While it might send a good message, the latest episode of "Glee" created a debate among Newtown residents, who were shocked by the shooting incident at Sandy Hook Elementary four months ago. Parents were upset that they were not alerted about the content of the episode, which could open old wounds.
Andrew Paley, whose children survived the shooting at Sandy Hook, told CNN, "We have no problem, at least the parents I've spoken to, that they aired an episode that had a school shooting." He added, "What's really upsetting is that no one, none of the producers, reached out to the town of Newtown to let us residents, who are so close to this, know that this episode was airing and that if anybody is a fan of 'Glee'... it would have been a shocker to them if they didn't know what the episode was about."
Another resident, Tricia Muzzio, also slammed FOX and people behind the show for not giving a warning, "This close to the tragedy without any warning, I believe was inconsiderate. [The episode] was so realistic that I couldn't believe it. I said to myself, 'Wow, this is really how it happened.' "
Luckily, Superintendent of schools Janet Robinson and Newtown victims' advocacy group, called Newtown Action Alliance, notified parents about the content of the episode. "I would suggest if you do watch this TV show to either not watch it tonight or watch with caution," the group said in an email to Newtown residents.
"Shooting Star", which aired Thursday, April 11, featured [SPOILER ALERT!] Becky bringing Sue's gun to McKinley High to feel protected and accidentally fired shots, causing fear in the school. Trying to cover up for the girl with Down syndrome played by Lauren Potter, Sue admitted the gun belonged to her and misfired when she was cleaning it.
A disclaimer before the episode advised viewer discretion because the episode "addresses the topic of school violence." Ryan Murphy called the said outing, which attempted to raise awareness of gun violence, "the most powerful emotional Glee ever."
Next week, the show will return with a new episode where the original members of New Directions reprise their performance of "Don't Stop Believing". In a new sneak peek video, stars Amber Riley and Chris Colfer explain why they do the number again.