I definitely think having a reality show to attract Glee-wannabes is a good idea – after all, it’ll be even more attractive to people looking for their piece of television fame.
But really, is this show necessary? Producer Ryan Murphy was initially opposed to it, as it would pull him away from Glee itself. He later changed his mind. In addition, the show adds a level of reality competition that really isn’t necessary for a scripted show like Glee.
Hopefully, a reality casting show for Glee won’t cause Glee to fall to a fate similar to other shows that tried this kind of thing. If you remember, the show to cast the new Partridge Family was fun to watch, but the series lasted only a few episodes. The Grease and Legally Blonde reality shows didn’t help the actual Broadway productions, either. A reality casting show seems to cause a bit of a curse – let’s hope Glee overcomes that.
“The Glee Project,” as the Oxygen show is titled, can either be a good show or an absolute trainwreck, and I’m not sure which it will be. It will be cast by the same person that casts the other actors, which is a good thing. It’ll keep the casting consistent. My concern is that people seem to get cast based on onscreen charisma on reality TV casting shows, whereas I imagine that with real casting, the person that’s the best fit for the part is chosen.
The show will feature people that are over 18 years old and can play high schoolers, and to its credit, won’t feature any humiliating audition scened. Of the 40,000 competitors, the show will only show us 85, who will quickly be narrowed down to a dozen. The goal of the competition is to find someone who inspires the producers, rather than just a good singer, dancer and actor.