Social Distancing and the Rise of Comfort TV


The hottest shows on TV right now? The ones that comfort you.

According to Hulu, viewers have sought out comforting TV and comedies over the past two weeks. Hulu has seen increased viewing overall, as well as increased time spent by subscribers on the platform. Comedies such as Bob’s Burgers, How I Met Your Mother and Brooklyn Nine-Nine have seen increased viewership, as have comfort dramas including Law & Order: SVU, Grey’s Anatomy and This Is Us.

New data from Hulu also indicates movies, dramas and kids content have seen the biggest jumps in viewers. However, shows that saw the biggest increase in hours watched include reality shows such as Keeping Up With the Kardashians and American Idol, and dramas like 9-1-1, Fear the Walking Dead and The Handmaid’s Tale.

Little Fires Everywhere, a Hulu original starring Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington, has generated more hours of viewership than any other drama on Hulu, including acquired shows with many seasons.

Binge-watch behavior is also on the rise. According to Hulu, viewers watching three or more episodes without break is up 25 percent compared to weeks ago before many states encouraged social distancing and issued stay at home orders.

While viewers are looking for entertaining content, live news viewing continues to rise. It’s up 40 percent compared to two weeks ago.

E! News staffers revealed what shows they’re watching while social distancing, check out what’s keeping us occupied below.

Edie Falco, James Gandolfini, The Sopranos

Abbot Genser/HBO

Seinfeld - Cast

Nbc Tv/Kobal/Shutterstock

Evan Rachel Wood, James Mardsen, Westworld


Outlander, season 4




Thandie Newton, Westworld

John P. Johnson/HBO

Schitt's Creek

Pop TV

Judge Judy

Donaldson Collection/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Tina Fey, 30 Rock


House Hunters International, HGTV


Mad Men


Grey's Anatomy


True Detective, Matthew McConaughey, Woody Harrelson

Lacey Terrell/HBO

Love Is Blind




Parks And Recreation, Adam Scott, Amy Poehler


The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel Season 3


Watch NBC News Special Report: Coronavirus Pandemic Tuesdays at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT on NBC, MSNBC and NBC News NOW. For the latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic and for tips on how to prevent the spread of COVID-19, please visit The Center for Disease Control and Prevention at

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