Thursday, November 5, 2009

A Geek's Response to "Glee"

I'll be the first to admit it - I love "Glee," Fox's surprise musical series about a high school glee club. As a high-school Chorus and Drama Club Award recipient, how could I not? Of course, none of the numbers we performed in Woodrow Wilson's Chorus were nearly as slick (or current) as those on "Glee." And unlike the members of the uber-talented Glee Club on the show who know all the notes and lyrics with barely a glance at the sheet music, we took months to prepare our selections. As for choreography and costuming... well, that was left to the annual musical.

I appeared in all of the musicals presented in my four years at Woodrow Wilson High School: "Bye-Bye Birdie;" "Godspell;" "The Wizard of Oz" and "South Pacific," moving up the ranks until I was cast as Emil in my senior year (the less we talk about my role as the Cowardly Lion, the better).

Still, what I wouldn't have given to be a part of Mr. Schuester's amazing ensemble of singers/dancers. Of course, the singers/dancers on "Glee" are all seasoned veterans well beyond the age of most actual high-schoolers, but that hardly matters.

What does matter, is the heart and soul behind the characters in the show. There's Rachel (Lea Michelle), the girl who knows she is destined for theatrical greatness; Finn (Cory Monteith), the Football jock who nevers feels so good as when he is singing; Quinn (Dianna Agron), Finn's cheerleader girlfriend, pregnant by his best friend and sent to Glee Club as a spy by the evil Ms. Sylvester (the always amazing Jane Lynch) and the rest of losers and jocks who are are inspired by Spanish teacher Will Schuester (Miss Saigon's Matthew Morrison), himself a past member of the school's formerly championship Glee Club, now surpassed by Sylvester's championship "Cherrioes" squad. Of course there's the adorably giant-eyed Jayma Mays (Red Eye; "Heroes") as the school counselor in love with Will, but betrothed to the awkward gym coach, Ken (Patrick Gallagher) and the hilarious Iqbal Theba as the clueless Principal Figgins, who seems to take delight in pitting Schuester and Sylvester against one another. And don't get me started on Will's wife, Terri ("Nip/Tuck" alum Jessalyn Gilsig), who is pretending to be pregnant in order to hold onto the man she doesn't deserve. And then there's the gay kid, Kurt (Chris Colfer), whose coming out to his dad made me cry and the adorably hot best friend, Puck (Mark "Please Lose the Lame Mohawk" Salling) who not only knocked up Quinn, but hooked up with Rachel because his mother wants him to date a "nice Jewish girl." Talk about ensemble casting! And I've barely scratched the surface, here.

Say what you may about Fox's deplorable and ridiculously right-skewed news division; their entertainment division has done something no other network has been able to do. They've created the first ever successful musical TV series. Anyone remember "Cop Rock?" If you do, I'm sorry. Hilarious, topical, sexy and fun "Glee" is probably the best non-Sci-Fi series to hit the airwaves in a very long time.

I say it's about time that Musical Theatre Geeks got our own TV show and I proudly stand among them shouting "Thank you!" to the show's creators, writers and cast. I just have to ask, where the hell were you when I was 16, and really could have used you?

If you haven't seen "Glee," do yourself a favor and watch it. And here are a few clips to whet your appetite:

You go, Girl!

That song's never going away, is it? So, which character do you think I identify most with? No cheating!

More, anon.

1 comment:

Mrs. Pine said...

Yay Glee!!! Hmmm...I'm not sure who you're most're a combo of a few, me thinks. I must say I was cursing the World Series b/c it's meant we've missed two episodes of the fabulousness that is THIS SHOW! xoxo