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The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows

Updated September 2, 2020 27.8k votes 1.2k voters 35.8k views1.3k items

List RulesTelevision series you hate yourself for watching -- but can't seem to quit. NO reality or game shows.

List of the best guilty pleasure TV shows, past and present, including sitcoms, dramas, reality shows, and game shows. These are the TV shows you won’t admit to watching -- even though you secretly do. Guilty pleasure television is addictive, and often horrible, but it never fails to draw in viewers. This list includes the TV shows you can’t stop watching, the greatest guilty pleasure TV shows of all time.

 Why are we so ashamed to admit that we can’t get enough of these so-called guilty pleasure TV shows? Perhaps it’s because, deep down, we recognize that these ‘so bad they’re addictive’ TV programs are truly terrible. Guilty pleasure dramas take everything to the extreme, adding crazy plot lines revolving around forbidden love, backstabbing, or jealousy. Guilty pleasure sitcoms are so cheesy they’re funny. Guilty pleasure reality shows are usually, paradoxically, unrealistic and showcase the worst in human nature. But much like a train wreck, viewers can’t stop themselves from looking.

 Some guilty pleasure TV shows have become so thanks to age. After all, millions of people watched “Full House” and “Beverly Hills, 90210” when they first aired -- but would you admit to watching them now? Even if you secretly do?

 This list contains the best guilty pleasure television shows of all time. Although everyone has their own ideas about what should be labeled ‘guilty pleasure’ TV, it’s not hard to admit that these shows, while not the greatest examples of television, are one thing: addictive.
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  • 1
    Modern Family is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    120
    82

    Modern Family

    Ed O'Neill, Sofía Vergara

    Premiered2009

    Genres (Tv)Sitcom, Mockumentary, Family, Comedy, Family Film

    Modern Family (ABC, 2009) is an American comedy television sitcom created by Francisco... more on Wikipedia

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  • 2
    The Simpsons is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    124
    99

    The Simpsons

    Dan Castellaneta, Nancy Cartwright

    Premiered1989

    Genres (Tv)Animation, Television comedy, Comedy, Family Film

    The Simpsons is an American animated sitcom created by Matt Groening for the Fox Broadcasting... more on Wikipedia

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  • 3
    Buffy the Vampire Slayer is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    222
    204

    Buffy the Vampire Slayer

    Sarah Michelle Gellar, Alyson Hannigan

    Premiered1997

    Genres (Tv)Supernatural, Horror, Comedy-drama, Teen drama, Action

    Buffy the Vampire Slayer (The WB, 1997) is an American supernatural drama television series... more on Wikipedia

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  • 4
    Once Upon a Time is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    111
    95

    Once Upon a Time

    Ginnifer Goodwin, Jennifer Morrison

    Premiered2011

    Genres (Tv)Drama, Mystery, Fairy tale, Comedy-drama, Fantasy

    Once Upon a Time is an American fairy tale drama series that premiered on October 23, 2011, on... more on Wikipedia

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  • 5
    American Horror Story is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    129
    116

    American Horror Story

    Connie Britton, Dylan McDermott

    Premiered2011

    Genres (Tv)Anthology, Horror, Supernatural

    American Horror Story (FX, 2011) is an American anthology horror television series created by... more on Wikipedia

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  • 6
    Friends is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    283
    203

    Friends

    Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox

    Premiered1994

    Genres (Tv)Sitcom

    Friends (NBC, 1994) is an American sitcom television series created by David Crane and Marta... more on Wikipedia

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  • 7
    NCIS is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    69
    52

    NCIS

    Mark Harmon, Michael Weatherly

    Premiered2003

    Genres (Tv)Crime Fiction, Action/Adventure, Police procedural, Drama, Thriller

    NCIS is an American police procedural drama television series, revolving around a fictional... more on Wikipedia

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  • 8
    The Vampire Diaries is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    120
    107

    The Vampire Diaries

    Nina Dobrev, Paul Wesley

    Premiered2009

    Genres (Tv)Supernatural, Drama, Horror, Fantasy

    The Vampire Diaries (The CW, 2009) is an American supernatural teen drama television series... more on Wikipedia
  • 9
    The Nanny is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    76
    63

    The Nanny

    Fran Drescher, Charles Shaughnessy

    Premiered1993

    Genres (Tv)Sitcom, Comedy

    The Nanny is an American television sitcom originally aired on CBS from 1993 to 1999, starring... more on Wikipedia

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  • 10
    Full House is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    136
    131

    Full House

    Bob Saget, John Stamos

    Premiered1987

    Genres (Tv)Sitcom, Comedy

    Full House is an American sitcom created by Jeff Franklin for ABC. The show chronicles a... more on Wikipedia

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  • 11
    Rugrats is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    69
    56

