22 'Go-To' TV Shows to Watch When You're Depressed


When you’re feeling depressed, sometimes all you want to do is crawl into bed and watch reruns of your favorite TV show.

Maybe you find yourself watching a show from your childhood because the familiarity brings a smile to your face. Maybe you love a certain TV show for its relatable characters that make you feel less alone and more understood. Or maybe you’re just craving a break from your reality and want to get lost in someone else’s storyline.

Whatever kind of TV show you’re looking for, we’ve got you covered. We asked our Mighty community to share their “go-to” TV shows they watch when they are feeling depressed. Did your “go-to” make the list? Tell us in the comments.

Here’s what our community shared with us:

1. “Supernatural”

“‘Supernatural,’ all the way. That show is amazingly uplifting, despite its dark storylines. The persistence of the characters and the sense of family outweighs all the pain and turmoil. Also, basically all the people involved in the show are wonderful human beings. Many of them have been publicly candid about their own mental health struggles, and speak out lovingly to their fans in an effort to raise awareness and promote healing. Truly, these warm, wonderful individuals have saved and improved lives with their voices, and their genuine appreciation of those of us who watch and listen. To me, that’s part of why the fandom is so expansive and dedicated.” — Nicole W.

2. “Friends”

“Rachel somehow gives me hope that I’m going to make it to the top someday when I feel so depressed and feel like I want to give up. Rachel went from [being] jobless to having a job offer in France for something she’s passionate about. Phoebe inspires me to look at life at a brighter side — that no matter how tragic life can be, sometimes it is still beautiful. And when I feel like I have to be someone else just so I’d feel accepted, Monica would then remind me I only have to be me and the right person will love me for who I truly am. So yeah, ‘Friends.’” — Lareine P.

3. “Pokémon

“I watch Pokémon when I’m depressed. I know it’s for kids, but all the characters are always really positive and there’s a lot of open verbal processing of problem solving and dealing with your feelings. That’s refreshing and uplifting to see.” — Autumn R.

4. “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”

“Strong females, great cast, and it doesn’t take itself too seriously. It’s just what I need when I’m feeling down.” — Erica H.

5. “Parks and Recreation”

“Leslie Knope is so inspiring and the whole cast makes you forget about what is wrong with your life and just focus on how funny things can be in Pawnee.” — James T.

6. “Bob’s Burgers”

“It’s very light and uplifting and it’s about a family that struggles to get by but they don’t ever let the stress keep them from having adventures and living their lives. It is motivating to see a family that doesn’t have it all but don’t care.” — Margo M.

7. “Law and Order: SVU”

For two reasons… One because Mariska Hargitay is my hero, but also because the sense of justice is helpful and gives me the motivation to keep pressing on despite my horrific past.” — Sarah C.

8. “My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic”

“I’m biased because I’m a hardcore brony, but ‘My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic.’ There’s an episode for whatever you’re feeling, and whatever happens, everything gets resolved at the end. Call it childish, but it makes me feel like there’s still hope and I shouldn’t give up. There are even some episodes that handle more adult topics as well, such as the grief of losing a pet or the struggles of starting a business/pursuing your passion as a career. It’s simplified because it’s a cartoon, but it always makes me feel better.” — Maddie V.

9. “Grace and Frankie”

“Both women go through hell early on in the series, and find solace in spending time with one another and in their friendship. It reminds me to reach out to those who care about me when I’m feeling low, even when I feel like I’m all alone.” — Allie M.

10. “Sherlock”

It’s just a fantastic show and gets your mind going and you’re not thinking about anything else except how to solve the cases.” — Nicole S.

12. “Glee”

“I miss high school choir like crazy and it just makes me so happy to watch that show. I get into very depressive moods that often last weeks and so I take advantage of it by watching ‘Glee’ all day.” — Elodie G.

13. “Frasier”

“I watch it every night when I’m going to sleep. The show is simple and I love the comedic take on psychiatry and mental illness. It’s funny without being dismissive and/or disrespectful!” — Bridget P.

14. “Sailor Moon”

“I love that anime because it gives me hope.” — Chloe C.

15. “Doctor Who”

“There is always something to save the day. Someone always comes and makes things right and I want that to be me in my life. I want to someday come and save myself like they do in the shows I love. I want to be a hero too.” — Savannah A.

16. “Boy Meets World”

“It’s familiar, comforting and I can relate to a story line or character no matter what.” — Katie D.

17. “Community”

“The sense of camaraderie between the characters makes me feel slightly better about the world.” — Emma A.

18. “House”

“‘House, M.D.’ was my go-to when it was still on Netflix. It never really failed to distract me, I’ve easily watched the entirety of the show 10 times. I think it was a combination of legitimate science coupled with House’s own issues and his self-destructive tendencies. Oddly relatable.” — Jess B.

19. “Full House”

“Full House [was] my favorite as a kid. Me and momma would tune in when she was home… And of course the main reason I keep Netflix is because of ‘Fuller House.’” — Brandy T.

20. “Suits”

“Louis Litt is such an under-appreciated character and his interaction with his therapist is so satisfying to watch. Just the fact that his character is so human, so complex and yet so successful gives me hope for the future.” — Eunice T.

21. “The Simpsons”

“Sometimes a mindless cartoon that doesn’t require much thought or feeling helps… Makes me giggle.” — Chelsea Y.

22. “The Office”

“It has a nice balance to it, so you don’t have to worry about getting too excited and pumped up then crashing before bed.” — Kate F.

What would you add?

Lead image via “Full House” Facebook page and ThePokemonNetwork YouTube channel

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