PopWatch Confessional: What TV show do you like watching before bed?


Image Credit: A&E

I’ve never been a huge fan of going to sleep in complete silence, but I became particularly dependent on the sound of the television to lure me into sleep when I got a roommate who always fell asleep to Friends reruns. I should note that in a normal living situation, your roommate’s sleeping preferences wouldn’t particularly matter, but we shared a studio apartment and, thus, we slept almost directly next to one another.

When she moved out this summer, I continued the trend until the sound of Joey’s voice started to sound like crickets dancing on swinging rusty gates. (Months later, I’m still going through Friends detox.) Recently, Intervention has taken its place. Intense, I know. “Sleep with the angels”? No thanks. I have inner demons!

The problem? There are only 100 episodes of Intervention available on Netflix, it appears I have a little under 2 months to find a new show that I don’t mind giving less than my full attention. So I need suggestions! 

It can’t be something I love — because I always end up making myself stay awake for full episodes. (I usually fall asleep about 30 minutes into Intervention, so I never really see the actual intervention, which is fine by me. I always considered it the least compelling part.) My fellow EWers had their own recs:

Kate Ward recommends the entire Law & Order franchise, saying there’s “nothing as soothing as knowing that whomever enters your house and murders you at night will likely get caught and sent to prison.” On that note, I have to discourage anyone from watching Criminal Minds immediately before slumber. Not only do I always want to watch the entire episode, but it makes for an extremely paranoid evening. Mike Bruno usually turns to Charlie Rose: “I love him and his show, but it’s always so damn late, and I’m just not intellectual enough to stay awake without a fake backdrop or some dramatic music to spice things up.” And Adam B. Vary, whose significant other is anti-TV noise, remembers his earlier days of pre-bed TV: “I used to fall asleep to Star Trek: The Next Generation, and then dream I was on the Enterprise, and it was glorious. Wait, was that out loud?” Yes, it was Adam. And I’m using it in PopWatch, by the way.

Ok, your turn, PopWatchers. What show do you put on before bed? And don’t lie and say Sex and the City. I’ve always wanted to watch that before bed, but the episodes are too short and my DVDs don’t have “play all” buttons. Also, DVD makers, EVERY DISC SHOULD HAVE A FREAKING “PLAY ALL” BUTTON. Sorry, I’m cranky. I didn’t sleep well last night.

Insomniacs should follow Sandra on Twitter: @EWSandraG. We’ll chat.

Comments (151 total) Add your comment
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  • etm

    Howard Stern (on demand) episodes, Married with Children, and Anchorman.

    • Gearhead

      terrible choices, I usually go with Top Gear or Good Luck Charlie

      • Monty

        Every night before I go to bed I watch an episode of South Park.

      • Laundry

        My Columbo DVDS. I know each episode by heart.

    • Eyad

      TNT has loekcd all of their online episodes, you must have login information from a paid tv provider to access any of their episodes online now.

  • Kip

    I have been falling asleep to How I Met Your Mother reruns. I don’t feel bad for falling asleep during them because I’ve seen them so many times before.

    • Kal

      I watch HIMYM before bed as well! I turn it off before I fall asleep, but my brain is now conditioned to know that watching HIMYM in bed means it’s time to sleep.

    • miss k

      HIMYM. All the freakin’ time.

      • CeCe

        Me too!

  • t3hdow

    The Daily Show/Colbert Report combo, most nights. If I’m inclined to stay up later, maybe the ’90s line up on Teen Nick. During football season, usually Monday Night Football, followed through with Sportscenter. Bonus points with ESPN still being on, and acting as a second alarm clock.

  • SaraJeanQueen

    This is sooo funny.. when I read the headline I immediately thought, “Friends on DVD”. It’s comforting, it’s fun to watch, and I think it’s because I know the episodes so well that they help me sleep.
    I haven’t done this in a while, but it’s been a habit off and on.

    • Aura Lee

      Yep! We watch Friends almost every night! It’s funny because some of the episodes are almost 20 years old and they are still hilarious (and let that sentence sink in, some of those episodes are almost 20 years old. )

    • Josie

      omg my first thought too! Friends on DVD :)

    • Daena

      Agreed! Watch friends all the time before sleep, right now i’m on season one again!

      • Moist Maker

        It always surprises me how funny season 1 really was, when the later episodes are more well-known. And how they really did start running out of ideas season 9 (and all the guys got a little chubbers).

