Lima, New York, Los Angeles. Season 4 will be Glee–king all over the country. At the Comic-Con panel for the show, we learned many things, but what was most noticeable is how the show is going to shift gears: half the cast will be living outside the lines of Lima, Ohio. And while everyone knew it was bound to happen, seeing it in action will most likely be a different story.
It’s no secret that some (critics and fans alike) took issue with the seemingly-jumbled storytelling and PSA-y nature of the show’s last season. But it seems as though with a slightly pared-down cast running the New Directions in Ohio, there may be a chance for more intimate character development. Executive producer Brad Falchuk explained “It’s a much smaller group in there, which is exciting for us because each story can be a little more intimate and a little more focused in a way because you don’t have 12 people to service.”
Don’t think that means new characters are out of the picture, though: the group DOES need 12 to compete in nationals. “We’re definitely looking to repopulate the choir room and casting some new people to bring in there, the idea is to keep that part of the show vibrant,” says Falchuk. The panel also divulged that we’ll see another dimension of the Puckerman family: Puck’s brother will be introduced, adding a much-needed dimensional element to round out Mark Salling‘s resident badboy-with-a-heart-of-gold. And while The Glee Project-winner Damien McGinty is out, Samuel Larsen and Alex Newell will still be there in some capacity next season, which means–of course–a return to their roots: “They’re underdogs again; that room is half empty and they’re desperately trying to get 12 kids for Sectionals,” said Brennan.
And guest stars? They’re already staking ’em up, even though no one’s seen the new scripts yet! There is another famous face adding herself to the roster of the impressive Glee lineup: Kate Hudson! “It’s a difference between the Will version of teaching and one that’s based on negative reinforcement,” Falchuk explained. “The challenge for Rachel coming out of being the biggest star in her high school choir and having the quarterback boyfriend and now starting fresh and the challenges of New York and being there alone is going to be interesting for her.” “Now she’s in a school with 1,800 other Rachel Berrys,” added Michele. The hard-as-nails teachings of Hudson’s character coupled with the cutthroat nature of New Yorkian Rachel Berrys? Sounds like a welcome challenge to Glee‘s arguably most un-challenged star. Looks like we’ll see if Lea Michele‘s character has the chops to make it against some serious competition!
Though not all is well and good going into season four: namely with Finn.”He went off on this adventure and nobody knows what’s happened,” said Falchuk. Oh yeah, and then there’s that whole ‘army’ storyline (seriously: could you ever see Finn in the army?!). So we’ll see how that (possibly ridiculous?) development plays out. And of course our poor Chris Colfer, his dreams of New York dashed–or were they? “[Rachel and Kurt are] best friends and it will be hard to keep them apart,” Falchuk hinted. There’s always NYU or even a CUNY, Kurt: just get thee to New York and make your own dreams come true!
But what about Klaine (though I’ve always preferred the nickname “Blurt” for these two. Just me?) Darren Criss seems to be in favor of a rocky road for the pair: “We all want to see them be together as long as possible but it’s good to have things shake up a little bit. The inevitable of a long-distance relationship produces a lot of interesting conflict.” Falchuk noted that modern technology will help tie story lines together. “We’ve been using that as a way to bind it.” I smell “don’t have Skype-sex” PSA-laden episode (please don’t do that, Glee, no matter how much you’d LOVE to have the kids sing *NSYNC‘s “Digital Getdown.” please.just.resist.) potential with that one. Sexting is so 2011 anyway.
Other things to expect? Will Emma and Schue finally get it on? They’ll be “living together and doing dirty things” said Falchuk. Saucy! Also Sue finally has her celebrity baby, Puck and Mercedes are in LA, Mike is in Chicago, and Quinn is in New Haven, CT at Yale. Chord Overstreet will also be back full-time. Hooray for troutymouth! Like we said, they’re Gleeking out everywhere!
What do you think about the new shake-ups and additions to the show? Any storylines you’re dying to see play out? Do you think it’ll be more ridiculous or an improvement on last season? Sound off in the comments, below!
Glee‘s fourth season premieres Thursday, Sept. 13 at 9 p.m. on FOX.
Follow Alicia on Twitter @alicialutes