We all have at least one show we treat like Courtney Love. In public we make fun of her with our friends or we might feign ignorance but we always take that walk of shame right back to our bedroom where we experience things that both nauseate and titillate us. We won't even tell our closest friends about it, unless we happen to enjoy our masochistic voyeurism with a partner.
What's your guilty pleasure?
There is a gray area when watching cartoons makes a dark descent from popular culture to "Weren't you on To Catch a Predator?"
The main criteria for which shows put you on people's 'watch list' seems to be if they are specifically designed for little girls. There is no way a grown man doesn't sound like a pedophile if he admits that he likes to watch My Little Pony (or Toddlers and Tiaras). If he says enjoys Phineas and Ferb, however, it is seen as an endearing sign of immaturity. Think Shawn Spencer from Psych.
It might not be fair but when it comes to children, especially in this day and age, most people would rather be safe than sorry.
Daytime Soap Operas
Where do I begin? The overacting is horrendous, the storylines are fantastical, yet still portrayed as being somewhat based in reality, and the villains are so over-the-top they make Wile E. Coyote seem normal.
How do I know this? My second mother used to tape them during the week and we'd curl up in her living room catching up on 'our soaps' throughout the wee hours of the morning. Of course, none of my friends were aware that I knew the mastermind behind everything in Salem was Stefano DiMera.
Before Jensen Ackles was a Winchester, he was part of the Brady clan. Amusingly enough on Days of Our Lives his sibling was also named Sammy, though it was spelled "Sami" because she was his twin sister.
Daytime Talk Shows
"You are NOT the father!"
What is it about that phrase, which compels us to endure an entire episode of Maury interviewing obnoxious baby mamas as they scream like banshees at one of the countless men they slept with?
My personal favorite was the White woman who cheated on her White husband with two Black men and the baby was clearly biracial. Her husband didn't seem to realize anything was amiss until she informed him that the baby might not be his.
I am going to assume the 'clueless husband' episode was staged because the alternative is just too pitiful.
These shows are deceptively called "reality" when the participants are a gross misrepresentation of who they are portraying. Still, we cannot seem to get enough of them.
I have never actually watched Jersey Shore however, since their orange faces keep showing up in the news, I am well aware of who they are. I can only imagine the feeling of needing a bath after subjecting oneself to an entire episode.
Having been raised in a traditional Italian-American family, I cringe at the idea that those self-absorbed Oompa Loompas are a supposed to be a genuine representation of my people. In fact, two of the cast members aren’t even Italian.