Glee raked in 19 Emmy and 11 Golden Globe nominations (the most nominated series of the year), taking home four Emmy and two Grammy Awards in 2010. Parents, be afraid. Be very afraid… This mesmerizing, toe-tapping musical comedy-drama advertised to teens, focuses on inclusion for the high school glee club members as they sort out their relationships, sexuality and awkward social quandaries. Being a former theatre major, I tuned in week after week, excited to escape with the vocally-talented characters as they spun innovative twists on popular show tunes. However, I found myself emotionally connecting with the misfortunes of the students. Each slushie in the face, or slam into the locker from the popular kids unleashed the desire to defend my dejected friends. Then season two rolled around. The opening scene panned across two cheerleaders lying in bed, the brunette stating, “I love your sweet lady-kisses.”(Insert vinyl screech.) My heart pounded as I jumped for the remote, praying my soon-to-be 12-year-old wasn’t within earshot of my bedroom. I deleted Glee from my queue.
You see, in the first season, I shrugged at the inappropriate cheating, emotional affair, premarital sex or storyline about the distraught boy struggling with same-sex attractions. It’s in most shows these days; I’ve seen that before. But this bedroom shot pushed me past my desensitization meter. Months passed, and Glee was voted the season’s number 1 Culture series among Teens and a Top 3 series among Adults 18-49. If 13 million viewers thought Glee was a hit, I considered giving it another try. I mean, maybe it was just a random shock value thing. I caught up with the beautiful cast of characters, and loved each R&B/modern rock mashup (aka: intertwining two completely different music genres into one), and even enjoyed the guest appearances by stars like Gwyneth Paltrow. So, when the waves of doctrine were slipped in, I mentally disputed them and moved on. I sang along, my inner drama queen secretly wishing she could dance on stage with the multicultural cast.