Binge-watching your favorite TV series sounds like an easy and enjoyable thing to do, but some people take the simple pastime to a whole new level, where it stops being fun and becomes painful and even dangerous. People like 25-year-old Alejandro ‘AJ’ Fragoso, who set a new Guinness World Record this week for the longest TV watching marathon – a whopping 94 hours. That’s two hours more than the previous world record of 92 hours, set in Austria just last month.
AJ, from Brooklyn, New York, started his epic TV binge-watching session with a couple of other contestants on Friday, as part of an event organised by multimedia software company CyberLink. He emerged as the last man standing, the following week, on Tuesday morning, having watched back-to-back episodes of shows like Game of Thrones, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Battlestar Galactica, and Bob’s Burgers, for 94 hours straight. He later gave credit to his Mediterranean diet for his endurance and high energy level.
The young record breaker did admit that the whole experience took a high toll on his physical and mental condition. Throughout this process I learned that binge-watching TV for abnormally long durations can actually be quite physically taxing,” he told reporters. CyberLink had arranged for a doctor to continuously monitor AJ’s health, and at the end of the marathon, he reported a variety of worrying symptoms like raised heart rate, acute hallucinations, and involuntary open-eyed “micro naps”.
And yet AJ can consider himself lucky for having survived the ordeal, as watching TV for exceptionally long periods of time can actually be deadly. Back in 2014 we reported on a number of deaths recorded in China during the Football World Cup in Brazil. Because of the time difference, men would stay up for days and nights in a row to watch the games and some of them suffered fatal strokes and heart attacks.