Glee: Furt

Fair warning: Satah’s review last week was much funnier than any of mine will ever be, and quite frankly, I don’t have a long review in me this week. I’m honestly not sure I’ll make it through the season, at this point, because the combination of just sheer badness and infuriating storylines is a little too much for me to handle. I can appreciate an artfully executed show even if I don’t like the stories, but Glee is a hot mess of conflicting stories, wildly seesawing tone, autotune, and dreadful acting. It’s a little much for me to handle.

This week on Glee: Uh, weddings and a whole lot of white nondisabled people. I thought shows didn’t do the wedding episode until they were running out of content in the third season. But I guess Glee was always precocious. I have to admit, I didn’t watch this week’s episode very closely because there were so many alluring distractions, like a sowbug crawling across the floor, deer in the pasture, paint drying, and grass growing.

But here’s what I did take away: There’s basically nothing schools can do about bullying, so if you are being bullied, the best option is to go to private school. If you cannot afford private school, that is simply too bad, so get ready to get bullied. Glee has really been riding the bullying wave here and so far I have been singularly unimpressed with what the show has to say about bullying and how to handle it, which seems to be summed up as ‘bullying sucks but you should just deal with it.’

No. Really. That’s what Glee told viewers this week. Meanwhile, Kurt’s friends tried to protect him by ‘manning up’ and confronting his bully in the locker room. Their efforts were unsuccessful. As Kurt points out, the only thing that would actually protect him is if the school established and enforced a no bullying policy, which is a pretty stark reminder of the responsibility of schools and districts: Bullying isn’t the responsibility of victims or their friends, it’s the responsibility of the people who are charged with keeping the school environment safe and functional for students. Surprisingly, Sue seemed ready to go to bat for Kurt, but, perhaps unsurprisingly, the school board refused to uphold Sue’s disciplinary actions when she stood in as principal.

Glee points out the only rational approach to the bullying issue, but none of the characters actually pursue it. Kurt’s father, who has shown before that he’s willing to fight for his son, just rolls over and sends him to private school, rather than pushing the school to set up and enforce a no bullying policy? He talks about not knowing the school board and feeling disconnected from the members, which I get, but I’m pretty disappointed in him for not fighting for Kurt’s right to stay with his friends. If Glee wants to play the afterschool special game, it should at least do it right.