Seven Shows to Stream While Social Distancing


Coronavirus is here and experts are recommending that people stay home to prevent community spread. But how will we entertain ourselves in the days ahead? Don’t worry – I’ve spent many hours on the couch preparing for a crisis like this one, and I’m here to do my part to help.


Love is Blind (Netflix)
It’s a dating “experiment” where couples who have never seen each other get engaged. It’s like a train wreck you can’t stop watching. But remember – you are being a good and responsible citizen by staying on your couch. Much like Game of Thrones, the final episode is truly rage-inducing. But that rage is your friend. Maybe you don’t like some of the people on the show – maybe you don’t like people at all. Even more reason to limit your interactions with the outside world.

Chernobyl (HBO)
Speaking of Game of Thrones… this show is nothing like it – but it is the best thing that HBO released last year. Maybe watching another government respond to a totally different public health crisis will be a good distraction? (It won’t be.) Fair warning – this show is absolutely terrifying and will not be at all comforting to watch. But it is very, very well done. And I’ll save you some time on Wikipedia – no, not every detail of the show is true to the real-life events of the disaster. But most of it is.

Miss Americana (Netflix)
While you’re making the most of your time at home, it’s important to take breaks from sitting on your couch to engage in activities like singing in the shower or dancing in the kitchen. This documentary might just inspire you to do that. Taylor Swift released her first album when she was 17. Now she’s 30 and one of the most iconic pop artists in the world. This documentary explores how both she and her music have transformed in that time. After I watched it, I purchased her last three albums and have been having listening to them daily. Maybe I need to calm down?


Watchmen (HBO)
This is a follow-up to the comics, with vigilantes trying to save the world from a terrorist organization. The main themes of the show are race, corruption, and the importance of family. If you want to watch a woman beat up some bad guys, go watch this. And remember – maintaining a distance of at least 6 feet from other people while in public means that for your own safety you shouldn’t punch anyone. (As much as you might want to when you discover that your local store is still out of toilet paper.)


The Politician (Netflix)
If you’re looking for a distraction from national politics as well as pandemics, this show is not about Democrats or Republicans, but about the manic drive that one young man has to be President. It’s visually appealing (picture a Wes Anderson aesthetic) and provides plenty of unexpected moments. The Politician is classified as a “comedy-drama”, and it’s definitely funny – but in a dark and nihilistic way.

The Expanse (Amazon Prime)
I haven’t yet finished the new fourth season of this one, but I devoured the first three. If you enjoy Sci-Fi – this show is what I had been waiting for after Battlestar Galactica. Cool space action, a diverse cast, and a focus on class issues and politics. Though if you think you’ll be upset by a storyline that includes the spread of infectious disease, maybe wait a few months before bingeing this one.


The Great British Baking Show (Netflix)
I’ll round out the list with my favorite thing to watch for hours while I fold laundry and look at memes on my phone. The name really says it all. It’s the competition you may be missing from March Madness, but with polite British people making impressive pastries. Bonus: This show might even inspire you to use some of the flour you’ve stockpiled in the pantry. And if you manage to finish the 7 seasons on Netflix, there is no shortage of other dessert competition shows to check out – like Sugar Rush, Nailed It!, and Zumbo’s Just Desserts – to name a few.