Alternative title: Shit Stupid and Ignorant People Say
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In the first five episodes of its sophomore season “Glee” has addressed topics as ephemeral as “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” and the music of Britney Spears, and as enduring as the nature of religious faith. In Tuesday night’s installment it turns to subject matter that is timely and also substantial: the episode, called “Never Been Kissed,” finds Kurt Hummel (an openly gay character played by Chris Colfer) antagonized by a bully who targets him because of his sexuality, and it addresses the consequences of Kurt’s decision to stand up to his tormentor.
Ryan Murphy, a creator and executive producer of “Glee,” has said this will be the first of several episodes in which its characters are affected by bullying. In the first part of a two-part interview, Mr. Murphy spoke with ArtsBeat about the ideas and themes that went into “Never Been Kissed.” (Part 2 of the conversation will be posted on Wednesday, after you’ve had a chance to watch the episode.)
Q.The issue of bullying – young people in general and gay people in particular – has recently become a flashpoint for discussion. How long have you been planning to use Chris Colfer’s character to tackle it?
HELENA, Mont. — Alarmed by evidence that gay and lesbian students are common victims of schoolyard bullies, many school districts are bolstering their antiharassment rules with early lessons in tolerance, explaining that some children have “two moms” or will grow up to love members of the same sex.