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Gleeful

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It's true, darlings. We've submitted to Glee.

We were happy to ignore the hype on this water-cooler-topic of a show up till now because our first reaction to any water-cooler-topic show is to recoil from it. We're snotty about that sort of thing. Sue us. To be honest, we had it written it off as one of those hipper than thou shows that always come off a little mean-spirited to us. One glance showed us a collection of cultural stereotypes complete with dumb jocks, bitchy cheerleaders, a mincing baby queen and a sassy black girl to top it off. Not for us. Especially since the critics seemed to be so divided over it.

But we were bored and found ourselves on Hulu and after the 50th email imploring us to watch the show, we shrugged our shoulders and settled in to watch the pilot episode.

We'll say this: it's completely politically incorrect, wasting no opportunity to make fun of gays, minorities, the handicapped, bulimics, teen celibacy movements, and alcoholics. But there's this weird vein of cheery, sappy optimism (embodied mainly by Matthew Morrison as Will Schuester, the glee club director with a dream) that threatens to break through at the oddest moments, no more so apparent than when the cast performs a number.

It's like a switch is flipped and it goes from Arrested Development or a Christopher Guest mockumentary to an old Hollywood musical right in front of your eyes. Not that it's all show tunes. Sure, you have your standards from Les Miserables and Chicago making brief appearances, but the show has a far more eclectic range than that, weaving in routines from Journey, Bell Biv Devoe, Color Me Badd, Kanye, Amy Winehouse, and Salt-n-Pepa that, under any other circumstances would be played solely for laughs due to the characters performing them but somehow manage to actually work. The next thing you know, you're choking up at a Journey cover or bobbing your head to that white guy rapping.

Bottom line is, when it's music time, they really go for broke and sell the hell out of it exactly in old Hollywood musical fashion. It's not just playing with the tropes defined 65 years ago; it's reveling in them. This is pure "Judy and Mickey putting on a show in the old barn" stuff. Trust us, we know from musicals.

When you try and sell that kind of old school showbiz to a modern audience, you're taking a risk and predictably, a lot of the criticism of the show brings up that dreaded word "realism." No, it's not "realistic" for a rag tag band of mostly social misfits to break out in flawless harmony and over-the-top production numbers. Of course it's not. That's the whole point to those types of musical numbers. They're metaphors not for what the world is, but for what we would like the world to be. By all rights, they should have no place in a show like this at a time like this yet somehow it works. The reason the show has sparked such significant interest is because it feels new. There have been a lot of different entries under "post-modern" when it comes to the classic musical genre of film, but none with quite this level of (pun unintended) gleefully mean spirited smugness broken up by wide-eyed, near-flawless production numbers. The kind of juxtaposition that results in an eye-popping show choir version of Amy Winehouse's "Rehab." You're struck by the absurdity, but you can't help bobbing your head along with it.

We weren't ready to fully buy into it until the closing number of the pilot episode, when the embattled glee club sold the hell out of Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" to our utter astonishment:



Goddamn if those little 25-year-old teenagers can't make a song about meaningless and random sexual hookups sound like an anthem to bring tears to your eyes. The numbers are almost all like that: melodramatic, polished to unbelievability, and oddly affecting in spite of it.

The show isn't flawless, by any means. It feels a little larval to us at the moment. Like the creators blew a lot of creative energy trying to tread a fine line between satire and romantic fantasy and because of that, the characters feel like a bit of an afterthought. After watching the three episodes available online, we weren't as annoyed by the stock characters as much as we thought we'd be. The Breakfast Club was nothing but stock characters and it still managed to tell some interesting and memorable stories about the lives of high schoolers. In fact, high school-based comedy/dramas like this tend to work well when they're working with stock tropes, from Rebel Without a Cause to My So-Called Life. Yes, the characters need some serious development (not to mention consistency) but there's nothing inherently wrong with a foundation of cliches if you know how to build on it.

We guess what we're saying is, the show is doing a pretty amazing job of genre-busting on its own; we're willing to cut it some slack while it gets on its feet in other areas. It helps that they have a relatively appealing cast, many of whom have serious performing capabilities. To provide a little salt to Morrison's sometimes sickly sweet optimism is the insanely funny Jane Lynch as the Colonel Kurtz-esque cheerleading coach ("Get the agony out of your eyes!"). Her ability to deliver an acidly funny line almost completely deadpan ("The way you use your mental illness to help these kids is really inspiring.") gives the show a very much needed dark edge to keep it from tipping into High School Musical or even Fame territory.

