Glee Covers Vogue
April 14, 2010 11:46 AM   Subscribe

The show Glee has created a remake of Madonna’s original Vogue music video, starring Jane Lynch. It's part of a promotional campaign for their upcoming (4/20) “Madonna” episode. Available at: Hulu, Fox, and Yahoo.

There's also a crappy-quality reversed version on Youtube.

I apologize if any of these videos are not available outside of the US and/or Canada. I tried to include additional link options, so as many people as possible could watch.
posted by zarq (111 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
Also, GlobalTV Canada has last night's full episode, but I can't view it to see if the video was included.
posted by zarq at 11:47 AM on April 14, 2010


4/20? Why couldn't they have made it the Bob Marley episode?
posted by wheelieman at 11:48 AM on April 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


As someone who won't get a chance to watch Glee (not a tv-ist thing here, time-ist), can someone tell me whether or not this whole Glee thing is taking a piss out of itself or if it's taking itself seriously? Jane Lynch should be a dead giveaway and the promos imply it's a satire but I hear it's all heartfelt song and dance numbers mixed with high school drama.
posted by cavalier at 11:52 AM on April 14, 2010


can someone tell me whether or not this whole Glee thing is taking a piss out of itself or if it's taking itself seriously

Both.
posted by WolfDaddy at 11:54 AM on April 14, 2010 [7 favorites]


wheelieman: "4/20? Why couldn't they have made it the Bob Marley episode?"

Or Hitler. It could have been one of those hilarious Downfall things.
posted by Plutor at 11:56 AM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


cavalier, Glee is wonderfully ridiculous. There's the high school drama, the singing, and then there's Jane Lynch. For more, here are 63 quotes from her character, Sue Sylvester. All text, so it's probably visible internationally. Of course, if you're just reading the lines, you miss the context, interaction and delivery, which make it all the better.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:56 AM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


I really wish Glee was better. It's just too damn whitebread for me, especially since I did a lot of high school theater and there was a huge overlap between our casts and the folks in the choir that did essentially the same stuff as Glee (ours was called "Shabop Shoppe", no lie). It's similar to the reason I can't watch Community.
posted by klangklangston at 11:57 AM on April 14, 2010 [5 favorites]


can someone tell me whether or not this whole Glee thing is taking a piss out of itself or if it's taking itself seriously?

Half and half. There's no doubt you've got to put up with some melodrama if you're going to watch it, but Jane Lynch and Stephen Tobolowski are both hillarious caricature-type characters. The song-and-dance is a combination of some supplementing the storyline but mostly just some entertaining jamming. Our recent MeFi discussion of Jazmine Sullivan's song on Glee will give you some idea.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 11:57 AM on April 14, 2010


I agree...it's both... I knows exactly what it is and what it isn't and plays it accordingly.. One of the best things going on TV right now, and one of about three shows I actually watch (thank you TiVo!)

This was on the show the other night, I caught part of it while the wife was watching...and thought...clever, and well done!
posted by HuronBob at 11:58 AM on April 14, 2010


My favorite line from last night's episode: "Did you know dolphins are just gay sharks? Yeah. They are."

Brilliant, just brilliant.
posted by HeyAllie at 11:58 AM on April 14, 2010 [8 favorites]


Jane Lynch is the best part about that show, but she should be the baseline for character and writing, not the fantastic exception.
posted by klangklangston at 11:59 AM on April 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


I really wish Glee was better. It's just too damn whitebread for me,

I agree. Not enough camp and not enough gay (which is saying a lot from a show with a Madonna Vogue cover). More Hedwig and less teen drama. Of course I'm guessing I'm not the target audience.
posted by geoff. at 12:03 PM on April 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


Glee would be excellent if they'd just stop singing!

I mean, one song per show, sure, I could tolerate that, but jeez, it's like every 5 minutes with another overwrought production number.

Thank god for DVR fast forward.
posted by madajb at 12:04 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Glee would be excellent if they'd just stop singing!

I mean, one song per show, sure, I could tolerate that, but jeez, it's like every 5 minutes with another overwrought production number.


Saw my first episode last night. It's porn. Unconvincing characters and lame dialogue stringing together the payoff scenes: pop tune bukkake.
posted by adamdschneider at 12:08 PM on April 14, 2010 [6 favorites]


I wish Glee's characters were written more coherently. One minute they're arguing and the next they're making up, and then back to fighting again. I guess the manic plot shifts are supposed to reflect how teenagers think and feel, but it gets a bit much to follow after a while. I'd also like Glee to get off my lawn, while they're jotting down my suggestions.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:09 PM on April 14, 2010


I like Glee, but I don't love it. Here is what Glee needs to do to make me love it:

1. Up Jane Lynch's screen time (as well as Puck's).
2. Stop having episodes that contain all songs about a theme (like smiling) or contain a word (like hello).
3. Make Jessalyn Gilsig as crazy as she was on Nip/Tuck.
4. Scratch 3. Just make the drama on Glee more like the drama on Nip/Tuck and stop having plot arcs that revolve around the fact that Will's song with Emma is (gasp!) the song played at Will and Terri's prom!
5. Make Mike Chang dance in the background all the time.
posted by joan cusack the second at 12:12 PM on April 14, 2010 [7 favorites]


I wish that Hulu didn't run an ad before I watched what was essentially an ad.
posted by frecklefaerie at 12:12 PM on April 14, 2010


Jane Lynch today is sexier than Madonna today.

