3 TV Shows That Prove Schadenfreude Is Real

3 TV Shows That Prove Schadenfreude Is Real

It allows me to forget my own worries, setbacks, and responsibilities for an hour. Or two. Or seven...

First off, I'll begin by admitting that I love TV. What makes that even better is that we're living in TV's "Golden Age". We have Netflix, Hulu, even Amazon Prime Video, all of which I love. My Roku is one of my most prized possessions. There are so many great choices and endless story lines, and all you need is a username and password from a friend and you can potentially have it all for free. Seem like a dream? I does to me. I love getting absorbed into a television show, learning all about new characters, analyzing their actions, and creating my own internal commentary on the events that I see occurring. It allows me to forget my own worries, setbacks, and responsibilities for an hour. Or two. Or seven...

But often I wonder why myself and so many others find television so comforting. Why do we enjoy becoming absorbed in a story, often absurd, contrived, or even completely fake, like The Bachelor or The Kardashians? Why do we enjoy watching a shows with a implausible storylines like the ending of Dexter, or the entire premise of Scandal? Why are we willing to dedicate hours to a program of our choice, oblivious to the outside world, the real world, sometimes even neglecting to set foot outside? Back when Glee and Gossip Girl was popular, I had friends who would stay indoors and spend all day devoted to these shows. Most shows don't necessarily teach us anything or better our lives in any significant way. Yet, we still devote our time, our emotions, and sometimes our money to these shows. Why?

The strange thing about watching television is that for the entire time you're watching you're show, you're only doing one thing, and that on thing is observing. Why do we like observing so much? For me, I like the choices. I like being able to pick and choose what I watch, deciding what's worth my time and what isn't. I think being able to choose is a big factor in the widespread devotion to television in modern culture. But I also think that, myself included, what most people chose for entertainment is often representative of the idea of schadenfreude. By this, I'm referring to the idea that we derive pleasure from the suffering of others. We like to see others going through difficult times, because it puts our lives into perspective. Here are some examples.


One of my favorite shows Shameless is about a poor Chicago family held together by the eldest sister, Fiona in the midst of an intermittently present but alcoholic father and an often missing mentally ill mother. Clearly, their lives are all difficult. This show is extremely entertaining, but also puts my troubles into perspective. After watching an episode of Shameless I'm often inclined to laugh at my own so-called "problems" like having to write a paper for school, when the main character, Fiona just got thrown in prison for a minor mistake.

The Bachelor

This is a completely contrived, fake, and, in my opinion, "stupid" show. BUT I STILL WATCH IT. WHY? My opinion is that all watchers of The Bachelor literally enjoy watching heartbreak or at least enjoy watching a flimsy simulation of heartbreak. We also enjoy watching people fall in love or, once again, a simulation of people falling in love, even if we know it's contrived. The fact that we often enjoy watching individuals experiencing drama, heartbreak, and outbursts of tears suggests that many of us have an innate need to see others "fail" in order to feel relaxed or satisfied.


This Netflix original follows the life and career of Pablo Escobar. While viewers enjoy watching his lavish lifestyle, we are also constantly on edge and nervous because his illegal operations are almost always threatened. He has to continuously defend his lifestyle and fight for the survival of himself and his allies. His life in hiding is not necessarily one to be admired and viewers can compare his lifestyle to that of our our own, thus recognizing the comfort and stability we have.

I'm not saying we're inherently bad for taking pleasure in others' misfortunes. But we need to recognize this dark tendency in ourselves. Schadenfreude can be dangerous. We should work on controlling our inherent schadenfreude while developing empathetic tendencies in ourselves in order to treat each other with kindness and respect. I believe as long as we attempt to limit our schadenfreude to television, it's dangers may be mitigated.

Cover Image Credit: streaming observer.com

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30 Things I'd Rather Be Than 'Pretty'

Because "pretty" is so overrated.

Nowadays, we put so much emphasis on our looks. We focus so much on the outside that we forget to really focus on what matters. I was inspired by a list that I found online of "Things I Would Rather Be Called Instead Of Pretty," so I made my own version. Here is a list of things that I would rather be than "pretty."

1. Captivating

I want one glance at me to completely steal your breath away.

2. Magnetic

I want people to feel drawn to me. I want something to be different about me that people recognize at first glance.

3. Raw

I want to be real. Vulnerable. Completely, genuinely myself.

4. Intoxicating

..and I want you addicted.

5. Humble

I want to recognize my abilities, but not be boastful or proud.

6. Exemplary

I want to stand out.

7. Loyal

I want to pride myself on sticking out the storm.

8. Fascinating

I want you to be hanging on every word I say.

9. Empathetic

I want to be able to feel your pain, so that I can help you heal.

10. Vivacious

I want to be the life of the party.

11. Reckless

I want to be crazy. Thrilling. Unpredictable. I want to keep you guessing, keep your heart pounding, and your blood rushing.