The show definitely needs to go through some growing pains if it's really going to fulfill its promise, but until then, we're not ashamed to say that we'll watch it for the once-every-ten-minutes or so musical numbers performed by some amazing talents, including Broadway babies Morrison and Lea Michele who almost singlehandedly outdoes Steve Perry on his signature song. Cory Monteith probably has the weakest voice in the main cast, but he's got a sweet boy band warble that he combines with a kinder, gentler take on the dimbulb jock that elevates it a little from mere cliche. Michele's Rachel, a show tunes princess raised from birth by her two daddies, needs a little work. Her voice is amazing and she's doing good work with what she's being given, but they need to hammer out some consistency on her. Morrison is never better than when he's performing a number, but he's another one that needs a little more fleshing out because he comes off a little cloyingly one-note. Jayma Mays as the germaphobic, OCD-afflicted guidance counselor is hilarious when she's given good scenes. The sissy gay definitely needs some work although he did get in a few choice lines ("Someday, you'll all work for me.").

But really, any flaws the show has are minor once the music starts and you find yourself sucked right into it to your complete surprise. Go watch it on Hulu if you haven't seen it. It's not perfect, but it's a lot of fun.





Pictures courtesy of fox.com

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113 comments:

You have no idea - I have been sitting here hitting refresh on the website all day today, waiting for you to post your thoughts on the show ever since I saw you mention it on Twitter.

Now that I'm about to explode from happiness, I'm going to read your thoughts. THANK YOU FOR STARTING ON THIS SHOW!


i'm so thrilled you boys will be covering this one. i was a bit resistant when they showed the pilot back in may(?), but the more commercials i saw for it, the more i got sucked in.

i found myself singing along with most of the songs they have done so far. can't wait to see where it goes!


I hate Lea Michele. I didn't like her in Spring Awakening, and I'm not loving her in this. Funny show, though, but I only like it for being politically incorrect.


Thank Jesus you guys are watching this! It's just SO good. I'm a cynical old bitty but I can't help but smile every time those damn kids burst out into song. LOVE IT.


Excellent! The show just had it's back nine episodes ordered by Fox, so we're in for a 22 episode [21 if you don't count the pilot] season! Here's hoping they can maintain the momentum presented in the first 3 episodes. :]


I was wondering if you guys were watching this show. The content sans the popularity seems so "up your alley."


Jane Lynch and TLo's endorsement -- well alrighty then!


LOVE this show. "Who is Josh Groban?" "Who is Josh Groban?!?! Kill yourself." You must youtube this exchange. Priceless. SO glad you are blogging about it.


There's a kind of joyful subversiveness to this show that really entertains me.


They totally won me over with Journey too! I am glad I like the show and that it is doing well (it just got picked up for a whole season! pretty good for only 3 eps!) because they stole away the brilliant Jane Lynch from the hilarious 'Party Down' on Starz, which everyone should also check out! It's on Netflix if you don't have Starz like me! Kristin Chenoweth will be doing a guest spot sometime soon which I'm sure will be great :)


Ok, now that I've read your thoughts I can breathe.

If my excitement was evidence enough, I love this show. I'd been talking it up long before I saw the pilot - I just fell in love with the promos. When it started back up this fall, I was really afraid that I had overhyped it too much in my mind. But I think overall, it has delivered.

I agree with a lot that you said - the characters need development and delve into stereotypes, etc. The hard part of doing something like this with a large cast set in high school is that you can't really avoid stereotypes. Not to mention with having a large cast, you can only focus on a few characters at a time. I think they'll start being more fleshed out as the series goes on, especially with the back 9 episodes being ordered. For example, it's my understanding that Kurt will be the focus of this week's episode - I can't wait to see what the creators have in store for him.

And the music is too damn good. Your Twitter about waking up with "Bust Your Windows" is how I am. Great song.


THANK YOU.

