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Ah, the outrageous bills, the alluring premium content that expires in three months, and the subscriber packages that never give you the exact channels you want — not mention the lack of competition: Cable is so Soviet era.

You've been clamoring to shed this ball and chain, and now maybe you can: A company called Sezmi is rolling out its service to Los Angeles and it's free until March. The provider pulls content from online, broadband and digital-airwave sources and puts it in homes via set-top boxes that it rents and sells (for $299).

After March the service will cost $5 for local, over-air digital channels (which, frankly, you can get yourself for free) and — where the real action is — $20 for more than 100 cable networks.

“We are in the midst of one of the most exciting times in television history,” said Sezmi co-founder and president Phil Wiser. “With a deep understanding of the changing needs of television viewers, Sezmi created a completely new end-to-end offering …”

L.A. this week gets its chance to cast off the shackles of cable. Sign up here.