Glee is a show which features in the FOX line-up of tv sitcoms. It draws a line between being a musical and comedy. The pilot was featured on May 19, September 2009 and it is now in its 5th season. Glee has made many a Billboard record because of its numerous covers of famous songs by its extremely talented actor-singers but its more impactful aspect is its numerous social statements through its many tortured protagonists. Glee mourned the death of one of its protagonists, Cory Monteith and that along with its dwindling TRP ratings has forced the network to make the 6th season its last. Here are some of the more impactful statements that Glee has made through its protagonists.
Every person has met a Rachel Berry like character in their life. She is the teacher’s pet, fiercely competitive, extremely focussed, is majorly hated for her goody-two-shooedness and she usually ends up successful. However that person is only a Rachel Berry like character. Rachel Berry is a different story altogether. Having being raised by two gay men, Rachel’s upbringing has beein meticulously scheduled with proper training in singing, acting, dance and dramatics. She is an ordinary looking girl who is constantly being picked on by the cooler kids in the school. When the Glee club was created by Mr Shuester, Rachel was the first person to audition for it because this is where she belonged. She knows that she is meant to be a broadway star and she can go to any extent to be one. Rachel is constantly told that she isn’t beautiful enough to make it big but her confidence in her powerful vocals and her unbounded spirit makes her special.
Kurt Hummel is the openly gay member of the glee club who has an oddly feminine voice. He is sassy and fabulous but is constantly being picked on for being what he is. Finding love is tough for Kurt but when he eventually finds him, it’s even harder to remain happy for each other’s success. The story of Kurt’s is the most heartening of all the characters in this show. The story of a restricted and bounded person limited by the twisted conventions of the society, jealous of his adopted brother and living most of his life in denial, is inspiring. Kurt eventually makes it to NYADA, the premier institute for performing arts and he realises his ambition for fashion. His vocal range is crazy and any man should be jealous of his courage. To the courageous and loving Kurt Hummel, hats off! To Chris Colfer who brought this character to life and winning the Golden Globe as a result, hats off!
Mercedes Jones is a belter. She is suave, sophisticated, egoistic and diva-ish. She idolises Whitney Houston and she aspires to be a soul and r&b singer. However Mercedes does not have the look. She is short and plump, which is a general disadvantage for any aspiring artist. And that does not stop her. She is fierce and ambitious and starts her recording career by selling demo cds of her album at a parking lot. She gets into the limelight when Kanye West’s maid buys her album, listen to it, likes it and then recommends it to Kanye. Mercedes Jones is an inspiration to all those people who believe that they are too over-weight to achieve their dreams.
Sanatana is the opposite of Mercedes. She is extremely attractive and finds herself tangled in the web of superficiality and glitter, she fails to see her own image and earlier plays a negative character. With music as her muse and the members of Glee club to support her, Santana learns about her own sexuality and about her own freedom. She is kicked out of her house when her Grand Ma learns that she is a lesbian. She goes to New York when she graduates without any plan, with just extreme confidence in her abilities. She considers herself a cut-throat bitch but soon realises that there is a lot of good in her. Santana Lopez is an enigma whose journey from being a stylish glitter doll to a real person is endearing.
Marley is the daughter of a cafeteria worker who is obese. She is constantly looked down upon because of her mother but she never fails to take a stand. She is subtle and beautiful, powerful yet restrained. She is threatened by her faulty genetics when a wicked cheerleader teases her about gaining weight because of the weight of her mother. She retches after eating anything and later suffers for bulimia. However she gains confidence about her own body image and that improves her vocals greatly. Through Marley, the writers of the show have shown various insecurities that plague the teenage mind and that is very relatable.
Glee is a special show. Not only did it help me learn about many new songs, it also helped me discover some insecurities and overcome them. I will be looking forward to the new season of Glee next year because we have come to care about its many protagonists.