I'm in the camp of "Yes, there's flaws, but WHO THE HELL CARES!" The flaws aren't anything that ruin the show for me. It's only 3 episodes in, for pete's sake... every series needs a little while to find its groove, and I have confidence it will.

Also, I love Jemma Mays and Jane Lynch, and while the characters ARE inconsistent right now, the one-liners that all of them spew have me laughing my head off, and that's all that matters to me. The show makes me foot tap and my stomach hurt laughing... that's all that matters to me. =)


I've been waiting for this all day!

I wasn't sold on this show until they did this version of "Don't Stop Believin'." Now it has a permanent home on my DVR.

Lea Michele's got some pipes!


I actually find myself watching the show because of its political incorrectness and the music is just fun. it's a refreshing brand of humor--it's outlandish. t


I caught the pilot last spring, and had been waiting to set the TIVO all summer. Love this show, such a welcome change of pace from the CSI-crime-drama-clones and Jay Leno (his new show is horrible.)

I think the cast is amazing. I *heart* Jane Lynch .... and the broad who plays Wil's self absorbed princess wife needs to be strangled at some point. The hysterical pregnancy is hysterical!

Good laughs, heart tugging themes, and music to get off the couch by.... Fox has a hit!

Thanks, guys, for adding this to the watch list! I have breakfast with you every morning....


Yay, boys! I'm glad you liked it and I 100% agree with your assessment that its flawed, but fun. Everyone needs an escape from reality now and again.


It's just such a cute show :)
It's just impossible to watch an episode and not feel happy!


OMG...I have been refreshing the site all day waiting for this post!!!

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this show and have been hooked since the pilot aired way back when! So glad you boys have gotten sucked in as well! lol!

While I really enjoy all of the production numbers, one of my favorite things about the show is the vocal scoring between scenes. Brilliant little snippets of vocal goodness!


So happy you guys are watching this. Love this show :)


I really enjoyed the pilot, but the next two episodes didn't quite do it for me, particularly the most recent one. Maybe I should have spent less time going "Why the hell is he suddenly forming an a capella group?" and more time focusing on Jane Lynch's awesomeness.


I fell in majorly deep love as soon as this show aired. I'm a huge Ryan Murphy fan and LOVE music so it's like the greatest thing ever.

Lea Michele singing "Take a Bow" put Rihanna to SHAME. Can't wait to hear them take on "Somebody to Love". Very excite!


The amount that I love this show is ridiculous. AND I'M SO GLAD YOU BOYS ARE WATCHING IT :)

It brings joy to me every week. I'm so happy the mainstream is bringing back the musical. It's been on the rise since Chicago run the Oscar and now it's the home stretch. Because all I really want for people in life is for them to be happy and spontaniously burst into song.


Wow, I just watched it this weekend on Hulu. I do love the musical numbers, and it is great to see musicals reach a larger audience.

However, there is something about this show that really doesn't sit right with me. If the tokenism and stereotyping was done in a harder hitting manner, or in service of a more challenging or subversive message, I would be able to watch. As it is, it seems like a winking permission to indulge in stereotypes and be off the hook for it because it is under the ironic/ knowing/ politically incorrect banner.


I'm glad I wasn't the only one waiting for this post. I totally agree that this show doesn't have to be perfect, it just has to keep me entertained to the point that I'm disappointed when an episode ends because it means that I have to wait another week to enjoy the ride again. This is one of the few shows that I have to watch more than once during the week to tide me over until the next episode.


I have my DVR set for this show. So cool I'll get to read TLO about it!


Jane Lynch is a genius who deserves much wider recognition. (See Best in Show.) I'd watch her read the dictionary.

But I think the most-quoted character in my house is Sandy Ryerson, played by Stephen Tobolowsky. He played Ned Ryerson in Groundhog Day, and I feel like it is no coincidence that the characters' last names match. Loved it when Sandy offered Will pot, saying "You're the one teaching those tone-deaf acne factories. You're gonna need it."

Juat from these two actors alone I knew I was highly likely to love this show, and I do. The excellent music is a great bonus.


I LOVE this show, and I think Jane Lynch is awesome!!!


