Top TV shows to watch this Christmas

Updated: May 6, 2021

By Chloe Olivia Sladden

In just under two weeks, most of us are off for the next weeks for Christmas. Finally. If the colder, wetter weather is making you retreat indoors, then here’s a list of some top-rated shows for you to binge on to pass the time.

Netflix: Once Upon A Time

Spanning 7 seasons, this show puts a high fantasy and darker take on Grimm and Disney fairytale characters. The series begins with 28 year old Emma Swan, who believes her parents abandoned her as she grew up in care and finds herself alone on her birthday.

She makes a wish for a better life, when her 10-year-old son Henry, she gave up for adoption returns to find her. Emma is forced to take Henry back to his town of Storybrooke, and his foster mum, Regina, secretly the evil Queen who is keeping all the fairytale characters miserable and without their memories of who they are.

This includes Emma’s parents Snow White and Prince Charming who had to send her away as a baby to save her from the inescapable curse, so she could one day save their kingdom as the saviour. Henry tries to reveal this to Emma as  Henry who has the storybook of the characters true memories. Henry must make his mum believe in them and herself, in order to break the curse and bring back everyone’s memories.

The constant twists and turns on connecting these characters and dramatically changing plots to how these fairytales go, make for moment after moment. Also, the seasons see curses break and new ones made, as heroes and villains come from the unlikeliest of fairy tale characters, leading to a dramatic conclusion.

Netflix: The Good Place

This show is currently in its 3rd season, Ellen Shellstropp died and was rewarded in the afterlife by getting to go to the ‘good place’. One problem, she knows she wasn’t a great person and so shouldn’t be there. So when she meets her soulmate Chidi, (which everyone gets in the good place) but her soul mate was meant for whoever should be there instead of Eleanor.

She ropes Chidi into teaching her philosophy and ethics to try and be a better person, so she can stay in a good place. It becomes harder with fellow impersonator Jason, posing as a monk and his soul mate, vain socialite Tani.

The unique approach to the show and its take on ethics, along with its wacky comedy makes for a binge-worthy show, you’ll finish in a day!

Netflix: Shadowhunters

Based on the bestselling series by Cassandra Clarke, Clary Fray is celebrating her 18th birthday with her mum, her mum’s friend and father figure Like and best friend Simon. All she wants is a normal life, after getting into art school, she goes to celebrate her birthday with Simon at a club. When there, she bumps into Jace and his friends, brother sister Alec and Isabelle. Jace is surprised, as they were meant to be invisible as they were hunting for a demon. For they are Shadowhunters, half angel half human warriors who protect the mortal and supernatural words of Werewolves, faeries, Vampires and warlocks.

When Clary’s mum suddenly disappears, Clary is attacked by a creature and saved by Jace who takes her to the New York Shadowhunters Institute. Here, Clary learns she is a Shadowhunters and so was her mum, who changed her memories with help from Magnus, a warlock with an eye on Alec. She must embrace her true destiny, with Jace, Isabelle, Alec, their mentor Hodge and her friend Simon who soon gets caught up with Vampires and the Shadowhunters enemy, and her real father, Valentine.

There are not enough words to describe this awesome and completely obsessive adaptation the if the books, again not shying away from a little gore or romance, and even some laughs. Added with some amazing songs by Ruelle, this series currently in season three will leave you immersed in the dark underworld that lies beneath our world.

Sky on Demand: A Discovery of Witches

Another TV show based on a book trilogy by Deborah Harkness and based in Oxford, England. It centres around mid-twenties historian Diana Bishop. She leaves her aunt and her partner in America, to follow a job at Oxford. However, she is secretly a witch in a world of Witches, vampires and demons but has given up magic, ever since her parents were murdered at age ten.

Her normal magic-free life is disturbed when in Oxford library, she accidentally summons an ancient Anselm manuscript of vampires, causing the supernatural shadow cabinet and centuries old and future love-interest French Vampire Matthew to take an interest in her. Diana must face up to her past, and embrace her spellbound powers to solve the mystery of her parents, protect the supernatural world and defy everything for a forbidden love.

This series is definitely not shying away from some gore and passion. Each episode in its debut seasons leaves you wanting more. The series slowly but dramatically draws out its plotline to a thrilling and unexpected conclusion, as Dianna has to live up to her family name as more vampire, demons and witches from the shadow cabinet that runs them, threatens to put a violent end to her and Matthew.

BBC iplayer: Doctor Who

A British TV show, that’s over 50 years old about a time lord, thousands of years ago, who can regenerate into a new person, when dying and can travel through space and time with their spaceship, the TARDIS. This time Lord now a time lady (played by Jodie Whittaker) is called the Doctor, who has many companions to travel with, protecting the earth from both humans, robots and aliens alike.

The show is currently in its eleventh series, with a new, long overdue and amazing feminist twist with the thirteenth doctor being female. This doctor along with her companions, Graham, his step free grandson Ryan and his friend Yaz, travel all over. From a planet called desolation to the Lancaster witch trials.

Netflix: Gilmore Girls

A witty, clever and nostalgic show about a young single mum Lorelai in her early thirties, and her daughter, Lorelai “Rory” who she had at sixteen. The loving mother-daughter team live in the small town of Stars Hollow, Connecticut, USA, which is full of sweet but wacky characters, including Rory’s best friend Lane, and Lorelai ls friend Sookie and Michael who work at the same Inn.

Other characters that make for great laughs in the show are neighbour Babette, town mayor Taylor and his assistant Kirke, dance teacher Miss Patty and Luke, who owns the dinner the duo always frequent.

When Rory is accepted into a good school in Hertford, Lorelai is forced to go to her estranged parents to ask money. In return, her mother wants Lorelai to come for awkward but hilarious Friday night dinners.

This sets off a quirky chain of events that will make your sides hurt with laughter every time but also warms your heartstrings spanning seven seasons and a Netflix revival. The constant pop culture references and long comedic dialogue make for a interesting show, that makes a 40 minute episode, not long enough!

Netflix and Last series currently on E4: The Big Bang Theory

A show that has surpassed the length of Friends, as its twelfth and final seasons is airing, The big bang theory is a hilarious American sitcom with some carefully placed and well done,heart-tugging moments. It begins with Leonard and Sheldon as scientist roommates, clueless about society and girls, until wannabe actress Penny moves in across the hall.

Topped off with the guys other scentiest friends, Howard and Raj, and later on, Amy (Sheldon girlfriend) and Bernadette (Penny’s ex Co worker and Howard’s girlfriend). In-between scientific discoveries, sci fiction and fantasy filled lol culture, and repeatable awkwardness, this gang is this decades answer to friends.

The growing ensemble throughout the seasons make for modern comedy, with a way of making being smart cool and fun again. You’ll instantly fall in love with this smart and goofy characters, especially the neurotic Sheldon Cooper.

There are so many more entertaining and addictive TV series but these should be enough to get you started. Proceed with caution though, these series can be very addictive very fast.

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