Friends, music teachers, and swing choir graduates: Glee left us hanging. Big time. We could sense the big events coming, sense them enough to shout “No! Don’t go there!” at the television. The last episode before the break set up several plot twists that couldn’t be resolved. This one episode, all by itself, brought up so many social issues that it should be required viewing for anyone who works with teenagers. Cyber-bullying, teen suicide, religion and teen social lives, texting while driving, and then again, the show choir competition.
The next new episode will be here in the beginning of April. April! Through the entire month of March we’ll wonder how our favorite characters and the ones we love to hate will fare. Frankly, the writers and producers have set us up for just about anything. Here are my own predictions.
Rachel: Will she or won’t she marry Finn? Will Finn follow her to New York as she pursues a career in the arts? She’s talented, but is she talented enough? It’ll be interesting to see if her star power is power enough to light up her life.
Finn: He’s really at lose ends. No football scholarship, a bombshell destroying his image of his hero father, and no plans after high school. His only plan is to marry Rachel, and he hasn’t thought beyond the ceremony. This doesn’t bode well for their future. I wonder if he will stay behind in Lima, run the garage for his stepfather Burt while Burt is in Congress, and settle in for some serious introspection.
Quinn: a screech of brakes and squeal of tires as she texted a message to Rachel – I’ll leave it right there.
McKinley High School staff: When Principal Figgins claimed that it wasn’t their job to reach out to someone like David Karofsky, it wasn’t their job to prevent his near suicide, school counselor Emma said it best: “If it’s not our job, then whose job is it?” Someone had to be there for David, to listen and to really hear his pain. That “someone” could have been a teacher. I predict the McKinley High School staff to get much firmer in their zero tolerance for bullying. They’ll start a chapter of PFLAG and reach out to students like Kurt and David and Blaine. Weak-kneed Figgins might be nervous about the social implications and the public reaction, but those teachers who truly understand their students will stand firm.
Puck will graduate, but not yet. He’s bound to be credit deficient in some way, and that will give Glee another year of his singing and guitar-playing talent. If they need a fundraiser, he can bake his grandmother’s addicting brownies.
Mercedes and Santana will take on the leadership and solo roles. Writers and producers have been building them up for a while. We’ll have some good music next season, folks, even without Rachel Berry.
I hope the Warblers from Dalton Academy will continue to compete with McKinley’s New Directions. They provide complex characters, an interesting competitor, and above all, good music.
Coach Sue Sylvester will have her baby and find motherhood to be to her liking. This should be a fascinating character development.
Kurt: Finn’s stepbrother is in for the biggest challenges. He’s headed to a fine arts school, or so he hopes. He and Rachel will be classmates if all goes well. He’s out and has a gay boyfriend, another talented singer and actor. Not all young men feel as confident as Kurt, however. And Kurt, despite his flamboyant nature and outgoing personality, still feels the inner conflicts of any teen. He’s blamed himself for not returning David Karofsky’s phone calls, thinking if only he’d called, David might not have tied the rope around his neck. Kurt walked into a God Squad club meeting looking for moral support and instead ended up blowing up. He told Quinn that no matter what she’d gone through in high school, with a teen pregnancy and a time with the outlaw goth gang, she had no idea what he or Karofsky faced every day. Kurt was straightforward in his criticism of poor little rich girl Quinn. Then Quinn was texting while driving on a collision course for – well, we still don’t know. The show ended with a screech of brakes and no resolution.
Kurt is the most complex of the Glee characters. I predict that he will feel guilt for not preventing Karofsky’s suicide attempt and will again feel terrible that his last conversation with Quinn was a verbal slap in the face. After facing these internal conflicts, I predict that Kurt will abandon his quest for a performance career and instead enter a counseling program. He has the experience, the intelligence, and the compassion to make a difference.
Good music, entertaining plots, and a few valuable lessons besides – what else could we ask of a television series? I still have Glee set to record. I won’t miss a single episode.