When I was eleven years old, I fell in love. It was at a Labor Day party: it must have been a big one because my family usually didn’t go to parties with this family, but pretty much everyone we knew was at this one, including my oldest friend in the world. At some point, my friend suggested we go in the basement to watch tv. There wasn’t anything on that I wanted to watch, but I was too shy to talk to the other kids, so I followed her.
What I saw would change who I was. It was happy and fun, with cute boys and silliness and music that I loved. I had found my first boy band. THE first boy band. I was in love with The Monkees. For the next several years, I identified primarily as a Monkees fan. I bought all the records (yes, records–on reprint from Rhino) and I built what my mom called my “shrine” in my wardrobe. I had a poster of Davy Jones that I carefully hung up at exactly 5’3″ so that I could practice kissing him (oh, what a sad day when I grew taller than he was) and I bought a clock radio that had a tape deck so that I could wake up to The Monkees every morning (I carefully taped the records for this purpose.) Every night I watched the show religiously, and I have a collection of episodes that I recorded. The day my parents bought tickets to the concert, my friend and I went outside to see if we could hear each other scream from in front of our houses, two blocks away from each other.
I think this has something to do with my Glee fascination. After all, the two shows have a lot in common. Music, of course, and the general positivity tinged with social messages, and in the end, they’re both TV shows that became music phenomena, filling stadia with teenagers screaming so loudly they couldn’t hear the music. My love of The Monkees was out of sync, happening as it did in the 1980’s, but other than that, my experience loving The Monkees was not unlike the experience of the teenagers who grew up watching Glee when it was on.
So you can imagine my delight when Kurt and Blaine’s story ended with this:
I still can’t forgive the writers for Season 6. I just keep thinking about how much richer the season would have been if Kurt and Blaine had stayed together and struggled with life in Lima, planning a wedding, sacrificing for each other, and compromising. Commitment is hard, and one of the reasons so many celebrity couples split is that for actors, you’re kind of either working constantly or not working at all, and it’s really hard to fulfill all of your needs when that is going on. If you’re not working, you’re likely to ask too much of your partner, and when you are working, you don’t have much left to give your partner. Being in Lima without Finn, being in competition with each other, trying to plan a gay wedding while living in a state where that’s illegal, trying to plan a wedding while your best friend is picking up the pieces of her shattered life, moving on with their dreams while Sam searched for his, (all while fighting Sue Sylvester and trying to be an adult in your own high school) all could have created interesting storylines and challenges to the relationship–challenges we could have watched Kurt and Blaine fight through together, so that when they got married everyone would have been cheering instead of shooting confused looks at each other.
But on the whole, the last episode is satisfying and I recommend it. KPD feels they were a little over the top with pairing up couples, and Sue Sylvester has a speech that hits the social messages a bit harder than they had to be hit, but that’s the kind of show it was. Finn/Cory Monteith is appropriately tributed, stories are wrapped up, and there is a lovely final song that serves as a curtain call for the show. There are probably not enough songs: solos go to Mr. Schue, Rachel, Sue/Mr. Schue, Mercedes, and Kurt/Blaine. Artie and Tina at least have solos in the previous episode (“2009”) which is also fun, although it’s a bit disconcerting to see 25-year-old Chris Colfer playing 16-year-old Kurt with the extra 30 lbs of muscle/height he put on over the years. (Everyone else looks the same, somehow.)
So now we need to move on. I think we’re going to go back to watching Elementary, since we accidentally bought CBS All Access for the month, so we might as well use it.