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Thursday, October 22, 2009

Glee shines brightly


    This season’s biggest new hit is the Fox musical Glee. While several networks have tried musical-based shows without success (think the 2007 train wreck Viva Laughlin), Glee somehow pulls it off. How does a show like this reach such a large, enthusiastic audience?

     One reason has got to be the large and varied cast. Not every character is part of the Glee Club, and even some of the ones that are aren’t completely focused on music. There are football players and cheerleaders. There’s a black girl yearning to shine in a white-dominated school. There’s a pregnant teenager, and the baby isn’t her boyfriend’s. There’s the boy struggling with homosexuality in an unwelcome environment. There’s the coach in love with a woman in love with another man, and the woman married and lying to the latter. And of course, there’s the always fabulous, always surprisingly, always hilarious Jane Lynch.

      Of course, Jane is far from the only cast member that has proved their range. The most memorable up until now was Kurt (Chris Colfer) in “Preggers” a few weeks ago. In this week’s episode, the appropriately titled “Mash-Up”, several students struggled to meld parts of their lives that didn’t go well together. Puck (Mark Salling) was finally given a meaty role to work with, revealing his family life and his heart’s desire. Here was someone mostly confined to the background and now he had some serious plot, and pulled it off well. I wouldn’t be surprised if the young man begins getting film work on his summer hiatus. While with a cast this size, it may take awhile to get around to everyone, others will surely get their chance to be featured as the series goes along.

     The show will be off for a couple of weeks, as most Fox shows are at this time of years, but the tantalizing trailer left viewers anxious and eager for the next installment of this delicious drama.

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