This show is awkward for me. It reminds me of my days in show choir and how much we all thought we were Rachel. Oh, and the queen-in-training looks just like my 8th grade boyfriend. I wonder if his wife thinks so...:)


I just really wish the 5-person club didn't blatantly sound like a 30-person a cappella choir. Where are all those bass voices coming from?? It's like watching a high school kid design a DVF ready-to-wear.


Then again maybe it's like Bollywood, where no one cares about the lipsynching.


Yes, LOVE the show, too, despite its flaws. And I just love how sincere and earnest they are when performing. There's no wink-wink 'irony,' they just love what they're doing.

Also love that, as you boys pointed out, the 'teenage' boys are actually, literally, in their mid-20's (25-27) so I don't feel like a creepy dude for thinking they're adorable.


I really, really, hate Glee, but I always end up watching it. If I was into musical numbers in the way that they are on Glee, I guess I could bear it, but I really hate most of the characters with a burning passion.
The coming out sequence on last week's episode seemed about 20 years behind.


love this show & i love you boys even more for blogging it.
thanks! :)


I cannot believe how much I love this!
Thanks for introducing me to another timewaster - one hour per week to watch, plus countless time looking for your post, reading and rereading, checking all the comments.
There ought to be a law keeping you boys more than 1000 feet from school yards to keep you corrupting the youth!


embouchement said:
"Maybe I should have spent less time going "Why the hell is he suddenly forming an a capella group?" and more time focusing on Jane Lynch's awesomeness."

I really think the key to watching this show is to never ask "why?" Just sit back and enjoy the absurdity.


As a high school theatre girl, this show (without the random breaking into song)was my life. I think that is why I have such a huge problem with it. These high schoolers aren't believable "artie" kids. While, I love the numbers, and the fact that I can relate; I hate the fact that they don't capture the spirit of being a "choir geek". The high school characters need major work. The desperation is too obvious. It needs to be subtler, because than you can actually start caring about the kids.


I AM A GLEEK! And I'm not afraid to admit it :)

If you like the music from Glee, check out Petra Haden... the arrangement of Journey's 'Don't Stop Believin' is originally hers. She creates all her instrumentations with voice, Bobby McFerrin-style.

Thank you thank you thank you for blogging Glee. I waited all summer to see the official season and it is SO worth it!


I was a little turned off by the hype too, but the show has managed to grow on me. Without the musical numbers, it would be just another high school comedy. The lip synching is obvious because the audio isn't mixed very well. I think FOX is trying to save money by recording the cast album at the same time since they're making a lot of money from music downloads.

Yes, it's flawed but the first season is allowed to make a few mistakes so the second season can take what works and make a good television show.


So glad you've started enjoying this one! Your review is absolutely pitch-perfect (get it? I crack myself up) about what works on the show and what doesn't. I'm also a Broadway geek, and I can't resist any opportunity to see my favorite theater actors spread their wings on TV (see Chenowith, Kristin). The fact that Matthew Morrison is hot is an added bonus.


I just cannot get into Glee. I want to, especially since I've heard comparisons to Arrested Development, which I loved. However, after the first episode I couldn't get past the boring and cliched characters and storylines and after that wasn't fixed in the second episode it just didn't hold my interest. Sure, the musical bits are entertaining but they're also SO obviously dubbed over. I don't blame them for doing so, but it's just not believable.


honesty.not.pc

OMG OMG OMG! I am so excited that you blogged Glee (even for just a breif maybe never again moment). The pilot was hysterical, the second show was kinda ok, the third had its ups and downs. But over all I really like it and I hope it grows into it's promise.

Oh BTW, the female H.S. lead singer is 38 IRL!!!!

I love Jane Lynch


"Goddamn if those little 25-year-old teenagers can't make a song about meaningless and random sexual hookups sound like an anthem to bring tears to your eyes."

Will it take away the bitter sting of the last episode of the Sopranos?


I am loving this show, in spite of the flaws. Musical numbers turn me into a squeeing fangirl every time.

The character "development" is a little frustrating so far. I wasn't buying Kurt's "I haven't told anyone" bit last week, and that's no fault of Chris Colfer's - it just wasn't consistent with the character up to that point. Other characters have similar consistency problems.

But I don't care, because, hey! Musical numbers! Squeeeee!!!!


