Saturday, January 8, 2011

Jump the Shark

I love Glee. Or should I say loved Glee. When it premiered a year and a half ago, I thoroughly enjoyed the seamless blending of humor, music and drama. The jokes were dialogue driven and funny, the music enhanced the plot and the characters seemed believable. It continued to be an enjoyable hour of television through its first 12 episodes, and I proclaimed GleeK love for life. And then it happened.

The show got popular. Now it's a mess, demonstrating that inflated creative freedom has done nothing but allow it to indulge its worst instincts.

First of all, WAY too much emphasis is being placed on Kurt. Yes. Kurt is gay. The problem is, nobody cares that Kurt is gay. Kurt's dad loves his gay son. And yet! Nobody cares that Kurt's dad loves his gay son. Or at least, people might care more if it wasn't jammed down our throats like bad cold medicine week after week after week. Ryan Murphy, I suggest you go to counseling and deal with your own "being gay" issues, rather than make them the forefront of what is supposed to be an ensemble show, not the Kurt Hummel Struggles with his Homosexuality Hour.

Second of all, since the show's production budget has increased exponentially, the amount of musical numbers has increased along with it. Too much of a good thing? Absolutely. In the first 12 episodes, there were, on average, three or four songs a show. Now it's five or six, with one being a massive, over-produced stage number. That's not to say that they aren't well done. The singing is still good, the arrangements are still good, the coreography is still good. The problem is that the plot isn't. There has been NO PLOT that I can discern during the last 8 episodes (Kurt is gay!). And with the lack of plot, the characters have simply been reduced to puffed up caricatures, being brought out and put back simply to say one or two lines an episode that are immediately drowned out by some unnecessary musical number. Hint to producers: use the songs to ENHANCE the plot, not drive it.

Don't even get me started on the tribute episodes, which are becoming more and more difficult to take. Along with Madonna, Britney Spears (easily one of the worst episodes of the show) and Rocky Horror, the cast will be taking on Michael Jackson and, JUSTIN BIEBER!?!? WHAT!? If we are going to have to sit through these ridiculous self-indulgent episodes, at least pay tribute to real artists who have some longevity. But, alas, this is becoming the trend with the song selection on the show. They began with 70s-80s hits and showtunes, with the occasional top 40 song thrown in, which was awesome. It exposed the new generations to great music and artistry. I'm sorry but my radio is already polluted enough with the likes of Bruno Mars and Rihanna. We don't need any more of that on TV!

In short, Glee has gone from being fresh and humorous to being strident, mawkish, preachy, and self-congratulatory. In other words, it kind of makes my skin crawl. With the lack of truly creative entertainment out there, this is a sore disappointment.

1 comment:

  1. Girl--good post. I only saw Glee a few times in the early days, but I enjoyed it early on because I was like--"this is eerily similar to my high school show choir days!" But now they seem so far away from that.

    Now I just enjoy the mash-up songs and the occasional "celebrity" performance (because I find it humorous that celebrities are now clamoring to be on the show)--I agree that there's not much of a plot of late.

    Though I always love Sue--she's just gosh darn funny. Even when she's mean--even when she's the Grinch.