Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Vol. CLIV, Issue 10
Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Find Pride In Your Guilty Pleasures

Illustration by Sophie Cooper-Ellis

Admit it: You have at least one secret show you watch when no one is looking.  The show you just can’t live without seeing, no matter how stupid, corny or predictable it may be. We all have our little guilty pleasures, but why be ashamed of them? Why not admit and embrace the ugly and horrible tastes that we truly have? This week I’ve been talking to some friends about their guilty shows trying to discover why we watch bad TV.

My first suspect I talked to about her addictions is also the sweetest person I know. Her shows included a seemingly endless list of reality TV shows. Now, granted I am not a huge fan of reality shows, but my friend excitedly rattled off her love of shows including “Awkward,” “The Hills,” “16 and Pregnant” and “Extreme Couponing,” just to name a few. I could sense that she feels bad about enjoying these shows, but can’t help her guilty pleasure.

“I know horrible, but I just think those are so funny!” she said.

I would never criticize my friend’s taste because my taste in guilty pleasure shows is far from intellectual. My “quality” shows are “Mad Men”, “Breaking Bad” and “Homeland,” among others. But come Sunday night, you can’t keep me from watching “Revenge” and “Walking Dead.” Weeknights for 11 seasons, I still laugh at every sex, fart and self-deprecating joke on “Two and a Half Men.” Heck, I’m one of the tens of millions of Americans tuning in to watch the most watched show, “NCIS,” also on its 11th season. Yes, my friends all comment on how their parents and grandparents religiously watch “NCIS” too. For the past 10 years, my staple for Thursday night has been “Grey’s Anatomy.” Even when the show is bad, I love it!

I even kept up with the spin-off, “Private Practice” (which was AWFUL) until the inevitable cancelation. And of course I still watch “True Blood” with all of the ridiculous vampire gore, sex and violence. What really takes the cake for my favorite guilty pleasure shows is “Sex in the City.” I blew through the series before coming to college, and I learned so many life lessons from my girls Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte. Yes, I’ve even had a cosmo or two!

In the past I would be embarrassed about watching “girly” shows, and I would pawn them off as shows my sister made me watch. But I’ve begun to think, “Why be embarrassed by a guilty pleasure?” Clearly I like shows that seemingly have no redeemable value. But all of my shows are near and dear to my heart!

When we finally met the mother in “How I Met Your Mother,” my friend and I were freaking out and ecstatic! When Castle and Beckett finally get together in “Castle,” a huge tension was released inside me. One of my fellow film and media studies majors and I had a discussion about how and why people are drawn to these “bad” TV shows. My friend came up with a good explanation.

“As you’re watching it, you know there are a million other things you probably should be doing, but somehow watching the absurd lives of people that is on such a different level than [ours] (and also CLEARLY staged) can be pretty hilarious,” he said.

So don’t feel embarrassed or ashamed about your guilty pleasures. Heck, admitting them to your friends might bring you closer through “Walking Dead” marathons, “Revenge” screenings or cosmos and “Sex in the City” get-togethers! If those reality shows help my friend relax after a long week or the characters have a special place in her heart, then good for her! There has to be a reason for finding pleasure in your guilty pleasure… Just embrace your eclectic, weird and bad tastes and enjoy.

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