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Stigma_Alerts_Archive

December 3, 2010

Glee: Not Funny

Fox Television's Emmy-winning musical comedy, Glee, stepped into stigma for its November 16 episode, entitled "The Substitute", which mocked and trivialized bipolar disorder--and included imaginary violence as humor.

Actress Gwyneth Paltrow, as substitute teacher Holly Holliday, played Mary Todd Lincoln- wife of Abraham Lincoln- as part of a history lesson. In the video link (above), the short scene begins at the 39:10 minute mark. The transcript and dialogue reads:

Holly Holliday is standing at the front of class room dressed in 19th century clothing, lecturing to a high school class.

Holly Holliday: Mary Todd Lincoln in the house! My husband was probably gay and I'm bipolar, which makes me yell things like [pointing to a teapot], 'That teapot is spreading lies about me! Or, that can't be my baby because I don't love it! [throws imaginary baby over shoulder]

Mr. Schuester knocks on the door and asks Holly Holliday to speak with him for a moment.

Holly Holliday: Guys, practice your bipolar rants. See, history can be fun!

Please contact Fox TV and the director of the episode to express disappointment with the scene. Mental illness is not a joke. Would the show have included a scene that played AIDS or cancer for laughs?

Glee has enormous power to influence young people who constitute much of the show's audience-and for whom suicide is the third-leading cause of death. Ask the show to make amends by producing episodes that deal with mental illness accurately and compassionately and include themes of recovery.

Fox TV: Email address for comments on shows

Ryan Murphy (Glee creator, director, writer):
Ryan Murphy Productions
5555 Melrose Ave
Chevalier Bldg.
Los Angeles, CA 90038
Phone: 323-956-5000
Fax: 323-862-2121

Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays

Best wishes to all our StigmaBusters for the upcoming holidays.

Unfortunately, the Glee character "Holly Holliday" is no cause for comfort and joy.


Glee

Eyes and Ears

Have you seen stigma in the news, entertainment or advertising media?

You are our eyes and ears! Send a report to stigmabusters@nami.org.

Because of the large number of messages received, they cannot all be answered individually; however, we appreciate every one and review and prioritize them for action. Please also contact the source directly.

You have more power than you know! We appreciate getting copies of any responses you receive.

Your help does make a difference.


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