Who would have thought? Well, actually, with the succes of movies like High School Musical, pretty much everyone. But still! For those not in the know (shame on you!): Glee is Fox’ hit comedy. It’s a musical series set in high school. We follow Spanish teacher Will in his quest for the reboot of the Glee Club – a club specialized in singing and dancing. But he runs into some problems along the way – the obvious overpresence of nerds and misfits in his club will soon turn out to be the least of his worries…

All that jazz

So it’s a musical series. If you don’t like musicals, stay far away, because this thing goes very deep. Sure, I guess you could watch it for the engaging characters or the hilarious comedy. The problem is: the characters aren’t all that engaging and the comedy isn’t that hilarious. Without the music, this series would have been just another mediocre teen series.

But the music – oh the music! Some songs are just executed so brilliantly that I can’t help singing or dancing along with them. A few high points of the first season to help you get started: Madonna’s “like a virgin”, Van Halen’s “Jump”, Wicked’s “Defying Gravity” and an awesome cover of Lady Gaga’s “Pokerface”. If that doesn’t have you going, then I don’t know what will.

Go Sue!

What makes this series so watchable – aside from the music – are the characters. One thing I’ve noticed concerning this, is that Glee is at its best when it’s not entirely taking their characters seriously, but write them as if they were.

Confused? One thing to criticize throughout Glee is that there’s an ever growing focus on drama. For every one of the funny moments, there’s a tear jerker. They try to do things fifty-fifty, but towards the end of the season, they were clearly struggling.

So the series is at its best when it gently mocks the characters. If you’ve watched the finale, there’s a brilliant montage about halfway through that will show exactly what I mean. These are the moments where the series really shines. Unfortunately, as the first season goes along, it tends to get more serious and less funny. Fortunately for me, the music did get better as it went along, too, so at least I got distracted.

In All…

I’m very curious to see where the second season will go. I’d think a lot of restrictions they had on the first season (budget-wise, for example) have been lifted, seeing how they snatched some Emmies. It’s a dangerous position for a series like Glee to be in. The first season already had some moments where they brought in expensive Guest Stars (Olivia Newton-John for example) and I just cringed all the way through. I hope they focus on their own characters, on that snarky humour thing they’ve got and on the fabulous execution of their musical numbers.

Glee is awesome. Every episode fills me with joy, just like a musical is supposed to do. Sure, it’s corny and the plot can get deeply stupid, but then the brilliantly executed music starts and I forget all about it. Oh, and Sue Sylvester. Never forget about Sue Sylvester.


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