Ditch the Guilt, Not the Pleasure

By Ryley McNichols

April 13, 2021

When it comes to television shows, there is the good, the bad and the dirty. What I was interested in is why people don’t like to admit they watched guilty pleasure shows.

For most people, guilty pleasures include reality TV. There’s a reason that shows like Jersey Shore or Keeping Up with the Kardashians have such high ratings?

Bess Franklin, an intervention specialist at Norwood High School, said she loved watching The Bachelor. 

“It’s the perfect way to unwind on a Monday night,” she said. When asked why she felt it was a guilty pleasure she said that it was because she knew it was fake, and it was “manipulated by the producers.” That didn’t answer my question on why she felt guilty about watching it.

Ashley Martin, an English teacher at Norwood High School, said her guilty pleasure was Bridgerton. Martin says she knows it’s “anachronistic” and leaves something to be desired in the way of substance, but she likes the costumes and the vibe of the show.

For myself it was shows like MythBusters, Clean House and anything on HGTV.

This led me down a long path. For the people I interviewed, most used the word “love” to describe the shows they were talking about.  Why would we feel guilty about enjoying something we “love”? I think we feel guilty because we care what people think. These shows wouldn’t be guilty pleasures at all if we didn’t care what people thought.

Let’s make it a movement to not be embarrassed by what we watch.