We’ve all seen the afterschool special with the pretty high school kids who are almost preternaturally nice and yet manage to learn a lesson about friendship or bullying in every episode. We’ve all see the show about the plucky, misunderstood, underdogs who defeat all the odds to become champions…no matter how unrealistic it is.
Glee is not that show.
I admit, I thought it would be. The idea just seemed so clichéd and, being the culture snob that I am, assumed that any show that is that popular must have the content of a cross between an afterschool special and the Twilight novels. However, a good friend of mine who has great taste in show recommended the show and was a big fan so I decided it couldn’t hurt to check out a few episodes since I had just finished catching up on several seasons of crime dramas that I hadn’t been watching lately. Besides, I have a rather embarrassing obsession with any movie about dancing or music. I actually liked Save The Last Dance, Honey (with Jessica Alba…the acting is awful), Step Up and every other poorly written dance/music film from the last 20 years. Yeah…it’s kind of sad.
I was addicted to Glee after three episodes.
For a choir geek and complete nerd in high school this show was an accurate portrayal of high school from the bottom rung of the popularity ladder. (Except for the slushies, that never happened to me…possibly because I had several violent friends who could kick anyone’s ass). On top of that, I spent a semester at a redneck high school in Arkansas where I was the only non-Christian, Lesbian in attendance. Kurt, I feel for you.
There is another reason I love this show. This show, unlike with shows that try to make all their characters shining beacons of morality, contains characters that all manage to earn my hate at least once during the season. In fact, hate isn’t strong enough. I loathe some of these characters, but I also empathize with some of them.
Here’s a few examples.
Kurt: He’s a complete bitch when he gives Rachel that little makeover to help her “impress”
Finn. On the other hand…there were times in high school where I would have done the same thing to a rival.
Rachel: Is there a more selfish, spoiled drama queen in existence? She needs to get off her high horse and realize she isn’t the only one with talent in the club. Also, what’s with her overbearing vocabulary? No one talks like that in high school…oh wait, I talked like that in high school. I was also a tad bit of a drama queen and a little condescending about my talents in high school. I wasn’t spoiled, but I was a bit similar in those other ways.
Will Schuester: *clicks tongue disapprovingly* He needs to learn some fucking impulse control when it comes to women…but so do I. I can’t blame him for that too much. I can blame him for not telling poor Emma about April or Shelbie right after they incidents occurred though.
Quinn: A nasty little liar, but I understand why. She obviously would have preferred for Finn to be the baby’s daddy and he would make a better dad than Puck any day. However, I can’t forgive the fact that she bitched Finn out about money so much for something that wasn’t his fault.
Now for the ones I have no sympathy for.
Terri: What a stupid, lying woman. (Why are all the women deplorable in this show more than the guys are?) She’s also super vindictive when it was her fault she and Will split up. Also….Terri, your perving on high school boys working for you is just fucking creepy.
Sue Sylvester: First of all, I love her character. I would hate her in real life though. Will is a complete wimp in how he deals with her. If I was him I would bypass that wimp of a principle, gather evidence and slap her so hard with a law-suit for harassment and a hostile workplace that she would still be spinning when she got fired.
Some will argue, “but what about what she did at the end of season 1?!” I’ll say the same thing I say about O’Reilly on Fox News. A couple of good and worthwhile actions does not make up for being a douchebag the rest of the time.
I could talk about more characters, but these are the ones I had the strongest reactions too.
My favorite thing about this show is how realist the characters are. They are selfish, self-absorbed, confused teenagers. I feel like the show could have been made about people I knew in high school.
As for the rest of the show. They have fairly good writing and direction, some awesome actors (Idina Menzel and Neil Patrick Harris! *squeal*), and the costumes are awesome for the dance numbers. Not to mention, they actually used music that isn’t the top 40 or showtunes (at least not all the time). My favorite songs were Don’t Stop Believin’, You Can’t Always Get What You Want, Bad Romance, and the mash-ups of Halo/Walking On Sunshine, Any Way You Want It/Lovin’, Touchin’, Squeezin’ and It’s My Life/Confessions Part II. I like a bunch of others, but those are my top picks for this season.
In short, it’s definitely no afterschool special and I’m looking forward to seeing what they do with the show this season.