Missing the New Directions? Rewatching “Glee” these days, it’s obvious that there were a lot of misses when it comes to its punchlines and storylines. Despite being a “product of its time,” we can’t deny how much it contributed to LGBTQIA+ representation on TV when it first came out. When GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) announced that it’ll be honoring Naya Rivera this year with a tribute from the cast, we couldn’t be anymore happy.
In case you aren’t familiar, GLAAD is a media monitoring organization founded to protest against defamatory coverage of the LGBTQIA+ community. It annually holds the GLAAD Media Awards in which “Glee” has received multiple awards and nominations in the past. This year, the organization has invited former cast members to honor Naya Rivera’s legacy and to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the episode where her character Santana Lopez came out as lesbian.
I’m honored to be joining my GLEE co-stars at the #GLAADawards to pay tribute to LGBTQ teens and honor the legacy and impact of Naya Rivera and her character Santana Lopez. April 8 on @hulu and @YouTube @GLAAD pic.twitter.com/dkMX7R85sd
— Darren Criss (@DarrenCriss) March 24, 2021
According to People, the special tribute to be aired during the awards show on Apr. 8 ET will feature Amber Riley, Jane Lynch, Jenna Ushkowitz, Kevin McHale, Heather Morris, Matthew Morrison, Chris Colfer, Darren Criss, Jacob Artist, Vanessa Lengies, Alex Newell, Harry Shum Jr. and Becca Tobin. (Yes, Lea Michele isn’t on the list but let’s not get into that.)
There will be a special introduction from Demi Lovato, who played Santana’s love interest on the show. (Brittana was still endgame though, if you weren’t able to catch the last few seasons of the show.) The tribute will not only honor Rivera and her character but LGBTQIA+ teens as well.
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In July 2020, Rivera’s passing shocked and saddened members of the LGBTQIA+ community, especially those whose lives she touched through Santana’s story.
You can catch the 32nd Annual GLAAD Media Awards on Apr. 8 at 8 p.m. ET on YouTube or on Hulu at 10 p.m. ET.
Photo screengrabbed from “Glee’s” “If I Die Young” performance video
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