By Michelle Hart, Staff Writer
"Ever since Glee Club won sectionals, everybody has been looking at us differently," said Mercedes, marking the return of Fox's underdog hit "Glee" on Tuesday night.
"Get used to it guys, we're stars now," said Rachel, before having the ceremonial slushy thrown in her face.
While these remarks may or may not be true within the context of McKinley High School, it certainly applies to the show at large. After taking home the Golden Globe for Best Comedy or Musical, "Glee" has seen a steady rise in fame becoming wmuch more than a cult hit that seemingly appealed only to the musical theater buffs.
Even though the episode, entitled "Hell-O," is technically still part of the first season, it felt sort of like a new beginning, a sentiment echoed by the title and the above statements. And yet, Tuesday night's episode proved that the more things appear to change, the more they stay the same.
In fact, the episode offered no fresh developments aside from Rachel's possibly ill-fated romance with a member of the Glee club's main competitors, Vocal Adrenaline. Will Shuster, who found out that his wife was faking a pregnancy in order to keep him on a leash, is no less confused about his feelings for Ms. Pillsbury, the school's adorably neurotic guidance counselor. Similarly, Finn, who fills the clichéd role of the dumb jock with a sensitive side, finds himself stuck between wanting to be with Rachel, not being able to move on from Quinn (his cheerleader ex who failed to let him know that he was not the real father of her baby), and clinging tightly to his reputation.
If these stories feel trite and bloated, they are. But, hey, that is not exactly the point of "Glee." The show derives much of its uniqueness in celebrating life's mundane happenings, a characteristic enhanced by the frequent bursts of song and dance. In this way, the show represents a common fantasy that appeals to just about everyone. Music possesses this inherent ability to always know what kind of mood you find yourself in, being able to express feelings you may not be able to articulate yourself. It is arguably this quality that gives musicals (and more precisely, musical episodes of non-musical television shows) much of their magic. "Glee" deftly allows its characters to express sentiments in new and exciting ways, often using well-known songs to make their point even stronger.
In spite of the melodramatic, tried and true characters and story lines, "Glee" manages to be one of the most distinctive, most enjoyable shows on television. Even amidst all the references to change and new beginnings "Hell-O" made, "Glee" shows no signs of changing anytime soon, and that is perfectly fine.