Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Glee doesn't win, but still finishes first

     Last night was the first season finale of the Fox hit Glee, "Journey".  With a reality competition to add cast members, and an expanded order of twenty-five episodes for next season, it is likely we will not go so many weeks without Glee next year as we did this year.  It's a risk of overexposure, but I feel that the risk is currently outweighed by the benefits.  The little show that could about the little glee club that could finished strong, despite loosing their Regionals competition to arch-nemesis Vocal Adrenaline.

     The breakout star of the show is a long-time character actress that I have long admired, Jane Lynch.  Her portrayal or villain Sue Sylvester is neither static nor two-dimensional.  She has been given depth, and does cartwheels around it.  Her plot involving her sister and recruiting less than perfect Cheerios set her up for a big redemption last night as she single-handedly saved the group from going under, though she couldn't save them from a big defeat by a biased, stuck up panel.

      I have missed Jayma Mays's Emma Pillsbury this spring, as she took time off to film the new Smurfs movie. However, her screaming match last night in the school office was one of her best moments, and with John Stamos (Full House, ER) set to appear as a recurring character next season as her new dentist boyfriend, she should more than make up for it in the fall.

      Delivering another great guest turn was the legendary Idina Menzel (Rent, Wicked) as Coach Corcoran.  Her heartbreak over the way she handled her daughter, Rachel (Lea Michele) has been notable to watch, and the twist of her adoption last night should set up another return in the future, although the show's producers have promised less stunt guest casting next year, now that the series has been established.

      Each member of the club has had their great moments this season, and I worry that the expanded cast next year will push aside some of my favorites.  Brittany (Heather Morris) and Santana (Naya Rivera) have wormed their evil, psuedo-lesbian ways into our hearts and a full-time contract for next year.  Rachel and Finn (Corey Monteith) seem to have gotten back together.  Kurt (Chris Colfer) has one of the best father-son relationships on television, and will soon be getting a love interest.  As will the fantastic belter, Mercedes (Amber Riley).  Last, but not least, the kids who have changed the most over this year have been Quinn (Dianna Agron) and Puck (Mark Salling).  What started as a standard love triangle has left them as two of the most valuable members of this very talented cast.

      Not to mention the amount of music covered this year, released on three full albums and two half-albums, has been awesome.  Last night's Journey medley was particularly memorable, as was the juxtaposition of Bohemian Rhapsody with Quinn's delivery.

     Glee is off for the summer, but will return to Fox next fall.

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