Top Netflix and Network Shows for Older Adults

Nobody needs to watch too much television, but for folks who are often unable to get out and about as much as they once were, finding good shows that they enjoy can really make a difference in their lives.

As I eagerly anticipate the arrival of Fall Television Premiere Week, and our mission focus this month is on older adults, I thought I’d share with you my top pics to watch with older friends and family members.


Grace and Frankie

Not for the prudish, but this show with Lily Tomlin (79), Jane Fonda (80), Sam Waterston (78) and Martin Sheen (78) addresses issues of aging seriously and hilariously all at the same time.

The Great British Baking Show

Ten bakers set out to create some delicious delectables in this strange cooking tent while some quite proper judges rank their creations. At the end of each season, one winner is crowned the master baker. It is surprisingly entertaining.

The Roosevelts 

A seven-episode Ken Burns documentary that explores the lives of Teddy, Franklin, and Eleanor.

Father Brown

Based on the short stories of GK Chesterton, this mystery series features an absent (but extremely clever) minded priest who finds himself called upon to solve mysteries.


Six-seasons of old school western television set in modern-day Wyoming.

Network TV


This is the king of senior citizen television. Leroy Jethro Gibbs (played by seemingly ageless Mark Harmon, 67) has been solving Navy-related crimes for going on 16 seasons. It’s gone on for so long, that some of you may not remember that it was actually a spin-off of that Navy legal show (also a big hit with the seniors) Jag. 

Blue Bloods

Also a longtime mainstay of elder television viewing. Tom Seleck (72) plays NYPD Commissioner and patriarch to a family of cops and lawyers.

The Good Place

Though one might take issue with the theology, who can taking issue with Kristen Bell? She’s adorable as a young woman who, through mistaken identity, ends up in The Good Place. Hilarity ensues with the help of Ted Danson and a really stellar cast.

America’s Got Talent

With a nod to the variety shows of another era, this competition shows off a wide array of talents from people of varying age groups, ethnicities, and socioeconomic backgrounds. Plus, there are always several surprises when people you don’t expect much from turn out to be fantastic.

The Good Doctor 

Last season’s breakout hit about a young medical resident who lives with autism. Though criticized by some, it has been hailed as a triumph by many for centering a show around a main character with autism.  Older people who may feel as though many have written off may find a kindred spirit in Dr. Shaun Murphy



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