There are few everyday moments more testing in a relationship than when you discover your partner has sped ahead in a series you were supposed to be waiting to watch together.
Of course, in this golden age of binge-watching, it’s all too easy to get ahead of yourself during a night in on your own; sneakily watching an extra episode and then another, until before you know it you’ve finished the entire series.
And it would appear this habit is having a far more serious effect on modern love lives than just a few playful disagreements, causing full-blown arguments and even break-ups.
A new study from Barclays has coined the term ‘series cheating’, a relationship offence whereby one half of a couple hops ahead of the other with their favourite box set.
Research commissioned by the bank found one in six consumers had argued with their other half over ‘series cheating’, with 15% confessing this no-no had even led to a break up.
This data potentially means more than one million relationships break-ups can be traced back to series cheating, signalling just how important the shared Netflix binge is to the 2019 love story.
Investing time and money in quality TV content is on the up. British consumers are now willing to spend an average of £11.70 for their streaming entertainment, with a notable increase of 8.3% from 2018.
This same research found an increased demand for British-made telly, with more than one-third (37%) of Brits being more likely to follow dramas filmed in the UK.
Loans taken out to finance new British TV productions such as The Crown, Top Boy and Sex Education are also on the rise, with an increase of 93% from 2018.
Gavin Smith, Relationship Director for Tech and Media at Barclays Business Banking, said:
Netflix and Amazon are locked in an arms race for new British TV series and films, and with Disney and Apple about to enter the fray, SMEs are ready to reap the benefits.
Gone are the days when a small group of production companies in Central London dominated the market – the biggest growth is happening outside the capital, heralding a new Golden Age in British TV and film, funded by the big budgets of streaming providers.
The weak pound and generous tax relief undoubtedly makes the UK an attractive choice, but it’s also the studio infrastructure and unbelievable talent we have in abundance that’s driving demand. Britain is about to fulfil its potential of becoming the global hub of TV and film.
Danny Fenton, CEO of independent television production company Zig Zag Productions, said:
This is a halcyon age for content producers in the UK as more and more platforms emerge requiring quality programming.
With the global perception that the UK are the purveyors of quality product, it means it’s never been a better time for companies like Zig Zag to explore new revenue streams and new client opportunities.
It’s certainly a good time for those who love a good British TV show. However, it’s a minefield out there for those trying to balance their love lives with their bingeing habits…
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Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.