Fox adds to TV’s landscape with ‘Glee’

Posted May 18, 2009, at 6:06 p.m.

Fox has figured out how to whet an audience’s appetite for a new show, as it’s giving “Glee,” the new musical comedy series by Ryan Murphy (“Nip/Tuck”), the best of all possible launchpads.

The show will get a sneak preview at 9 p.m. Tuesday, May 19, right after the “American Idol” finale. What happens to it after that, when it will return in earnest, is still up in the air, but we hope Fox will find a home for it on next fall’s schedule (or pair it again with “Idol” in January).

“Glee” has an unlikely premise, with Will Schuester (played by Matthew Morrison), a high-school Spanish teacher, trying to revive the Glee Club which meant so much to him as a student at the same school.

He ends up with the usual collection of misfits: big-voiced diva-in-training Mercedes (Amber Riley), geeky guitarist Arty (Kevin McHale), dramatic soprano Kurt (Chris Colfer), punk rocker Tina (Jenna Ushkowitz) and self-proclaimed star Rachel (Lea Michele).

Will also reaches across the school’s social strata and blackmails star quarterback Finn (Cory Monteith), who has a fantastic shower voice, into joining.

“Glee” is about the many obstacles Will faces, including his wife, Terri (Jessalyn Gilsig), egotistical cheering coach Sue Sylvester (played by the always great Jane Lynch) and Finn’s fellow football players and cheerleader girlfriend Quinn (Dianna Agron).

“Glee” is “High School Musical,” only its heart is coupled with a sly sense of humor. It’s a terrific change-of-pace series to which Fox should give a plum time slot as soon as possible.

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