I fucking LOVE this show! Thank you SO MUCH for blogging about it, guys!!!!!!!


honesty.not.pc, she's 23, not 38(!!). there is no way in hell.

and sara (5:53pm), did you expect them to be totally believable?? this show is obviously a comedy and not meant to be a realistic interpretation. i went to the l.a. county high school for the arts as a vocal music major (a billion years ago) and this show sort of in a way brings back memories, but not because of its realism at ALL. it's more of a nostalgic feeling of remembering what it's like to desperately want to shine and trying to put performances together, etc...

i guess i just don't usually expect to get any kind of reality from television. even from "reality" shows.


I love Jane Lynch....(always have, so I found her first, nah-nah-nah)


I will echo Remy's earlier comment because I also hit refresh on my browser a zillion times today waiting for your Glee post. Welcome to the fanclub.

I was yet another skeptic who heard about it and dismissed it as a clone of High School Musical. I caught the premiere on Hulu a few weeks ago and was hooked. It just makes me so damn HAPPY. And yes, Jane Lynch is awesome.

Is anyone else reminded of their college days by this show? At my university the girls were MUCH more excited about dating a glee club member than a football player. (Clearly a quirk of the Ivies but I'm reminded of it when I watch Glee)


*squeal* - So excited you like this show, TLo! Now, if you would only start critiquing Cat Deely's outfits on So You Think You Can Dance, I'd be completely thrilled.


Victor Garber! Debra Monk!


Thank you Thank you Thank you for blogging this show!!!!!


I think this show is quite terrific. I love that there is finally a main stream tv show with music in it. Closest we have to musical on tv. I am concerned about how the writers will be able to maintain the story lines fresh and dynamic. But loving it so far.


I have great hopes for the show and I loved the pilot.

However, I've been disappointed so far with the episodes. They seem to have difficulty integrating musical numbers with a plot line. I also can't stand the plot of the teacher and his horrible wife. You don't know why he is with someone so 2-dimensional and horrible. I don't th ink they know where they are going.

For Jane Lynch alone, it's worth watching. Amazing!

I hope they work it out because it would be a blast to have a series like this.


I want to like it. I feel like I SHOULD like it. And I don't DISlike it, but really? I'm in it for Jane Lynch. If it wasn't for her, I'd have stopped after two episodes. ("I don't menstruate." "Neither do I.") I think, for me, the problem is that I don't LIKE the music. They do it well, yay music on TV, but I don't like those songs.

Of course, now that I know you'll be covering it, I'll have more reason to watch. Even though I have not forgiven Lea Michele for how much I hated Spring Awakening.


Huh, comment got posted under the wrong ID..."Deana" is me. I know you were all worried.


I love the show, but my major problem is that the musical numbers seem so overproduced. Like once they start singing it's so obvious that it's a dubbed in track that they're lip synching...badly...to. I rarely think that the cast is capable of belting out the tunes that they do. The Gold Digger video is so over the top that I find it tough to watch. However, the songs are fun and the characters are lovable and I hope they can work it out.


Oh, you bitches have made my day!

I had a feeling that 'Glee' was sure to be a breakout hit.

Kind of like 'Fame' meets 'Welcome Back Kotter'.

But I love the singing and dancing. A format that hasn't really been seen in television for a long time.


And Jane Lynch, god bless that sassy lez, has such a deadpan delivery that makes you wonder if she's two seconds away from attacking you with a hidden corkscrew. I always felt she was so underrated, and I hope the show finally gives her some shine.

So thanks again, boys. I'll be following you every step of the way.


What's the target for a successful tv show - 100 episodes? Forget it! Glee has TLo's attention & approval - they have made it!


^100 episodes is a good target for syndication, but quality can be determined by the end of the second season.


Glee takes the obvious Highschool cliches and uses them to their advantage. But what makes this show better than their attempts at highschool musical etc. is that they went all the way and took it there and i love it. Highschool musical was trying to keep it kid friendly and Glee just said screw it and layed it all out on the table. And its amazing! I adore the number throughout the show along with its spot on comedic humor. This show will be on as long and the over the top story lines and fully commited numbers keep on coming. A++


Now it's unanimous. Every Single Friend I have who watches t.v. has been ordering me to watch this show. "You'll love it" they say. "I already watch too much t.v." I say.

