In these strange days of being stuck indoors, where the weeks are so long it's like Tuesdays last for 400 years, you've probably been looking for ways to pass the time. That's not necessarily a problem that you face alone, either – if you've got children, and they're indoors all day, you might need a peaceful couple of hours to recharge.
If you're a Sky or Now TV customer and you didn't fancy signing up to Disney Plus this week, you've got a strong suite of TV shows and films for the family to enjoy. Sky still has a good selection of Disney movies to watch, as well as imported animated favorites and its own originals to check out. Below, we've captured some entertainment you can stream on Sky that'll keep the family busy.
In terms of age ratings, we'd advise you to follow Sky and Now TV's own rating system, which will tell you which content is suitable for smaller children.
The entire Harry Potter series
All eight of the Harry Potter movies are on Sky Cinema and Now TV, and on April 10 and 11, Sky Cinema will dedicate a whole channel to marathoning the movies. Our verdict: the earlier ones are better than you remember, while the later, dour films lose a bit too much of the Spielberg-y magic of the first two pictures. Prisoner of Azkaban is the best one, obviously.
Toy Story 4
The latest Toy Story movie is also on Disney Plus – along with most of the Disney movies you'll also find on Sky – but if you don't want to sign up to a new streaming service, Toy Story 4 is on Sky too. It's definitely not as strong as the past three entries, feeling more like an epilogue after the third Toy Story completed most of the character arcs, but it's very well-made and emotional all the same.
The Lion King (2019)
Sky has the two most recent live-action remakes on its service in The Lion King and Aladdin, both of which hit cinemas last year and made megabucks at the box office. Whether they live up to the animated classics they're based on is another question, but they're suitable family fodder while you're stuck indoors.
The Adventures of Paddington
The Paddington movies were a smash hit with families, and this animated series about the marmalade-loving bear is in a similar vein, with Ben Whishaw returning to voice the character. It's kid-friendly stuff, obviously, hailing from the Nick Jr channel, but the nine episodes here will hopefully keep your children occupied with wholesome adventures about a bear wearing a coat.
Acclaimed Cartoon Network show Steven Universe is a hit with kids and adults alike. It's about a group of superhero-like beings who protect a fictional American town, while the titular Steven learns his own abilities over the course of the series. What starts as a colorful, nicely-animated show gradually becomes more complex in its themes and mythology, and it's been such a hit that it got a follow-up series called Steven Universe Future.
With over 20 years' worth of pocket monster-based anime out there, Sky doesn't have a comprehensive archive of Pokémon episodes, but it still has a few hundred to watch. They include the Black & White and Diamond and Pearl series, which feature original stars Ash, Misty and Brock. If your children enjoy the games, they'll probably want to watch this too. The original series, meanwhile, can be streamed on Netflix.
Among Sky's selection of kids-focused content, you might want to check the two Gruffalo-themed short films: The Gruffalo and The Gruffalo's Child (we'd have gone with Son of Gruffalo ourselves, followed by Gruffalo vs Predator). The first film was Oscar-nominated for Best Short Film, and Helena Bonham-Carter narrates both of them.