      • Squishmar

        Moist Maker… I love your name! Shout out to that “Friends” episode. I’m not a huge fan of the first season mostly because with the exception of Chandler, the characters hadn’t evolved into what they would eventually become. But they are still funny. And Aura Lee… thanks so much for that reminder. Twice. ;)

    • Laurie

      Yep, that’s what I watch before bed every night too! the reruns on TV are pretty convenient to turn on as I’m getting ready for bed and going to sleep!

  • Dean

    Typically I watch The Daily Show and then some Sportscenter or the end of a baseball game. Colbert sometimes, but I’ll usually watch that the next day at work. Don’t tell my boss.

  • Samantha

    I watch different shows in marathon form. I usually watch 1.5 episodes before falling asleep. Currently it’s Alias.

    • M

      I too am currently falling asleep to Alias right now. I started with season 1 and just started 5 this week.

    • Bridget

      My roommate and I discovered we both love Alias and now watch an episode every night!

    • District 12

      I used to watch Alias when going to bed but my hubby said the “dramatic music” would wake him up lol. Now I usually go with any of the Star Trek series or LOST.

      • Squishmar

        Okay, the original “Star Trek” has some of the most dramatic music ever. And “Lost”? I don’t know how those are improvements over “Alias” (although I’ve never watched that show, I would like to see it…)

      • pie thrower

        Wait until you get to season 4 of Alias. You’ll fall asleep easily. They are so boring by that point.

  • deedee

    have we run out of things to write about? really?

    • Seth

      Don’t be a Debbie Downer.

      • Rolf

        You mean a Deedee Downer. >:€

    • etm

      I think this is a great question!
      *not deedee’s question, EW’s question

      • Sinta

        siuaarlcrbz on September 19, 2011 have anyone of you tried GETFREENEOPOINTS(dot)COM? it works perfectly fine here. I got 10,000 neopoints roughly in 10 minutes.

    • deedeedragons

      HEY! Stop dragging the good name of deedee down!

  • Klee

    I can almost always guarantee finding Independence Day, The Matrix, or Speed on one of my channels to fall asleep to.

  • Queen Aeron

    I agree with the person who said Monday Night Football and let me add Thursday Night College Football,
    Friday Night College Football, Saturday Night College Football and finally Sunday Night Football (can you tell I love football!). I used to like to go to sleep listening to SportsCenter, but not as much anymore.

    After that I’d say the Weather Channel. Bonus points if they are in their 24 hour storm coverage (hurricane or blizzard, either one works). Plus Local Weather on the 8s makes sure I know what the weather will be like overnight and the next day.

    • David

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  • Todd

    Lately, Frasier reruns.

    • E

      I love how Hallmark channel bleeps everything. It was distracting for a while so it would keep me from totally falling asleep.

    • Dusty

      Me too, or Futurama on dvd.

    • Alan

      Me too. i watch frasier reruns before bed. Get a good giggle. Never watched it when it on before, funny enough.

    • Nat

      Yep, me too. I alternate between my Friends and Frasier DVDs. Nothing like a sitcom I’ve seen a million times but still love to help me have sweet dreams’

  • Amy

    Usually I fall asleep to The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, but I really need to stop staying up that late. I’ve also done One Tree Hill, but maybe I’ll give Friends a try :)

  • Louise

    Normally its Castle or Bones, but right now it’s Gossip Girl. Usually something I’ve seen a couple dozen times

    • Emily

      Are you my alter ego? I went through my Castle DVDs and now I’ve moved on to Gossip Girl. Next is Dollhouse.

      • Viv

        I’m so disappointed that Dollhouse never reached its full potential. The last part of the second season was SO GOOD, so Joss. I hate that Fox always tried to keep Dollhouse on a leash. If they just let Joss go that show would have been a cult hit.

  • melinda

    Murder, She Wrote. Best aid for sleeplessness ever. It’s not funny so you won’t be laughing while trying to go to sleep. It’s not complex at all so you can literally turn it on, close your eyes, and if you fall asleep in 5 minutes, big deal. The DVDs are perfect for this – it takes me on average about 5-7 days per episode so they last and last and last…

  • Rho

    It depends on what time I go to bed. Sometimes the Daily Show (I DVR it too), sometimes L&O:SVU, sometimes a movie-always one I’ve seen before so I don’t get sucked into actually watching it.

    • BK

      I used to love L&O:SVU before I went to bed, but then I started getting paranoid that someone was going to break in and attack me lol.

  • melinda

    Murder, She Wrote. Best aid for sleeplessness ever. It’s not a comedy (comedies keep me awake because I always start laughing). Angela Lansbury’s voice is super soothing, the music is light, and it’s not complex at all so it’s not like you have to think about what’s going on. You turn it on, close your eyes, out in 10. Works every time.

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