Skip to main content

Chewing gum for the brain: TV to turn to for pure escapism

By October 17, 2020No Comments


Pop culture obsessive Fionnuala Jones helps us end our never-ending selection scroll by suggesting the perfect list of escapist TV to ease our addled minds…


Emily In Paris


If you haven’t come across a hot take concerning this show on your timeline, chances are you’ve spent some time away from your phone this week – and for that, I applaud you.

From the creator of Sex And The City comes Emily In Paris, in which hot-shot American Emily (played by Lily Collins) moves to the City of Lights to pursue an unexpected job opportunity.

Full disclosure – you will either love this, loathe this or love to loathe it. It’s wonderfully escapist, but to the point that some may find it ludicrous. You’ll be easily distracted by the fashion and the immense eye candy throughout.

The Haunting of Hill House


No, you aren’t misreading that – I am recommending the spooky series that came out in 2018 and not the most recent iteration, The Haunting of Bly Manor.

Why? Well, simply put, the second series is not as good. As a non-horror aficionado, Hill House shook me to core. Even reading the words Hill House brings me back to the Bent Neck Lady (if you know you know).

If you need something scarier than the reality we’re living in, then look no further.

The Bridge

Channel 4 / All 4

If you were a fan of T4’s Shipwrecked or the shorter-lived Unanimous, you will LOVE this absolutely bat-shit reality TV concept from Channel 4.

The show sees 12 strangers from very different walks of life move into a remote cabin, tasked with building an 850ft bridge from scratch in 20 days. If they manage, their finished bridge will allow them to cross over a lake to an island where £100,000 will be waiting for them. 

The catch? Only one of them can take home the prize pot. Dun dun dunnnnnnnn!

Impressively, they’ve managed to secure an Irish contestant called Maura who’s mad for the ride (sound familiar?) and Sly, a 60-something who vehemently hates Trisha Goddard. It couldn’t get more Channel 4 if they tried.

The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills


There’s a reason why everyone and their mother got bet into this franchise over Lockdown 1.0 – it is sweet, delicious trash. 

RHOBH was the sixth instalment to the franchise, focusing on the personal and professional lives of the filthy rich women residing in Beverly Hills, California.

While there’s been many a season and cast change since, don’t be intimidated. You will fly through this ‘10s time capsule as you gawk at the fashion and the fisticuffs. 


RTE Player / All 4

As I am of a certain age, I never understood the reference to the Glenroe Fear people got of a Sunday night. E.R. on the other hand, I knew all about – I begged my mam to let me stay up and watch it alongside my sister to avoid the dread that a fresh week of school would bring.

That said, having only ever known Abby Lockhart’s E.R., I decided it was time to watch it from the beginning once level 3 rolled around again. This show has aged like a fine wine, with some of the best onscreen relationships you’ll ever see. Doug Ross and Carol Hathaway! Doug Ross and Mark Greene! Benton and Carter! The list goes on. 



If you’re feeling disheartened by talk of Halloween being cancelled, look no further than Halloweentown, where it’s Halloween all year round! 

When a young girl living with her good-witch grandmother learns she too is a witch, she must help her grandmother save Halloweentown from the evil forces at play.

Starring the late, great Debbie Reynolds, this is a mega charming film to watch with or without the kids – especially if you have Hocus Pocus-fatigue.

This Is Paris


If you’re someone who follows pop culture closely, you’ll know that there’s more to Paris Hilton than meets the eye.

This revealing documentary attempts to pull back the curtain on the real life and loves of the heiress and OG influencer, as well giving insight into the abuse she suffered in her past.