I'll be the first to admit that I was a hardcore Gleek back in my day. This series had a hold on me (I may or may not have attended a Glee Live! concert in my youth), in part due to the musical numbers, the ragtag cast of characters, and the outlandish storylines that made this show something unforgettable.
But in a recent Glee rewatch, I couldn't help but notice some of the strange money-centered plots peppered throughout the show. From William McKinley High School's weird financial priorities to Rachel and Kurt's inexplicable Bushwick loft, here are the most puzzling examples:
1.Right off the bat, in Glee's pilot episode, we're introduced to the whacky priorities of William McKinley High School. When Spanish teacher Will Schuester decides to revive the glee club, Principal Figgins has some major reservations. He tells Will that he will have to pay $60 out of pocket per month because, unlike the Cheerios cheerleading squad, this club isn't going to bring the school any prestige.
2.Will's wife, Terri, is a walking financial nightmare. She's very upset about living paycheck to paycheck but refuses to work more than four hours a day, three days a week at Sheets-N-Things. She also has a notorious "craft room" in the Schuester house where she hides her Pottery Barn stash. When she decides to fake a pregnancy, she wants Will to give up his teaching job to become an accountant to provide for them.
3.Wanting to earn a little extra money in the wake of Terri's pregnancy news, Will takes on janitorial duties after school. Because the school has already cut a janitor for budgetary reasons, Schue offers to do all of the work for half of the earnings. At this rate, his new side gig can't be making him much. Know your worth, Schue! You are scrubbing hardened slushie goo off the floor!
4.It's no secret that money is at the center of the outrageous feud between Sue Sylvester and Will Schuester. It's Sue's running shtick throughout the series, as she continually tries to destroy the glee club so the Cheerios can have the maximum amount of funding. In fact, early in the series, Sue asks her Cheerios to infiltrate the glee club and destroy it from the inside.
5.I consider Will Schuester rapping to "Gold Digger" both a money plotline and a travesty.
6.During the absurd stint where Quinn plans on secretly giving Terri her baby, she asks Terri to help fund doctor appointments and maternity clothes. Terri finds this unreasonable, but does take a second job as an unqualified nurse at William McKinley High to spy on her husband.
7.In one of her fleeting Sue Sylvester-isms, Sue likens the toxic environment she plans to create in glee club to the time she sold her house and "salted the earth in the backyard so that nothing could grow there for 100 years," all because she had to pay closing costs.
8.Apparently, the school can't seem to find the money to pay for a bus that has wheelchair access for Artie when it comes to transporting the New Directions to their competitions. Soon after, it comes to light that the school hasn't spent much money on making anything accessible. It's very realistic that their budget would be tight, but concerning when we see WMHS host other egregious school events.
9.The entire episode where the glee club films a local commercial for a mattress store and then gets paid in mattresses is iconic.
10.Despite having zero dollars for New Directions, in a strange moment of realism, Principal Figgins says the school's electricity bill has gone up due to the use of lights in the auditorium. Have you seen their musical numbers, Figgins? Broadway caliber!
11.Though the New Directions somehow manage numerous matching outfits and intricate backdrops for many of their performances, they don't have enough money for costumes and hairspray for regionals in Season 3. Sugar Motta (whose family apparently has enough money to rent out Breadstix) saves the day and covers this expense.
12.Since the New Directions frequently need to raise money, the students organize numerous fundraisers throughout the series. From marijuana-laced cupcakes to a sexy calendar featuring all the guys in glee, it gets weird fast.
13.After graduation, Rachel and Kurt are off to the Big Apple to pursue their dreams. They find a spacious loft in New York City that's the size of a house. Given the fact that Rachel is a student and Kurt is an intern with Vogue, how are they affording rent and food and cost of living? Even when they bring Santana into the mix, it's a baffling situation.
14.Once Rachel lands Funny Girl (a funny coincidence given Lea Michele's current role as Fanny Brice on Broadway), she has access to a town car that drives her around. Realizing that she's losing herself to fame, she decides to learn how to ride the subway like a regular person. This begs the question: How was she getting around before all of the fame? As a NYADA student, was she taking taxis everywhere?
And that's what you missed on Glee! Share your weird rewatch revelations in the comments below.