question of the day: Do you hate-watch television?

Big Fat Gypsy Wedding

We’ve talked about guilty-pleasure TV before, but this is a new thing to me: hate-watching a show you can’t stand at all. From Seattle PI:

Admit it. There’s at least one show you find yourself watching, week after week, even though everything about it makes your skin crawl. When said program is brought up in conversation, you immediately quip, “I hate that show!” which you genuinely do – but you still set your DVR to record it every Tuesday at 9/8c on Bravo. (Sorry, Real Housewives).

It’s a pastime that many refer to as “hate-watching” – a form of cruel and unusual television punishment that occurs when “you watch a show you wouldn’t choose to watch for any reason other than to mock it for its awfulness – say, by sharing snide Twitter exchanges with like-minded hate-watchers when the program airs,” according to The Associated Press.

In a sense, social outlets like Twitter create a virtual community where people broadcast their masochistic TV habits and sympathize with other hate-watchers. Here’s an example: “The feminist in me cringes when #TheBachelorette opens her mouth ‘I want someone to be the boss and take control’ BARF #hatewatching,” wrote Twitter user ?@KatarinaSamora.

I can’t “admit it,” because I don’t hate-watch. I don’t have time to keep up with the good stuff on TV — I’m certainly not going to waste my time with stuff I think is awful.

But I know I’m weird.

Do you hate-watch television? What would you hate-watch if you did? Is this a harmless extension of the guilty-pleasure, or is something else going on? Was hate-watching inevitable with the amount of godawful crap that fills the cablewaves?

(The image up top is from U.K. Channel 4’s Big Fat Gypsy Wedding, a show I bet people hate-watch. I accidentally saw part of an episode once, and it’s almost the most appalling thing I’ve ever seen.)

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