I'm sure Jane Lynch in 1990 was sexier than Madonna in 1990, too.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 12:14 PM on April 14, 2010 [5 favorites]


I'm not a fan, but the editor of the weekly I freelance for is, and she decided someone needed to do recaps on our blog. So...
posted by total warfare frown at 12:16 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


I agree. Not enough camp and not enough gay (which is saying a lot from a show with a Madonna Vogue cover)."

Well, and frankly, it seems really self-conscious about the campiness and the gay subtexts, which makes them awkward. Glee needs to come out of the closet, embrace the gay and the campy and move forward with that as part of the open core identity instead of treating it like wink-wink-are-you-being-served?
posted by klangklangston at 12:16 PM on April 14, 2010 [5 favorites]




I really wish Glee was better. It's just too damn whitebread for me


Agreed. Glee should be like 200% crazier and campier. Crazy like more then one evil twin per season and a singing serial killer and balloon drops all the time for no reason.
posted by The Whelk at 12:17 PM on April 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


Madonna 'Has No Idea What 'Glee' Is'
"It seems as if everyone on the planet is planning on tuning in to watch 'Glee' -- everyone, that is, except Madonna, whose songs will be featured on the show next week. 'Madonna doesn't have a TV and has no idea what 'Glee' is,' a friend of the Material Girl tells me. 'The show did ask her if she wanted to make an appearance in the much-hyped Madonna episode. She said 'no thanks' and, to be honest, she would rather they sing an Elton John song than butcher one of hers.' It's true that artists have no control over who sings their songs on TV, although Madonna will make over $100,000 in royalties from the 'Glee' episode that contains her material."
posted by ericb at 12:19 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


The creative team it needs is Tim Heidecker, Eric Warheim and Bruce Labruce.
posted by klangklangston at 12:20 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Okay, so.

That video was way fun! Really, it was. But I'm still not a "GLEEk" or whatever. I just can't approve of the way the show plays fast and loose with registers of realism and sacrifices the integrity of the premise to this kind of fan-pandering wankery. I still don't get off on seeing teenagers fantasies writ large with big budgets, which is basically what their perfectly mixed production numbers amount to.

I agree that more Hedwiggery and seriously theaternerd numbers would be much truer than all this pop classic coverage. Don't the Glee kids really want to sing Sondheim and Weill? I would.

I guess I can't blame the kids of today for missing music videos on television...
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 12:24 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Jane Lynch is the best part about that show, but she should be the baseline for character and writing, not the fantastic exception.

I read a review that said that without Jane Lynch the show would be a bargain-basement teen soap opera.

Glee needs to come out of the closet, embrace the gay and the campy and move forward with that as part of the open core identity instead of treating it like wink-wink-are-you-being-served?

Well, "American Idol" needs to do that too but it ain't gonna happen.

Jane Lynch today is sexier than Madonna today.

After the music video for "Celebration" I have a hard time picturing Madonna getting away with filming another music video ever again.
posted by blucevalo at 12:34 PM on April 14, 2010


Don't the Glee kids really want to sing Sondheim and Weill? I would.

YES YES YES
posted by blucevalo at 12:35 PM on April 14, 2010


>> 'Madonna doesn't have a TV and has no idea what 'Glee' is,' a friend of the Material Girl tells me.

"Madonna did, however, state that she is aware there's an invention called television, and that on this invention they show shows."
posted by The Card Cheat at 12:35 PM on April 14, 2010 [8 favorites]


Not enough camp and not enough gay

That's now how Sue "C"s it.

gayclaws -- LAWL
posted by WolfDaddy at 12:38 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Is it weird that whenever Vogue is mentioned, I always think of this video?
posted by bettafish at 12:38 PM on April 14, 2010 [6 favorites]


cause 300 was significantly more fabulous then the original video?
posted by The Whelk at 12:44 PM on April 14, 2010


I've only managed to watch a single episode all the way through. The dialogue is mostly pretty awful. But this bit made me laugh:

Emma: Rachel, did you just throw up?
Rachel: No. I tried, but I guess I just don't have a gag reflex.
Emma: One day when you're older, that'll turn out to be a gift.
posted by zarq at 12:44 PM on April 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


Okay that Vogue 300 video was brilliant.
posted by WolfDaddy at 12:47 PM on April 14, 2010


My biggest pet peeve about Glee is that the instruments filmed in the background of the musical numbers rarely if ever match the instruments being played as part of the song (and I'm not talking about synchronization -- they're usually completely the wrong instruments!).

I know that musicals are almost always zany and over-the-top. However, when I watch The Sound of Music, I actually feel like Judy Garland is singing on the set, and to the camera -- not lip-syncing to a pitch-perfect, autotuned studio recording. Glee is just one notch too incredulous for me to take seriously.

Oh, and it's entirely possible to poke fun at High School stereotypes without actually enforcing/strengthening them, which is something that Glee is especially guilty of. The writers of Glee need to hire Tina Fey as a consultant -- Mean Girls is the only movie I can think of that actually did a realistic portrayal of an American high school.
posted by schmod at 12:55 PM on April 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


Wow, you guys are taking Glee way more seriously than it takes itself. If it was all-Jane-lynch-all-the-time it would get old fast. It's a high-school-drama show that happens to be self-aware enough to poke fun at the genre while it uses its conventions. Brilliant.

Well, and frankly, it seems really self-conscious about the campiness and the gay subtexts, which makes them awkward. Glee needs to come out of the closet, embrace the gay and the campy and move forward with that as part of the open core identity instead of treating it like wink-wink-are-you-being-served?

