What’s your guilty pleasure? For me it’s food, shopping, or TV. Sadly, if I allowed myself to indulge in food I would eat myself into an episode of Extreme Weight Loss with pounds of chocolate and enough Mexican food to feed the USS Enterprise. As for shopping, the sales clerks at Macy’s know me by name and I think they may be surprising me with my own parking spot for my birthday.
My favorite (and most benign) guilty pleasure would be television shows. I guess it’s pretty safe to say that I ignored all of the admonitions from my grandmother about watching too much television being synonymous with rotting my brain, because I’m addicted. My mom would pick me up from Kindergarten and we’d watch General Hospital on the couch eating peanut butter and mayonnaise sandwiches. Yes mayonnaise. They really aren’t that bad. I survived years of brown bag lunches sitting on the floor in the back of the classroom and I’m pretty sure I didn’t grow a third nipple or get some strange bacterial infection. Wait; let me check on that first one…nope, I’m good.
General Hospital was my first love but I quickly turned into a TV slut, loving Mash, Little House on the Prairie, Family Ties, Friends, Quantum Leap, Charmed, Angel, Sex in the City, House, Desperate Housewives, The Sopranos, and Rescue Me. It wouldn’t take but a couple of episodes and I was head over heels. I laughed and cried and learned about life as if I was the goofy cousin in their family. And after it was time to say goodbye, I wiped my tears, cursed the network and went into self imposed TV rehab to get through the worst of the withdrawals. Sometimes it worked. Other times I would search the internet for reruns or leave the wallpaper picture of my favorite actor on my cell phone until my kids would harass me into deleting it three months later. Sigh. Needless to say, Tommy Gavin (aka Denis Leary) and the boys of Truck 62 from Rescue Me still show up in my dreams even without the picture to remind me.
I can’t really remember a time that I wasn’t addicted to at least a couple of shows and the last year was no exception. The sheer volume of available networks and channels makes it difficult to choose which shows to watch and reality TV seems to have kept its grip in the market with yet another rendition of the snob-wives or another view into the endless foray of redneck careers. I’m pretty sure that someone at Google came up with the term “TMI” after watching a reality TV show about rednecks. Isn’t it a bit crazy that Soap Operas still get a bad rap? Seriously, if I had to choose voters by what they watched on TV I would take a soap viewer any day over one that watches the Jersey kids or Honey boo-who.
The good news is that there are some great shows out and the new season is about to start. It’s been a long summer and I’m ready for my next fix of my two favorite shows; Scandal and Revenge. Pure genius in the form of drama, romance, action, and plenty of plot twists.
Scandal brings you Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington), former public relations consultant for the white house, and her gladiator crew who save the day, and more than a few powerful asses, with their ability to hide and manage would-be scandals involving everything from murder to cover-up’s. But the real scandal lies in the story of Olivia, the president, and her gladiators, their lives, loves, and the truth about their past’s. Lots of steam and passion to go along on his roller coaster ride with Olivia and her oh-so-endearing married man, the President (Tony Goldwyn).
Revenge is the story of Emily Thorne (Emily VanCamp) and the prestigious Grayson family who destroyed her family when she was just a child. The plot unfolds in pieces with flashbacks of the past and the introduction of love and the people that played a part in her father’s death. Emily lives under an alias in plain sight and is determined to avenge his death while the Grayson’s power proves to be a worthy and unpredictable adversary. The twists and turns will keep you on the edge of your seat. And don’t forget the hot men in her life in the form of Josh Bowman, Nick Wechsler and Barry Sloane.
The good news is that if you haven’t been watching these shows from the beginning you can easily catch up with DVD’s, streaming videos, or rentals. But be forewarned, there isn’t a 12-step program for TV addiction, I checked.