Guilty pleasures are guilty for a multitude of reasons. Some people may love a show, but be hush-hush about it because they may not want to be associated with that particular fanbase. Or maybe they have a reputation for being intellectual or whatnot, and feel like enjoying a "fluff" show kinda goes against who/what they're supposed to be. Or maybe a show is targeted at a particular demographic, and we enjoy it despite being far removed from that demographic. For example, adult males who enjoy Sailor Moon- a show whose main demographic is 6-12 year-old girls.
Like I said, my guilty pleasure anime/manga is not popular or really very good. You could name a ton of examples in its genre that are MUCH better. But somehow it strikes a chord with me and I love it.
It's almost like with dating. Don't you hear stories all the time from people who are conflicted because they're in a relationship with someone who's completely not their type/ pretty much the opposite of what they usually date but are genuinely happy? You think, as an outsider, that there should be no conflict. If you're happy, be happy. Like what you like. But sometimes, you feel like you have to justify liking what you like, whether it's to yourself or others. You know?
That's a very astute observation there, Dincrest. I really liked the analogy at the end. Kudos to you man!