Jeff Slagle, a student at California State University, loves having a good time with his friends, however, he has been a victim to the fastest growing phenomenon: purchasing TV Shows on DVDs. Slagle recalled the time when he first got involved in this craze. “I was at the Frat House and suddenly, we were watching Family Guy. I remember saying, ‘I want to own that,’ so the next week, I bought it.” Not only does Slagle own three seasons of Family Guy, but he also owns every season of The Simpsons, and plans on buying In Living Color and Best of SNL.
The releasing of new and old television shows on DVD box sets has quickly become the biggest grossing product in the home video industry. This allows consumers the chance to watch their favorite sitcoms all the time at any time. This even permits the TV fan to see television shows that are no longer on the air.
Slagle isn’t the only person who purchases older TV Shows on DVDs. Nina Lutwick, a student at Clark University, owns an array of them, such as the first two seasons of Saved By The Bell, South Park and Sex in the City. She is looking add more to her collection. “I get a kick out of watching shows that I love so much and it’s nice to have them at your fingertips,” Lutwick said, “I really enjoy the shows and I will never be able to see them on TV again.” Daniel Dziomba, a senior at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York, owns every season of South Park, Futurama and Kids in the Hall. He echoed the point that Lutwick made. “I have been a real big fan of Futurama and Kids in the Hall, but both shows have been taken off of TV when they used to be run in syndication,” Dziomba ricocheted. He also stressed another concept. He revealed, “I have been a fan of South Park for quite some time and they (Comedy Central) rarely re-air the episodes from some of the earlier seasons and these episodes were some of their best.”
There are a couple of factors as to why TV Shows on DVDs have become the hottest commodity, but Judith McCourt, a Research Director for Video Store Magazine, summed it all up in a few sentences. She talked to Greg Hernandez of the Los Angeles Daily News about the trend earlier this year. “The Simpsons is something that is on national television, you can record that,” she said. “But the consumer is seeing an added value in DVD because they can just watch it on their own terms and there is lots of supplemental material that rounds out the viewing experiences.”
That marketing concept makes TV Shows on DVDs a booming market. John Maynard of the Washington Post wrote, “According to the trade magazine, Video Business, TV titles generated approximately $1.5 billion in sales in 2003, up $610 million from 2002. In addition, the trade newsletter DVD Release Report calculated that studios released 527 TV titles in 2003, nearly double the number released the previous year.”
It seems pretty clear that the success of TV Shows on DVDs will keep rising. Stores are becoming stocked with these box sets, including Target, Best Buy and Wal-Mart. With the home video industry growing at a rapid pace, one could expect their favorite older or newer television shows to be on shelves relatively soon. This should please a lot of people including Slagle, Lutwick and Dziomba.
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