    Rugrats

    Elizabeth Daily, Christine Cavanaugh

    Premiered1991

    Genres (Tv)Animation, Animated cartoon, Children's television series, Animated series

    Rugrats is an American animated television series created by Arlene Klasky, Gábor Csupó and... more on Wikipedia

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  • 12
    The Golden Girls is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    183
    154

    The Golden Girls

    Bea Arthur, Betty White

    Premiered1985

    Genres (Tv)Sitcom, Comedy

    The Golden Girls is an American sitcom, created by Susan Harris, that originally aired on NBC... more on Wikipedia

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  • 13
    Charmed is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    97
    89

    Charmed

    Shannen Doherty, Holly Marie Combs

    Premiered1998

    Genres (Tv)Drama, Fantasy, Supernatural

    Charmed (The WB, 1998) is an American fantasy drama television series created by Constance M.... more on Wikipedia

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  • 14
    The Suite Life of Zack & Cody is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    55
    43

    The Suite Life of Zack & Cody

    Cole Sprouse, Dylan Sprouse

    Premiered2005

    Genres (Tv)Sitcom, Teen situation comedy, Children's television series, Comedy

    The Suite Life of Zack & Cody is an American sitcom created by Danny Kallis and Jim Geoghan.... more on Wikipedia

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  • 15
    The Addams Family is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    71
    63

    The Addams Family

    John Astin, Carolyn Jones

    Premiered1964

    Genres (Tv)Black comedy, Sitcom, Comedy, Fantasy

    The Addams Family is an American television series based on the characters in Charles Addams'... more on Wikipedia

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  • 16
    True Blood is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    93
    87

    True Blood

    Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer

    Premiered2008

    Genres (Tv)Fantasy, Horror, Drama

    True Blood (HBO, 2008) is an American fantasy horror drama television series created by Alan... more on Wikipedia

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  • 17
    Married... with Children is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    145
    135

    Married... with Children

    Ed O'Neill, Christina Applegate

    Premiered1987

    Genres (Tv)Sitcom, Comedy

    Married... with Children is an American sitcom that aired for 11 seasons. It featured a... more on Wikipedia

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  • 18
    The Suite Life on Deck is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    50
    40

    The Suite Life on Deck

    Dylan Sprouse, Cole Sprouse

    Premiered2008

    Genres (Tv)Sitcom, Teen situation comedy, Children's television series, Comedy

    The Suite Life on Deck is an American sitcom that aired on Disney Channel from September 26,... more on Wikipedia
  • 19
    I Dream of Jeannie is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    58
    52

    I Dream of Jeannie

    Barbara Eden, Larry Hagman

    Premiered1965

    Genres (Tv)Sitcom, Comedy, Fantasy

    I Dream of Jeannie is an American sitcom with a fantastical premise. The show starred Barbara... more on Wikipedia

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  • 20
    Good Luck Charlie is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    42
    33

    Good Luck Charlie

    Bridgit Mendler, Leigh-Allyn Baker

    Premiered2010

    Genres (Tv)Sitcom, Children's television series, Comedy, Family Film

    Good Luck Charlie is an American sitcom that originally aired on Disney Channel from April 4,... more on Wikipedia

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  • 21
    Hannah Montana is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    48
    40

    Hannah Montana

    Miley Cyrus, Emily Osment

    Premiered2006

    Genres (Tv)Sitcom, Teen situation comedy, Children's television series, Musical, Comedy-drama

    Hannah Montana, also known as Hannah Montana Forever in its fourth and final season, is an... more on Wikipedia
  • 22
    The Magic School Bus is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    39
    34

    The Magic School Bus

    Lily Tomlin, Daniel DeSanto

    Premiered1994

    Genres (Tv)Animation, Children's television series, Educational television

    The Magic School Bus is a Canadian–American Saturday morning animated children's television... more on Wikipedia

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  • 23
    Batman is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    66
    71

    Batman

    Adam West, Burt Ward

    Premiered1966

    Genres (Tv)Action/Adventure, Sitcom, Comedy, Action, Camp

    Batman is a 1960s American live action television series, based on the DC comic book character... more on Wikipedia
  • 24
    Star Trek: The Next Generation is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    61
    66

    Star Trek: The Next Generation

    Patrick Stewart, Brent Spiner

    Premiered1987

    Genres (Tv)Action/Adventure, Drama, Adventure film, Action, Science Fiction

    Star Trek: The Next Generation is an American science fiction television series created by... more on Wikipedia

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  • 25
    I Love Lucy is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Guilty Pleasure TV Shows
    59
    63

    I Love Lucy

    Lucille Ball, Desi Arnaz

    Premiered1951

    Genres (Tv)Sitcom, Comedy

    I Love Lucy is an American television sitcom starring Lucille Ball, Desi Arnaz, Vivian Vance,... more on Wikipedia

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