You must have missed most of last season, where the gay character's coming out to his father, and his father's response, were heartfelt and genuine, and went beyond the campy-gay-kid and hardass-working-class-dad cliche (while using that convention!).

Each individual show is pretty much populated by cardboard characters, but over multiple episodes some of those characters become well-rounded 3D people (which makes the 2D cheerleaders and jocks even more entertaining in their flimsiness.)

I love watching it with my teenagers. It's the only show any of us plan ahead to watch.
posted by headnsouth at 12:58 PM on April 14, 2010 [4 favorites]


However, when I watch The Sound of Music, I actually feel like Judy Garland is singing on the set, and to the camera

Talk about the instrument not matching the visual!!!! ;-)
posted by WolfDaddy at 12:58 PM on April 14, 2010 [14 favorites]


You had me at "Jane Lynch." I love her; I like the music; the writing has some good moments, if also a tendency toward cheap melodrama overall.

I've been looking forward to its return (but Lost wins for what I'll watch the night it's broadcast.)
posted by Zed at 12:59 PM on April 14, 2010


Yep, the only video that works in the original post is the Yahoo one, which seems to be unauthorized and waiting to be shot down any minute. I really have no idea about this Glee thing, but it sure as hell is teaching me all about the state of region blocking streaming. And reversed versions now? Things are getting weird.
posted by Iosephus at 12:59 PM on April 14, 2010


However, when I watch The Sound of Music, I actually feel like Judy Garland is singing on the set, and to the camera -- not lip-syncing to a pitch-perfect, autotuned studio recording.

What alternate universe version of "The Sound of Music" are you watching that has Judy Garland in it? Whatever it is, I have to get my hands on it!
posted by blucevalo at 12:59 PM on April 14, 2010 [6 favorites]


Glee needs to come out of the closet, embrace the gay and the campy and move forward with that as part of the open core identity instead of treating it like wink-wink-are-you-being-served?

Read the FPP. They are now branding themselves with a shot-for-shot remake of the Vogue video. Any gayer and campier and you'd have to air it on a pay channel.
posted by Navelgazer at 1:00 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


'Madonna doesn't have a TV and has no idea what 'Glee' is,' a friend of the Material Girl tells me.

That speaks volumes.
posted by blucevalo at 1:00 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Sigh. Yes, Julie Andrews was the star of the Sound of Music.....
posted by schmod at 1:05 PM on April 14, 2010


I actually felt bad for a minute there, liking the 300 version better than the Glee version. I was thinking "Awww, maybe I'm not such a gay man inside after all."

hahahah, silly bitch.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 1:06 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


"You must have missed most of last season, where the gay character's coming out to his father, and his father's response, were heartfelt and genuine, and went beyond the campy-gay-kid and hardass-working-class-dad cliche (while using that convention!). "

Yeah, again, that should be the baseline, not the glorious exception. And wasn't that essentially just once episode?

I dunno, I guess on this, I feel the same way that I do when discussing Obama—he's OK, I guess, but I wish that he were about three times more liberal than he actually is.
posted by klangklangston at 1:13 PM on April 14, 2010


Nearly Obama needs more big budget musical numbers about camp icons.
posted by The Whelk at 1:15 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


(clearly)
posted by The Whelk at 1:15 PM on April 14, 2010


I've only watched a couple of episodes. Last night, I tried again, and came to the conclusion that Glee has already jumped the shark. They work too hard to force the songs into the story line, and the musical performances really aren't that great. The show pretty much peaked with Don't Stop Believing, and it's been trying to recapture that glory ever since.*

I was looking forward to the Vogue video, and ended up switching it off after about a minute because I found it painful to watch. To me, it didn't come off as campy, it came off as a poorly done copy by people who were trying too hard.

*Kinda the way Andrew Garcia on American Idol peaked early on with his cover of Straight Up, and has been trying to recreate it ever since.
posted by MexicanYenta at 1:21 PM on April 14, 2010


Also, the show does not "tend towards cheap melodrama" - cheap melodrama is its bread and butter. It's the only way the show works as well as it does.

To explain, they basically have all of these stock characters. They've got the over-acchiever, the doe-eyed innocent, the lovable gallump, the sexy bad-boy, the mustache-twirling villain, etc. We know the broad-strokes of the characters the moment we see them. For this kind of show, that's a Good Thing.

So they take these characters and throw them through classically melodramatic plot turns of love and betrayal and espionage and all that. So far none of this is at all original - it's just a soap opera. But the twists all have comically dark and demented aspects to them, which not only causes the appropriate coughs and sputters, but also keeps the show from falling into the soap-opera abyss.

This is necessary because the rhythms of the show are original and are a huge factor in why it's as good as it is. So they take these stock characters, throw them in the plot-twist blender, and set them loose, but what we get then are usually small character moments, adding layers to these deeply, deeply flawed folks until it becomes almost torturous to watch them, and then they slingshot in the other direction and break the tension with glorious musical numbers (some of these better than others, of course. "Hello, Goodbye" was transcendent last night. "Hello, I Love You," was basically useless.)
posted by Navelgazer at 1:21 PM on April 14, 2010 [5 favorites]


3. Make Jessalyn Gilsig as crazy as she was on Nip/Tuck.

Make Terri even crazier? She was already cartoonishly crazy and evil. Will and Terri's storyline was my least favorite from the first half of the season. Will Schuester was the dumbest character on TV not named Ralph Wiggum. And Ralph isn't a teacher. I was so glad to see that storyline more or less resolved.
posted by kmz at 1:28 PM on April 14, 2010 [4 favorites]


And wasn't that essentially just once episode?

