My Love/Hate Relationship With ABC Family

The first time I tuned into ABC Family was years and years ago. Other channels had been showing previews for an ABC Family drama about a girl and a horse. Still heartbroken over the loss of my beloved Caitlin’s Way (they totally stole the plotline!), I decided to give Wildfire a try.
The premise was sketchy. The plotline was ill conceived, and the acting was terrible. But there was a snarky heroine and the beginnings of a love triangle…and lots of unnecessary drama. Needless to say, I was hooked.
Ever since, I have been a loyal — albeit, skeptical — ABC Family viewer. Sure there were some shows I skipped. (I mean did anyone actually watch Kyle XY? ) Somehow I never did get the Secret Life bug, and I never watched that one about gymnastics. But for the most part I’ve reveled not only in their oh-so-cheesy, made-for-TV movies (Mario Lopez Holiday in Handcuffs was cute okay?), but their hour long dramas, too. Greek will forever be one of my favorite ABC family shows. And yes, I did watch Wildfire all the way through. I was a loyal viewer of the TV version of 10 Things I Hate About You, despite the horrific pilot and now I DVR Pretty Little Liars and The Lying Game every week without fail.
I love the drama and suspense that The Lying Game now brings to my Monday nights. I love the clothes and the cute boys and the never ending questions (Who is A? Someone please tell me!) that the little liars bring on Tuesdays. I loved the quirky cuteness of Greek and 10 Things. And I love that they continue to make really horrible Bring It On sequels.
But do you want to know something else?
I hate that I love these shows. Hate it. Because, as I’ve mentioned, they’re really pretty terrible. The acting, with a few exceptions, is subpar, the plotlines make no sense (How can A really be everywhere?), and the lines can get pretty cheesy. So why can’t I stop tuning in? What makes me want to watch these shows? Is it the same thing that forces me to find Jersey Shore fascinating or is it the morbid fascination that draws me into really horrible Lifetime movies? (Yes. I did watch William & Kate and I’m only a little ashamed to admit it.) Maybe. Or maybe it’s just that it’s good TV. Not intelligent TV, or well made TV, but fun, entertaining, lighthearted, time killing, suspense building TV.
I’ll leave you gals to ponder that. Because, if you’ll excuse me, last week’s episode of The Lying Game, is calling my name.

Maxim Says the Darndest Things: September 2011 Edition
Maxim Says the Darndest Things: September 2011 Edition
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