Cast: Matthew Morrison, Jane Lynch, Lea Michele, Cory Monteith Running Time: 13 episodes (610 minutes total) Due Out: Dec. 29, 2009
PLOT: A high-school Spanish teacher (Morrison) becomes the director of the school's Glee club, hoping to restore it to its former glory, while the cheerleading coach (Lynch) tries to tear them down.
WHO'S IT FOR? As the show's creator said during the Golden Globes, "anyone who has ever gotten a wedgie in high school." Plus, it helps if you like singing and dancing.
It's easily the best pilot episode of the 2009 fall bunch. "Don't Stop Believin'" by Journey still stands as the signature moment for the show, even if the actual glee club performance was just a bunch of jazz hands. It taps into the nerd in (almost) all of us, and gets the toes tapping as well. Yeah, that's right. I just used "tap" one too many times there. My bad. Other "best song" moments can be "Sweet Caroline" and "Somebody to Love." It's not that I only like the oldies but goodies, but "The Thong Song" and "Gold Digger" just didn't cut it. There's more to this song and dance besides the ... song and dance. The dramedy is entertaining as well, especially when Lynch is involved. They also have the rare ability of taking a character who seems like a stereo-type at first, and showing they are much more.
I do have one complaint. And it's a big one. Live singing please! The signature part of the show is supposed to be the glee club. But rarely do we actually get to here the authentic singing. Sure, we get the overproduced, perfected studio cut, but I want the mistakes. Wouldn't that make the show even better? To hear the occasional missed note would bring us even further in to this high school world. Instead, they are taking us away. And guess what marketing geniuses? Then you would have two soundtracks to sell, and twice as many "Glee" singles to download on iTunes.
- Director's cut of Pilot episode - Audition Pieces: Rachel sings "Own My Own" and Mercedes sings "Respect" - Welcome to McKinley! - Fox Movie Channel presents Casting Session - "Deconstructing Glee with Ryan Murphy" Featurette - Dance Boot Camp Featurette
EXTRAS SCORE: 8/10
You'll be hard pressed to try and find another show on TV that is giving its core audience exactly what they are looking for. Plus, you can tell the cast and crew is putting an extraordinary effort into this show. With the coming episodes featuring Madonna and more, there is really only one thing you have hope for out of this show ... Show the flaws. You're not using a voiceover when you are speaking, right? So quit with the voiceover when you are singing.
FINAL SCORE: 8/10