My problem with the reading wasn't the fact that it was religious or the way he read it. I liked the way he read it. It sounded nice to me...(but I do agree no one can compare to Linus) My problem was his revelation to 'do the right thing' apparently took place off camera. It came out of the blue. One minute he wants to learn his lines and be part of the special and the next he wants to get serious. I wish we had seem some kind of progression from point a to point b.
I also have a really big problem with Rory's "homage" to Charlie Brown. Glee is getting irritating in that it is constantly duplicating other things EXACTLY, and then calling it an homage. Can you really just steal whatever you want as long as you claim that it is honoring the original?
I didn't get "homage" from Rory's reading at all. What I instantly thought was "oh my god they're ripping off Charlie Brown and they think their audience is too young and stupid to notice." And actually, I'd prefer if it was a rip off. As it is, its an homage to Charlie Brown within an homage to Star Wars within an homage to Judy Garland. It is basically a poorly produced Frankenstein of all these Christmas Specials that we could just go and watch anyway if we wanted to.
Also, if you will think back to last Christmas, the ENTIRE episode was an "homage" to the grinch. If Glee can't generate its own holiday themed content, why bother? It's getting painful to watch.
The bible reading didn't even register as homage because it felt so out of place. Linus reading that passage at the end of the Peanuts special was beautiful and meaningful whether you were a person of faith or not. (I'm not.) The entire plot of the special was Charlie Brown struggling to understand what Christmas was all about, being frustrated by the flash and over-consumption and feeling out of step. Linus steps in to remind everybody that at its core, the holiday is about peace and good will.
Its possible that the Glee special meant to deliver that same message, but I simply didn't feel it. Sure, I felt sad for the poor little Irish boy who couldn't be with his family, but I nearly forgot all about him after a half hour of Rachel and Kurt arrogantly prancing around in black and white.
To those who feel superior that they got this sophisticated blend of humor that the rest of us couldn't grasp: trust me. We got it. We got it well before the Cheerios showed up to do a bland and out of place dance routine. I have seen the old christmas specials and am a huge fan of Judy Garland and also Star Wars. I thought it was cute for about five minutes and I agree that Lea Michele did a fantastic job emulating the acting style of that era: but the whole thing was so flat. There was no snark or wit and it didn't play on anything. It established the joke, didn't take it anywhere new and then dragged it around tirelessly forever like a child who got to open a present on Christmas Eve.
You can't just film some musical numbers in black and white and call it satire. And you can't just steal someone else's material and call it an homage. Well, I guess Glee can.