A couple of people have asked me what I thought about the grilled cheesus episode of Glee. Too many thoughts for Facebook, but I also doubt, given all the work (stupid work) I've got going on right now, that I'll organize them well enough for a full-on blog on theodicy, religion in schools, and what a pale shadow of Aretha's magnificent cover of "Bridge Over Troubled Water" that was. Here are the highlights, though, and I welcome comments/discussion:
First of all, I just don't think Glee deals very well with more serious material. I think Kurt's a good character to do it with because Chris Colfer is pretty compelling, but I don't think it's their strong suit as a program. From the fake baby to teen pregnancy to the eating disorder to religious faith (or the lack thereof), I think there "big issue" episodes are always disappointing. Except the drug use one (with the "vitamins"). That was hilarious.
Narratively, I thought it was sloppily done, and I was severely underwhelmed by most of the music.
Theologically, I thought it was dismissive of the atheist's viewpoints. In addition to the fact that "I or a loved one have had a tough time" is not the only reason one might be an atheist, surely the complaints made by both Kurt and Sue deserve a better response than "Well, we believe, and you're a bad friend if you don't let us pray for you."
Also, while there must be churches where you can bring a friend, announce that he's an atheist and get nothing but smiles and nods from the rest of the congregation, I really thought that scene was disingenous. Like, a lot.
But I liked grilled cheesus, and Kurt's version of "I Wanna Hold Your Hand."
PS - Aretha
Aretha Franklin - "Bridge Over Troubled Water"