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World Cancer Day: 6 TV Shows That Give a Novel Insight to Battling With The 'Dreaded C'

On this World Cancer Day, here are some (six) TV series with plots that talk about battles with this life-threatening disease...


February 4th is the World Cancer Day when institutions and people around the globe unite to raise consciousness about cancer and strive to make it a global health priority. World Cancer Day is discerned to promote awareness about this life-threatening disease every year on this day. 

Even today, Cancer is one of the foremost causes of death worldwide. However, with treatment, this deadly disease can be defeated. 

On this year's World Cancer Day, here are some television series that give us an insight into the lives of people affected with the disease and their battles.

The Big C is an American Drama Comedy that aired from 2010 to 2013. The show begins in Minneapolis where a Westhill High School teacher Cathy Jamison – a bespoken, suburban wife and mother is diagnosed with melanoma (a type of skin cancer). The consciousness of this compels her to start to live. 

She decides to keep her diagnosis from her family, reforming in ways they find obscure and increasingly unusual. As the show progresses, Cathy lets her family and some new friends support her as she copes with her terminal diagnosis, and finds both humour and compassion in the many distinctive relationships of her life. 

The show highlights the myriad of emotions Cathy goes through during her fight with the disease and has been called a "Humour meets Tragedy", a tragi-com, if you may.  One minute you are laughing out loud and the next minute you feel like crying. Yes, it's that kind of show!

This New Mexico based series that has won hearts all over the world revolves around an underemployed and depressed high school chemistry teacher, Walter White, who is struggling with a midlife crisis and a recent diagnosis of stage-3 lung cancer. Together with his ex-student Jesse Pinkman, he turns to the world of crime by producing and selling crystallized methamphetamine to secure his family's financial future before he dies while battling the dangers of the criminal world. 

Over the seasons, Walter changes into a drug kingpin twisted by his desire for the world to recognize his genius. The show revolves around his struggle with the disease coupled with a struggle to secure future of his beloved ones.

Sex and the City is one of the most famous romantic drama-comedy series. The show follows the lives of a group of four women—three in their mid-thirties and one in her forties—who, despite their different natures and ever-changing sex lives, remain inseparable and confide in each other. 

SATC had an amazing six-year run and it never left the audience disappointed. In its final season, Samantha Jones, an independent businesswoman and an outspoken personality, is diagnosed with breast cancer. She is shown going through chemotherapy and facing the challenge head-on, playing with her look by wearing outrageous wigs, hats, and headscarves after she loses her hair. 

In one of the final episodes, she gives a speech for a cancer benefit dinner and receives a standing ovation for removing her wig onstage and admitting that she was suffering from hot flashes. 

The show is said to have one of the most accurately described cancer-related plots.

Alexa & Katie is an American sitcom that revolves around lifelong best friends anxiously awaiting the start of their freshman year of high school when they are faced with a crisis as Alexa is diagnosed with cancer and starts undergoing treatment. Alexa strives to have a normal life while to support Alexa, Katie makes an important decision and cuts off all of her hair. 

The series was said to be what the 'Disney-fication of cancer' would be like. “Alexa & Katie” never wandered into too harsh boundary though. There’s no talk about death, no existential crises, and no moves to have its protagonist start her own meth lab (yet). 

With the girls' shaved heads, the show launches into storylines and scenes centred on wigs, baldness, and various beanies. The show charts all the struggles of a teen battling with a life-threatening disease from adjusting to having no hair to not being defined by her illness. 

Playing House is an American comedy television series who's story revolves around mother-to-be Maggie who ends her marriage upon discovering her husband's affair with a woman online, she turns to her best friend Emma for support. In order to help Maggie in her time of need, Emma gives up her successful business in China to return to their hometown of Pinebrook, and help her friend raise her newborn baby. 

The series with its amazing humour and multiple storylines will leave everyone laughing until suddenly, Emma is faced with cancer. In between single motherhood and cancer, the friends are consistently there for each other through all the changes. The show is absolutely wholesome as you watch the best friends battle it all out together. The plot is said to be 'unusually well done' by several critics.

Jane the Virgin, an American romantic comedy revolves around the life of a traditional, religious and hard-working young woman, Jane Gloriana Villanueva. Jane's vow to save her virginity until marriage becomes complicated when a doctor mistakenly artificially inseminates her during a checkup and to make matters worse, the father is a married former playboy and cancer survivor, who also owns the hotel Jane works at. 

The last several episodes of Jane the Virgin are some of the best the show’s ever seen, and they’ve also shifted into a very serious plot for the three Villanueva women at the core of the show. Jane's mother gets diagnosed with stage three invasive lobular carcinoma and her doctor recommends removing the cancerous lump as quickly as possible. 

"My body makes me who I am. It has never given up on me and I'm not giving up on it," Xo says. when faced with the choice of surgery. Through her decision and conversations, Jane The Virgin captures how you can consider your partner while also making a decision that's true to who you are and what you want.

Did we miss any show?

Let us know in the comments below.

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