Secretly, I've been saving it for that future year when life is drear and I need a couch potato marathon ordered from Netflix to salve the wounds. Because I believe them, that I will love it.

But darn it you guys, the resolve is weakening.


Yay! I'm so glad you guys like my new favorite show! :)


The pilot was amazing! I'm hoping the show will rise back up to that level again.

I wish the music sounded a little less canned and a little more like the characters were actually singing. But I'm definitely enjoying it and will keep watching!


i love this show so very very much and have been waiting for you guys to start writing about it----yay! i wish my high school had had a glee club, would have been so much more fun than yet another production of "how to suceed in business...."

i am not ashamed to say that i watch the songs on youtube over and over. they make my heart swell. and lea michelle's voice is just awesome.


I loooooove Glee. I'm a total gleek already and I'm so glad you guys like it!!


I am thrilled to see you'll be blogging GLEE!

I think a show like this may be exactly what viewers will want to see in this day and age: a group of characters capable of being completely, joyfully, hopeful in perfect four part harmony. With all the crap going on in the real world, what better way to spend an hour.

I'm loving Lea Michele and Jane Lynch especially. I'm also perhaps a bit biased, as a friend of my performed on last week's episode!

I get a bit of a "Strangers with Candy" meets "Fame" vibe from the show.


Absolutely agree with your assessment of GLEE. Right now, we're watching it completely for the musical numbers and hoping the characters become a little less one-note and the setting a little less absurd. Because honestly, wasn't high school bad enough without making it over-the-top bad? No matter what though, the show-choir Amy Winehouse number will keep us watching through many a first season stumble...


John Lloyd Young eating that thumb cake sent me over the edge last week- I really almost peed in my pants.


Looking forward to your posts on Glee. I'm so glad you finally saw the show and liked it.

And Jane Lynch rocks. I plan to work in "waterboarding" and "your resentment is delicious" into my daily conversations.

Cheers!


TLo,

I love that you're watching Glee. John Lloyd Young of "Jersey Boys" was in Accafellas- the shop teacher with no thumbs. My junior year of H.S., we did Fiddler.
Gerard Alessandrini of Forbidden Broadway was our Tevye. Bryan Batt of MM is a FB vet. Sal should sing on
MM.
Jane from Boston


I have waited all summer for Glee to come on, we watched the preview whne it was 1st on.

Jane Lynch is so delicious that I'll watch just for her.
She is always a hoot in whatever she does.
Talladega Nights anyone? I hate Two and a Half Men, but I love to catch it when she is on.


Thank you! While they are still finding their way with the characters, the musical numbers are fabulous, and the writing is pretty sharp. Like this exchange when Emma talks to Rachel about bulimia:

Rachel: I tried, but I don't have a gag reflex.

Emma: When you're older, that will turn out to be a gift.


They had me at 'Rehab' - but 'Goldigger' really sealed the deal. Yes - the show has flaws - but I'm willing to give it time to work them out.

Glad you're covering the show!!


I do love this show and for all those who are puzzled by the sometimes odd story jumps, I say "Lighten up! It's just Glee!"


I'm so happy that you guys have enjoyed the first few episodes :). As soon as I saw the pilot last spring I immediately began telling everyone I knew to tune in and they are all loving it. Hopefully we can get others to watch so we don't have another Pushing Daisies on our hands! And how awesome is Jane Lynch? If you haven't seen Party Down, it is definitely worth a rental or view on Netflix instant.


I'm glad you guys came around to the show! I have to agree with, just about, everything you have to say about it. It's definitely in that, "let's throw everything at the screen and see what works," stage where the characters change every episode but, hopefully things will start to settle. I think this show is great and am glad to hear of it's full season pick up.

Can't wait to hear what you have to say about it, in the future.


To any Glee haters I say: "Your resentment is DELICIOUS."

As a former HS theater nerd, I am just adoring this show. What is particularly unique is this seemingly paradoxical union of pure earnestness and snarky irony....the show manages to seem fun and wholesome and naughty and subversive all at the same time.

Plus, it lets us see Jane Lynch every week. What could be bad about that?


Welcome to the Gleekhood!

Although I do have to say - while I understand saying that this show feels very new compared to what is on television today - it actually is a lot like the second coming of the show Popular that Ryan Murphy created in 2000. That show only made it two seasons - but it was bitingly funny.


