After winning the sectionals round of the high school show choir competition — not to mention a Golden Globe and the hearts of millions of TV viewers — the musical freaks and geeks of “Glee” are back for nine more episodes.
As the rag-tag champs prepare to face off against their polished rivals at the regional level (as well as daily classmate bullies and one terrifying cheerleading coach), series creator Ryan Murphy talks about the unlikely rise of “Glee” itself as the season’s biggest television success story.
It takes practice to make a hit series.
“[Throughout] the first four episodes we were really trying to figure out what the template of [the show] was,” Murphy admits. “Now I think we have it down to a science. I think we are making the storytelling and the music go together in a more organic way because we’ve had more experience to figure this out.”
Fans have played a role in the creative process.
“I feel like a scripted musical hadn’t been done on television or worked in so long, so there was nothing to go by,” Murphy says. “[So] we listen very closely to what fans say about the show. Fans like certain things, don’t like certain things, and I am somebody who reads those blogs — I like knowing. I loved that the audience is very invested in the heart of the show. So that’s something we are writing to more now.”
Attracting A-list guests is easy — finding the right part for them is hard.
“You have to watch out that it doesn’t become ‘The Love Boat,’” Murphy warns about the dangers of casting too many guest stars. “You just can’t have Jennifer Lopez walk into a Lima, Ohio high school — it makes no sense.” While J.Lo was rumored to appear on the series (she won’t — this season, at least), expect upcoming guest spots from Idina Menzel, Jonathan Groff, Molly Shannon and Neil Patrick Harris.