How Television Saved 2016


As the summer of 2016 came to an end, the despair that had started after Brexit was as rife as ever. The pound was falling but hate crimes were rising. People took to social media to voice their anger and petitions were signed. A country was divided and the future was looking bleak. Until the 24th of August rolled around and things suddenly became a little brighter.

“The Great British Bake Off” seventh season began and Britain was encased in a sweet pastry blanket. A broken Europe no longer had the same shock factor as a broken biscuit tower. Memories of “Bin-Gate” clouded any fears of the possible “Marmite-Gate”. And as for Paul Hollywood? Britain now had someone to direct their anger at.

Yet no sooner had the glorious show started, Candice was being crowned and that was it all over for another year. So then we all had to face our harsh reality once more. And to make matters worse, there was an upcoming presidential election. Which consequently resulted in Donald Trump being elected President.  And once more, Britain and the world were plunged into despair.

However, there was a show that could distract us once more. Ten years after the release of the original series, “Planet Earth II” premiered and gave us a welcome distraction from the world once more. As a nation, we could once again unite for a common goal – such as a lizard escaping a swarm of deadly snakes.

So what is it about these programmes that are just so darn heart-warming? First of all, they make for easy watching. These types of shows don’t require intense concentration, or the need to have seen all previous episode before watching. Secondly, they show us a reality which differs from that of our day to day life. Competitive biscuit making? Remote mountain ranges? Both are as exotic as each other if you ask me.

But most importantly, they shows us the best in which the world has to offer. Bake Off reminds us that despite the tensions between people, deep down everyone rooting for each other and wants one another to do well. Meanwhile, Planet Earth II reminds us that nature is cruel, but however bad life gets, there will always be a clip of a swimming sloth to cheer you up.

Jess Simpson

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