Yay! I'm so glad you guys are Glee-ing. I agree the show needs some work, but I'm really enjoying it so far. I think they need to temper the Schuster's wife to make her less odious. They're struggling, I think, to find the balance between the sublime snarkiness and the sweetness. They're not there yet, but it's still just So. Much. Fun.


ill watch anything with jane lynch in it, and she does not disappoint in this role. and im with you on your assessment. its not perfect, but its certainly trying to get there.


I freakin love this show. As a former show choir member and a current performer in musicals, this show is so right up my alley. I love the mix of music they use and I love, love, love Jane Lynch. Can't get enough of every word that comes out of her mouth. She says the things we all want to say but can't.


O.K. here is the poodle pissing on your new Jimmy Choo's....So what you all are saying is that despite the fact Glee panders to social/economic/racial stereotypes its o.k. because the hate (overtly or subvertly) dished is all good and fine as long as its set to a peppy tune?

Just thinking out loud...^J^


"I bust the windows out your car . . ." Hee hee!


Lisa said...

So what you all are saying is that despite the fact Glee panders to social/economic/racial stereotypes its o.k. because the hate (overtly or subvertly) dished is all good and fine as long as its set to a peppy tune?



Well...no. In fact, we'd go so far as to say there's no "hate" at all in this show. There's a vast difference between being politically incorrect and being hateful.


^^What TLo said.

Seriously, there isn't hate here. The political incorrectness isn't that nastiness that masquerades as comedy, ("If you don't accept my bigotry, you must have no sense of humor!") but rather a kind of gentle acknowledgement of differences and a stubborn refusal to take everything seriously. The realities of life as a gay teen or a wheelchair user or an plain old outcast aren't held up as some sort of har-har, let's pile on. It's more a camaraderie of misfits kind of thing, you know, just because someone is different and some people treat him or her with prejudice doesn't mean that person loses the right to laugh at themselves.


I wondered if you were watching! I love Glee...kind of reminds me of Popular (on about 10 years ago) in that the main characters are stock, there's not much of a plot, but there's so much outrageousness that it doesn't matter. Anything with Jane Lynch has a place in my heart, but is it bad that I want the rest of Christopher Guest's group to show up (especially John Michael Higgins)?


I have to say that the Don't Stop Believin number brought tears to my eyes. The show needs some work tho. Morrison's wife just sucks the air out of the room-too cartoon horrible with no redeeming qualities. I'm iffy on Jane Lynch's character too altho I think I'm the only one. In addition, I don't find OCD charming. And the Gold Digger number I still can't decide if it was in bad taste. Which isn't something that I normally ponder.

But, I'll sit thru another episode or two before I decide on it.


As someone who still bursts into song any time someone mouths a few words that remind me of one ("Well, they do it because they've always done it," says a friend. "Tradition! Tradition!" I sing, from Fiddler on the Roof, as a for instance), I adore "Glee."

As a former high school debater who was even geekier than geeks, I adore "Glee."

As one who rarely watches television aside from news programs and Project Runway, I adore "Glee."

I haven't been this excited about a television show in years and years.


New Directions...say it fast (snort, giggle)


Not hating on GLEE just the "formula". I've had a double espresso and I am feeling better. Every once and awhile I would like to see a television show where the writers don't use the easy-bake-oven recipe for character development i.e. girl 1cup heavy-set 1/2 cup "streetwise" 2tbsp roll eyes 2 heaping spoonfuls of big mouth/voice bake until dark brown and you've made the perfect Middle America Comfort-Zone African-American.

Sorry...maybe I am just bored with it all....thanks TLo et. al for the dialogue and for hearing me out. This was very refreshing.


Glad you're covering this show! If you take Glee for what it is, pure fun entertainment, then it's worth watching.

Check it!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C2FMdOLyRcA&feature=player_embedded


This show is my guilty pleasure! I get annoyed at time when they decide to go all sugary, but I believe in it :) The more sarcastic parts are delicious though... The show reminds me of daria in some way. A weird mix but I'm sure they can do something great with it!


Glee is IN.

Loved how they absolutely went all the way with the 'Acafellas' numbers.

