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[Feature Request] Change how Plex Handles Multi-Episode Files

Currently, Plex handles multiple episodes in a somewhat inconvenient way. If, and only if, your episode format begins with S## E##-E##, it will detect that the file is for multiple episodes and then, under the season folder, show entries for each episode in the range that all link to the same file. This means if you click on episode 2 out of a two part episode, it re-opens the file at the beginning. This really doesn't provide any benefit to the user. Alternatively, if you don't match the format exactly it will simply show a gap in your list and label the file as only being the first episode in the range.

My proposed solution is to, instead of re-listing the same file multiple times, simply allow one file to be listed as a multipart episode. Instead of having separate entries for each episode on the season list, have a single entry but list it as Episodes #-# when the file contains multiple episodes. As part of this, it would also be nice if Plex would concatenate the episodes' data where appropriate adding tags, directors, summaries together with some sort of simple separator where appropriate.

Here's a quick mockup of how the season page would look, if my explanation isn't clear enough on its own.

Additionally, Plex would need to recognize other commonly used formats like 01x01-x03, 01x01-03, S01E01-03, etc. for multiple-episode files, like it currently does for single episode files.


  • NewPlazaNewPlaza Members, Plex Pass Posts: 381 Plex Pass
    edited April 4

    Interesting. Plex could do what you depict in the picture but it will never be able to start playing part2 of a single multiple-episode file. I mean... It could but without any real accuracy on when episode1 ends and episode2 begins. Sure we can say 'split the 60 minute episode down the middle' but is that truly the spot the video should end and the other to start.. Who knows... Plex isn't about re-authoring someone else's work.
    Don't get me wrong.. I do understand your pain. I don't like how Plex deals with multiepisodes. I ended up just splitting the episodes myself.

  • ccraddockccraddock Members Posts: 4 ✭✭

    Totally agree.
    If you have ever watched classic doctor who you will understand

  • evilhamstermanevilhamsterman Members, Plex Pass Posts: 3 Plex Pass

    I don't think you need to necessarily worry about playing the second episode in a two part file. Many times when this happens it is for one of two reasons; first it is a two part episode arc like the two part season premiere listed in the example above in which case you would likely just want to watch it all the way through anyway. The second possibility is it is a kids cartoon like PAW Patrol where they have two short stories in each episode thetvdb in which case you likely are just going to play the whole episode anyway as your little kids won't care. This is how Netflix, Amazon, Google, etc example on Google handle those shows, they just have one episode but list both titles, they don't make any attempt to split them or show them separately.

    The second case it a big pain for myself and others. I have little kids and so I have kids cartoons, and while we don't like to use the TV Sitter, sometimes you have to because you need to work or clean or something and being able to just start playing a show on auto play is nice.

    This would be a great addition to the ability to mark shows to use DVD order like you did with Firefly.

  • cellochcelloch Members, Plex Pass Posts: 423 Plex Pass

    I don't mind having both episodes listed twice, but it would be good if Plex flagged both as watched once you finish viewing the double episode. Currently it only marks as watched the first one.

  • NewPlazaNewPlaza Members, Plex Pass Posts: 381 Plex Pass

    Well, see... That's something that needs to be worked out. Some could even say that's a bug.

  • JuiceWSAJuiceWSA Members Posts: 5,197 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited May 17

    @NewPlaza said:
    Well, see... That's something that needs to be worked out. Some could even say that's a bug.

    It's a bug now. It evolved into a bug from it's original single-celled-organism after it grew legs and walked out of the primordial soup onto dry land some 2.2 million years ago. The buggy actions haven't changed, but it has a completely different exo-skeletal configuration - and breathes air instead of water.

    Plex hasn't fixed it in 2.2 million years, so it's probably not very high on the 'list of things to do'.

    Name and place the joined episode, skip one, then name and place the next one. Worrying about something that's not going to happen isn't healthy. The 'Work-Around' has been working for a long time and will continue to work. After you manually handle a few hundred of these things it's as easy as falling off a log.

  • NewPlazaNewPlaza Members, Plex Pass Posts: 381 Plex Pass

    OMG!! Thank you!!! That was great!!!

  • doctrtube1doctrtube1 Members, Plex Pass Posts: 22 Plex Pass

    I find it easier to just split the episodes with Pavtube software.

  • JuiceWSAJuiceWSA Members Posts: 5,197 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited May 18

    @doctrtube1 said:
    I find it easier to just split the episodes with Pavtube software.

    You can do that with MKVToolNix as well, but when you sit down to 'create this new masterpiece' and discover it's been professionally edited with Frame Accurate Editing Equipment into one continuous 90 minute production, then discover that no software on Earth is capable of frame accurate editing of H264 material, or inventing the bits the professional editors left on the cutting room floor to put back in your post-processed masterpiece, you find out you have a chopped up 'hack job' not worth watching...

    Then you add the first tandem episode, skip one and then add the next one. Pretty much like most of the rest of us are already doing and you say to yourself; 'Oh yea, that's why they do that'.


  • NewPlazaNewPlaza Members, Plex Pass Posts: 381 Plex Pass

    My hack jobs are very well. In-fact, I also include the intro and ending credits to both making it look very good.

    I've never use Pavtube software so can't say much about that.
    SolveigMM Video Splitter is my goto tool. It supports multiple tracks, subtitle tracks, damn near frame by frame, on the spot removal of segments, etc..

  • doctrtube1doctrtube1 Members, Plex Pass Posts: 22 Plex Pass

    99% of my media is downloaded off the newsgroups,
    99% of the time they are already named correctly for Plex to recognize and identify
    But there is that 1% that gets you .
    My media is not open to the public, just friends and family,
    so I have to fudge them like everybody else.
    I dont get all fancy with credits and all, but kodos
    if you have the time.
    Toolnix works great but is format limited.
    Haven't found anything yet Pavtube wont edit.

  • NewPlazaNewPlaza Members, Plex Pass Posts: 381 Plex Pass

    it only take just a couple of minutes and double episodes are so rare I don't mind.

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