12. Philanthropic

I want to give.

13. Philosophical

I want to ask the tough questions that get you thinking about the purpose of our beating hearts.

14. Loving

When my name is spoken, I want my tenderness to come to mind.

15. Quaintrelle

I want my passion to ooze out of me.

16. Belesprit

I want to be quick. Witty. Always on my toes.

17. Conscientious

I want to always be thinking of others.

18. Passionate

...and I want people to know what my passions are.

19. Alluring

I want to be a woman who draws people in.

20. Kind

Simply put, I want to be pleasant and kind.

21. Selcouth

Even if you've known me your whole life, I want strange, yet marvelous. Rare and wondrous.

22. Pierian

From the way I move to the way I speak, I want to be poetic.

23. Esoteric

Do not mistake this. I do not want to be misunderstood. But rather I'd like to keep my circle small and close. I don't want to be an average, everyday person.

24. Authentic

I don't want anyone to ever question whether I am being genuine or telling the truth.

25. Novaturient

..about my own life. I never want to settle for good enough. Instead I always want to seek to make a positive change.

26. Observant

I want to take all of life in.

27. Peart

I want to be honestly in good spirits at all times.

28. Romantic

Sure, I want to be a little old school in this sense.

29. Elysian

I want to give you the same feeling that you get in paradise.

30. Curious

And I never want to stop searching for answers.
Cover Image Credit: Favim

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10 Places From Movies And TV You Can Visit In Real Life

It's like stepping into Hollywood!


I am constantly so enamored by the world of Hollywood and by going to visit places I have seen on screen. It's always such an unreal feeling to see where my favorite pieces of entertainment were shot. Here are 10 places from some of our favorite movies to see and visit in the real world!

The High School from "10 Things I Hate About You"

If you have ever wanted to dance on the same stairs as Heath Ledger or just stand in the same courtyard as Julia Stiles then you're in luck! Along the water in Tacoma, Washington, Stadium High School is located which was used both inside and out as the high school from one of the greatest teen movies of all time. This school is massive and so beautiful it's almost Hogwarts level stunning.

Pacific Coast Academy from  "Zoey 101"

Growing up I always dreamed about going to Pacific Coast Academy and being best friends with Jamie Lynn Spears and one of those things can (kinda) become a reality! Located in Malibu is a beautiful campus called Pepperdine University and it is the school they used to shoot scenes of Zoey and the gang at PCA. It is a christian based college and is prestigious in it's own right so if unlike me you are smart enough you can live out my dreams.

Central City Police Department from "The Flash"

Have you ever wanted to show up to Detective Joe West's place of work? Well head to the Vancouver City Hall in Vancouver, Canada and you will recognize your surroundings as the Central City Police Department! If you are lucky enough to show up on a filming day, you might even seen the man himself — Barry Allen.

Forks High School from The Twilight Saga

Personally, I am more invested in Bella and Jacob but for all my Team Edward ladies (and gentleman) you can visit the real-life school where Bella and Edward first met and their love blossomed into whatever obsessive weird thing it was. They also used the parking lot at this school to film the infamous scene where Edward saves Bella from getting crushed by a car. The school is called Kalama High School and is located in Kalama, Washington

Max And Dani's House from "Hocus Pocus"

Anyone with taste loves the movie Hocus Pocus — that's just facts! And I have some good news for fans of the film...you can visit the infamous Denison house! Located in none other than Salem, Massachusetts you will find this beautiful home where my favorite siblings once lived.

Silent Hill from "Silent Hill"

I will say before talking about this place that visiting it is EXTREMELY dangerous as just like in the movie the town as been burning from below for years and years. This small town is called Centralia and is located Pennsylvania and has a roaring population of about four people.

Hobbiton from "Lord Of The Rings"

I am personally not a fan of Lord of the Rings but I know a lot of people are so I wanted to include this super cool place on the list. If you ever find yourself in New Zealand you can visit Hobbinton from the movies and spend a day living like your favorite characters.

Platform 9 3/4 from the Harry Potter Series

Now this place will unfortunately be packed with muggles of course but you can find it at King's Cross Station in London! If you are anything like me and are obsessed with these magical movies this is a dream destination just don't run too hard at the wall if you're a muggle it will probably end in a concussion.

East High from the High School Musical Saga

Located in Salt Lake City Utah is the real life East High that was used in the filming of all three High School Musical movies. It is my absolute dream to attend this high school and walk the halls of the greatest high school of all time. They used both the outside and inside and the school so every inch of the school will remind you of these great teen movies.

Gus and Hazel's Bench from "The Fault in Our Stars" 

If you ever wanted to visit the site of this kiss between star crossed lovers you're in luck! Located along a canal in Amsterdam is a bench that is clearly marked by all the fault in our stars graffiti. Recreate this cute picture with your significant other and use a quote from the movie — then you'll just win in life.

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