We all know that Meg Ryan is the ultimate rom-com queen—Julia Roberts is a close second. Most of us grew up watching Sleepless in Seattle, When Harry Met Sally, French Kiss, and You’ve Got Mail. And anybody who’s ever told you that you wasted too much time on them can go to hell because apparently, those movies make you a better person.
A new study found that repeated exposure to romantic comedies can make someone be more sensitive and open-minded. 87 college students were made to watch rom-com and action movies for five weeks, and their moral intuitions were recorded: “The participants’ viewing habits were broken down into four sections, with a quarter watching exclusively romantic comedies, another quarter watching exclusively action films, and the rest watching either a 60/40 or 80/20 ratio of rom-com to action.” Researchers studied their ideas of loyalty, fairness, respect for authority, purity, and harm.
And the students who exclusively watched rom-coms made them more sensitive to four of the five moral intuitions; purity was the exception, which makes sense ‘cause rom-coms like No Strings Attached or Friends With Benefits are all about sex.
So go ahead—lose yourself in another Meg Ryan marathon.
Follow Ysa on Instagram.