TV to Disconnect from the Turmoil of Covid Life

Covid-19’s impacts have extended far beyond real life and into the worlds we use as an escape, such as those found in movies and tv shows. Obviously, Covid-19 and quarantine have resulted in more people watching movies, specifically, but I don’t think many people realize the impact Covid has had on their viewing experience.

I have noticed a change in the way I watch certain shows; several months ago I was watching Community (a show about non-traditional students at a fictional community college) on Netflix with my dad when I realized that I related to the show more than I thought. Even though I’m not yet in college, the show felt oddly familiar and I couldn’t figure out why. I finally realized, months later, that it was because Community embodied everything school used to be; seeing your friends, studying with them, hating on that one teacher for no specific reason. It’s what school was before the pandemic. The reason I gained (an even stronger) attachment to the show was because it embodied something I could no longer have in real life because of Covid-19; a “normal” school experience. This made me think about what certain shows I felt spoke to me at this point in my life, during the pandemic.

We’ve always watched shows to escape from reality; this is no secret. Whether we admit it or not, it happens. But after this realization during Community, I started to think of aspects of life from pre-Covid times that certain shows I loved before the pandemic, now embodied. I will include a list of some of these that I have found to be true, along with some shows/movies that I feel go with each of them:


    1. “Normal” School- Pretty self-explanatory, and already covered when I talked about Community, but there are many other shows out there that do the same thing such as Gilmore Girls (you will see this one a lot in this list) or even Harry Potter at this point.
  • Traveling-  I don’t know about you, but I really miss traveling, or even just getting on a plane. Some of the shows/movies that have helped give me a taste of the freedom to leave our homes as we please are Ratatouille (don’t pretend like you haven’t been binging Disney+ movies), Spiderman: Far From Home, Enola Holmes, and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. These are all movies and shows I loved in general, but their settings or travel within the story provide shots of London, New York, and Paris that we can’t get in-person right now, and helps to relieve the pain of being stuck at home.
  • Adventures with Friends- When I say this I mean primarily hanging out with friends without the fear that you will give them a deadly virus or that they will give it to you. I yearn for the days when we could go inside each other’s houses and play board games or Just Dance together. And until that day comes again, some of the movies and shows I have watched that make me feel like I’m hanging out with my own friends are Cobra Kai, Community, The Flash, Phineas and Ferb, Supernatural, Harry Potter, and Guardians of the Galaxy. These are all very different shows/movies, but they all give off the vibe that you are with your closest friends and having a good time (or getting into trouble in some cases), like the good old times.
  • How our Lives Correlate More with Sci-Fi/Fantasy than Rom-Coms These Days- When I realized this I was pretty annoyed, but there are, evidently, several shows and movies out there that seem sci-fi, apocalyptic-y that are still super relatable to how we all feel right now. Some of these are Daybreak (on Netflix), The Umbrella Academy, Supernatural, really any Marvel movie, Princess Diaries (one and two), and Wynonna Earp (also on Netflix). 
  • “Normal” Life in General- I think we can all relate that watching tv or movies at this point sometimes causes a temporary panic when no one is social-distancing and staying six feet apart. I always forget that I’m watching something that happened pre-Covid because the pandemic has been going on for so long. It’s not just that but also seeing people interact without masks, going out on dates, going to concerts/shows, going out to restaurants (eating INSIDE? Gasp!), and simply living life as we did before Covid-19. Most of these are probably repeats but include: Gilmore Girls, The Flash, Scooby-Doo (as a rule, I’ve found that watching nostalgic shows/movies helps me remember “normal”, pre-Covid times), Phineas and Ferb, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Harry Potter, and any other nostalgic movies/shows that remind each of us, individually, of our childhood or just of a time before Covid-19 changed our lives. 


These are just some of the things that I have noticed personally, but I think will apply to everyone. Shows, movies, and books are many people’s way to disconnect from the turmoil of real life, and I think that has become even more important during this ongoing and unprecedented pandemic. While these Covid-minded interpretations I’ve noticed don’t ruin or hinder the awesome content we all know and love, I think it’s something interesting and important to realize and reflect on as we go through this weird and crazy time.