In which I write about a television series on a writing blog. However I am trying to keep this series of I am… Essays on this blog so here you have it.
Several years ago, when Glee came out, I was pretty skeptical. It seems to be a little out there and odd and kind of dorky. I mean it’s basically a musical TV series. Sort of like American Idol with a plot.
I passed on it. it was “lame”.
Suddenly, one day, Glee showed up on Netflix. Season One anyway. So hey, this is popular, let’s see what’s what with Glee. And I was hooked. The whole series was basically a series of cover songs of older music with a lose plot used to tie the songs together by lyrical themes. The cast is actually full of fairly annoying and unlikable characters but at the same time, I can’t help but hang on to their every plight.
What really helps the series is that the cast members can actually sing music. Hell part of the reason the entire cast is basically a bunch of nobodies is that they went out and found people off Broadway or wherever who could actually perform.
After the first season climaxed at the Sectionals competition, cleverly throwing back to the Journey song that brought the group together, Don’t Stop Believin’, I wanted more. I didn’t want it to stop. Sadly, Netflix had no Season 2. Occasionally I scooped up shows through Amazon when they would have promos for free video credit but I only managed to get a third of the way through.
Fortunately, Netflix caught up and Season 2 arrived. The series started taking new turns. The music became more up to date, which actually kind of hurts the series’ charm. The A Cappella group the Warblers was introduced and got many opportunities to show off throughout the season. More interestingly, several characters who in Season One were essentially furniture started to get pushed up into the spotlight. The core cast grew naturally as the original stars had been somewhat exhausted. The originals didn’t fall away at all, they just got a bit less screen time.
On a side note, the one character I’d like to know more about who has literally been referred to as furniture on the show has still never got anything, which is the ever present pianist. Who the hell is that guy anyway and why is he always hanging around?
Anyway, Season 2 got grander with it’s competitions and drama. It also made several interesting choices which really stood out during the competitions. During the Sectionals performance, the standard duo of Rachel and Finn are pushed aside for Quinn and Sam, but the camera work and staging is paralleled to the previous Sectionals of Rachel and Finn. (On a side note, I really wish Rachel had done this song because she would have kicked ass at it).
Even more clever was the Nationals duet finale with Rachel and Finn which does directly parallel the previous season finale except for the crucial difference that instead of accepting their love for each other there is a bit of animosity and even hatred at work.
Speaking of Rachel. Never have i been so torn on a character. Rachel Berry is the extremely self centered star performer of the group. She thinks she is “all the shit” when it comes to the club, which isn’t helped by the fact that she is right. This makes her extremely unlikable. On the other hand, she is so legitimately ridiculously talented that I could listen to her sing all day. It almost makes me want to cry at some points. Not every song is a winner but there are a lot of really brilliant songs done by Rachel.
Which brings up my last little point I’d like to touch on. There is this impending dilemma for the end of Season Three. The creators have decided that it doesn’t work to keep the characters perpetually in High School. The actors age out. They also may want to explore other roles (or even singing careers). It also gives the excuse for the writers to dump characters when their pay grade starts to spike. This creates “The Graduation Delima”. Officially, only Kurt, Finn and Rachel are leaving (supposedly/apparently). In watching Season Three, it feels like almost all of the main cast is in their Senior Year. Once they graduate, what happens?
They could continue with the show, get some new “kids” and keep going. The problem I see here is that so far, despite getting more characterization, Kurt, Finn and Rachel are the most important characters in the series. Quinn and Santana are ok, but a lot of the others are are pretty one dimensional despite.
There also could be an entirely different possibility of following the cast as they move on. There is a lot of push that could land a lot of the main characters in New York. Even if they rebrand the show ‘”Broadway” and move on, that could almost work.
Probably the best option, frankly, is to just end it.
Yeah, I like the show. I like it a lot. I watch repeats of the songs on Youtube and have a dozen or so MP3s of the tracks, but it may be time to just end it. I have gotten irritated at series endings in the past but I have seen many others just linger for way too long.
The best example I can think of is House, which should have also ended at Season 3. House fires his staff and ends up alone like he wants. No lame reality show style contest, no dumb prison junk or House goes crazy crazy, just an end. I used to really like House but the plots got so drama filled and outlandish and there are so many times House can misdiagnose things until he gets an epiphany before it gets old.
So my vote, despite my Gleekdom, is for Glee to end. Push them to a win at Nationals, give us the series climax we all want, and let ti quietly ride off on a huge bang.