the millennial cultures of streaming and binging. I wasn’t totally off-base. The DVD system, in that a DVD can only contain a maximum of six hours of content, does prevent massive wastes of time. That said, Michael’s main reason for maintaining his DVD service has more to do with the larger breadth of offerings that DVD.com, a Netflix company, offers their users.

Keeping it Old School With Netflix DVD Service

Netflix: A History

Netflix was founded in 1997 as a video sales and rental company transacted entirely on mail service. The company introduced their first monthly subscription format in 1999, began introducing video on demand in 2007, and began introducing original content shortly after in the form of independent films. While their streaming service is their most popular sector, DVD.com is another of their companies, in addition to several subsidiaries and studios globally.

How It Works

After your traditional first month for free, DVD.com plans start at $7.99/month with a single disc rental at a time, unlimited per month. One can choose from upgraded plans for more viewing opportunities. Once you’re a member, you can begin to organize your queue, selecting from thousands of movies and television programs that will automatically be sent to you in the order that you specify in the lineup. Most users receive their disc or discs within two business days, and shipping is free both ways. Once the post office receives your return, the next item on your queue is dispatched from the nearest Netflix center.

The Offerings

Endless. I have yet to search a title on DVD.com that could not be fulfilled, save for those that have not yet been released on disc. Since I lost my access to HBO and Showtime in a change of cable provider, I’ve been able to keep up with the programs that I’ve been missing in my life through DVD.com. Michael and I keep a list in my phone of films that either of us considers “classic,” which the other of us has not previously experienced. Those are added and moved up and down our over 500-title queue as the necessity for viewing them hastens. If something in our queue is available to stream on Netflix, the website alerts us. Fancy? No worries. They offer Blu-rays, too.

Last Word On Netflix DVD Service

After a while, you start to embrace the scars that were once those pesky pimples. When I found out I could catch up on The Affair, view my favorite legends in old football games, and watch Modern Family in order, I came back around to Netflix on DVD. Easier (and cheaper) than the near-extinct rental stores, Amazon Prime, and movie tickets, it’s become one of the easiest and most fulfilling anomalies of my life as a millennial accustomed to having the world at my fingertips. When I watch guests grimace when they visit our abode in a similar fashion to my first encounter with my boyfriend’s entertainment center, I can’t wait to divulge the secret that they’ve been missing out on.

And, as an added bonus, Michael and I can shove our favorite movies down each other’s throats whenever we want.

Bonus: My Picks from DVD.com, Unavailable for Streaming on Netflix

  • Modern Family – Much more fun when watched in order, which is saying a lot, since it’s so fun already.
  • My Cousin Vinny – Talk about early feminism… kind of. And speaking of, Marisa Tomei is hot.
  • Miracle – I don’t consider myself a hockey fan, but I quoted this film when I wrote my New York Giants all-franchise team article for the Last Word on Pro Football site.
  • Coming to AmericaEddie Murphy at his finest, and the most quotable movie I had never seen until it came through from our queue.
  • Swingers – A testament to some fine comedians in their early days; a film Michael considers a classic.

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