Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Glee The Complete Second Season on DVD

Earlier this year I had the opportunity to review the DVD of Glee Season 2 Volume 1. This unique release had the 1st half of the season of the series out and running during the same week the second half of the series started on television. The sensational Fox series has now just released the complete 2nd Season on DVD. To see my review of the first half of the series, click here, if the link doesn’t appear, go to the link at the bottom of the page. One would think that from that review, the high praises would continue, unfortunately, the praises are not as high as they were when the series started. The magic that was there, up to and including the first half of Season 2 has dwindled and fallen by the wayside. That isn’t to say there isn’t some magic here, but I am starting to wonder. Unfortunately, for some, like my wife, the series has started to wear thin and some of the subject matter is difficult to watch, as a result, many of the previous viewers have moved to other programs.

Technically, a well filmed, acted, edited, and scored program still exist. There are times the magic makes an appearance and while I may not like all of the characters, I see the talent of each actor, none more so than Sue Sylvester played by Jane Lynch and Will Schuester played by Matthew Morrison. While neither is realistic as to a real school teacher, their roles are fun and the two play well off of each other. This is due largely to the story, cinematography and especially the musical scores and choreography that support the program. The quality of performances on screen is not the only quality of this show, I also recognize the talent of the filmmaking crew involved.

As the series progresses, it continues down a path that addresses several themes, especially noted in this particular season is the self discovery of Kurt, a gay character played brilliantly by Chris Colfer. We see his character grow, develop relationships and address the important issues of homosexuality, bullying, and acceptance continue. Unfortunately in the character development we see other characters also making decisions that are obviously not to their benefit and it seems as if the direction of the programming and script allows for this. The series at times even seems to promote negative behavior, for example, the episode Blame It On Alcohol which has the show ending in a drunken party. Without sounding old fashioned, there are certain behaviors such as underage drinking where the adult characters in the show seem to promote the negative behavior. I said in my earlier review of Glee that the show was treading on thin ice regarding some of the behaviors and actions it seemed to promote. If anything, they are crossing that line more and more, and this was the case in season 2 with the storylines, ranging on everything from sexual activity, to the selfish displays centered on what some would call love.

With the negatives of the show, it is still at times promising and is at least opening up doors of discussion other programs are not. While we may not always like the answers to the questions being asked, at least they are asking the questions. There are some open and honest discussions related to life, God, death, and the beyond. There are even episodes about love and acceptance that display the aspect of loving your neighbor and doing unto others themes. We also see situations where characters who are not seen in a positive light change and recognize that others do love and care for them. This is especially true with the character Sue Sylvester, but not just her character, we see it in others on the show. We see the importance of coming close and showing love in difficult times, such as death, or for a teenager, even the break-up of a dating relationship. There are many who desire to experience real friendship, yet are unwilling to go the extra mile. While we see characters that use others, we see also episodes like A Very Glee Christmas or Funeral where we see people come together. Unfortunately it seems as if the show ends on a low note in more episodes than not. While there may be a joyous, entertaining song being played out for us on screen, that doesn’t guarantee a positive theme.

I still enjoy Glee, but I, like many other viewers am at the place of wanting more. I want more for the characters; I would like to see more positive role models, especially for a program with so many teen and gleek followers. If the show is to continue and grow in viewership, they need to seriously look at the direction they are going as they are currently loosing more viewers than they are gaining. It is a sad that while into only their third season, they have lost more steam than they should.

I have to wonder, how much of a reflection on current society is Glee? I honestly don’t know, I hope there is more hope, with more potential than is displayed on screen. Like my last review of this show, I would still like to see more positive roll models, or even a person of faith portrayed in a respectful way. I don’t mind the themes, I don’t really mind so much the answers they come up with, what I don’t like is the lack of hope and potential for good. While the show addresses spiritual themes, I wish they took those themes more seriously and showed more respect than they do. There is an arrogance about Glee and the makers of the series that does not sit well with me.

The DVD package is a good one with ample special features that are fun and entertaining. The low pricing of the DVD will keep fans happy. I wish I could be more positive, but it is what it is, like so many others, if things don’t change, I likely won’t be there for a Season 4 and Season 3 is already slipping. It all started that downward slide with Season 2 and unfortunately, it continues.

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