Last night’s episode of Glee is pretty much the reason why I’m so ambivalent about this show. There were 10 minutes in there that were actually pretty good and moving and affecting. But it was 10 minutes that didn’t really belong to the show. It felt like 10 minutes that could have been plucked out and put into another, better show about teenagers and worked. But Glee has lost all good will with me, so instead of being affected or moved, I was just annoyed that the show was trying so hard.
If Glee weren’t made up of a bunch of caricatures who were more concerned with their racist cats than their boyfriends; If the show didn’t have an “issue of the week” mentality; If the earnestness felt earned and true rather than cloying; If the writers hadn’t worked so hard to create an admirable portrayal of a teenager with Down Syndrome only to pull the rug out from under that portrayal for no real reason except shock value; If Glee was a better, different show, they could have made this episode mean something. As it stands, they basically shoehorned a “shocking” event in the middle of more ridiculousness and the whole thing failed in my opinion. This doesn’t even take into consideration the WTF of Bieste suddenly wanting to get with Will and the stupid “catfishing” of Ryder plot.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – this show should stop with the earnest, cloying, “lesson of the week” structure and just focus on being about wild, well-rounded characters who burst through stereotypes and cliches to feel real. Except that this show will never be that. That would make too much sense.