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HELLO!’s TV Team share top TV show picks to lift your mood on Blue Monday

'Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the television'

HELLO!’s TV Team share top TV show picks to lift your mood on Blue Monday
Emmy Griffiths
TV & Film Editor
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Blue Monday is supposed to be the most depressing day of the year, but it doesn’t have to be! While the mood might be down to Christmas being well and truly over, the cold and dark weather and the start of another work week, Albus Dumbledore once said, 'Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the television!' Okay, we might have ad-libbed the ending there, but there is nothing like a truly good show to lift the spirits when down in the dumps. So what shows are guaranteed to give you a boost? Check out HELLO!’s TV team’s top picks…  

The Traitors - BBC

While murderous, shady and full of treacherous behaviour, nothing has given me more joy over these chilly last couple of weeks than the return of BBC’s reality show, The Traitors.

For the uninitiated, the premise is this; a group of contestants can win the cash prize of £120,000. While most of them are playing an honest game as 'Faithfuls,' several of them have been made 'Traitors' by the show’s host, Claudia Winkleman. While the Faithfuls win by successfully rooting out the Traitors from their midsts, the Traitors take home the prize money by managing to stay until the end of the game. 

Claudia Winkleman hosts The Traitors© LLARA PLAZA
Claudia Winkleman hosts The Traitors

As a viewer, this means having a viewpoint of knowing who everyone is, while the contestants do not, making for some simply hilarious, gripping and jaw-dropping viewing. Not to mention, it’s not The Traitors unless you’re laughing about it with fellow fans online - it’s Twitter at its best! - Emmy Griffiths, TV and Film Editor 

Big Boys season 2 - Channel 4 

This hilarious comedy-drama is guaranteed to leave you in stitches. While it tackles sensitive subjects such as mental health and grief, its heartwarming portrayal of friendship is truly uplifting.

Having watched and loved series one, I was looking forward to the new episodes - and I wasn't disappointed. I think it's safe to say series two is even bigger and better than the first if that's possible. I don't think any other sitcom has made me laugh (or cry) as much as this one. I really can't recommend it enough. 

Series two sees the gang return to university for their second year © Channel 4 / Rob Parfitt
Corinne (Izuka Hoyle), Danny (Jon Pointing), Jack (Dyllan Llewllyn), Yemi (Olisa Odele)

For those who don't know, the sitcom follows the unlikely friendship between shy and newly-out Jack and his uni roommate Danny, who despite his laddish exterior is struggling with his mental health. Series two takes Jack, Danny and the rest of the gang into their second year at Brent University. While Jack's family continues to navigate life after his dad's passing and Danny revisits his past. - Nicky Morris, Senior TV and Film Editor 

The Brothers Sun - Netflix

A comic tour de force, The Brothers Sun is sure to lift your spirits. When I pressed play, I was expecting a background show at best, but with Michelle Yeoh, Justin Chien and Sam Li at the helm, I was totally gripped – and in hysterics.

Sam Song Li as Bruce Sun, Justin Chien as Charles Sun, Michelle Yeoh as Mama Sun
Sam Song Li as Bruce Sun, Justin Chien as Charles Sun, Michelle Yeoh as Mama Sun

After famed assassin, Jade Dragon gangster and Bake Off enthusiast Charles Sun is ambushed in his own home, he immediately jets to Los Angeles, where his mother, Mama Sun, and younger brother, Bruce, have been in hiding. Determined to protect his family from a new threat; Charles finds himself at loggerheads with his mother (who is never wrong) and his improv-loving, hapless brother Bruce.

Filled with mind-blowing martial arts sequences, Shakespearean-level family drama, and moments of pure comedy gold, The Brothers Sun needs to be on your must-watch list – Megan Bull, TV & Film Writer

Michelle Yeoh as Mama Sun in The Brothers Sun. © James Clark/Netflix
Michelle Yeoh as Mama Sun in The Brothers Sun.

Live to 100: Secrets of the Blue Zone - Netflix

Do I want to live to 100 years old? Not particularly, if I'm honest. But a TV show all about how people manage it is so up my street. And I would like to be here a long time, if not for an entire century, so when I saw this Netflix docu-series about the people in various 'Blue Zones' around the globe living the healthiest lives of the entire earth's population, I dove straight in.

The four episodes see author and National Geographic Fellow Dan Buettner jet to small towns in Japan, Italy and Greece, before heading to one in his homeland, USA, to explore how residents in these so-called Blue Zones have mastered longevity. Each zone has its findings, and they're all so fascinating.

Live to 100: Secrets of the Blue Zones
Live to 100: Secrets of the Blue Zones

As a bit of a woo-woo cynic, what I loved most about Live to 100 is that it was science-based and offered facts and data on how different habits can have a genuine impact on our health and life expectancy. It was also genuinely uplifting to see not just how the residents' health thrives, but their happiness too. - Francesca Shillcock, Senior Features Writer

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