As people all over the world continue social distancing, life can feel pretty quiet. Thankfully, we’ve got the streaming hearth to fill our homes with glorious sound.
Whether you’re folding laundry, filing taxes, or tending to some other at-home business, it can be nice to have a little chatter going in the background with familiar shows great for multitasking. Consistent in tone and format, these series don’t require your full attention to appreciate (though they’re enjoyable enough to devote all your focus to if you like).
In a time where isolation is a necessity, here are 22 shows streaming on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and HBO Now suited to helping you feel a little less alone.
The dulcet tones of Sir David Attenborough are the best kind of company, and nothing brings the great outdoors to the great indoors like nature docs. In Netflix’s Our Planet, Attenborough narrates the exploration of eight ecosystems and the creatures that thrive there. If you love this one, be sure to also check out Night on Earth narrated by Samira Wiley.
How to watch: Our Planet is now streaming on Netflix.
Niles and Frasier Crane make excellent house guests. Frasier, the beloved Seattle-set spin-off of Cheers, maintains a consistent tone throughout — combining sharp-witted comedy with loving characters and compelling plot developments. Excellent to pop on while you’re cooking up some tossed salads and scraaambled eggs.
How to watch: Frasier is now streaming on Hulu.
Do work-from-home mandates have you missing your office? Then turn to NBC’s hit mockumentary while you answer e-mails/organize spreadsheets/sell paper. Whether you’re on your first viewing or 30th rewatch, the employees of Dunder Mifflin always brighten up a day.
How to watch: The Office is now streaming on Netflix.
Fans of adult animation know the comforts of the Belcher family well. Invite Bob, Linda, Gene, Tina, and Louise into your home for pleasant exchanges, exciting adventures, and a whole lot of burger talk. Then, keep your ears perked for guest voice-acting appearances by all-star comedians like Zach Galifianakis, Samantha Bee, and Bill Hader.
How to watch: Bob’s Burgers is now streaming on Hulu.
Ah, the relaxing sounds of The Great British Baking Show: an orchestral score, contestants explaining their strategies, presenters describing the history of cooking, Paul Hollywood relentlessly trying to make the show entirely about him. Pop it on and enjoy.
How to watch: The Great British Baking Show Seasons 4-10 are now streaming on Netflix.
There’s never a bad time to rewatch RuPaul’s Drag Race. Each season, some of the country’s best drag performers fight for the title of America’s Next Drag Superstar. Listen in for the reveals, judges’ critiques, drama, and spectacular soundtrack. Start your engines, and may the best queen win!
How to watch: RuPaul’s Drag Race Seasons 1-6 are now streaming on Hulu.
Don’t believe anyone who tells you otherwise: Law & Order: SVU marathons are the great American pastime. Following a predictable procedural structure that can be fun to watch but even more fun to ignore, Dick Wolf’s hit crime show is easy to leave on in the background while you tend to other things. Embrace Olivia Benson’s one-liners. Yearn for those “dun-duns.” Fight. For. Justice!
How to watch: Law & Order: SVU is now streaming on Hulu.
With Friends no longer streaming on Netflix, plenty of us are looking for a new group to hang with. Luckily, Cougar Town‘s has Courteney Cox too. This under-appreciated sitcom follows the antics of some 40something friends in their Florida neighborhood. And it’s perfect for drinking wine to.
How to watch: Cougar Town is now streaming on Hulu.
If you like New Zealand accents and catchy tunes, Flight of the Conchords is the background show for you. This delightful sitcom, chronicling the move of musicians Bret McClegnie (Bret McKenzie) and Jemaine Clemaine (Jemaine Clement) to New York City, hit HBO in 2007 and gained a cult following in short order. Brilliant and light, Flight of the Conchords is always there for a laugh.
How to watch: Flight of the Conchords is now streaming on HBO Now.
Join lifestyle experts Jonathan Van Ness, Antoni Porowski, Tan France, Karamo Brown, and Bobby Berk as they travel the world to improve lives. Each makeover includes cooking lessons, grooming tutorials, closet overhauls, home remodeling, and some spectacular life advice.
