COVID On Our Screens

Updated: Mar 23, 2021

“Attention shoppers, we ask that you please not physically wrestle things from your fellow customers. There's a highly contractible virus out there that our country does not have a hold of. None of y'all are listening, huh? Alright, enjoy the apocalypse!”


Image from NBC

The COVID 19 pandemic has affected our lives in so many ways including what's on our television screens. Lots of shows opted not to incorporate the pandemic in their current seasons but some thought it was important to add to their stories. Grey’s Anatomy, Superstore, This is Us, Station 19, Black-ish, Chicago Med, Fire and P.D are just some of the shows that are portraying the coronavirus.


Being the longest running medical drama show, it was a no brainer for Grey’s Anatomy to show the pandemic from a hospital's perspective. More than ever they are focusing on the medicine and how much tougher this job has become. It’s important for medical shows like this to accurately display what it’s like for first responders. They show how limited the PPE (personal protective equipment) for healthcare workers is, the impact of losing patients who are all alone, and the difficulties of not getting to see family for long periods of time.


However in the very few scenes where the workers aren’t at the hospital, they don’t always wear their masks, which is slightly unrealistic - some real hospital workers have complaints about that. Station 19, a Grey’s Anatomy spin-off shown about firefighters, is also handling the pandemic from a somewhat similar point of view.


Image from ABC

Superstore, an NBC sitcom, shows what living with the pandemic is like in a very different way. Superstore is pretty much what it sounds like, a show about a superstore and its workers. The employees are all at different points in their life and they come from different backgrounds which allows us to see how people’s lives are affected by the pandemic in a new way.


Opposed to Grey’s Anatomy and other medical shows, Superstore is dealing with the virus in a more lighthearted everyday life way. Out of all the shows I’ve seen that are including COVID, this is the most realistic. A lot of the time when the media tries to be “relatable”, it can feel too forced and isn’t funny or actually relatable.


This is mostly because Superstore hasn’t lost sight of their old plot lines; they just added masks and other safety protocols. They show people dealing with this pandemic and still moving on in a safe way. With the loss of America Ferrera's character and the addition of COVID in the show; viewers were concerned that quality would go down, but the show has only improved.


When I saw the promos for these upcoming seasons and saw that they were going to incorporate COVID, I was worried that it would be unrealistic and wouldn’t receive good feedback. And yes, some other shows would probably be better off if they let COVID out, but in my opinion Superstore is better than ever and it feels even more relatable because of how well they fit it in. Though Grey's Anatomy has veered from previous storylines, it’s critical for the writers to properly show what it’s like at a hospital now.


Check out more articles from #Hannah !

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