Whether its theatricality has been to your taste or not, you can’t deny that Glee has made its mark in popular culture, so much so that “Song’s Ruined by Glee” is considered a legit game category according to Pitch Perfect. It’s been six years since the musical-comedy’s first episode and last Friday (20th) saw the show’s swansong episode. Though a sad moment for avid Gleeks, the show’s six seasons have seen over 400 covers/original songs that will forever remain in its legacy. It’s been a tricky job, but we’ve managed to choose the best cover/original song from each series, see if you agree!
Season One – True Colors
Given that the song defines Glee, it would be very easy to use ‘Don’t Stop Believin‘ as season one’s highlight. However, we didn’t want to meet your expectations, but rather challenge them, hence our praise for the group’s rendition of Cyndi Lauper’s ‘True Colors‘. If you’re able to glaze over the sickly-sultry glances between the lovestruck characters, you’ll be able to enjoy Jenna Ushkowitz‘ soothing vocals that glide even higher with the help of the group’s overall harmony.
Honourable Mentions: Keep Holding On, One Less Bell to Answer/A House Is Not a Home
Season Two – Teenage Dream
In Season Two, Blaine Anderson (Darren Criss) blazed into the series and sweeped not only Kurt, but the whole audience off their feet – and this cover is the reason why. Along with the rest of The Warblers, Criss demonstrates how a choir makes use of its talents with their excellent four-part harmony. Where Glee really succeeded as a series was when it took mainstream pop and took it somewhere where we’d never expect it. Little did we expect to love Teenage Dream in acapella form.
Honourable Mentions: I Feel Pretty/Unpretty, Thriller/Heads Will Roll, Landslide
Season Three – Without You
Though Lea Michele has many mentionable belts to her name, her take on David Guetta and Usher’s ‘Without You‘ takes the top spot for Season Three’s efforts. Accompanied by a tender piano, pounding drums and crescendoing strings, the song is completely revamped from its original dance sound to a powerful ballad. For sure one of Glee’s most memorable and touching performances.
Honourable Mentions: Rumour Has It/Someone Like You, Never Can Say Goodbye, Smooth Criminal
Season Four – Love Song
As the series progressed, so did its characters. Sworn enemies somehow became amiable companions and it certainly had a positive impact on the music. ‘Love Song‘ brings together Rachel, Santana and Quinn into harmony, and each voice contributes in its own specific style, particularly Dianna Agron’s whose rich tones just make you want them to become a three-piece girl group. Now that Glee’s over they have the time right?
Honourable Mentions: The Scientist, Mine
Season Five – Make You Feel My Love
We add this song with a heavy heart, Michele’s rendition of ‘Make You Feel My Love‘ featuring in the episode titled ‘The Quarterback’, a dedication to the late talent Cory Monteith. Whilst sung beautifully, the amount of emotion is transparent, and completely genuine. Though Glee had its light hearted humour, it also had moments where everyone could relate, inducing emotions to show that we’re all human and music is one way we’re able to cope through these hard times.
Honourable Mentions: Hey Jude, If I Die Young, Here Comes The Sun
Season Six – I Lived
Whilst we have chosen the final song of the series, ‘I Lived‘ marks a celebratory end, and perfectly summarises Glee’s run. Its characters and storylines have certainly lived parallel to many viewers around the world. Thanks to Glee we’ve seen a rise of LGBT coverage, a rise of musical mash-ups and simply, entertainment. For many, it will be missed.
Honourable Mentions: Uninvited, A Thousand Miles
So there we have it! If you’ve been a fan of the series, tell us your favourite song in the comments!