Thursday, September 17, 2009

Glee Finally Turns the Corner

Tonight was the first time I have ever enjoyed Glee.

If you've read my review of last May's pilot episode you'll know how disappointed I was to not love the dorky geek-fest right out of the gate. I love musical theatre, I love Ryan Murphy, I love highschool shows, I even have a pre-existing love for at least 4 of the main cast members- I really should love Glee, but I found myself wanting to turn my TV off partway through (something that I never want to do, unless I'm watching Private Practice).

Over the past 2 weeks (since Glee's fall premiere) I have found myself having to explain why I don't like the show to multiple smart and interesting people who are already proclaiming it their favourite show on the air: it's stereotypical, it's overly dubbed, it's not very innovative, it plays on annoyingly postmodern themes of outsider status, it unfairly vilifies the popular kids, it demands pathos for characters who haven't earned it, etc, etc, etc...

And while all those things still apply, this week I actually enjoyed my Glee experience. First of all, my love of Matthew Morrison (Will) is the best thing the show has going for it, then put him in a boy band (the guiltiest of all my guilty pleasures) and I'm already having fun. Add a sweet (if unrealistic and somewhat self-pitying) story about underrated glee club members Mercedes and Kurt and the beginnings of the humanization of queen bee Quinn and jerky jock Puck (who has an AMAZING name, by the way) and you have the makings of something I might be able to like some day.

I said after the pilot that I'll be watching Glee no matter what, hoping that one day it will win me over. So maybe it's started today. Little by little, maybe they can flesh out their awkward characters into people I can actually root for, and deepen their typical villains into characters unto themselves. Maybe then I can celebrate Glee for what it was always meant to be: a show that can make me smile.


Todd W in NC said...

I'll agree with a few of the negative points you make, especially the noticeably excessive dubbing. But, as for the episodes, I feel the exact opposite. I was really impressed with the pilot episode, but my enthusiasm has decreased over the last two episodes.

The third episode seems a little early for characters to start quitting & re-joining the club, the adult boy band seemed to distract from the teenagers' story (and, it's a little too convenient that so many characters on the show, both teenager & adult, are just that good), Mercedes being naive to Kurt's true nature was hard to believe, and I didn't like her solo musical number (she sang well, but it broke the fourth wall a little too much).

The show still feels original and has potential, but I hope it picks back up, or I may have to consider the pilot episode a well made mini-movie, and if it declines fast, I'll consider dropping my season pass.

Kelly said...

it was definitely not a perfect episode. it's entirely early for them to be running through plot at the rate they're going and the surprising talent in the school is getting a little too convenient (ive never met anyone who can sing like rachel, not to mention having her in the same club as mercedes). I think the boy band would have read better if it was more about will taking these talentless guys and giving them confidence and teaching them to be great (which I think was the point, but it got lost in the overly dubbed perfect vocals).

they do also need to pick more interesting songs for the dream sequence emo ballads.

im just saying that my main issues with the show seem to be being addressed, not that its even close to being as a good a show as it has the potential to be.

thanks for the comment, Im glad there's someone out there who's not blindly in love with Glee.