Kurt's relationship with his dad and the consequences of his coming out was also a significant subplot of this episode, and his crush on Finn played a prominent role in one or two other episodes. I don't read it as self-conscious or inadequately embraced (and consider Kurt and his dad to be one of the best parts of the show.)
posted by Zed at 1:29 PM on April 14, 2010


However, when I watch The Sound of Music, I actually feel like Judy Garland is singing on the set, and to the camera...

Term grade for GAY 101: F.
posted by ericb at 1:36 PM on April 14, 2010 [10 favorites]


The video's god-awful, and that comes from someone who's really been enjoying the show.

I'm beginning to see signs that the show's losing its path. First, Sue isn't a singer. Just because she's becoming one of the most popular character doesn't mean you start messing with her character guidelines to integrate her into the musical numbers, much less have her be the star of an autotuned 'Vogue' cover.

Second, I found the Season 1.5 premiere (seriously, BSG, thanks so much for giving every Tom, Dick and Harry network that idea) to be really disappointing. It is such a hackneyed plot cliche – and not a good one – to have a season build towards major character growth in a season finale and then roll it all back in the next season's premiere, just so you can lazily elongate the same plotlines you'd been developing instead of birthing new ones. That's what they did here, even to the point of having severely character-atypical behavior.

Now, I know to expect from Glee that Sue is always going to be sabotaging Will with complete immunity no matter what she does; that the glee club will always be irrationally challenged by Figgins and perpetually on the cusp of extinction no matter what its successes; that Will and Emma, and Quinn and Rachel, are going to be worse than Maddie and David, or Sam and Diane.

In short, the characters apparently aren't going to develop but merely keep resetting, and as someone whose bread-and-butter is Joss Whedon (who's actually due to direct an episode, no kidding), that's one of the most boring things I can possibly envision. I suppose I"m a little bit ticked because the Season 1.5 premiere kind of felt like one big "PSYCH! Just kidding!" moment.

And if you're going to scream 'spoilers!' at me, then what are you doing in a thread discussing the "next episode" promo that appeared at the end of the season 1.5 premiere, for God's sake?
posted by WCityMike at 1:40 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


cheap melodrama is its bread and butter. It's the only way the show works as well as it does.

My biggest beef is too much repetition, too many simple reversals of the same point. How many Character X is quitting! Is this The End of Glee Club?!?! plots have we had in just 14 episodes? There was more than one with Rachel alone. Hence "cheap" melodrama. I imagine I'd be fine with the melodrama and stock characters if I found the twists as satisfying as you seem to. De gustibus non est disputandum and all that.
posted by Zed at 1:40 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Watch: Jane Lynch and Her Fiancee Lara Embry Show Off Their Engagement Rings.
posted by ericb at 1:42 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


headnsouth: Wow, you guys are taking Glee way more seriously than it takes itself. If it was all-Jane-lynch-all-the-time it would get old fast. It's a high-school-drama show that happens to be self-aware enough to poke fun at the genre while it uses its conventions. Brilliant.

Bingo. My new theory is that Glee fans are people who aren't made uncomfortable by a tension between irony and sincerity. As a matter of fact, I rather relish that tension when I see it.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 1:48 PM on April 14, 2010 [8 favorites]


WCityMike - I don't like it any better than you do, but it happens with almost every "risky" show that gets the go-ahead. They get thirteen episodes or whatever to build their characters and stories to a worthwhile conclusion, and then if people start watching, they get picked up for future seasons and suddenly have much more space to play out stories which would have been truncated before. Hence, this episode, which some A.V. Club commentor referred to as an "anti-Deus ex Machina" from the final 15 minutes of the previous ep, walking back all the triumphs which the mid-season "finale" had thrown together a little haphazardly during sectionals.

And while I don't dig walking back to earlier conflicts, I thought the way "Hell-o" did it to be knowing and hilarious and appropriately dark and sad.

But maybe I'm just a Glee apologist.
posted by Navelgazer at 1:54 PM on April 14, 2010


It's a teen soap opera that takes itself seriously 50% of the time and has increasingly over-the-top musical numbers and has Jane Lynch on it. I do not understand why people keep complaining about it: if that is not your cup of tea, there are 8 gazillion other channels with shows on them.
posted by NoraReed at 1:55 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


There's a Lady Gaga episode coming soon too. Prepare your FPP now if you're predisposed to such things.
posted by mykescipark at 1:56 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


It is such a hackneyed plot cliche – and not a good one – to have a season build towards major character growth in a season finale and then roll it all back in the next season's premiere, just so you can lazily elongate the same plotlines you'd been developing instead of birthing new ones.

Ugh. Chuck syndrome. I haven't actually watched this week's Glee ep yet, but it's very disappointing to hear that. I also haven't watched the last few Chuck eps where I hear there might actually be some plot development, but I'm not holding my breath. I was so so disappointed with the giant reset button at the beginning of this season.
posted by kmz at 1:57 PM on April 14, 2010


the writing has some good moments, if also a tendency toward cheap melodrama overall.

Wait, what? Saying that Glee has a tendency toward melodrama is like saying that Michael Bay movies have a tendency toward modest bursts of flame.
posted by Tomorrowful at 1:59 PM on April 14, 2010 [5 favorites]


I hate Glee and don't understand the uproar over it. Glee is Cop Rock in High School.

