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Movies & TV

26th May 2019

A tribute to Glee – the cheesiest and most incredible TV show we’ve ever seen

Rudi Kinsella


Every episode of Glee is coming to Netflix next month, and we really don’t deserve a show of its quality.

The Wire. The Sopranos. Game of Thrones. Breaking Bad. Lost.

Just some of the biggest TV spectacles of the past 20 years, but we’re here to talk about a show that belongs among them, one of the more forgotten pieces of televisual brilliance.

We obviously mean Glee.

The series won countless awards, had a massive audience and was without a doubt one of the CHEESIEST television shows we’ve ever seen.

And that cheese was part of the reason why it was so damn good.

We will only be looking at the masterpiece that was the first season of Glee, as it did go a little bit off the rails by the end. This was largely due to the show deciding to add a ridiculous amount of new characters, to the point that it was borderline impossible to keep up with it.

There was also the tragic death of Cory Monteith (Finn Hudson), who died while the show was still filming, and it was never the same again, as you might imagine.

But the first season was an absolute classic, and here’s why.

The storylines

As we’ve said, the first season of Glee was a masterpiece.

The drama you had in your secondary school had absolutely nothing on what was going on in William McKinley High. Teen pregnancies, love triangles, massive amounts of sex and seemingly endless bullying, you couldn’t take your eyes off it for a second.

And all of these issues dealt with through the form of a Glee club singing classic songs? Can’t beat it.

Some of the scenes were genuinely as emotional as you’ll get on television.

Clip via Bradley Johnson

A proper villain

There has been a lot of chat about Game of Thrones over the past couple of months, and who the real villain of the show was. Was it The Night King, was it Cersei, was it Dany, was it the cruel world of politics itself?

Well there was no denying who it was in Glee – the head cheerleader coach, Sue Sylvester. God, she was horrible.

She tortured the students and made it her mission to end the Glee club, by any means necessary. The worst crime of all.

Portrayed incredibly by Jane Lynch, she is one of the most detestable television characters we can remember. Until the ninth episode, that is.

Following a typical run of events that saw Sylvester up to her usual horrible antics, the episode closes with her compassionately taking care of her sister Jean, who has Down Syndrome, in what is an extremely emotional scene.

We get an insight into her world and her private life, and another layer is added to what was already a compelling “villain”.

Clip via Neuton Gama

The musical numbers

My god the musical numbers. Seeing a dramatic scene play out in a genuine, serious way is boring. We’ve seen that done a million times before.

Seeing a dramatic scene play out by each of the characters involved singing a rendition of ‘Total Eclipse of the Heart’? Give me that all day, every day.

Clip via MusicOfGlee

Or what about their farewell to beloved teacher Mr. Schuester? Try hold back the tears with this one, we dare you.

Clip via MusicOfGlee

Or their mash-ups. If anyone knew how to do a mash-up, it was the lads in Glee club.

Clip via Ree Reee7

Clip via MusicOfGlee

The characters

Where do we start? We had Finn and Puck, two handsome high-school jocks who made the transition from the football pitch to the stage, as we’ve seen many times before. We had Rachel, the musical theatre nerd who would do anything to make it on Broadway.

But it was the others who really made the show what it was. Mr. Schuester (or Mr. Schue for short) had a Jurgen Klopp level of inspiration when it came to his pre-show speeches.

Kurt, who came out as gay early in the first season, was a fan favourite for his flamboyant personality and sassy confidence. The episode where he joins the football team and finally makes his dad proud… We’re going to need a second.

Or Principal Figgins. What a legend. His main job as principal of the school was basically to exclusively look after the Glee club, which is bonkers, but once you look past that, you see one of the show’s funniest characters.

Clip via Glee Scenes

Then you had the likes of Artie, Mercedes, Quinn, Santana, Emma, Blaine – the list goes on. All great characters in their own right, all of whom made the show what it was.

If this has you craving a binge watch of the series, then we’ve good some great news; Glee is coming to Netflix on 30 June.

We’re counting down the days.

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