I don’t much believe in the notion of guilty pleasures since why should you feel guilty for doing something that brings you pleasure? For instance, I almost always DVR all the Hallmark Mysteries and often watch them repeatedly if halfheartedly. It helps that I’m currently working on writing two mystery novels, but I’ve always felt a particular sense of calm when watching these non-scary, only somewhat dramatic movies that always end hopefully if not completely happily. Many of these films are generally filmed in Canada masquerading as anywhere from New York City to small town USA, though the Netflix’s Holiday in the Wild was filmed in South Africa, and at an elephant orphanage in Zambia.
In both, our heroines have suffered a giant life upheaval and run off someplace quirky or beautiful. In both, they move on from whatever came before. In both, they are capable if often underestimated.
I don’t know about you, but gorgeous locations, interesting plot twists that don’t keep you up at night and incredibly handsome men work for me in my mid-winter viewing. Can these be classified as part of the romance genre? Sure. But they don’t fall into the soppy category that our grandmas grew up on. They’re smarter and more relatable and even when cliched, they just make you smile and are really just fun, mid-winter treats.
And when you’re done with those, you might want to binge-watch Heartland.