5 Gentle Stress Free Shows to Watch on Netflix During Troubling Times
Television Can Be a Great Stress Reliever
Life is scary y'all! Some days it feels like there are monsters ready to jump out at me at every turn. On days like that I don't want to watch things that will put me in a further state of panic. I recently made the mistake of watching The Ted Bundy tapes on Netlix and I had nightmares. I immediately started watching some of my old standbys and before I knew it, I felt much better.
If you are currently going through a difficult season in your life or you just like to relax and enjoy a good show without overthinking, I have created a list of 5 gentle shows you can watch now on Netflix. Sit back, get your remote and get ready to forget your stresses for at least a little while.
The Andy Griffith Show
The Andy Griffith Show 1960-1968 Eight Seasons
The Andy Griffith Show just might be the ultimate cozy television show. Mayberrry is a byword for a safe and friendly community of hayseed citizens who care about each other. The cast is all talented and I personally think Ron Howard was the cutest child actor of all time. If you want to rewind to a time and place that never was, this is the show for you.
My Favorite Character: This is an easy one, Barney Fife! Those faces Don Knotts made took the character to another level.
My Favorite Episode: Dinner at Eight (Season 7 Episode 17). Aunt Bee and Opie both are going to be away from home and Andy cannot wait for them to scoot on out so he can have the whole house to himself. Of course this does not happen. With a little help from miscommunication, Andy ends up eating 3 suppers at three houses, including his own.
Can You Watch The Andy Griffith Show Anywhere Else? Yes, all 8 seasons are available to watch if you have a subscription to Amazon Prime
Friends 1994-2004 Ten Seasons
Friends is a real crowd pleaser. Like most of the other shows on this list, it has never really stopped being popular. I watched the show when it originally aired and was not really interested in re-watching it until I got sick and had weeks of downtime. On re-watching I thought the show held up really well and surprisingly, Joey was a lot funnier than I remember him being.
Why is This Show a Good Cozy Pick? The characters are people you want to be friends with. Who wouldn't want to be friends with attractive, well groomed, funny people who live a life that would, in reality take much more money to maintain? This annoys some viewers but just forget about how Monica can afford that huge apartment and enjoy the show.
Favorite Character: This is a tough one and changes each time I re-watch the show. Right now I would say my favorite character is Phoebe just because Lisa Kudrow is such a great comedic actress. If you haven't watched it, The Comeback is an excellent example of what a versatile actress she is.
My Favorite Episode: The One Where Everybody Finds Out (Season 5, Episode 14) Chandler and Monica have been keeping their new relationship a secret. The friends figure it out but want Chandler and Monica to confess. Watching Phoebe try to seduce Chandler is the most hilarious moment in the show's history.
Gilmore Girls 2000-2007 Seven Seasons
This show seems to get more and more popular as the years go by. Lorelai Gilmore is a young woman who got pregnant at 16 to the horror of her straight-laced, conservative parents. She moves to the Mayberry-esque town of Stars Hollow, Connecticut to raise her daughter Rory. The show starts when Rory is 16 and wants to go to the expensive private school Chilton. Lorelai can only afford the school with help from her wealthy parents. The only problem is that she has not spoken to them in years. After some awkwardness, Lorelai's parents agree to pay for Rory's education as long as they have a weekly with them in Hartford.
My Favorite Character: Sookie St. James played by Melissa McCarthy. She is Lorelai's best friend who is a cook at the inn where they work. She is clumsy and competitive and since playing this part McCarthy has become a big star. This is where I first was introduced to her and I have been a fan ever since.
Why This Show is a Good Cozy Pick: This show is filled with pop culture references, zany characters, and people you really end up caring for. The townspeople are fun and whimsical and there's a bit of will they or won't they drama to keep a viewer hooked. After you binge watch this show, Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life catches up with the girls 10 years later.
My Favorite Episode: The Bracebridge Dinner (Season 2, Episode 10)
This episode is beautiful. It pretty much sums up the magic of the series. Emily and Richard drama, a horse drawn carriage and Stars Hollow craziness is all front and center in this episode. Also, there is a real life Bracebridge Dinner every year in December at Yosemite National Park.
That '70s Show
That '70s Show 1998-2006 Eight Seasons
It took me a while to give this show a chance. It was so popular when it aired and I was a bit of a hipster at the time, so I resisted watching it. The show follows a group of friends who live in Wisconsin in the 1970s. They often hang out at Eric Foreman's house so viewers get to know his parents and his sister.
Why This Show is a Good Cozy Pick: This show is very silly and it never really took itself too seriously. It can be campy at times and this makes it alright with me. Bonnie and Terry Turner created this show and 3rd Rock From the Sun, which is another good to watch on a rainy day. 3rd Rock From the Sun can be found on Amazon Prime.
My Favorite Characters: Eric's parents Red and Kitty. Red is a typical strict, old-fashioned, hard-nosed father and Kitty balances him out by being hyper, sweet and a little feisty.
My Favorite Episode: Ski Trip (Season 1, Episode 13)
The friends are planning a ski trip to Jackie's ski lodge. Her boyfriend Kelso is uninvited when he kisses Pam Macy under the bleachers at school. Kitty and Red are looking forward to having a romantic evening alone and it is ruined when Kitty remembers the time Red made out with another woman at the movies. The best part was when Kelso is hitchhiking and is picked up by a trucker who has a crush on him. Kelso, being naive, has no idea.
Frasier 1993-2004 Eleven Seasons
Dr. Frasier Crane started out as a character on Cheers and got his own spin-off in 1993. Cheers is also available to watch on Netflix and Hulu but I have always preferred Frasier. Frasier is an uptight, stuck-up, social climber who lives in Seattle, Washington with his retired father Marty Crane. His brother Niles lives in the city as well and the two of them are often seen trying to scheme their way into the upper crust of Seattle society. Each time they try to probe how smart and sophisticated they are, they end up with tossed salads and scrambled egg on their faces.
Why This is a Good Cozy Pick: A show about snobs trying to prove how superior they are to everyone else doesn't really sound relaxing but it is. Frasier and Niles never win at their quest to be the belles of the ball. That is why I love this show so much. Watching them get their comeuppance every episode is very satisfying.
Favorite Episode: Travels With Martin (Season 1, Episode 21)
Frasier takes his dad on a trip in a Winnebago that no one wants to go on. Daphne and Niles go along for the ride. They end up in Canada by mistake and Daphne panics because she doesn't have permission to be in Canada. Watching the group try to trick the border guards is pure comedy.
Favorite Character: Dr. Niles Crane. David Hyde Pierce is a great physical comic, plus he takes the script to new heights with his comedy timing. My mom always laughs during the episode where he makes shaving cream explode in his own face.
Where Else Can You Watch This?: Hulu and Amazon Prime
What's Your Favorite Cozy Sitcom?
Let me know in the comments down below! Also would love to know what your favorite episodes and characters from these shows are. Thank you for reading!
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© 2019 Brandy McGhee Nelson