Friday, September 11, 2009


So I'm watching Glee! this season. They ran the pilot last spring, then again last week. The first new episode aired this week. I enjoyed it all very much.

I didn't think I would. When I first heard about the show and its premise I figured, "Pass!"

But then I stumbled into the first episode last spring and it was...surreal. Crazy obsessed people, music and dancing, weird relationships, high school as hell redux. It was fascinating.

And the second episode gives me confidence that it will continue to be a fascinating, slightly surreal world peopled with oddballs. And as the spouse and I discussed on our drive to the coast today, almost everyone on the show is Crazy!

Our hero, Will, teacher and glee club facilitator? Crazy.
Will's wife, self-absorbed housewife and crafter? Crazy!
The cash-flow obsessed Principal? Seriously crazy!
OCD Guidance Counselor in love with Will? Crazy.
Football Coach pining for OCD Girl? Crazy.
Butch Nazi-esque Cheerios Coach? Dangerous Crazy.
Cheerios? Run-of-the-mill celibacy club Crazy.
Rachel, would-be superstar? Crazy.
About the only character who isn't clearly crazy is the football quarterback Will had to mousetrap into joining Glee...until he admitted to himself that he liked it and chose to stay.

The first episode introduced us to everyone and sketched out the relationships. This second episode dug a little deeper--and there's been movement on some storyline fronts already, a very good sign.

Football Coach's speech to OCD Girl was heartfelt and made some valid points. I was pleased when she changed her mind to accept his date and backed off a little from her daydreamy pursuit of (the married) Will.

Cheerio Coach was simply growling at Will in the first episode. She was protective of her turf but didn't feel seriously threateneed. Now that she's had her funds reduced slightly--and lost face in a couple of showdowns with Will in front of the Principal--she's definitely out for blood. Will, of course, is clueless about this. He really doesn't grok--yet--just how seriously she takes this threat to the Cheerios' supremacy in school. But he'll learn...the hard way, probably.

There was lots of good stuff in this episode. The only real flaw, in my view, was when Will's wife learned that she wasn't really pregnant...but didn't admit it to him. Yes, she's self-absorbed. She's materialistic. She's a social climber. She shamelessly manipulates him emotionally. But I was really hoping she'd come clean--that we'd see that there was some line she wouldn't cross.

Alas, they went for the easy--and predictable--plot point of having her lie to him. Instead of telling Will she'd learned she wasn't pregnant after all, she told him she'd learned that it was a boy at her appointment that day. Sigh. So far there is nothing to suggest what Will ever saw in her besides her looks. I was hoping for better.

She did back off on the new house, agreeing that they could stay in the apartment they've got. Which, as my spouse pointed out to me, was some growth for her. But not much--and giving her some much needed humanity would strength the love triangle subplot. At this point, Will's choice is between his (self-absorbed, greedy, materialistic, manipulative and now deceitful) wife and OCD girl, who clearly has her own problems but at least sees him as something more than a meal ticket and fashion accessory. Were she more sympathetic, Will might have a genuine dilemma...if he ever sees the truth.

Will is almost painfully naive. He doesn't see his wife's flaws. He's the ONLY person in the entire school (including the students) who doesn't see OCD Girl pining for him, and he has no clue the Cheerios Coach has him in her mostly-metaphorical gunsights.

But overall I'm really enjoying this show a lot. I recommend it!

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