An Open Letter To The Creators Of Glee

Mr.’s Murphy, Brennan, and Falchuk:

I’m going to be real with you guys. Like, really really real. As a fan of your show, I’ve put up with a lot of things that I thought I would only take from Mr.’s Lindelof and Cuse. The way you abuse your fanbase is, at times, ridiculous to astronomical proportions. Maybe I’m the only one that feels this way, but I highly doubt it.

Let me start by saying that I think there are some things that you guys do VERY well. The relationship between Kurt and his father being the thing you do best. You’ve changed the landscape of television, in my mind, for the better. Having openly gay characters on a show used to be taboo, but I think you’ve done a good job of showing a more realistic version of the everyday life of a teen wrestling with the issues brought on by his sexuality. You’ve won awards for the episodes that really highlight this aspect of the show, as you should.

You’ve also done a good job of keeping the chemistry between certain characters strong and fresh. The relationships among the kids is unlike any other television program. They all share common goals of fitting in, being liked, falling in love; but they also have personal aversions or affections for one another that keep the show running without getting boring. So again, I commend you.

Now for the part that is hard for me to say, made easier by the fact that you continually force it into my head: The television show “Glee” is a business fronting as entertainment. Worse, it is the Wal-Mart of television shows. I can’t turn around without seeing a magazine cover, billboard, or television commercial for something with the GLEE-brand on it.

And even that wouldn’t bother me so much if it weren’t so overtly inconsiderate. The beginning of this was after the first episode featuring Gwyneth Paltrow as “Holly Holiday.” The next day I was listening to the radio, and the DJ said that the next song would be “Forget You.” Assuming I was about to hear Cee-Lo, I turned the dial up. Instead I was subjected to hearing the version of the song from “Glee.” And I haven’t heard Cee-Lo’s version on the radio since.

The cast of the show currently has more Hot 100 entries than the Beatles. So, the greatest band of all-time, to some, has been beaten out by a ragtag group of misfits in a glee club doing covers of songs that are, in most cases, weeks or months old. This is sad on so many levels, it’s hard to compute in my mind.

And now an even more disturbing news story has come to my attention. “Glee” is said to be covering Rebecca Black’s hit viral video “Friday” in an upcoming episode. This is bothersome for a couple reasons: 1. The song itself is abysmal at best. 2. Now that the show is covering viral videos, where does the line get drawn? I mean, is there a chance that Artie will be singing “Chocolate Rain” or Kurt and Blaine will be doing a “What What” parody for the Warblers? No doubt the “Glee” version of “Friday” will become a number one hit, thus making Rebecca Black wealthy beyond her wildest dreams and, in the process, show every untalented 12-year old’s parents that spending a couple grand to shut your kid up could pay off a million times.
And seriously guys, did you see Colbert and Fallon take on “Friday” with The Roots? There is no way that song still has legs after those two played what I can only imagine is the greatest meta-parody version of a song that never deserved to be made in the first place.

If “Friday” does have legs left, they’ve both got severely sprained ankles and dislocated knees.

But there’s more to my disappointment than just the unprecedented proliferation of the music charts and deeming celebrity on anyone with money and a terrible, terrible idea for a song.

Why is it, creators of the television series “Glee,” that for every step forward, you take five steps back? I understand the necessity to keep things moving and that you want to please everyone in the audience, but there has to be a point you’re trying to get to in the end. I can best illustrate the point I’m making through the character Sue Sylvester.

Jane Lynch is a phenomenal actress. She’s proven this over and over again in television and movies like “Party Down” and Role Models. Her character on your show has served as a good adversary for Will Schuester, but you’ve made a point of giving her so many different personality changes, she may as well be a blank face.

Sometimes she’s nice to the glee club as a ruse to try to get them shut down. Sometimes she’s extremely rude to people who have done no wrong. Other times she’s shown with her sister, who is mentally disabled, as a caregiver full of love and sympathy. The character doesn’t make any sense.

At first it was nice to have her as comic relief. Then when her sister came into the show and the Becky character came on full-time, I thought maybe there would be a change in the way Sue was written. And it did change for a while. Then it went right back to lazy Sue stories where she’s trying to steal Christmas, or shoot Brittany out of a cannon. Is Jane Lynch just so good that it is impossible to write for her? Or did you let the character get away from you and now you don’t know how to reel her back in?

On the subject of Santana’s recent revelation that she is a lesbian…Really? I don’t want to question your reasons for taking the character in this direction, honestly it’s nice for her to have a storyline that’s interesting instead of her usual three one-liners per episode, but I’m afraid that starting another character arc of this sort is going to take time away from the Kurt stuff that you do so well. It was also done in a way that completely caught viewers by surprise, and probably turned some people away from the character.

I know that you guys have made a mint off of this show. As someone who used to really enjoy it, I don’t begrudge you your success. In fact, with season one being as good as it was, I’m over the moon happy for you. However, I can’t stand idly by and watch you destroy something that I think could be great again. All you have to do is put a little effort into it.

Maybe the next time someone declines usage for a song, just leave it alone. You guys don’t need any extra publicity. Maybe the next time you have a scene where Will and Sue are fighting in front of Figgins, you let Sue say something that a person might say instead of having her read out of the Diablo Cody book of witticisms.

Good luck with the rest of the season, guys. I really do hope that you turn things around and bring the show back to the glory days of roughly one year ago. If not, I’ll be forced to stop watching all together. Oh, and if you need a quick idea on how to improve the show in one simple gesture: Don’t do any more Lady Gaga-themed episodes!


Josh Terzino

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