Drowning in midterm stress? Here are five shows that can ease the pain


Photo Credit: Courtesy of PBS

In two weeks, many will bask in springtime sun rays while many others will be swallowed up by their bed sheets, self-inducing into a week-long coma.

With spring break right around the corner comes the realization of an even more urgent matter — the plethora of midterms and projects due before break. For some, this time of year is a breeze, but many feel the overwhelming pressure of performing their best in their academics. To ease the pain and misery, here is a list of five shows on Netflix to help slow down and unwind.

Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee (2012-Present)

A relatively recent addition to the Netflix stockpile of fluff, “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” first premiered on Crackle in 2012. In this web-based talk show, Jerry Seinfeld pairs guest comedians with classic cars in a journey for — you guessed it — coffee. Each episode is different, random, unscripted and full of contagious laughter and joy. Perfect for quick study breaks, episodes range from 15 to 20 minutes in length, making for a comfortable viewing experience with your smartphone if away from home.

Jerry Before Seinfeld (2017)

Although Jerry Seinfeld appears twice on this list, it’s because he is twice as wholesome as most comedians. Seinfeld’s newest stand up special, “Jerry Before Seinfeld,” tells the story of his upbringing with goofy Dad jokes galore. As most comedians draw on their dark past, Seinfeld’s lack thereof makes his comedy refreshing and lighthearted. Even Seinfeld’s personal anecdotes between stand-up segments will lift up the souls of those dispirited spirits locked up late at night with their notebooks.

The Great British Baking Show (2010-2017)

If comedy doesn’t satisfy, “The Great British Baking Show” just might. This televised baking competition can slow anyone’s racing mind after an intense study period. It has just the right amount of intensity to stay hooked without overbearing the wholesomeness throughout. Naturally, viewers will love some candidates less than others, but no one on the show is rude or discourteous, unlike the common backstabbing tropes of American competitive cook-offs. The show is also delightfully British and filmed in the yards of castles and mansions inside little white tents.

Moving Art (2014 & 2017)

Immersing yourself in nature can be a lot better than being surrounded by books and pissed off college students, even if it’s contained within a screen. Cinematographer and producer Louie Schwartzberg uses his camera skills combined with 4K time lapses to captures all the hidden beauty of nature that lies beneath the surface. After exploring through deserts, oceans, forests and flowers, students may feel more energized than they would from reading their textbooks or memorizing flashcards.

Chill With Bob Ross (1983)

This list wouldn’t be complete without a Bob Ross show in the mix. Every stroke of Ross’ paint brush has the power to lull any viewer into a deeper sense of calmness. With its equivalent, “Bob Ross: Beauty is Everywhere,” there is pleasing painting aplenty to choose from the 52 episodes now online for streaming. Ross’ words are just as soothing as the visual appeal of his creations. Some of his life advice and lovely quotes can numb the mind to the desperate struggle of keeping our grades above satisfactory. Phrases such as “You can do anything here — the only prerequisite is that it makes you happy” has the power to loosen the tension in all of our study-crazed lives.