Glee cast members admit some of the stars 'hated' the show

Former Glee stars detail their ‘rough’ filming experiences and admit some cast members ‘HATED’ the show in resurfaced viral video – as Korean-American actress Jenna Ushkowitz slams ‘tone deaf’ cultural story lines

  • Jenna Ushkowitz, 34, and Kevin McHale, 32, played Tina and Artie on the popular musical show from 2009 to 2015 
  • A 2020 podcast interview with the stars is going viral on TikTok
  • Kevin says he never ‘hated’ the show but ‘some people did’; he admitted that he ‘broke’ when he had to sing ‘What Does the Fox Say’
  • Jenna said that season five ‘was really rough for us’ and agreed that the show was ‘tone deaf’ — like when she had to sing Psy’s Gangnam Style
  • They also discussed how ‘creepy’ Matthew Morrison’s character Mr. Schue was 

Glee stars Jenna Ushkowitz and Kevin McHale have revealed that some of their Glee castmates ‘hated’ the show — and while they may not have felt that strongly themselves, they did find some of filming ‘really rough’ and have labeled the series ‘tone deaf.’

Jenna, 34, and Kevin, 32, played Tina and Artie on the popular musical show from 2009 to 2015, but they weren’t always happy with the plot lines and the songs they had to perform.

While Kevin admitted that he ‘broke’ when he had to sing The Fox by Ylvis in season five, Jenna — who is Korean-American — appeared even more put-off that she was front and center for a performance of Psy’s Gangnam Style 

TV stras: Jenna Ushkowitz, 34, and Kevin McHale, 32, played Tina and Artie on the popular musical show from 2009 to 2015


Hated: A 2020 podcast interview with the stars is going viral on TikTok. The pair both laugh when asked when they started hating Glee

Not all fans: Kevin says he never ‘hated’ the show but ‘some people did’


Not fun: He admitted that he ‘broke’ when he had to sing ‘What Does the Fox Say’

The pair opened up about the experience in a March 2020 episode of the podcast Dating Straight, and the clip is now going viral on TikTok.

During the video clip, which has earned millions of views on TikTok, co-host Amy Ordman asked when Jenna and Kevin started hating Glee.

The stars both laughed at the question, clearly taking no offense. 

‘I never hated it,’ Kevin said, before admitting, ‘Some people did. I was the last one to break, I will say that, out of the cast. I was the last one to lose it.’

He added that ‘What Does the Fox Say was the boiling point’ for him, referring to the 2013 novelty song by Norwegian comedy duo Ylvis.

‘Season five was really rough for us,’ Jenna chimed in. 

When Amy noted that they also performed K-pop star Psy’s Gangnam Style, Jenna — who sang it — pulled her mouth into a thin line, clearly not happy that she was tasked with that song. 

After Amy replied that the show was ‘pretty tone deaf,’ Jenna said: ‘Yeah, absolutely.’

‘If you watch it now you will be shocked,’ Kevin said. 

Podcast host Amy then noted that she had just watched a compilation of Mr. Schue, the teacher played by Matthew Morrison, being ‘creepy for four minutes straight.’

Glee fans on TikTok have recently been sharing lots of old clips of Mr. Schue moaning, grinding, and being otherwise overtly sexual on the show.

‘It’s creepy!’ said Jenna.

‘Someone tweeted it saying, “Should he go to jail?” added Kevin 

Why the Glee cast hated Glee #glee #gleek


High school Kevin (left) and Jenna (right) pictured as their Glee characters

Yikes! They also discussed how ‘creepy’ Matthew Morrison’s character Mr. Schue was

This is hardly the first time that Glee has been accused of being tone deaf, though the stars of the series have not historically been the ones to say so. 

The Atlantic described a 2013 episode as ‘tone deaf and verging on offensive,’ while The Telegraph labeled the whole series a ‘tone-deaf horror show.’ 

In 2019, BuzzFeed created a whole list of ‘problematic’ moments.

But much of the negative coverage of Glee has also been about star Lea Michele’s behavior on set.

Last summer, her co-star Samantha Ware responded to Lea’s post regarding the death of George Floyd.

She wrote: ‘Remember when you made my first television gig a living hell?!?!… ‘Cause I’ll never forget… I believe you told everyone that if you had the opportunity you would “s*** in my wig!” amongst other traumatic microaggressions that made me question a career in Hollywood.’ 

Under fire: But much of the negative coverage of Glee has also been about star Lea Michele’s behavior on set

Remember me? Last summer, her co-star Samantha Ware responded to Lea’s post regarding the death of George Floyd

When the comment made headlines, other Glee cast members chimed in with their own experiences. 

‘Was she unpleasant to work with? Very much so; for Lea to treat others with the disrespect that she did for as long as she did, I believe she SHOULD be called out,’ said Heather Morris.

Amber Riley, who played Mercedes Jones shared two GIFs of herself following the allegations, one raising her hand and the other sipping tea. 

Later, she made clear she wasn’t focused on the controversy amid the turbulent times of social unrest in the wake of George Floyd’s killing, and would only speak on the topic once while appearing on Instagram Live. 

She said, ‘I don’t give a s*** about this Lea Michele thing – I really don’t give a f*** … people are out here dying and being murdered by police. I don’t give a s*** about this Lea Michele thing — I wish her well, I hope she has an amazing pregnancy, I hope that she has grown.’

Meanwhile, trans model Plastic Martyr, actress Elizabeth Aldrich, and Real Housewives of New York star Aviva Drescher also shared negative comments, 

All the stars that have spoken out against Lea Michele

Samantha Ware

Glee actress Samantha re-ignited rumors of Lea Michele’s alleged bad behavior on-set, when she responded to Michele’s post regarding the death of George Floyd earlier this week. Ware, 33, said: ‘Remember when you made my first television gig a living hell?!?!… ‘Cause I’ll never forget… I believe you told everyone that if you had the opportunity you would ‘s*** in my wig!’ amongst other traumatic microaggressions that made me question a career in Hollywood.’ 

