Netflix Canada vs. Netflix USA

It’s been almost a month since we cut the cable television cord. Save for not being able to watch Compass (why oh why can’t CBC encode Compass for iOS?), I’ve absolutely no regrets. I’ve no desire to see any of the new TV season because I have no idea what’s on the new TV season because TV hasn’t been promoting the new TV season to me. And I’ve fallen completely out of touch with what’s new in the Swiffer space, as I’ve not see a TV commercial for weeks.

Which is not to say we’re not watching television: we’re watching Netflix (via the Wii) and, on occasion, Crackle (on the iPad, albeit frustratedly because it doesn’t support video-out to the TV).

I love Netflix and I hate it: just when I think I’m going to hate it enough to sign off, I find a great documentary like It Might Get Loud or a great drama like Weeds (which I watched four seasons of very quickly and happily). Which makes up for the seemingly endless stream of straight-to-video movies, repackaged TED videos and good movies I’ve already seen.

One of the almost-completely-useful features of Netflix is its “Top 10 for Peter” feature (I wonder if it’s called “Top 10 for Peter” for everyone?): it almost never seems to change, there doesn’t seem to be any way, at least on the Wii, to take things off the list, and it generally recommends things I’ve already seen elsewhere (which I suppose means its taste engine is working) or that I have no interest in at all (which means that it isn’t).

Here’s what the “Top 10 for Peter” list recommends for me right now:

  1. Mad Men (I’ve seen every episode elsewhere)
  2. Arrested Development (I’ve seen every episode, on the CBC)
  3. MI-5 (I’ve seen every episode, including 2 seasons Netflix doesn’t have yet)
  4. Being Human (no interest)
  5. Hell on Wheels (no interest)
  6. Wallander (I tried, I really tried, but, in the end, no)
  7. Torchwood (no interest)
  8. The Forsyth Saga (no interest)
  9. The IT Crowd (no interest)
  10. Numbers (I’ve seen every episode, on broadcast TV)

For interest I turned on a US proxy server and looked at what Netfllx in the US recommends for me; here’s American Peter’s Top 10, which has no overlap with Netflix Canada’s recommendations; most of these shows I’ve never ever heard of:

  1. Wilfred
  2. Warehouse 13
  3. Mythbusters (watched on Discovery channel on cable)
  4. Thor
  5. Alphas
  6. Louie
  7. Battlestar Galactica (and not the old series offered in Canada)
  8. Limitless
  9. Parenthood
  10. Flashpoint

I note also that there are two additional seasons of Weeds available on Netflix US (reason enough, perhaps, to set up a proxy server at home?), along with a much different selection of movies. It’s odd how I have a single international Netflix account, which a single taste profile that adapts to the content available in the jurisdiction my IP address reveals me to be in; much preferred, I suppose, to the usual “sorry, but you’re account can not be used in this country” that other services present.

Update: just after posting this, after not changing for many weeks, my “Top 10 for Peter” on Netflix Canada suddenly rebooted; the new version is:

  1. Being Erica
  2. Leverage
  3. The Glades
  4. Carnage
  5. Californication
  6. Hotel Babylon
  7. Jericho
  8. TED “Head Games”
  9. Luther
  10. Another Earth

More diversity there, and more things I haven’t seen. Let’s see how this goes.