Not to make light of what’s going on in the world right now, but there is just so much awful news that it’s hard not to curl up into a ball when you hear about it all, day after day after day. Sometimes you need to hear good stuff too, just to keep you going.
That’s why we think it’s important to always have one Pollyanna type friend in your squad. You know, the person who somehow always sees the positive in a situation, and can uplift even the most negative of Nellys out there.
If you can’t find those people in real life, we get it, friending is hard when you hit the adult years, but no worries, TV’s always got your back. Here are a few eternal optimists that we’d love to have in our squad. Sure, these people may be fictional characters from television, but we could all use someone like them in our lives, don’t you think?
Sue Heck, The Middle
People never remember her name, she rarely makes any of the teams or organizations that she tries out for, and people ignore her at every turn. Yet somehow Sue Heck (Eden Sher) still has one of the most infectious, loveable attitudes of any teenaged girl around.
Kimmy Schmidt, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
If you were kidnapped as a young girl and forced to live out your formative years in a bunker, you’d probably be pretty bitter. Not so for Kimmy Schmidt (Ellie Kemper), who despite those hardships puts on a huge grin and shares her excitement for all of life’s moments, both big and small.
Phil Dunphy, Modern Family
They say opposites attract, which is certainly true in the Dunphy household. Claire (Julie Bowen) may have her hands full with husband Phil (Ty Burrell), but his boyish enthusiasm, positive thinking and sheer love of life is pretty infectious… even if he does have a weird thing for magic.
Leslie Knope, Parks and Recreation
You either have to be a curmudgeon or a resiliently positive person to be in politics, the latter of which describes Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) to a T. Through seven seasons she fought for her beliefs and geeked out over awesome political heroes with no shame, giving us one of the coolest female politicians to ever be featured on television.
Kenneth Parcell, 30 Rock
Okay so Kenneth (Jack McBrayer) was an odd duck, but you couldn’t help but love his weird religious sayings, that gigantic grin, or the fact that he was able to stay so positive as a page, despite tons of abuse from his network- and show-running bosses.
Jessica Day, New Girl
It takes a special type of person to withstand the shenanigans of three oddball male roommates, but Jessica Day (Zooey Deschanel) did it with sheer positivity and love. Okay so sure, sometimes it was a little annoying just how often this girl could find the positive side to a crappy situation, but in the end she stayed true to herself and her “adorkableness,” and we can’t help but love her for that.
Charlotte York, Sex and the City
When you think about it, Charlotte (Kristin Davis) has some pretty streamlined ambitions in terms of wanting to find a husband and have children. But really, what’s so wrong with that? Despite infertility issues, a failed marriage and a career that disappeared overnight, Charlotte managed to remain her girl group’s nicest and most positive influence over six seasons and two movies.
Jane Villanueva, Jane the Virgin
If there was ever a character that deserved to be bitter, it was Jane Villanueva (Gina Rodrigeuz). After all, the girl got knocked up and had a baby before ever even having sex — if that doesn’t ruin your first experience we don’t know what does. Yet Jane not only remained an eternal optimist through it all, she also kept her faith in the power of love and romance. Now that’s a positive outlook.
Frankie Bergstein, Grace & Frankie
It’s gotta be a kick to the groin to learn that your husband and life partner has been secretly gay with his best friend for more than two decades. So of course Frankie (Lily Tomlin) was upset by the whole thing when it happened to her. Yet somehow she still managed to hold onto her sense of humour and positive thinking, even making a new best friend in Grace (Jane Fonda) in the process.
Dev Shah, Master of None
One of the brilliant things about Aziz Ansari’s character and show is that things don’t always work out for Dev, and he definitely gets bummed out. Yet every time he suffers a blow—be it on a personal, professional or romantic level—he finds some positive thing to live for and focus on instead. Also, we just love the way he loves food.
Phoebe Buffay, Friends
Some people thought Lisa Kudrow’s character on the sitcom was kooky or “dumb,” but we like to think she was resiliently positive. How else do you describe a character whose childhood was ridiculously difficult and traumatic, but went on to live each day with a smile, without really caring what people thought of her? “Smelly Cat” forever, we say.
Sookie St. James, Gilmore Girls
Sookie (Melissa McCarthy) was accident prone, scatterbrained and the first to freak out in an emergency. But when it came to the everyday grind she always managed to find the bright side of life or lend a kind word to someone who needed it. Plus, she managed to invoke tons of positive emotions from her food, which is another overall positive plus in our books.
Caroline Forbes, The Vampire Diaries
When this series started Caroline (Candice King) was a bit bossy and abrasive, but that was then. Once we got to know her we realized that this was a girl who was always there for her friends, was intent on making sure they experienced all of the regular things teenage girls should experience together, and who would drop everything and anything to give a hand or a positive word to someone in need. That’s why, by the end of the series, she was undoubtedly our favourite.
Caroline Channing, Two Broke Girls
Her father embezzled other people’s money and she went from rich to nothing, yet somehow Caroline (Beth Behrs) still managed to have a bright outlook on life. Not only was she the positive driving force behind the cupcake business, but she also managed to bounce back from every klutzy physical accident she ever had. Now that’s inspiring.