Is there a word analogous to “readthrough” that works regardless of what kind of media it is?

That is, I’m looking to condense “an instance of going through an entire (fictional) work” down to a noun (or a shorter noun phrase). (It doesn’t have to be specific to fiction media.)

Readthrough makes sense for a novel or comic book; playthrough for a video game; and viewing for a movie. I’m not sure if there’s anything natural for listening to an audiobook or podcast, or for watching a tv series.

The usage is like: “I’m in the middle of a Discworld readthrough right now.” or “I picked up so many more clues on the second viewing!” or “I do a playthrough every year.”

Note: This is distinct from a single “session” of reading/consuming the media-item. A readthrough-thing can contain many sessions of actually reading/watching/playing.

Generic terms I’ve considered:

  • A “usage” of the media is a bit strange even if the use/purpose of media is to engage with it.
  • A “binge” is almost what I’m looking for, but implies that you’re completing the playthrough/thing in one session. And notice that you often see it as “binge-watch” or “binge-read” to clarify the medium (and distinguish it from binge-eating/etc.)
  • An “experience” seems too generic; nothing to specify it as about media.
  • A “consumption” is really close, but I find it unnatural to use as a countable noun — “a consumption; many consumptions”.

Is there anything more fitting that I’ve missed? (Poetic/archaic phrasing is acceptable!)

  • What's the difference between a readthrough and just reading a book, or a playthrough vs playing to the end? Is there some subtlety, e.g. speed or thoroughness? (runthrough means a quick and cursory go).
    – Stuart F
    Commented Jan 16, 2023 at 19:58
  • Got an answer? Post an answer.
    – tchrist
    Commented Jan 16, 2023 at 20:01

4 Answers 4


I suggest (from Cambridge Dictionary)

review verb (WRITE/TALK ABOUT)
If critics review a book, play, film, etc. they write their opinion of it.

Neither 'readthrough' nor 'playthrough' have significant coverage in mainstream dictionaries.

I’m in the middle of a Discworld review right now.
I do a review every year.

  • This word doesn't fit. A person doing a readthrough, playthrough, or viewing of a piece of media does not have to write or talk about it. Commented Jan 17, 2023 at 11:38
  • @user2357112 they don't have to be writing about it. Merriam-Webster has to view or see again, to examine or study again, to go over or examine critically or deliberately. Commented Jan 17, 2023 at 11:42
  • That's a different sense of the word than the definition you quoted, and that sense of the word doesn't fit either - "readthrough", "playthrough", and "viewing" all apply the first time you consume a piece of media. Commented Jan 17, 2023 at 11:44
  • @user2357112 OP says “I picked up so many more clues on the second viewing!” or “I do a playthrough every year.” I have no idea what the fictional words "readthrough" or "playthrough" mean. Commented Jan 17, 2023 at 11:46
  • If you don't know what words mean, then don't try to suggest synonyms! And the fact that an example sentence said "second viewing" doesn't mean that all viewings have to be second or later - after all, what about the first viewing? Commented Jan 17, 2023 at 11:47

If a verb is acceptable, you could use to plow through, defined by Cambridge as:

to finish reading, eating, or dealing with something with difficulty

It is most often used with books, but (as the above definition suggests) one can certainly use it with other media.

  • This carries too many implications about the intensity of the activity to be a good fit. Commented Jan 17, 2023 at 11:44

How about "redo" or "do-over"? Not sure if a hyphenated spelling of the second one makes it conforming to your requirements.

  • This doesn't fit. "Readthrough", "playthrough", and "viewing" all apply for the first time a person consumes a piece of media. "Redo" and "do-over" do not. Plus, it would be very strange to speak of "redoing" a movie or book to mean watching or reading it; it sounds more like producing a remaster or remake. Commented Jan 17, 2023 at 11:42


… mysteries, which she consumes for fun …


the act or process of directly perceiving events or reality


to take into the mind or memory

"going through"?

Let’s go through it once more to make sure you know what to say.

The answer is based on my own "sense of language" and dictionaries don't quite make it.

  • Please include sources and citations for your answer as well as how this answers the question. I encourage you to see the help center.
    – livresque
    Commented Apr 27, 2023 at 1:44
  • The answer is based on my own "sense of language". No academic source is going to contain remarks like "fits for all possible media". On the other hand, if you try to use these with different media, you immediately understand if these fit or don't. But! If you know how to add relevant sources here, I will appreciate you doing this. Commented Apr 27, 2023 at 17:51
  • Again I encourage you to edit your post after viewing the help center. Here is a list of resources that you may prefer to cite english.meta.stackexchange.com/q/2573/36710
    – livresque
    Commented Apr 28, 2023 at 0:04

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