There, I said it.

I love Jane Lynch though.

I also hate House.
posted by eatdonuts at 2:03 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


I liked Glee a lot more before I found Community, which does a lot of the crazy half-self-aware with ridiculous characters who still have genuine emotions and arcs thing about thirty times better. The only difference was that Glee had songs, but I pretty quickly tired of how incredibly overproduced all the numbers are, as well as how milquetoast the song choices are.
posted by shakespeherian at 2:27 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


I gotta admit, I do not get the Glee love at all. As far as I can tell, it's just a High School Musical redux that wants to be a Christopher Guest-directed Strangers with Candy-style parody of Fame. It does not succeed.

But, hey, the people love mediocrity. I can only assume it's for the sort of people who actually enjoy American Idol.
posted by Sys Rq at 2:27 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


I watch it for the song & dance numbers. The overly-dramatic and goofy storylines perfectly mimic the Broadway musicals of the 50s and 60s - Oklahoma!, Guy and Dolls, Carousel, Funny Girl. The show numbers spring up on the same thinly veiled pretexts. I'm delighted that it's back, and sorry I missed the 1st half of the 1st season. Lots of spot-the-references, like Shoe and the mattresses (Once Upon a Mattress), and Rachel singing "Don't Rain on My Parade" (Funny Girl). I like that the show has a heart, the good guys mostly win, and meanness is not valued. Just like in musical theater.

My main complaint is the overuse of auto-tune, although I kind of like that sound, but it shouldn't be ever-present.
posted by theora55 at 2:31 PM on April 14, 2010


We saw our first Glee episode last night. Way too much melodrama and too much focus on annoying Rachel girl. Would have liked more of the other characters. The lead guy (the teacher of the glee club) is a schmuck and comes up with stupid premises (the song TITLE has to have "hello" in it?! Talk about limiting).

Plus, he shut down the best song sequence in the show.

I'd love to see more of the edgier characters (I see above that there was a storyline around the openly gay character, and I'm sorry I missed that).

As someone who is not a big fan of hers, I felt there was too much Jane Lynch. It's like they're making it a showcase for this maniacal manipulative evil person. And she's so OBVIOUS about it. I'd MUCH prefer subtlety or, to go in the other direction, completely campy over the creepy-stalker vibe this was giving the episode I saw.
posted by misha at 2:33 PM on April 14, 2010


> If it was all-Jane-lynch-all-the-time it would get old fast.

Yeah. Obviously, she's hilarious, and by far the best part of a show I prefer in small and infrequent doses-- but her character works as contrast and counterpoint. Basically, she's too spicy to be on-camera all the time. Also, a genuinely nasty anti-hero can carry a sitcom (cf. Jay Mohr, in Action), but as the tack is taken so rarely, it's probably rather hard to sell.
posted by darth_tedious at 2:46 PM on April 14, 2010


that Will and Emma, and Quinn and Rachel, are going to be worse than Maddie and David, or Sam and Diane.

Quinn and Rachel? Someone's been reading too much fanfic.
posted by nooneyouknow at 2:46 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


'Madonna doesn't have a TV and has no idea what 'Glee' is,' a friend of the Material Girl tells me.

Here is an article that says the complete opposite.
posted by MiltonRandKalman at 2:54 PM on April 14, 2010


Madonna doesn't have a TV

She also reports that your favorite band sucks.
posted by shakespeherian at 2:56 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Here is an article that says the complete opposite.

Well, I'll be! Entertainment Weekly refers to itself the same way I refer to it!

"EW."
posted by Sys Rq at 3:07 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Is this something I'd have to know if Madonna has a TV to understand?
posted by found missing at 3:08 PM on April 14, 2010 [4 favorites]


> The overly-dramatic and goofy storylines perfectly mimic the Broadway musicals of the 50s and 60s - Oklahoma!, Guy and Dolls, Carousel, Funny Girl.

No, the pretexts used in Glee are much more similar to the earlier musicals of the 1930's: stage productions. The 50's and 60's musicals you name, and most of their contemporaries, are the "just bust out singing and dancing for no reason" ilk, plus the trendy ballet dream sequences. The Gold Diggers, The Mickey and Judy musicals, up through For Me and My Gal are all centered on stage performances. Most musicals after them are a mutating mix of staged performances and "naturalized" numbers, so there are counterexamples from many shows... The Sound of Music is a good example of a mixed naturalized and staged musical.

After the late '60s, all bets are off and it's pastiche and camp left, right and center stage. Which I like very well, thank you. The reflexivity musicals still use when they do a show about a show reflects one of the genre's fundamental strengths: the willingness to foreground the spectacle of talent. Bringing a procenium into a film/tv text is saying something interesting about entertainment conventions and mediums as they relate to one another.

Anyway, it's the "postmodern" era now. We've had Urinetown in high schools and Avenue Q on B'way and Across The Universe, and they even made a movie of Nine, for some reason. We've been alllllll over the genre by now, and the mixed registers of realism I mentioned before are what brings this show down for me. Musicals are often very much about performers and performance, and sustaining interest in the drama of performance has to be the biggest challenge in Glee, infinite length and all. So I have sympathy, but the stage numbers bleed into montage fantasies of action all over the school (Hello, I Love You) and boast preposterously expensive costumes and sets to not flaut the show's premise (Glee Club is going to be cut for funding reasons.) It's just having its cake and eating it too, without really paying the same dues to film and musical theater and vaudeville on a formal level that its forebears have often, when at their best, done, and it's not on account of the irony-sincerity balancing act. It's a cheap, lazy, artless musical theater sensibility that relies too heavily on tv conventions of fast cutting and loudness. It's the commercial impossibility of going without perfectly polished production numbers on network primetime. If you put something as raggedy and weird as Hedwig on, you'd have a failed show. But then again, I guess for "real" talented teens singing live, there's that OTHER juggernaut, with the voting and the popularity contest.