Who would have thought I'd enjoy any rendtition of 'I Wanna Sex U Up'. Not me anyway.


LOVE this show! Thank you!


I watch this over and over with my 13 year old daughter... Is that weird? Don't care - I love it!


I'm really looking forward to sort of "background" episodes on each of the characters. To me, the question marks in the group are Artie and Erica. So they're a guy with in a wheelchair and an Asian hipster girl with a stutter. Why did they start singing? What drives them? (I also go back and forth on wanting to know more about Artie's disability. On one hand it is incredibly rare to see a character who's disabled in a prime-time show where the disability isn't made into a major plot point / fodder for a very special episode. On the other hand it's incredibly non-sequitur to know nothing about their backgrounds when we know so much about Rachel and whats-his-name.)


Love the show, so glad you guys are blogging about it. I can't wait for tonight's episode.


Great post and analysis, Tlo! I watch it for the musical numbers, I think they're very talented and do an amazing job.


I love Glee! I'm surprised that there hasn't been a TV show of this kind out before.


Love the show, love Jane Lynch and the whole cast! I hope this show sticks around!


LaFemmeFataleinNY

Great review, guys!!!This show is so awesome, can't wait for the episode tonight!


I love this show! I almost fell out of my chair when they started singing "Push It". Hahahahahaha.


I LOVE GLEE. I don't mind stereotypical characters in the first few episodes of a show, because I know they'll change. And honestly, gay jokes make me laugh. Anything making fun of people in a joking way makes me laugh--that's why I like Borat. And as I AM a lez, it doesn't make me think that anyone's being homophobic. It's not like they're just making fun of Kurt--they're making fun of everyone.


Thank you, TLo!

I watached "Glee" for the first time tonight and I absolutely loved it!

Now totally addicted!


Ah, you guys did it again! You raved enough about a show to make me watch it(when I thought I would hate it!) and I loved it! Thanks guys for showing me the light yet once again.

Kzspot


This show is my new Wednesday night date with my 17 year old daughter. We love it and now your blogging it! I'm thrilled!!


Love the idea of this show, but there are too many villains.

With Jane Lynch on board, why water the story line down with so many other bad guys so soon? There's plenty of time to develop The Wife and The Mohawk Jock next season.

Too much backstory too soon spoils the initial joy for me.

I'm just your friendly retire HS Speech/Drama teacher. Believe me, one powerful coach, who insists that the P.E. Dept's massive collection of free weights actually belongs smack-dab in the downstage center of your stage because "that's the way it's always been," is enough for any Glee Club to deal with for a while.


I liked the pilot and earlier episodes of Glee a lot, but last night's offering was weak. "Single Ladies" has been done to death already, and even if it hadn't, lip syncing to someone else's voice is just not compelling. We didn't see original production numbers last night.

Also, I really wish they'd send the former Glee Club coach off to prison or have him die or move to Thailand or something. The show is better when he's not around.


Thank you thank you thank you!!

I hadn't heard about this show until you guys reviewed it, and I just devoured all three available episodes on Hulu last night.

This show is fantastic. Just silly/unrealistic enough to really work. Kind of takes me back to High School and my Show Choir days ;)

LOVE the Aca-fellas episode!


I am so thrilled you boys are blogging Glee.

I have no idea how Jane Lynch can deliver such deadpan humor with a straight face.


I became a 110% committed fan after seeing Mercedes'/Amber Riley's bust the windows. The very definition of FIERCE. Just amazing. Thanks for turning me onto this show.



Pam


I was sucked in last May with the pilot. They ARE politically incorrect but for effect, I think. Look at the gay jokes made (which will pull in the homophobes) only to do an effective about-face and tell an emotional coming-out story this past week. I really think they make the PI jokes only to hit people over the head with a hammer (gleefully) to make people think. Love it.


I was sucked in last May with the pilot. They ARE politically incorrect but for effect, I think. Look at the gay jokes made (which will pull in the homophobes) only to do an effective about-face and tell an emotional coming-out story this past week. I really think they make the PI jokes only to hit people over the head with a hammer (gleefully) to make people think. Love it.


I love this show more than life itself. So glad you guys are covering it. I think that Kurt, despite his obvious stereotypical behaviors, is a really awesome character. I love love love love Glee.





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