Tag Archives: lgbtq

Shoved Out of the Closet and Glee’s White Knight Syndrome

I’m going postpone BerryCap today because I have some much more pressing issues when it comes to Glee right now and it really boils down to the show’s glaring and unmistakable misogyny.

I'm too tired.

I was going to do a write up about the episode two weeks ago that dealt with Santana and her coming out, but the episode ended in the middle of the story’s arc and I figured I’d give Glee the benefit of the doubt and see how the show would tie it all up. Turns out they tied it up into one big ass pile of bullshit.

To recap what happened during “Mash-Off”: It was Trouble Tones vs. New Directions and thus Finn vs. Santana in a verbal sparing war in the hallway. Santana crosses some lines and then Finn obliterates any and all lines that have ever existed by telling Santana to come out of the closet and calling her a coward because she hasn’t yet. In a crowded hallway. In front of dozens of students. Some politician, whose niece overhead this particularĀ  exchange, plans to out Santana in a public commercial aimed to attack Sue. Santana, obviously upset since she hasn’t told her parents yet, confronts Finn who says something along the lines of “everyone in the school already knows and they don’t care”. He doesn’t know about the ad. And then Santana smacks him clear across the face and the episode ends. (And that’s what you missed on Glee!)

When we arrive back at McKinley in for “I Kissed a Girl” the very first scene confronts what happens during the previous episode. Santana, Finn, Will, and Shelby are all in Figgins’ office to discuss what happened last week. Well, not really, just to discuss Santana slapping Finn. Figgins says she’s going to be suspended because WMHS has a no tolerance policy when it comes to violence (except slushies are cool); Will and Shelby agree. That is until our favorite Hero Boy, Finn, swoops in to say that she didn’t really slap him even though it looked and sounded like it.

Yes, Finn comes to Santana aids. She will not be suspended! Hooray! He wants sectionals to be a “fair fight” and he feels bad for her because he thinks she is just awesome. Aw, how sweet of him.

But he tells her unless she and the rest of the Trouble Tones come back to Glee for a “lesson” he’ll go back to Figgins and tell him the truth. Blackmail isn’t a good look on you, Finn, and I don’t really know what kind of “lesson” a straight white boy could have for a lesbian latina.

Nonetheless, Santana and the rest of the Trouble Tones wind up in the choir room for “Lady Music Week”. That’s music “for ladies, by ladies”. Finn continues to push Santana’s outing further saying everyone in glee knows about Brittany and her and they’re not judging because they’re “accepting and cool”, failing to consider that coming out isn’t only about having accepting people in your life but coming to terms with yourself and how your future’s going to change. But again, Straight White Boy Finn really wouldn’t know much about that.

Kurt and Blaine sing a song to Santana; she’s ungrateful because of course she is.

Later Finn approaches Santana at her locker, seeking praise for his oh so fantastic lady music idea. She tells him straight up that he’s practically forcing her out of the closet. He responds that it’s really the pizza guy congressional candidate who is forcing her to “deal with it”, completely shirking the blame. Nevermind that it’s because of Finn that the pizza guy even has that information. Needless to say, Finn does NOT apologize for outing Santana.

But Finn is the good guy! He’s concerned for Santana because he thinks that one day her anger is going to turn suicidal. He sings her a patronizing version of “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” (because obviously lesbians are just in it for the fun!) and then she thanks him for it and fucking hugs him! Are you fucking kidding me, writers? All Santana needed was a serenading by Finn and everything is just fucking dandy? How in the fucking world does a douchey song make it okay? Her life is going to be forever changed because of some privileged white boy and all he has to do is sing? No. I know Glee isn’t exactly about realism but that is just bullshit.

It’s apparent that now pizza guy’s ad has run because as Santana walks down the hallway all the dudes oogle her like they’re watching her fuck a chick. And then some underclassman rugby captain approaches her. He says that girls like Santana are a “challenge” and they just need the right guy to “straighten” them out. FUCKING GROSS, GLEE. Here you go, Finn, and everyone who said that nothing good comes from being in the closet. This is why. People like this douchebag exist and they think they have to right to “straighten” queer girls and very often that includes rape. But, hey, Santana was only scared of facing her “feelings”.

Granted the glee girls come to her defense. Rugby dude tells them he’s trying to make her “normal”. Brittany replies that she is normal and Quinn says it isn’t a choice.

BUT. Then the girls launch into a song that is entirely about kissing girls to please males. Do the writers even listen to the content of the songs before they pick them? “I Kissed a Girl” is perhaps the most offensive song about faux-sapphic love ever written yet they thought it would be the most appropriate song to sing. And the show has at least three gay writers (including a lesbian) so there is really no excuse. Anything for that paycheck, huh?

Following their performance, Santana updates everyone: she’s told her parents, they’re cool with it, and now all she has to do is tell her grandmother. Yet, when Kurt came out to his dad we saw an extremely beautiful and moving scene. But Santana’s developments are told off screen continuously. When will we ever see her kiss her goddamn girlfriend?

Speaking of her girlfriend, where was Brittany during this whole storyline? We saw her during her campaign for class president but she is completely absent from Santana’s coming out story. Why the hell is that? Because Finn, a boy who is not even her friend and knows nothing about being gay, is the better choice to aid her as she comes out?

Anyway, Santana comes out to her grandmother. Unfortunately she doesn’t take it well and kicks Santana out of the house calling it a sin and a scandal. It would be a moving and poignant scene that shows the flip side of the coming out process. That sometimes it isn’t okay and your family doesn’t accept it like Burt Hummel accepted Kurt. There’s still the potential that her grandmother will come around and things may patch up in the future, of course. But the scene we see, set in her grandmother’s kitchen (using the set of American Horror Story — appropriate), is rife with heteronormative rhetoric. Santana says that she feels the way about girls that she’s “supposed to feel about boys”. Supposed to? Glee, the writers, and Santana herself think that girls are supposed to love boys. Forget about Brittany saying she’s is normal. Nope, Santana still thinks liking boys is what she’s supposed to do.

In the end, Santana sings a songĀ  to the group. A song that gives her strength and reminds her that she’s not alone. And then the fucking camera pans to Finn, in case you forgot that he’s the White Knight in this story. Fucking pathetic.

The thing is, with Glee, its audience is so young and impressionable and it is literally spouting all the wrong concepts when it comes to sexuality, homosexuality, and feminism: girls need boys to save them, even if they’re gay, forcing someone out of the closet is okay — if your intentions are “good”, girls just want to have fun, etc.

And I haven’t even touched upon Quinn, Rachel, or Shelby in this episode. Another day, because much like Santana, I’m too tired.

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Filed under Glee, Television