And by the way, got any underrated musicals to recommend? I am literally OUT of movie musicals. I am down to The Girl Can't Help it, which was nice actually.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 3:11 PM on April 14, 2010 [6 favorites]


nooneyouknow: Quinn and Rachel? Someone's been reading too much fanfic.

I'll be in my bunk.
posted by WCityMike at 3:16 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Here is an article that says the complete opposite.

What the article says: "EW has learned that Madonna has given Glee the rights to her catalog and that an all-Madonna-music episode is in the works for early next year."

I suspect EW 'got it wrong' and that Madge is 'right' in not knowing about the deal. Warner Music "owns the rights to Madonna's catalog of earlier recordings."* They do the deals. She gets royalties (as recording artist and in some cases songwriter).

BTW -- licensing rights for future recordings, etc. are owned by Live Nation and Madonna, as a result of their October 2007 10-year deal when Madonna left Warner Music.

It's likely she had no involvement in negotiations for the performance licensing to FOX ('Glee') just as the Jackson family has no say over the licensing of Michael's music, and the families and estates of the Beatles don't either since the band's catalog is owned/managed by Sony/ATV Music Publishing.
posted by ericb at 3:27 PM on April 14, 2010


I can only assume it's for the sort of people who actually enjoy American Idol.

I would rather spend 2 hours every weeknight fending off the amorous advances of an enraged wildebeest in heat than watch a single second of the execrable horror that is American Idol. And I fucking love Glee.

YOUR ARGUMENT IS INVALID.
posted by elizardbits at 4:18 PM on April 14, 2010 [6 favorites]


Why does American Idol still exist? I mean, how many of the winners have actually gone on to fame and fortune? You'd think people would stop showing up.
posted by The Whelk at 4:21 PM on April 14, 2010


YOUR ARGUMENT IS INVALID.

It wasn't an argument; it was an assumption. Furthermore, one anecdotal case don't invalidate nothin'. Further furthermore, my assumption was with regard to the motivations of the producers of the content, not that of its consumers.

(Now, if you had said "moot," you'd've been correct.)
posted by Sys Rq at 4:25 PM on April 14, 2010


YOUR ARGUMENT IS INVAILD
posted by The Whelk at 4:29 PM on April 14, 2010


I liked "Glee" despite the mostly annoying musical numbers until I realized that I only enjoyed it because it reminded me of Alexander Payne's Election. However, this Madonna parody/homage may encourage me to tune in next week—I must see if Kurt sings one!
posted by Houyhnhnm at 4:35 PM on April 14, 2010


Why does American Idol still exist? I mean, how many of the winners have actually gone on to fame and fortune?

Plenty! I've never watched the show and I don't listen to pop music, but I can name plenty of former contestants, some of whom didn't even win. Have you ever heard of Adam Lambert? Clay Aiken? Kelly Clarkson? David Archuleta? Sanjaya? Ruben Studdard? They all have legions of fans and an album in every Walmart across the country. If they hadn't been on the show, no one would know who they are and they'd still be singing into their hairbrushes. If you don't think that's fame and fortune, then you expect too much.
posted by Houyhnhnm at 4:49 PM on April 14, 2010


Last night's episode wasn't the best, but still enjoyable. For all the doubters, I'd recommend going back to watching from the beginning. If you still don't like it, then it just ain't your cup of tea. Myself, the darn show pretty much always leaves me with a smile and infectious desire to belt out nonsense songs (since I can't ever remember actual lyrics).

And yes, this was for a win last night, "Did you know dolphins are just gay sharks?"

Hee hee.
posted by Atreides at 5:00 PM on April 14, 2010


EW has learned that Madonna has given Glee the rights to her catalog

PR defeats journalism once again.

Madonna has not "given" Glee the rights out of the goodness of her heart. The Glee production company has acquired a mechanical license to the songs, possibly at a discounted rate.

Most, if not all, of Madonna's songs are not even hers to "give."
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 5:03 PM on April 14, 2010


My favorite line from last night's episode: "Did you know dolphins are just gay sharks? Yeah. They are."

And yes, this was for a win last night, "Did you know dolphins are just gay sharks?"


Wow. It takes a special kind of hack to steal such a dumb joke from an old t-shirt.
posted by Sys Rq at 5:16 PM on April 14, 2010


I sorta like Glee, in that turn your brain off way you enjoy a guilty pleasure show, but I just wish there were less auto-tuning. If a cast member is good enough to actually have performed on Broadway, then they don't need it.
posted by ZeusHumms at 5:37 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


I wrote Rolling Stone a note after seeing last week's Glee cover, to ask facetiously after the show's all-white cast. Not content with showing only the "regular" (pretty, white, hetero, non-wheelchair-bound) characters on the cover--including an up-skirt of good girl Rachel--posed in a way that reminded me of some Nixon-era pop group's greatest hits album photo, the first full-page interior photos features basically the same crew, with only the second interior photo showing the "ethnically diverse" characters. It seemed so amazingly tin-eared that I couldn't imagine who would've greenlighted those configurations and tableaux.

