Battle Of Cheerios Versus Jocks In Super Bowl "Glee"
At the beginning of the episode, Sue’s constant search for the ‘bigger and better’, combined with her mean (or should we say, insane) character finally lead her to schedule the cheerleading Regionals for her Cheerios on the same night as the McKinley High’s football championship final. At the same time, football Coach Beiste is struggling with hostilities within the ranks of her championship team: An argument over a lost game turns violent when some of the team members - lead by closet homosexual Karofsky - express their disgust at Finn, Puck, and Sam’s participation in the Glee Club. Knowing about the long history of bullying and mutual dislike between the two groups, Coach Beiste and Mr Shue decide to force them into being one united team by having them perform a "Thriller" themed half-time show together. The two teams try to come together in the spirit of MJ, but ultimately both are subjected to ridicule from other McKinley High students.
For those still caught in the throes of high school drama, the "Glee" Super Bowl episode can be seen as an encouragement, a motivation to break out of the popular/unpopular, acceptable/unacceptable, cool/geeky thought pattern that has been gripping high schools for decades. Given the fact that teenagers are in the middle of testing boundaries for themselves, defining and re-defining their personal values so as to find a place in society, this binary thinking might be understandable, but that doesn’t make it any less dangerous and oppressive.
As usual, "Glee" viewers were also treated to several great song performances last night. The episode’s core performance, a musical mix of Michael Jackson’s "Thriller" and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ "Heads Will Roll" – which also featured the University of Southern California’s Marching Band – was very impressive, as was the Cheerios’ opening sequence performing Katy Perry's "California Gurls." Nevertheless, none of the musical performances can be said to have been truly spectacular or extraordinary, and most of them did not actually add anything to the plot. For example, the Dalton Warblers' a capella performance of "Bills, Bills, Bills" felt like it was only added to give Blaine and Kurt some screen time without adding to the progress of the story.
Amidst the Super Bowl spectacular, "Glee" put forward an important message of society to implement mutual respect. While some larger story arches were continued, the "Glee" Super Bowl episode still presented a coherent story for non-Gleeks too, and was an entertaining culmination to a football-dominated Sunday.
Reach Christine Weitbrecht here.
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