GLEE Post-Super Bowl Episode to Feature Michael Jackson’s “Thriller”; Will Not be a Tribute Episode

     November 17, 2010


Since Fox’s announcement that hit-series Glee would follow their broadcast of this season’s Super Bowl, speculation has been rampant regarding which artist those pesky high schoolers would be paying tribute to in the episode.  However, it seems the producers have decided to take an alternative route, and simply do a traditional episode of the ratings juggernaut.  EW reports that the undoubtedly large-budget episode (the most expensive in Glee history, according to EW) will include music from Black Eyed Peas, Lady Antebellum, Katy Perry, and yes, Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.”  The plot will reportedly center on the local football championship (at the halftime of which “Thriller” will be performed, in a mash-up with a yet to be announced song) and the regional competition for Sue Sylvester’s cheerleading squad. For more on the big episode, and the show itself, hit the jump.

UPDATE: We’ve posted the first images from the Glee Thriller episode that airs after the Super Bowl, click here to check them out.

Although the decision to nix the tribute idea may come as a bit of a surprise, it’s probably for the best. This season’s Britney Spears episode was a far cry from last year’s masterful Madonna tribute.  The show seems to be at its best when the story influences the songs, and not the other way around. A football championship sounds like a great way to acknowledge a slew of sure-to-be confused NFL fans when their television suddenly changes from juiced-up athletes battling for one of the most important titles in all of sports, to a group of skinny kids singing Lady Gaga songs.

It was previously thought that the Glee producers were mulling over three possible artists to pay tribute to in the big post-Super Bowl show: Michael Jackson, Prince, or Bruce Springsteen. But apparently the only artist they were ever considering was Sir Elton John (EW says to expect a John-centered tribute in one of the back-nine episodes of the current season).  There had been rumblings recently that the producers were beginning to rethink the tribute strategy, and go with a traditional episode instead.  All for the best I say. The current season as a whole has been a little more hit and miss than last year (though Gwyneth Paltrow nailed her guest stint on last night’s episode, and the Rocky Horror tribute was spot on). Nevertheless, come Super Bowl Sunday the show is sure to draw its biggest ratings in its history, which is saying something given that it’s one of the highest rated series on television.  General Motors is also apparently sponsoring the episode, so it’s very likely that there will be limited commercial interruptions.  Super Bowl XLV will be on February 6th, 2011, with this very special episode of Glee to air immediately afterwards.

UPDATE: We’ve posted the first images from the Glee Thriller episode that airs after the Super Bowl, click here to check them out.