Glee 3-D: Propaganda for the Obama Generation

Posted Sunday, August 14th, 2011 by Gregory Forman
Filed under Law and Culture, Not South Carolina Specific, Of Interest to General Public

How could one not love Glee 3-D?

It, and Glee, are Utopian fantasies in which a Red America of bigots, malevolent overlords, and religious scolds is finally and definitively vanquished by a Blue America of multicultural, limit-denying, losers.  Oh, and the economy’s strong enough that everyone can afford a ticket.

Savor the ironies of Glee’s presence of the Fox network, whose owner, Rupert Murdoch, funds some of the more vile right-wing propaganda (or, if you’re part of the right-wing, the only “fair and balanced” news on American network television).  Murdoch, evidently, enjoys funding both sides of the culture wars (e.g., The Simpsons).

The three “Gleeks” (Glee fans) whom Glee 3-D chooses to highlight demonstrate the film’s political agenda.  One is a gay, mixed-race, teenager who was accidentally outed at age 14 when his journal was maliciously circulated in his middle school.  One is a dwarf at a Yuma high school who becomes part of the cheerleading squad, is asked to the prom by a member of the football team, and is elected prom queen.  One is an obese young woman with Aspergers who develops social confidence connecting with fellow Gleeks.  All three emerge triumphant (and happy) and all three connect their realization that they are part of “America” to the multicultural-affirming, gay-friendly environment depicted in Glee.

Also note that many of the singers most frequently covered on Glee and in Glee 3-D–Katy Perry, Pink, Ke$ha, Lady Gaga–celebrate a sex-positive, gay-friendly, multicultural world in which outsiders are not just accepted but embraced.  Glee 3-D may be the best multiculturalism propaganda since the 2008 Democratic Presidential primaries.  Baby you were born this way.

As lovely and charming as the Utopian universe Glee inhabits is, I don’t see how we get to a world in which everyone gets to be prom queen.  Of course Utopia is Latin for nowhere.  Or it could be Canada?

5 thoughts on Glee 3-D: Propaganda for the Obama Generation

  1. California Observer says:

    Um….so? Most shows are wish-fulfilment anyway, but for me multi-culti hugs are still a better wish than military ass-kicking.

    1. I hope you didn’t take my Glee 3-D blog as criticism of the show or movie. The first sentence was a pretty strong indication that I loved the movie. It was the most effective propaganda for the liberal vision of America that I have encountered. Obama should adopt it for his 2012 campaign. Glee is what America should look like.

      To the extent I have a criticism with the multicultural view of a world in which “everyone’s a winner” is that if we imagine it will be Blue America victory because the dwarf becomes a prom queen we will never reach our goal (not everyone can be prom queen). Instead victory will come when no one is limited in their dreams because of their race, gender, religion, sexual preference, disability, etc. That is a more subtle, less satisfying dream.

  2. Van says:

    No comment, you scare me.

  3. I love Glee!

    While I absolutely love the show, I do find it curious that there are a far more homosexual characters in the major cast than one would think based on the number of characters (5 out of 15-16). Then again, my high school choir (which I was in) was probably overrepresented as well :)

    I was also bothered a bit by one particular storyline –

    One episode compared Quinn and Lauren. Quinn, now a very fit and athletic cheerleader, previously was overweight and out of shape. In a fit of self loathing, she got fit and got a nosejob. Lauren, in comparison, is morbidly obese but loves herself, and has no interest in fitness that we can see. The moral of the story is that Lauren has a healthy outlook on life and Quinn has some kind of self hatred in that she felt the need to change her body in order to be loved.

    This was completely backwards. Quinn was a bit overweight, and improved her long term health outlook by becoming athletic and fit. Furthermore, in the real world, she improved her mating outlook by becoming more fit (nose job irrespective). Lauren, on the other hand, will die a young death from diabetes and heart disease.

    So why was Lauren the one we were celebrating?

    Still it’s the best show on TV. I love that a show without violence can be so entertaining and in fact the most popular show on TV. There is hope for America yet.

    1. Nick:

      I think the episode you criticize (I believe accurately) is in line with my critique with the world Glee imagines. Not everyone gets to be prom queen simply because they desire it so strongly. In a moral world that I would wish to inhabit, Quinn would be celebrated for her transformation and Lauren would be encouraged to lose weight.

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