Kicking off: Samantha Ware made claims about Lea Michele earlier this week. 

Alex Newell

Alex – who starred as Unique Adams on series for four seasons – promptly aired his feelings on Twitter. ‘We ain’t got not a damn thing to lie about 6 years later!’ he replied to one fan who suggested they were making false accusations about Michele’s behavior.

Dabier Snell

Actor Dabier Snell, who appeared in one episode of Glee, claimed he wasn’t allowed to sit with Michele on set, saying: ‘GIRL YOU WOULDNT LET ME SIT AT THE TABLE WITH THE OTHER CAST MEMBERS CAUSE ‘I DIDNT BELONG THERE’ F–K YOU LEA.’ 

Bad memories: Lea on Glee with Chris Colfer and Heather Morris

Heather Morris

Morris, 33, who played cheerleader Brittany S. Pierce on the Ryan Murphy show, claims Michele was ‘very’ unpleasant to work with, saying: ”Was she unpleasant to work with? Very much so; for Lea to treat others with the disrespect that she did for as long as she did, I believe she SHOULD be called out.’

Melissa Benoist

Supergirl star Melissa Benoist, who appeared on Glee with Lea Michele, liked a series of posts describing star’s bullying and abusive behavior toward castmates. Benoist appeared on Glee’s fourth season playing a character named Marley Rose. She sang a duet with Michele on the series. She also pressed the heart button on tweets from Glee’s Alex Newell and Amber Riley that essentially endorsed the spirit of Ware’s sentiments

Amber Riley

Riley, who played Mercedes Jones in the through all six seasons, shared two GIFs of herself following the allegations, one raising her hand, while the other sipping tea. The response caused a stir among fans who saw it as a subtle way of the actress chiming in. Later, she made clear she wasn’t focused on the controversy amid the turbulent times of social unrest in the wake of George Floyd’s killing, and would only speak on the topic once while appearing on Instagram Live. She said, ‘I don’t give a s*** about this Lea Michele thing – I really don’t give a f*** … people are out here dying and being murdered by police. I don’t give a s*** about this Lea Michele thing – I wish her well, I hope she has an amazing pregnancy, I hope that she has grown.’

RHONY’s Aviva Drescher

Even Real Housewives of New York star Aviva Drescher had a story to tell, commenting: ‘You were once very unkind to me so I am not surprised by your behavior. You shouldn’t judge others before looking in the mirror.’ Michele made disparaging remarks about Drescher during an episode of Andy Cohen’s Watch What Happens Live. 

Awkward: Lea slated Aviva on a 2014 appearance on Watch What Happens Live!

Abigail Breslin

Scream Queens actress Breslin, 24, was another former co-star who was caught ‘liking’ a smattering of tweets about the controversy. Including one that read: “not everyone agreeing that something felt off about Lea Michele… where have y’all been i’ve BEEN saying this FOR YEARS??? i thought i was alone.’

Yvette Nicole Brown

Actress Yvette Nicole Brown also gave her support to Ware. ‘I felt every one of those capital letters,’ the Community actress tweeted ‘EVERY person on a set matters. EVERY person on a set deserves respect. And it is the RESPONSIBILITY of every series regular to make EVERY person who visits their home feel welcome. This dismissive attitude is what’s wrong in Hollywood AND the world.’

Marcel Spears 

The Mayor actor reacted to an array of replies to Ware’s initial tweet, including one directly asking Yvette Nicole Brown: ‘I assume u feel the same since u worked with her?’

Under fire: Lea Michele in

Gerard Canonico

Broadway actor Gerard Canonico, 30, was an understudy in the original Broadway cast of Spring Awakening starring Michele and her BFF Jonathan Groff. ‘You were nothing but a nightmare to me and fellow understudy cast members. You made us feel like we didn’t belong there,’ Canonico wrote in a comment on her Instagram apology, which he had re-posted after claiming it had initially been deleted. 

Elizabeth Aldrich

Actress Elizabeth Aldrich – who was Michele’s understudy in Ragtime – claimed on Twitter: ‘She was absolutely awful to me and ensemble. She demeaned the crew and threatened to have people fired if she was in anyway displeased. I used to cry every night from the mean and manipulative things she would do. She was 12. She was terrifying.’  

Iqbal Theba 

Glee co-star Iqbal Theba said he was not mistreated by the star and took to Twitter to write: ‘Lot of people r assuming that @LeaMichele mistreated me. Let me state it clearly that I was never mistreated by her. And if some of the cast were treated badly then she has apologized for it which is wonderful. But being called a racist is too heavy & unfair a burden 4 most of us, specially in these troubled times.’

Plastic Martyr

Trans model Plastic recalled an incident with Lea in the women’s bathroom at the 2010 Emmy Awards. She told The Sun: ‘She goes, ”Excuse me?” and she looks at her friends, looks at me again, and says, ”Excuse you, you’re in the woman’s bathroom”. I went from feeling like I was on cloud nine to feeling like a circus freak.’

Dean Geyer

Dean Geyer – who played Brody Weston, the boyfriend of Michele’s character Rachel Berry, for 14 episodes – had nothing but nice things to say about her. ‘Lea is still one of my favourite co-stars that I have had the pleasure of working with. She is extremely hard working and super fun to be around,’ he said.

Jordan Pruitt 

The Voice star Jordan Pruitt chimed in on Friday, tweeting: ‘Everyone in Hollywood KNOWS that Lea Michele is a horrible human being …. she is a B**** to everyone. We all know it … yawn. Moving on …’ 

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