Which is not to say I don't enjoy the show. But I do agree that it plays down to a hetero constituency instead of going Rip Taylor more often.
posted by the sobsister at 5:37 PM on April 14, 2010


My friend Luminosity made the "300 Vogue" video. New York Magazine interviewed her about fan-made videos, and hosted that video on its own site. Her "300 Vogue" was also listed by NY Mag as #15 on their list of the Twenty (Intentionally) Funniest Web Videos of 2007:
In a sea of easy parodies, Luminosity’s lush, hilarious pairing of 300 and Madonna’s "Vogue" is the best fan video of the year.
So, that.
posted by tzikeh at 6:20 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


I agree. Not enough camp and not enough gay (which is saying a lot from a show with a Madonna Vogue cover). More Hedwig and less teen drama. Of course I'm guessing I'm not the target audience.

The show Ugly Betty is wonderfully full of both gay and camp! And it is a show hardly anybody watches. I think it's last episode is next week. It's uneven, but this last season has been lots of fun.

As to Glee, I can't get into it. (Thanks for posting this video, though -- it's great!) I wish there was a show that was a cross between Strangers with Candy and Glee. That show would be awesome.
posted by bluefly at 6:32 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


My BF's building was a shooting location for Ugly Betty.

That is all.
posted by The Whelk at 6:47 PM on April 14, 2010


bluefly, fyi, Ugly Betty's series finale is tonight. In about 10 minutes, 9pm central time.
posted by nooneyouknow at 6:49 PM on April 14, 2010


420 VOGUE EVERY DAY
posted by Mikey-San at 7:03 PM on April 14, 2010


My biggest outrage with the latest Glee is that they had Idina Menzel as a guest star...

...and she didn't sing.

Yes, I'm a fan of Glee (at least, I've subscribed to it on Hulu, even though I missed a few episodes last season -- no matter, the plots are ridiculous and there's always the "what you missed" to catch me up). But as a veteran of the high-school show choir, I am constantly astounded at how this ragtag group of underfunded arts kids can afford to have identical, professionally made outfits for every. Single. Production.

I remember the fuss we'd kick up when the group kept wanting to change its look every year. You don't shell out 100 bucks for a horrific, sparkly, ill-fitting dress only to have the new kids come in and think they want something "cooler" and "more flattering." Show choir dresses are not cool. And they're never flattering. So stop making me more dresses bedecked with sequined hideousness!

Not that I'm bitter.

(I can't really comment on the video because I couldn't last through the first minute -- it didn't hold my interest. Then again, I'm not that well versed on Madonna and so probably couldn't appreciate how well or poorly done it was. Although Jane Lynch is, as noted, awesome. But that's a general observation.)
posted by paisley sheep at 7:09 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Fuck Madonna and her stupid goddamned song. "Vogue" was nothing but a shameless exploitation and perversion of a subculture that had a lot of meaning and vibrance in a lot of people's lives; in fact, Madonna's lyrics pretty much spat upon everything the vogue scene was about and was trying to accomplish.

Go listen to this instead.
When Madonna came out with her hit "Vogue" you knew it was over. She had taken a very specifically queer, transgendered, Latino and African-American phenomenon and totally erased that context with her lyrics, "It makes no difference if you're black or white, if you're a boy or a girl." Madonna was taking in tons of money, while the Queen who actually taught her how to vogue sat before me in the club, strung out, depressed and broke. So if anybody requested "Vogue" or any other Madonna track, I told them, "No, this is a Madonna-free zone! And as long as I'm DJ-ing, you will not be allowed to vogue to the decontextualized, reified, corporatized, liberalized, neutralized, asexualized, re-genderized pop reflection of this dance floor's reality!"
DJ Sprinkles

posted by koeselitz at 7:13 PM on April 14, 2010 [6 favorites]


....and I was wondering how long it would take for that to come up.
posted by The Whelk at 7:13 PM on April 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


Why does American Idol still exist? I mean, how many of the winners have actually gone on to fame and fortune?

Plenty! I've never watched the show and I don't listen to pop music, but I can name plenty of former contestants, some of whom didn't even win. Have you ever heard of Adam Lambert? Clay Aiken? Kelly Clarkson? David Archuleta? Sanjaya? Ruben Studdard?

Also, Jennifer Hudson has a freaking Oscar. Given the extremely long odds faced by someone who wants to make it in the music business, being a finalist on American Idol is probably the closest thing there is to a sure bet.
posted by lunasol at 7:24 PM on April 14, 2010


I will admit to being ignorant. I had only heard of Clay Aiken and had no idea Jennfier Hudson was ever on. Comment retracted, knowledge gained.
posted by The Whelk at 7:38 PM on April 14, 2010


American Idol is still on because in spite of the horrible judges, the smarmy host, the idiotic producers, the incompetent technicians, the cheesy band and the gawdawful group singalongs, you do occasionally get to see a complete unknown bust loose with some awesome singing.

Then that person wins, and they get signed into the evil AI management contract, and they release a single that's too cliched and corny for even Bette Midler, and then they fade into obscurity. Because after Kelly Clarkson broke out of her contract, they tightened the contracts up so that NO ONE GETS OUT ALIVE. So if you like someone, pray they come in fourth; then they are free to sign with whomever they want.
posted by MexicanYenta at 8:52 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


I was told the Contracts where more then a little evil and have only gotten worse, I heard this in response to why there haven't been any really good on recently, no one wants to be locked-down in some insane Faustian contract if they can help it.
posted by The Whelk at 8:57 PM on April 14, 2010


Make Terri even crazier? She was already cartoonishly crazy and evil. Will and Terri's storyline was my least favorite from the first half of the season. Will Schuester was the dumbest character on TV not named Ralph Wiggum. And Ralph isn't a teacher. I was so glad to see that storyline more or less resolved.

