Fox gives Glee a top-flight launching pad

by Allison Waldman, posted Mar 5th 2009 5:01PM
foxIf you had to guess, what's the most coveted, prime TV real estate currently available? In February, it was the post-Super Bowl slot, but now -- what could it be. How about the hour after the American Idol finale on May 19 on FOX. With that in mind, FOX has decided to give one of its most promising, albeit unusual, new products the hour.

Ryan Murphy's musical comedy series Glee is getting the post American Idol finale hour. And yes, it is a musical comedy TV series. After American Idol crowns its new winner on May 19, all those millions of viewers, the ones who stay on the network, will see a special preview of the show about a struggling high school glee club.

The head of Fox, Peter Liguori, described Glee as "an ambitious and unique show," and so it is. There have been episodes of TV shows that have had musical sequences, like Scrubs and Eli Stone, plus the classic Bocho drama Cop Rock was an all-singing, all-dancing fiasco.

But Glee is something different. It's getting tremendous buzz and just this week it added to the cast two legitimate Broadway musical stars who also happen to be great TV stars -- Kristin Chenoweth (Pushing Daisies) and Victor Garber (Eli Stone). If I knew nothing else about Glee, these two stars would be reason enough for me to tune in and check it out.

For other people, Ryan Murphy is the draw. After Popular and Nip/Tuck, why wouldn't you have faith in his writing? Glee has a simple premise, upbeat high school teacher pours his heart and soul into resurrecting the once great glee club, but there's the promise of Murphy-esque wit and a soundtrack of established hit music from past to the present. Unless you're a Grinch about musicals -- and I know there are many of you out there -- this sounds great.

My only worry is this: Glee is getting a great boost with the American Idol finale lead in. However, after that sampling, Glee will not begin airing until the fall. That's an awfully long time to keep people psyched by what they've seen. Of course, if the Glee pilot is as super as the scuttlebutt suggests, perhaps all summer long will be a season full of salivating anticipation that builds to a huge fall re-premiere. We'll see.

[via Futon Critic]

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I have high hopes for the show, but I think their strategy of running one episode on May 19 and then it vanishing until, what, late August at the earliest? is insane. Really, really stupid. Didn't "Pushing Daisies", "Eli Stone", etc. prove that most people won't wait around forever for a show to return? And those series had around a dozen episodes each to hook fans. Also, based on the previous shows from this show creator ("The Shield", "Nip/Tuck"), I think it's going to be a bit more complex and involved than the average "American Idol" fan would be able to follow.

March 05 2009 at 9:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I know nothing about this show. But I would still watch it purely for Chenoweth and Garber.

March 05 2009 at 5:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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