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108 voters

The Best TV Shows That Deal with Grief

Updated January 15, 2021 572 votes 108 voters 4.6k views42 items

List RulesVote up the shows that best center their storyline around grief and loss.

Grief can often be an all-consuming feeling that makes you feel all alone in the world. But the fact is, nearly everyone has gone through the stages of grief at one time or another in their lives, and sometimes the best way to understand grief is to watch how others deal with it. In our current age of television, there's no shortage of shows that deal with grief in utterly compelling, human ways that can go from heartbreaking to empathetic to hilariously satisfying all in one episode. 

Shows about grief and loss can be therapeutic for those suffering from grief, but they can also be cathartic and just plain entertaining for everyone else. Sometimes there's nothing better than a good cry, and the best shows about grief understand that. From dramas to comedies to big-budget epics, the shows on this list all manage to say something unique about loss and show the variety of ways that grief can affect us. Whether these shows are full on cry-fests or manage to wrap up their grief in a happy ending, these shows understand the complexity of grief in all its forms and are able to turn it into endlessly riveting television.

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  • House1
    37
    15

    House

    Hugh Laurie, Omar Epps

    Premiered2004

    House, M.D. (Fox, 2004) is an American television medical drama created by David Shore. An... more on Wikipedia
  • Sorry for Your Loss2
    34
    13

    Sorry for Your Loss

    Elizabeth Olsen, Kelly Marie Tran
    Sorry for Your Loss (Facebook Watch, 2018) is an American dark comedy web television series... more on Wikipedia
  • After Life3
    27
    13

    After Life

    Ricky Gervais, Penelope Wilton

    Premiered2019

    After Life (Netflix, 2019) is a British dark comedy television series, created by Ricky... more on Wikipedia
  • Dead to Me4
    28
    19

    Dead to Me

    Christina Applegate, Linda Cardellini

    Premiered2019

    Dead to Me (Netflix, 2019) is an American dark comedy web television series created by Liz... more on Wikipedia
  • The Leftovers5
    22
    13

    The Leftovers

    Justin Theroux, Amy Brenneman

    Premiered2014

    The Leftovers (HBO, 2014) is an American supernatural mystery television drama series created... more on Wikipedia
  • BoJack Horseman6
    21
    12

    BoJack Horseman

    Will Arnett, Amy Sedaris

    Premiered2014

    BoJack Horseman (Netflix, 2014) is an American animated sitcom created by Raphael... more on Wikipedia
  • This Is Us7
    12
    5

    This Is Us

    Milo Ventimiglia, Mandy Moore

    Premiered2016

    This Is Us (NBC, 2016) is an American television series created by Dan Fogelman. Follows a... more on Wikipedia
  • The Handmaid's Tale8
    12
    6

    The Handmaid's Tale

    Elisabeth Moss, Joseph Fiennes

    Premiered2017

    The Handmaid's Tale (Hulu, 2017) is an American web television series created by Bruce Miller,... more on Wikipedia
  • Grey's Anatomy9
    11
    8

    Grey's Anatomy

    Ellen Pompeo, Justin Chambers

    Premiered2005

    Grey's Anatomy (ABC, 2005) is an American medical soap opera television series created by... more on Wikipedia
  • Rectify10
    8
    4

    Rectify

    Aden Young, Abigail Spencer

    Premiered2013

    Rectify is an American television drama series created by Ray McKinnon, and is the first... more on Wikipedia
  • Shameless11
    7
    2

    Shameless

    Emmy Rossum, William H. Macy

    Premiered2011

    Shameless (Showtime, 2011) is an American comedy-drama television series developed by John... more on Wikipedia
  • A Million Little Things12
    9
    8

    A Million Little Things

    David Giuntoli, Ron Livingston

    Premiered2018

    A Million Little Things (ABC, 2018) is an American family drama television series created by... more on Wikipedia
  • Six Feet Under13
    6
    5

    Six Feet Under

    Peter Krause, Michael C. Hall

    Premiered2001

    Six Feet Under (HBO, 2001) is an American drama television series created and produced by Alan... more on Wikipedia
  • Kidding14
    9
    9

    Kidding

    Jim Carrey, Catherine Keener

    Premiered2018

    Kidding (Showtime, 2018) is an American comedy-drama television series created by Dave... more on Wikipedia
  • 13 Reasons Why15
    16
    20

    13 Reasons Why

    Dylan Minnette, Katherine Langford

    Premiered2017

    13 Reasons Why (Netflix, 2017) is an American television series based on the 2007 novel... more on Wikipedia
  • Parenthood16
    6
    7

    Parenthood

    Peter Krause, Lauren Graham

    Premiered2010

    Parenthood (NBC, 2010) is an American television drama series created by Jason Katims. Four... more on Wikipedia
  • M*A*S*H17
    6
    6

    M*A*S*H

    Alan Alda, Wayne Rogers

    Premiered1972

    M*A*S*H is an American television series developed by Larry Gelbart, adapted from the 1970... more on Wikipedia
  • Friday Night Lights18
    5
    5

    Friday Night Lights

    Kyle Chandler, Connie Britton

    Premiered2006

    Friday Night Lights (NBC, 2006) is an American sports drama television series developed by... more on Wikipedia
  • The Killing19
    5
    5

    The Killing

    Mireille Enos, Joel Kinnaman

    Premiered2011

    The Killing (AMC, 2011) is an American drama television series created by Veena Sud, based on... more on Wikipedia
  • Broadchurch20
    5
    5

    Broadchurch

    David Tennant, Olivia Colman

    Premiered2013

    Broadchurch (ITV, 2013) is a British serial crime drama television series created by Chris... more on Wikipedia
  • Looking For Alaska21
    2
    1

    Looking For Alaska

    Charlie Plummer, Kristine Froseth

    Premiered2019

    Looking For Alaska (Hulu, 2019) is an American teen drama television series created by Josh... more on Wikipedia
  • Council of Dads22
    1
    1

    Council of Dads

    Sarah Wayne Callies, Clive Standen

    Premiered2020

    Council of Dads (NBC, 2020) is an American drama television series based upon the 2010 book... more on Wikipedia
  • Everything's Gonna Be Okay23
    1
    1

    Everything's Gonna Be Okay

    Josh Thomas, Kayla Cromer

    Premiered2020

    Everything's Gonna Be Okay (Freeform, 2020) is an American comedy television series created by... more on Wikipedia
  • ER24
    4
    4

    ER

    Anthony Edwards, George Clooney

    Premiered1994

    ER is an American medical drama television series created by novelist Michael Crichton that... more on Wikipedia
  • Single Father25
    0
    0

    Single Father

    David Tennant, Millie Innes

    Premiered2010

    Single Father is a four-episode 2010 BBC television drama centred on Dave, a photographer... more on Wikipedia