The Glee Project!
Another Day Late Dollar Short Hulu Review by Christiana Gaudet
As much as I love Glee, I wasn’t going to watch the Glee Project.
First, it’s on the Oxygen Network, for gosh sakes. As a point of personal pride, I just pretend this network doesn’t exist. In fact, I mostly pretend TV doesn’t exist.
But, being a Gleek is like being gay. You don’t choose to be, you just are.
I also hate Reality TV. I hate it because of its name. Sorry, but “Reality TV” is an oxymoron, end of story.
I hate how cheesy and petty and stupid it makes people seem. I’m afraid it will actually cause those of us not on television to act as if we are.
Mostly, I hate it because it is so damn compelling. As much as I’ve tried not to, I’ve been sucked into “What Not to Wear,” “The Apprentice,” “The Sing-Off,” and “The Voice.”
I have yet to watch an episode of “American Idol” for fear it would simply be mind crack for me.
So, a night off, a bottle of wine, a willing husband and curiosity got the better of me. I thought I would check in, just for the first five minutes, to see just how terrible The Glee Project would be.
Problem is, it was awesome! It just what the doctor ordered for those of us going through end-of-the-season slushy withdrawals.
Here’s the premise. Forty thousand talented youth auditioned nation-wide for a chance to be one of twelve chosen to compete in this weekly TV show. The ultimate winner will be a guest star on seven episodes of Glee. Ryan Murphy explains it as a way of creating a talent pool from which to pull replacements for the Glee Club’s graduating seniors. Good. I was wondering how they would handle that.
The twelve contenders are all fabulously talented. Since what they are competing for is a spot on Glee, they need to be more than talented. They need to be able to take direction, learn dance steps quickly, emote appropriately, and fit into the larger-than-life Glee world.
Like the Glee cast, each of these kids is an individual. There’s a short boy, a dreadlocked boy, a fat girl, a hot Latina, a gay kid and so on. They are all likeable, and all believable as potential members of New Directions.
The show itself involves the usual reality TV moments of coaching, desperation, friendship, appraisal, and competition. Since the coaches and directors are actually from the Glee staff, it had enough star power to be interesting.
First, the kids each had to sing a line from the song “Signed, Sealed, Delivered.” The object was to show individuality. Then, they recorded a video together, performing Katy Perry’s “Firework.”
Each kid’s performance was evaluated. The bottom three each had to do a “last chance performance” for Ryan Murphy himself. Ryan then chose one to eliminate from the competition.
In this first episode, the kid went home because of his ‘tude, not his chops – an important lesson for all aspiring performers.
Although it is a cheesy reality show on Oxygen with disappointing ratings so far, The Glee Project has a lot of what makes Glee itself so much fun. I’ll be back next week to see what happens.