How 'Glee' Is Destroying the Space-Time Continuum
How 'Glee' Is Destroying the Space-Time Continuum
John Kubicek
John Kubicek
Senior Writer, BuddyTV
Glee rarely obeys traditional rules of continuity, and pointing out the giant plot holes is one of my favorite pastimes. Whether the show just decides to undo storylines after they've served their purpose (Quinn in a wheelchair, Rachel's pregnancy scare, Sue's suspension) or ignore certain details (where are Joe and Sugar?), Glee's absurdity has become one of its charms.

Now, thanks to the decision to stretch the school year across two seasons, there's a massive new problem and it involves destroying the way time works.

Glee to End After Season 6>>

The next new episode, "A Katy or a Gaga," will include performances of Katy Perry's "Roar" and Lady Gaga's "Applause." Both of these songs were released in August 2013. But the action on Glee is taking place several months before that.

Since the show just featured prom and we have yet to see Nationals or graduation, the show's fifth season is presumably taking place in April/May 2013. So to include songs released after that is impossible and, as such, the show is ignoring the rules of the space/time continuum.

I'm not necessarily pointing this out as a bad thing. I understand the need to cover current hit songs and, as I said, continuity has never been the show's strong suit. But it's a fun game to play, noticing all of the times Glee references things that took place after the internal timeline of the series. It already happed in the premiere with jokes about the legalization gay marriage and Russia's harsh homosexual propaganda laws, both of which didn't occur until June.

So this is just one of those things you have to notice and then ignore. Maybe Brittany, while at M.I.T., invented time travel and went back to give her pals in New Directions all the cool new music to perform. Or maybe Sugar has been gone for so long because she's the Doctor's newest companion on the TARDIS.

To be fair, this kind of time manipulation is nothing new on TV. One Tree Hill's decision to condense the first four seasons into just two school years saw some similar problems, like when Lucas and Nathan went to a Charlotte Bobcats NBA game in season 2 even though, within the show's timeline, the team hadn't been created yet.

Even other Emmy-winning shows have done it, notably The West Wing. In order to get to a campaign storyline with Jimmy Smits and Alan Alda in season 6, the show somehow ignored the fact that the Santos/Vinick presidential election took place three years after President Bartlet won re-election. In other words, there's a whole year that never happened on the show, but there was never a time jump within the plotlines to explain how this happened.

I'm sure this is just silly nitpicking, but these are the things eagle-eyed TV viewers should look out for. So have fun watching Glee, and try turning it into a drinking game. Every time you spot an anachronism, take a shot. It might make these final two seasons go by a little quicker.

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(Image courtesy of FOX)