[BlogEntry] Disappointed in Comcast

So last night, for the first time in a long time, I decided to get the Wrestlemania PPV. It was to be Ric Flair's retirement match, and that alone was worth the price of admission. I figure the show starts somewhere around 7:30 or so, with a bunch of previews to lead up. I wonder aloud to Kerry over dinner how this will work, since everything is "On Demand" these days – will I actually have to be sitting at the TV right when it starts, or will it be the sort of thing that just turns on, and I get to watch it whenever?

Around 6:30 or so I start looking for it on the On Demand Guide (which has its own button on my remote control, after all), and I can't find it? Odd. I find a number of things called Wrestlemania, all of which are "free previews." Never the actual event. I wonder if, because it is live, that I will be able to turn it on closer to the start time. Seems odd to me, but the evidence is there in front of me, I can't see it.

Finally as it approaches 7:45 and I've checked the website to see that the show started at 7pm, I call Comcast. What follows is the gist of the conversation:

"I can't find Wrestlemania on my On Demand Guide."

"I'm sorry to hear that, sir, would you like me to go ahead and order that for you over the phone?"

"Why can't I find it?"

"I don't know, sir, but I can order it for you right now."

"Well did it start 45 minutes ago?"


"And will I be able to start it from the beginning?"

"No, sir. But after it is over, it plays again from the beginning."

"So you're telling me to watch 3/4 of it, and then at midnight, go back and watch the first hour?"

"I'm just saying that it repeats, sir."

"Ok, I guess I'll order it. So how do I find it?"

"Turn to channel 401."

"401? How would I have ever known that?"

"I don't know, sir. Is it on?"

"Yes. Cool. Thanks. Now this is being recorded, right? Like when I get other On Demand shows and they are in my DVR section?"

"No, sir. You'll need to press your record button."

"And then I'll be able to change the channel?"

"No, sir."

"Is this in HiDef?"

"No, sir."

Oy. Something dawned on me after — not all PPV is "On Demand". Wrestlemania is still an old fashioned "event" PPV where you have to sit and watch it live. I'd forgotten those exist. I just assumed that once it had begun, I would be able to watch it whenever. I also learned later that it was broadcast in HD as well, but that cost extra money – something the operator never told me.