Gleeks Are Too Cool for Your Stupid Yearbook, Anyway

Tonight on Glee, the gang learns that there won't be a page for them in the yearbook this year. (Why not? Budget cuts, of course--that irritating buzz phrase of 2009.) Most of the song-and-dancers are fine with it, thrilled even; the Glee Club yearbook photo is usually the object of ridicule. And not for nothing, people: There's a reason the show's emblem is an L on a forehead.

L, of course, stands for loser. My high school didn't have a Glee Club, but we had plenty of Losers. Note the capitol L, please--I'm not making a judgment here. This was a thing, an actual category of being. We all knew which kids fell into this category, though no one actually, specifically assigned them the role. It was just one of the many horrors that denoted high school life.

Let's face it: TV shows are often set in high schools, because said places have such an obvious caste system, manufacturing misery. I remember one girl in school who was repeatedly referred to as a "social climber." All that meant, of course, was that she tried too hard to hang out with the popular crowd. She didn't know her place, but most kids did; you were either in or out. I wish that someone had told me, back then, that life beyond high school isn't quite so much like a giant pressure cooker. There are no yearbooks, for one thing.

From My So-Called Life to Beverly Hills 90210 to Dawson's Creek, shows set in high schools succeed again and again. Considering that natural law of comedy--it's funny because it's true--the jokes practically write themselves. So do the cruelties and the sorrows.

Tonight, according to Glee's promos, Rachel (Lea Michele) will feel the need to assert the Glee Club's relevance -- yearbook photo or no. Hilarity (and fun musical numbers) will ensue. But I'll still feel like sitting her down and telling her that it doesn't matter, really. She'll graduate, and she'll leave the Cheerios in her dust. Nobody looks at yearbook photos after high school ends, Rachel. Well, maybe way in the future, some washed-up, former cheerleaders might. But who cares about them?

Plus: Glee and Teen Pregnancy: Why So Blase?

Do you still have your high school yearbooks? Chime in below!

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