Yes, I did.  I watched the Rocky Horror episode of Glee.  More than that, I planned to watch it.  I rarely plan on watching specific episodes of TV.  I am not good at following a series from week to week, and I often find myself watching shows like Law & Order or Arthur, where the characters are familiar, but you can basically jump in at any point in the narrative.  With most sitcoms, the reassuring fact that everything will be resolved in 22 minutes means I don’t have to follow to be able to follow along.  Along the way, I’ll pick up key reoccurring elements, or plot developments so I can make cultural references that are somewhat on target. (I know it happened when Ross & Rachel were on a break; I know about the Soup Nazi and the Chinese restaurant episodes of Seinfeld.  Well, maybe I’m a decade behind, but I used to know the cultural lexicon…) Still, when a coworker started telling me about Glee, I heard the fantastical plot, and started watching, just to see.

I won’t lie and say I’m hooked.  It’s not a show you watch for the plot.  As a matter of fact, here’s the plot: Hey, we’re in a competition against insurmountable odds.  Wow, we won.  Oh, no!  There’s another competition coming up. And let’s swap boyfriends, just for the hell of it.  Throw in some pregnancy, some OCD, and some thin characters, and that’s basically it.  But I do enjoy the show.  I love watching the staging, hearing the singing, and suspending disbelief in the way we always do when watching anything with the word “musical” in it.  Breaking into song in the library and having a full back-up band, doo-wop girls, and a chorus line?  Bring it.  Dancing on top of chairs in perfect pitch while lifting girls skyward, as you pretend to be a 15 year old in control of his voice?  Right on. 

I guess Glee is supposed to appeal to the musical theatre/pop music nerd in all of us, focus on nerd.  The glee club is supposed to consist of cast-offs from high school, of the socially retarded dregs of teen society, of the losers, the geeks, the gays, and the band-dorks.  I buy it, in some respects.  Take Kurt, the only openly gay guy in school.  Surely he’s an outcast.  Take Rachel, who is routinely ridiculed for dressing like an old lady and is just too much of a goody-goody overachiever even for me.  Surely no one really likes her.  Take Quinn; have a baby in high school and…wait?  What’s she doing back in school?  Where’s the baby?  Oops, I guess I dropped that plot line when I missed the season finale or something.  I’m sure they tied up the loose ends very neatly.

Anyway, for all the progressive messages on homosexuality, acceptance of kids with Down syndrome, and issues of teen pregnancy, I don’t think they did a good enough making it look convincing dorky.  Sure, they talk about joining the Glee club as being social suicide.   Where are the real musical theatre dorks?  Where are the wholly undate-able guys with greasy long hair?  Where are the girls wearing acid-wash jeans?  Where is the outcast who inexplicably wears military fatigues everyday?  The girls who haven’t discovered a hair brush yet?  The guys wearing eyeliner and skulking in the corner?  And even Rachel, who is supposed to be the one who dresses like a frumpy old lady, is wearing designer labels.  Aside from her cardigans, which I’m sure are a dorky affectation, here is my point: I shouldn’t be overhearing middle-schoolers saying, “I just bought the dress Rachel wore on last week’s episode.”  People who are committing “social suicide” are not supposed to be trend-setters for legions of impressionable youth. 

With product placement seeing an explosion (notice people on the screen are now drinking real Coke on TV, and driving real Cadillacs, and sporting real logos?) on television and in movies, it’s no surprise websites like Cool Spotters are springing up.  From their site:  “Coolspotters is an online service that makes it easy to discover and buy the products, brands, and fashions being used by your favorite celebrities – in their real lives, and in movies and television.”

Find that Schiaparelli-inspired H&M Kerchief print sweater that Rachel wore. Or the Anthropologie moth sweater that Emma wore (I want this; you can buy it for me, but not in that pastel teal color).  Or, of course, the lacy Marc Jacobs number Tina the faux-stuttering dork wears to school on a regular basis.  I mean, don’t we all?  What?  You mean musical theater outcasts don’t wear Alexander McQueen to school? 

Just don’t tell Glee.  It’d be too unbelievable.

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