You may recall that Fox slotted an episode of Glee after this year’s Super Bowl. The audience overlap is limited, but the minds behind Glee did their best to appeal to football fans by putting some of the kids in pads for that week’s centerpiece dance number. Remember that more is better on Glee, though, so they were also zombies, singing a mashup of Michael Jackson‘s “Thriller” and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ “Heads Will Roll.” Glee followed up on the Jackson thread with tonight’s episode (which I have not yet seen), which featured “Man in the Mirror” and The Jackson 5 song “ABC,” as well as Janet Jackson’s “Control.” So it comes as no surprise when creator Ryan Murphy announced earlier today that he will follow up on tributes to Madonna, Britney Spears, and Lady Gaga with an episode devoted to the King of Pop. It took time to talk the Jackson estate into the idea, but with their approval, the writers will fast track production on the episode so it will be ready to air on January 24. The cast will shoot half of the episode before the holiday break and finish the rest in early January. TV Guide says to expect 10-12 of Jackson’s songs to be Glee-d.
Hit the jump to see the “Thriller” scene from the Super Bowl episode.
The tribute episodes have been a mixed bag so far. I hated the Madonna episode, rather liked the Britney Spears episode (mostly because it was heavy on Heather Morris), and have no recollection of the Gaga episode. So let’s call it a wash?
I, like most Americans, am a big fan of the Michael Jackson catalog, so I am intrigued by the potential. Especially now that I have developed a new appreciation for Glee in contrast to Murphy and co-creator Brad Falchuk‘s other show, the truly awful/wonderful American Horror Story. But the “Let’s rush this out there as quick as we can” mentality is not promising. I am willing to keep in open mind through the new year. Fingers crossed that “P.Y.T.” makes it in there. [Edit: Whoops. Artie sang "P.Y.T." for the Valentine's Day episode last year. And it's not bad. I guess that is why I thought it would be a good fit.]