I really just agree with everyone else who thinks Glee needs to embrace the camp wholeheartedly, and that Terri's crazy is often just amped-stereotype.

But it might just be the fact that I prefer Jessalyn Gilsig when she is having black-out sex and giving birth to a baby with an unexpected race.
posted by joan cusack the second at 9:08 PM on April 14, 2010


Ambrosia Voyeur. Have I got a movie musical for you!!

"All American Coed" is quite possibly the best worst movie I have ever seen. It is a rivalry between a major university - Quinceton - and a girl's horticultural academy - Marr Brynn. In one of the opening scenes, the matronly president of Marr Brynn discusses the school's lack of popularity with a couple people - including her own niece. Someone suggests that the school is unpopular because the girls aren't pretty. The President says that she prides herself on shaping the minds of the next generation of young women. At that moment, the niece interrupts and says, "But Auntie!! Girls don't want to grow up and live with a BRAIN! Girls want to grow up and live with a MAN!!"

It has drag. It has blaxploitation. It has gigantic dance numbers. And it is only like 90 minutes long, so it isn't too much of a commitment.

The only other So Bad It's Good movie musicals I can think of off the top of my head are:

Thoroughly Modern Millie with Julie Andrews, Mary Tyler Moore, and Carol Channing. (And Bea Lillie - For a little historic broadway fun!). To call the musical numbers in this movie random is an understatement.

The Worst Witch - with Tim Curry and Fairuza Balk and Diana Rigg. I'm not really even sure if it could be considered a Musical. But it has musical numbers, including Tim Curry singing about his tambourine.

I'm sure I'll have more suggestions as I work my way through my collection of "50 American Musicals (That Nobody Has Ever Heard Of!)." But for now that's all the weird I've got.
posted by greekphilosophy at 9:30 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


....and I was wondering how long it would take for that to come up.

Yeah, that's what he said.

*cough*
posted by ODiV at 9:30 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


You can nitpick Glee to death, but the show comes down to the fact that they have absolutely nailed a formula which has resurrected a dead genre. This is a musical drama on Fox, that was renewed for a full second season. It's kind of weird. I guess one decent thing came out of American Idol.
posted by mek at 1:16 AM on April 15, 2010


The only other So Bad It's Good movie musicals I can think of off the top of my head are...

Term grade for GAY 101: A+.
posted by ericb at 5:46 AM on April 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


My biggest outrage with the latest Glee is that they had Idina Menzel as a guest star...

...and she didn't sing.


Oh my god, this a gazillion times.

I'm holding out hope that, since she's VAs director, she'll show up in some later episodes and get to sing then. Nobody puts Idina in the corner.
posted by ashirys at 6:58 AM on April 15, 2010


I'm not crazy about the show, but the blond cheerleader who delivered the "gay sharks" line cracks me up just about every time she opens her mouth. A great deadpan.
posted by Bookhouse at 9:53 AM on April 15, 2010


In the episode in which Kurt was shooting himself doing his own Single Ladies video, that cheerleader, Brittany, was one of the dancers. The actor, Heather Morris, really was one of Beyoncé's Single Ladies dancers. How's that for self-reference? (I learned this double-checking Kurt episodes for one of my previous comments in this thread.)
posted by Zed at 10:07 AM on April 15, 2010


The actor, Heather Morris, really was one of Beyoncé's Single Ladies dancers.


I hadn't known this, but I was intrigued and found this on Wikipedia:

"Morris was hired in 2009 to star as Brittany in the first season of Fox's musical comedy series Glee, about a high school glee club. She was brought in by the show initially to teach the choreography for Beyoncé's Single Ladies dance to the actors, however the show was looking for a third cheerleader and she got the job."

This is pretty awesome, especially considering that she's one of the best comedic actors on the show.
posted by lunasol at 12:54 PM on April 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


Hey Gleeks! You wanna sing songs from the show and be auto-tuned and -harmonized to perfection just like the cast?

Yup, there's an app for that.

Gay sharks not included.
posted by WolfDaddy at 1:34 PM on April 15, 2010


Ambrosia Voyeur:
The Apple (quite disturbing)
The Return of Captain Invincible (with Cristopher Lee singing!)
posted by Sparx at 4:40 PM on April 15, 2010


I'm holding out hope that, since she's VAs director, she'll show up in some later episodes and get to sing then. Nobody puts Idina in the corner.

Prepare to be pleasantly surprised.
posted by mek at 7:20 PM on April 15, 2010


Sparx, I´ll see your Lee and raise you Walken.
posted by concrete at 5:01 AM on April 16, 2010


Wow, I couldn't finish watching it. I found Lynch's voice to be really irritating.

But, you know, I'm a big Madonna fan. I'd rather just watch the original Vogue video.

I haven't watched Glee yet, so I don't know if I'd like it or not, but after watching a minute of the Vogue remake, I'm thinking I wouldn't.
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 7:14 PM on April 16, 2010


Lynch doesn't sing in the show (or hasn't yet) so you might be OK on that count.
posted by Zed at 1:00 AM on April 18, 2010


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