Sunday, 2 January 2011

DVDs make me angry...

We've made it to 2011. That's right, a year that I always assumed would only ever exist as a Best Before Date on tinned goods is now here.And do you know what? I even thought about doing a blog about New Years Resolutions, in line with just about everyone on the internet. But then, this evening, I saw something that made me much angrier than stupid New Years resolutions.

Tonight, I watched Sex and the City 2 on DVD. No, that's not the thing that made me angry, as while it's not necessarily my sort of film, I managed to sit through it making a few silly and somewhat rude comments (to see the best of these, look for the hashtag #manvssatc on Twitter). No, what made me angry was after we'd watched the film, my lovely Neety wanted to put the special features on.

I feel I need to clarify this. The action of putting the special features on isn't what made me angry. What made me mildly annoyed firstly, was that the 'Special Features' Disc only has five featurettes on, which made me wonder why they couldn't just put it on the first disc (the answer, of course, being that then they can advertise it as a Two-Disc Special Edition), but again, I ignored this.

And then, the killer moment. When Neety clicked on the second featurette she wanted to watch, an advert for all the other Sex and the City DVDs played before the feature started. Yes, that's right, an advert was glued onto the front of the feature.

That's a step too far for me. I accept that we get trailers and adverts on DVDs when we first put them in (which you can always traditionally skip by pressing the menu button) and I know that these often don't seem to match up very well with the main feature. (Case in point is the SATC2 DVD which has a trailer for Cats and Dogs: The revenge of Kitty Galore on it. Because that will obviously appeal to the same people who'd watch Sex and the City....) And I expect special features for a film to contain clips from other films/shows in the franchise just to remind you of the bits you've forgotten. I even expect to see that incredibly annoying un-skippable anti-piracy advert on the front of the DVD that you have bought legally. (Interestingly, that advert is very rarely on pirated DVDs so I'm told, so doesn't that make the thing pointless in itself?) But to force you to sit through an advert when trying to watch a special feature on a DVD you've paid for? That's just rude.

Take TV for example. Yes, we now have the 'credit squeeze', where the end credits for the program you have just enjoyed are squashed to one side so that the irritating continuity announcer can remind you what is coming up next. But at least that's at the end, so you can ignore it or turn it off. But I take exception to being forced to watch adverts on a DVD I've paid for.

Can you imagine what it'd be like in real life if that was the situation. If whenever you wanted to see, speak to or engage with anyone, they would stop and advertise other things that they thought you might want, based on the opening line of conversation you had fed to them? No-one would stand for it. So why do we stand for it on DVDs?

I don't think we should. I think we should make a stand. I'm going to rise up and speak to producers of DVDs and tell them that this type of direct marketing just isn't cricket. And if that this all continues then I shall not be buying any more DVDs....

.... Oh who am I kidding. I'm not going to boycott anyone. This isn't going to stop me buying DVDs. (It's lack of money and storage space that does that!). In fact the entire result of this rant will simply be that you all read it and judge me for over-recating to the whole situation.

Ah well, ranting is what the internet is for, right?