One of the most talked about previews of the season – ‘Glee‘ – airs tonight on Fox after the exciting ‘American Idol’ season finale. The series, actually airing in the Fall, follows a ‘Fame’ like group of kids at McKinley HS who band together and form a Glee Club, in the midst of the social difficulties they all face on campus.
At McKinley you’ll find the archetypes that you find at any typical American high school campus: The bookish nerd, the stuck-up princess – and the jock, who is being blackmailed to join the club but who also has his own little high school secret of his own:
“Well I think my character is less confidant then he seems,” said Cory Monteith, who plays quarterback Finn Hudson, at a recent red carpet screening for the series. “He has dreams of performing as a dancer and a singer but that’s not what the quarterback of the football team does. He also has a problem with the ladies. It’s not a problem meeting girls or dating girls. When he’s making out with girls he has a problem with arriving early. That’s all I can say!”
And what were the stars of the show like as kids?
Patrick Gallagher, who plays tough, manly coach, Ken Tanaka, says he was a bit of a wild child. “I thought I was cool but I was a punk rocker,” he told us. “And in 11th and 12th grade I was into music and theater. I was from a small town and I think that’s why the show resonates with me. It’s part of the underdog that lies within me and I think a lot of us were like that.”
But he doesn’t particularly think his character’s sports skills are anything special – “I don’t think he’s the greatest football coach. Not because he doesn’t understand football, he’s just gotten to the point where he’s kind of hit a rut in his life,” he says. “He’s madly in love with Emma the guidance counselor who is in love with Will the Spanish teacher.”
How about the object of the coach’s affect, Emma Pillsbury, played by Jayma Mays? Turns out the man she’s in love with is married. “She has this whole basket full of issues yet somehow she’s supposed to be the voice of reason for these students. And I just love the irony in that.”
Jayma was stronger than her character while growing up. “I was the jock. I was a line backer believe it or not,” she joked. “Ha ha no, I don’t know how other people perceived me but I definitely didn’t feel like I fit in. I did all the stuff I think I was supposed to do. I was a cheerleader. I hung out with non-cheerleaders. I did a little bit of everything but I think it was primarily because I didn’t know who I was.”
Watch the one-hour preview of ‘Glee’ tonight on Fox after ‘American Idol.