How to watch: Queer Eye is now streaming on Netflix.
Complete with a laugh track, That ’70s Show is a classic sitcom. No matter what the gang gets up to, the plots are easy to follow and the characters enjoyable to watch. Sure, a particularly good zinger might distract you from time to time. But that’ll be kind of nice, won’t it?
How to watch: That 70’s Show is now streaming on Netflix.
How It’s Made is one of the least stressful programs on the market. Learn how everyday objects like mirrors, bowling balls, fishing line, car headlamps, and toy figurines are made through incredible footage and soothing narration.
How to watch: How It’s Made Seasons 25-27 are now streaming on Hulu.
Cooking shows can be calm and relaxing, or they can be a tense fight to the finish. Chopped is a splendid combination of both. Each episode, four chefs face off in three rounds: appetizer, entrée, and dessert. It’s just the right background noise for cooking, snacking, and waiting for delivery.
How to watch: Chopped Seasons 14-36 are now streaming on Hulu.
Now may not be the best time for a total home overhaul, but a little spring cleaning can’t hurt. Relish in the wise advice of tidying legend Marie Kondo as you sort through drawers, pack up old clothes, and give gratitude to all the stuff keeping you company while at home.
How to watch: Tidying Up with Marie Kondo is now streaming on Netflix.
Come for the wisecracks, stay for the consistent format and bangin’ theme song. House may have ended in 2012, but the medical mysteries it contains are still plenty engaging. Unless you really want to get into all the hospital drama, this is an easy series to pay half your attention to.
How to watch: House is now streaming on Amazon Prime Video.
For many, Stars Hallow and the Gilmore girls are home. Kick back with Rory and Lorelai as they banter over pop culture, snack food, and all of life’s ups-and-downs. Can’t stop after seven seasons? Queue up Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life as a bonus.
How to watch: Gilmore Girls is now streaming on Netflix.
Oh, Divorce Court. Under the guidance of the honorable Lynn Toler, this arbitration-based reality show attempts to settle disputes between couples splitting up. Surprisingly light and fun, this is what daytime dreams are made of. Seriously, it’ll feel just like having cable again.
How to watch: Divorce Court Season 21 is now streaming on Hulu.
Harken back to your favorite Saturday morning ritual by streaming SpongeBob‘s most iconic episodes. From Alaskan Bull Worms to The Flying Dutchman, the Bikini Bottom collection included with Amazon Prime Video has all the most quotable scenes. Is mayonnaise an instrument?
How to watch: SpongeBob SquarePants Seasons 1-5 are included with Amazon Prime Video.
Weddings may be getting canceled the world over, but we’ll always have Randy and the team at Kleinfeld’s to remind us of that special day. Watch brides from across the world flock to this high-end salon in search of the perfect dress for saying, “I do.” It’s easy to watch when you have a minute, and just as easy to tune out when you don’t.
How to watch: Say Yes to the Dress Seasons 14-16 are now streaming on Hulu.
My kingdom for more Forky! One of the best things to come out of Disney’s big streaming play, Forky Asks a Question extends the story of Toy Story 4‘s breakout star with 10 delightful short films on topics like friendship, time, art, and cheese. Watch Forky acclimate to his new normal, while you do the same for right now.
How to watch: Forky Asks a Question is now streaming on Disney+.
If you need even more chaos than the folks in Scranton can provide, Workaholics is a pretty great choice. Marvel as Blake, Adams, and Ders party their way into oblivion and magically manage to keep some semblance of an income. It’s all the fun of a rager, but with none of the mess.
How to watch: Workaholics is now streaming on Hulu.
Fill your home with Larry David and his very many complaints. Curb Your Enthusiasm is the right pick for anyone feeling down on their luck and in need of a little miserable company. Plus, the Curb theme song just kind of is life right now. So, crank it up!
How to watch: Curb Your Enthusiasm is now streaming on HBO Now.
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