I think that part of why Mike O'Malley works on Glee is the foil he creates for Chris Colfer's portrayal of Kurt. The characters are so different, but still have a deep love for each other that they express easily, even as they struggle to connect to each other...It's very emotional and believable. I think most of the audience can connect to it well, because usually people have one parent they connect with more than the other. For me, Kurt and Burt's relationship could BE my own relationship with my father, which makes their scenes together just that much more poignant for me.
Quite seriously, with the exception that my dad owns a construction business instead of a tire store, and I'm a gay woman instead of a gay man, Kurt and Burt's relationship is so reflective of my own with my dad, it's scary. And the whole tone of their relationship is so SPOT ON with my own experiences. The writing is a little generic, it's Mike and Chris's acting and chemistry that pulls it off for me. Burt's struggle to be supportive of his son, no matter what, and Kurt's willingness to compromise himself to make his dad more comfortable, even though that's not what his dad wants...it's realistic. It's a complicated dynamic, so even though "Laryngitis" was a basic plot recycle of Kurt's story line in "Preggers" (Kurt tries to do something "manly" to impress his father, followed by a emotional confrontation) I was still interested.
I really liked how Burt barely blinked when he first caught Kurt making out with Brittany. He just kind of took it in and moved on. Even though he was pretty clearly not really buying it, he didn't push, and I didn't get the feeling it was because he hoped that Kurt had "changed his mind" about being gay or anything, just that he was willing to let Kurt explore his own boundaries as long as he was responsible about it. And the trucker outfit barely made him blink when he first saw it, even though it was clearly out of character for Kurt. This makes me think he's more laid back than I had previously thought about Kurt's stylistic choices. Obviously he wasn't so sanguine about some of Kurt's other, more outlandish outfits (he didn't look terribly pleased about the sequins and unitard in "Preggers") but even then, he didn't demand that Kurt change out of it or anything, just sort of grudgingly accepted it on a pretty flimsy excuse from Kurt. So he seems to genuinely mean it when he said in an earlier episode that he and Kurt have a deal that they don't try to change each other.
Edited by PoemJunkie, May 13, 2010 @ 2:06 AM.