Books on TV Author Interview with Suzanne Gardner

In our last author interview we helped you get to know Crissy Calhoun a little better.

This time we’re introducing you to the second half of the terrific tandem that is our Glee guide writing team, Suzanne Gardner.

(If you missed the interview with the book’s other author, Erin Balser, read it here.)

You were an early adopter Gleek, starting your blog Gleeks United in October 2009 . Tell us what made the show stand out for you and why we should watch it.

For me, Glee felt like just what I needed in a TV show: something fun, cheerful, and optimistic. A show to make me laugh, cry, dance, sing, and cheer. Not only does it pair fantastic writing with incredible music, but I think that Glee is a realistic portrayal of what high school is actually like. Many students in high school don’t actually fit in, and Glee shines an honest light on that while bringing the viewer into the world of these social outcasts. If you’ve ever felt like an underdog or an outsider, even just a little bit, you need to be watching Glee.

What made you think that Glee deserved the TV companion treatment, and what kinds of things will you be analyzing in Don’t Stop Believin’?

Glee really has so many layers (kind of like onions and ogres, as Shrek would say), and I think that its fun, musical side often draws attention away from the messages and issues the show tries to address. By giving Glee the TV companion treatment, we can bring these ideas to the forefront. In Don’t Stop Believin’ we’ll be analyzing the meanings behind the song choices, the comparisons between characters, the show’s themes, and more. Oh, and the mile-a-minute references the show throws in, giving shout-outs to pop stars, musicals, and more? We’ve got all that covered, too!

Every week on Music Monday over at Gleeks United you suggest a song you’d like to see one of the cast members perform. What’s #1 on your Glee song wishlist?

Do I have to pick just one? The main reason I run Music Monday is because I have so many ideas of songs I want to see on Glee! One I’m still particularly hoping for, however, is Tina singing “Something To Talk About” by Bonnie Raitt. I love when Tina gets a chance to show off her vocal skills, and I think this would be a fun song for her to sing about her and Artie! Their romance is starting to blossom again, but I think it might take some pushing from their glee club friends to help them realize that they should really give them “something to talk about…how about love?”

And what about if you had to perform a song on Glee? Which one would it be, and why? (Fair warning: I may hold you to this at Glee karaoke.)

I’m scared of your warning! I used to sing back in elementary and middle school, but I now usually try to avoid singing when other people are around. And while I love to sing along to pretty girly songs, if you put me in front of a crowd I’d probably pick my favourite tune to belt out when playing Rock Band: Bon Jovi’s “Wanted Dead or Alive.” I don’t know how it would fit in on Glee, but I do know that it’s amazing to belt out the line, “I’ve seen a million faces and I’ve rocked them all!”

What Glee character were you most like in high school? Is it the same character you relate to best now?

Both in high school and now, I would say I’m probably a mix of Rachel and Tina, because while sometimes I can be loud and confident like the former, in other situations I get nervous and shy like the latter.

To finish up, what other shows are part of your regular viewing schedule?

Currently, I can’t miss Doctor Who, 30 Rock, Being Erica (which just got renewed for a third season, woo!), Modern Family, How I Met Your Mother, Life Unexpected and United States of Tara. I’m also getting into Community and Castle, and I’m excited that Party Down just started up again!

Thanks for chatting with us, Suzie!

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