Sunday, 27 June 2010

Countdown: I'm a Gleek, #20 - 11

I thought I'd do a complete one-eighty and follow up the last Countdown (Pearl Jam!) with one that highlights the top 20 musical moments on Glee. If you're as big a fan as I am (please don't tell anyone how I live) you're probably watching season one on repeat, anxiously waiting for new episodes that won't grace your television screen until September. And if you're not a fan, check out some of the links and maybe, just maybe, I'll convert you to a fully-fledged Gleekling.

Why do I love Glee? Sue Sylvester is the obvious answer. Jane Lynch has become one of TV's most popular stars, playing the amazing and slightly bipolar cheerleading coach. She gets the second best lines in the show, generally at the expense of Glee Club coach, Will Schuester's ridiculous hair. "Oh hey there William, I though I'd smelt cookies wafting from the ovens of your little elves that live in your hair." Outstanding. However it's sweet but slightly dimwitted Cheerio, Brittany, that's been getting all the best lines lately. Here's some of her best...

1. "I've been here since first period. I had a cold. I took all my antibiotics at the same time, and now I can't remember how to leave. I also don't know why I only made fourth on the glist. I made out with, like, everyone in this school. Girls; boys; Mr. Kidney, the janitor. I need to do something to get into the top three."

2. "It's not that. It's just that most of us don't know how to bake. I find recipes confusing."

3. "I'm pretty sure my cat's been reading my diary."

Amazing. All the characters bring something to the table. Powerful vocals (Rachel, Mercedes, Santana), emotion (Emma, Artie, Quinn, Kurt) and there's a healthy dose of romantic triangles and other multi-sided shapes (Emma-Terri-Will, Jesse-Rachel-Finn-Quinn-Puck). But the REAL star of the show is the music, which is generally carefully placed to advance the narrative. So, long introduction over, let's get to it!

Honourable Mentions

Halo/Walking On Sunshine (Rachel, Quinn, Tina, Mercedes, Santana & Brittany)
originally by Beyonce Knowles and Katrina & The Waves

Total Eclipse of the Heart (Rachel, Finn, Jesse & Puck)
originally by Bonnie Tyler

Bad Romance (Kurt, Tina, Santana, Rachel, Mercedes, Quinn & Brittany)
originally by Lady Gaga

originally by Julie Andrews

School counsellor, Emma Pillsbury, is in love with Will Schuester from the start of the show. But Will's married to his 'pregnant' wife Terri. So Emma decides that instead of being alone she's going to marry football coach Ken Tanaka, even though they're going to live in separate houses in different parts of town and he can't really touch her due to her germ phobia. While Will teaches Emma the steps to her first dance (in her wedding dress of course), she busts out some My Fair Lady, pointing out the obvious; she's still very much in love with Mr. Schuester. I don't know why, but this has been Emma's only solo up to now. Hopefully this will be addressed in season two as her voice is surprisingly good.

originally by James Brown & Betty Jean Newsome

Quinn's journey throughout the first season was pretty awesome. Her fall from grace was pretty cool to see as she went from mega-bitch to pregnant loser. But Glee being as awesome as it is actually gave the character a lot of depth and made you genuinely feel for her as she was kicked out of home and ended up being one of the more supportive members of New Directions. In terms of vocals she was never a stand out until the Funk themed episode, in which she got a whole bunch of up-the-duff girls together and performed 'It's A Man's Man's World.'

18. The Safety Dance (Artie + Glee Flash Mob)
originally by Men Without Hats

Artie's secret dream is to be a dancer. Unfortunately, Artie was in a terrible car accident that left him paralysed. So it came as a complete surprise when Artie got out of his wheelchair in a crowded shopping center and started doing 'The Safety Dance.' Even though the song is ridiculous, Artie's vocals and the amazing choreography more than made up for it. Knowing that it was a fantasy sequence makes it one of the saddest moments in the show. And this wasn't even the most depressing moment for Artie in this episode!

17. One (Rachel, Sean & New Directions)
originally by U2

A lot of people hate on Rachel, mostly because she's annoying. However there's no denying she has an incredible voice and at the end of the day, she's a nice person. She more than proved it when she went to give Finn's paralysed friend, Sean, singing lessons after he helped her realise that losing her voice wouldn't be the end of the world after she got a bad case of laryngitis.

16. True Colours (Tina & New Directions)
originally by Cyndi Lauper

I heart Tina. She's sweet, loves Artie, dresses like a goth, can be very funny (the vampire scene with Principal Figgins was priceless) and can belt a tune when given the chance. Her time would eventually come when she was given the solo for 'True Colours' and she didn't disappoint.

15. Imagine (Haverbrook Deaf Choir & New Directions)
originally by John Lennon

Oh, the humanity! Just watch. If you don't like it, congratulations, you have no soul...

originally by The Donnas

Emotional manipulation, thy name is Glee. Getting Artie, aka Wheels, to sing a slowed down version of 'Dancing With Myself' was a low blow. Props to Kevin McHale (who plays Artie) for learning the wheelchair bound choreography. The song was important for a couple of reasons; it set up the romance between Artie and Tina and was foreshadowing for the reveal of Artie's secret dream of being a dancer.

#13. Dream On (Will & Bryan)
originally by Aerosmith

Getting Neil Patrick Harris to guest star as the amazingly named Bryan Ryan was a smooth move. Even better, he was Will Schuester's old rival from back in HIS Glee Club days. Both were going for the lead in a small town production of Les Miserables and battled to 'Dream On.' Surprisingly it was more awesome than funny. Harris can hit some high notes, but Mr Schuester still blew him out of the water.

#12. Vogue (Sue Sylvester & Cheerios)
originally by Madonna

It doesn't get much better than this. A shot-for-shot recreation of 'Vogue' with Sue Sylvester taking Madonna's place. One of the funniest moments in the show. As Sue would say, it's outstanding!

#11. Maybe This Time (April & Rachel)
originally by Liza Minelli

When Rachel quits New Directions to star in a production of Cabaret, Will is desperate to find a replacement. Enter alcoholic high school drop-out and former Glee Club star, April, played by Emmy winning actress and Broadway star, Kristin Chenoweth. For the first time in the show, we see someone dominate Rachel's vocals. The two duet 'Maybe This Time' from Cabaret and April is quite clearly the stronger performer of the two leading ladies.

Well that's ten down. Ten to go.... stay tuned!!

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