Sunday, September 17, 2017

My Love/Hate Relationship with Kodi and Why I Didn't Watch the Emmy's Tonight

Not so long ago we were given a Firestick for my birthday. The device wasn't given to us for the sole purpose of replacing our Apple TV (which we were perfectly happy with) but to expand our viewing pleasure with the magical gifts of the almighty Kodi. We were ready for our minds to be blown and so we embarked on our Kodi adventure. A few days in cancelled our cable subscription and pared down our Netflix to streaming only.
We were initially excited, I'll admit. The access to what seems like any movie or tv show you can think of seemed too good to be true. Am I really watching Alien Covenant before it's out on video??? The thrill of it almost made up for the disappointment. In space no one might hear you scream, but you can't escape how badly a movie can suck.
"If you've got Kodi, why do you still pay for cable?" they said.
"Kodi is amazing." they said.
"You'll never want for another tv service." they said.

They LIED.

Here's the thing, if you are a horror (or any genre, really) buff like me, you probably seek out articles and lists of films that might not make it to your local theater or even dvd. Through a Kodi search you will find countless of these to add to your "Favourites" list. What you don't realize, as you continue to fill your queue with nerdish delight is that actually viewing many of the titles is a total crapshoot.
Perhaps, although you were able to find that obscure movie you've been dying to watch, no stream is available. Perhaps there are many streams available, but none are 1080p (apparently the highest quality) or even HD so your only options are grainy or pixelated, or sadly, even a pirate version shot by someone with a handheld device.
Or maybe, SCORE! The movie IS available and at crisp quality, to boot, so you settle down with your favorite cocktail or snack to watch only to find out 30 minutes into it that 30 minutes worth is all the stream offered. You might find that foreign movie you've heard so much about and covered your bases...high definition stream, check...full movie, check. Now we're cooking! Wait, something isn't lining up here...the subtitles are to a completely different movie.

Almost all of the above also applies to tv shows. This week's Scientology and the Aftermath was a delight to watch. Next week everyone, including Leah Remini might be blurred or pixelated beyond recognition as if suddenly in the Witness Relocation Program. I don't know about you, but I like my RuPaul's Drag Race crisp and clear. I'll admit I've never felt fully at ease with the concept but gave in to peer pressure and the promise of having a world of horror and arthouse movies at my fingertips. I wouldn't want people to just download my paintings and decorate their homes with them without me reaping any benefits so I should know and be better. In a way it feels a bit like well-deserved karma.

Kodi is great if you don't mind sometimes spending upwards of 40 minutes before finding a movie you can actually watch or being frustrated to the point of watching a movie at a quality you would never consider acceptable were it a dvd or other legit streaming service. I look forward to ditching Kodi and going back to knowing I have direct access to what I want to watch when I want to watch it.

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