I know we all have guilty pleasures but what’s the fun in having them if you can’t share your shame with others?
The WB and CW teenage dramas | I have watched them all from Dawson’s Creek and Felicity to Gossip Girl and The Vampire Diaries. When The WB first came on the air, I was within the age demographic for viewership but over time, I’ve gotten older and the former WB/now CW has definitely not (though it could be argued that the actors are closer to my age then the ages of the characters they play). What was normal viewing has morphed into a guilty pleasure and I’m pretty okay with that. Some people read romance novels (nothing wrong with that) and I watch teen dramas with hunky actors. My husband even got me a Vampire Diaries first season blue-ray set for Christmas – he speaks my love language. [Note: Can I just say how much I miss Felicity and Dawson’s Creek?]
Real World/Road Rules/Challenges on MTV | I’m pretty certain I’ve seen every episode of the first 6-10 seasons of these shows thanks to the all-day marathons MTV is so fond of and while I’ve missed a great deal of the newer versions (if you’ve seen one season, you’ve pretty much seen them all), I have seen most of the Challenges/Gauntlets/[insert name of something competitive and *hard*] as my husband is a great lover of any kind of competition (his new favorites are food related like Top Chef and Chopped). These shows really make you question the intelligence of the human race, I feel like I ought to listen to 3 hours of NPR for every 30 minutes I watch of stupid, past-their-prime former quarterbacks/cheerleaders/emo musicians/pseudo intellectuals compete for fame, fortune and hangovers. And yet I watch.
General Hospital | Unlike many of my friends, my mom did not watch soaps growing up (she was too busy cleaning) so I got a late introduction to the genre. My college roomie (love you, Kara) loved General Hospital and we would watch it pretty regularly along with the other girls on our floor (love you girls, too). Anytime I’m home alone in the afternoons, which pretty much NEVER happens, I find myself drawn to the TV at 3 to watch an episode. The good news is, I’m pretty caught up on the story line(s) within that viewing time; this is also the bad news. I’m amazed that while children age years within weeks on soap operas, nothing else actually happens or gets resolved with any speed. But like spending time with a good friend you haven’t seen in ages, watching General Hospital is quite comforting.
Chelsea Lately | I’ve never been one to watch late-night talk shows but then along came Chelsea Handler and her gang of comedians and I cannot quit that show. Simon usually gets home right before or as this show is coming on so it’s the one thing we watch together (the rest of our viewing is done separately and then on weekends we go through the DVRed shows and agree on which ones we can delete). She is hilarious and her interviews are so unlike the rest because she gives people crap for things and doesn’t hold back – she says the things I’m thinking. I don’t know why I’d qualify this as a guilty pleasure, perhaps because the show can be crass sometimes or fairly useless in the grand scheme of things, but really, there isn’t much on TV that isn’t one of those things, at least not much that I watch ;). I also love The Soup, which is also on E! and equally as useless and entertaining.
Honorable mentions: Top Gear – UK version, Law & Order, CSI: Miami and Morning Express with Robin Meade, Yo Gabba, Gabba! (though I am loath to admit it since I have formerly professed my skepticism about the show).
I’d love to hear about your television-related guilty pleasures…