6 Reasons 'Bachelor In Paradise' Is So Much More Than A Guilty Pleasure

There are a few terms that may come to mind when trying to describe ABC's Bachelor in Paradise , and "guilty pleasure" is at the forefront. While BiP seems like it would have all the ingredients to make it a certifiable guilty pleasure (i.e., a bunch of people looking to attract one another are dumped on an island, alcohol is always flowing, and the most dramatic cast members are guaranteed ample camera time), the romantic reality competition is so much more than that. I would even go so far as to say that — at times — BiP borders on some highbrow programming.

OK, that's a bit of a stretch, but the show is definitively far from trashy. Season 2 of this fine piece of television has catalyzed a plethora of emotions within my very being each time I grab a freshly minted glass of chardonnay and sit down to watch. I laugh, I cry (well, I got a little teary once), and I even learn a few life lessons. The Bachelor and Bachelorette castoffs that land in paradise are — for the most part — genuinely looking to find someone they can build a future with. Along the way, #FriendshipGoals are created and cast members have opportunities for introspection on how to navigate their way through this crazy thing called life.

In case you doubt me, I have compiled a list of reasons why our beloved BiP is much more (oh, so much more) than a guilty pleasure.

1. The #FriendshipGoals

While the format of the show is decidedly romance-driven, worthwhile friendships have been built between many BiP cast members. Remember the heart-to-heart between Juelia and JJ? I can't even.

2. The Cast Members Are Genuinely Looking For Love

There is no amount of editing that would make genuine proclamations of seeking "the one" seem that convincing. All the members have sought out the platform in hopes of finding the thing most of us dream of — the ultimate bae.

3. Tanner Is Basically Chandler Bing

I've said it once and I'll say it again — Tanner is the Chandler Bing of reality television. With quips and rejoinders worthy of one of the most pivotal sitcoms of our time, I would have to say this catapults BiP out of the guilty pleasure category.

4. Juelia, Juelia, Juelia

Single mother and widow, Juelia, is a true survivor. She not only deserves love — she inspires fans each episode with her courage and openness.

5. That Self-Aware Intro

The '80s-inspired intro might be the best thing to ever happen to Bachelor Nation. Moreover, the fact that this show can be self-aware and poke fun at itself shows it is much more savvy than your typical romantic reality competition.

6. All The #RelationshipGoals

The most solid BiP couples (hi, Jade and Tanner) are truly worth rooting for, and inspire our respective lists of #RelationshipGoals. You know you have much more than a guilty pleasure when you're literally comparing your dating experiences to those of select cast members. My standards have shifted immensely since Season 2 premiered.

I think I've made my point, and it's about time I geared up for the next episode. I only wish I had Jorge — i.e., the nicest bartender ever — on hand to make my cocktails.

Images: Bob D'Amico/ABC; Giphy (3)