Having established itself comfortably as a massive commercial success, with booming ratings and record music sales, it would be easy for "Glee" to sit on its dancing heels and churn out a carbon copy third season.
But creator and executive producer Ryan Murphy is planning on doing the exact opposite.
Having already revealed that some of the top cast members will graduate after this season -- and will be replaced at McKinley High by additional students who will be introduced this year -- Murphy revealed more about his plans in interviews with TV Line, TV Guide and The Hollywood Reporter.
Perhaps the biggest change will come for Sue Sylvester, the ornery cheerleading coach played to Emmy-winning perfection by Jane Lynch. She's worked to destroy the glee club for the last two seasons, and has had brief, if strange romantic interests, and Murphy plans to kick her story lines into another gear this coming season.
"We have an amazing 20-episode arc for Jane Lynch that's quite fantastic," Murphy told TV Line. "We've decided it's a little tired for Sue to be constantly trying to destroy the glee club. We did that, and we did that well. But now it's time for Sue to stop picking on the glee club and time for her to start picking on the country."
Which means, he said, that she'll be running for Congress. God bless, and God save, America.
Another big change for Sylvester? True love, perhaps.
"One thing I'm looking for is someone for Sue Sylvester to love," he revealed. "Who is that person -- man or woman? Who is man enough to love Sue Sylvester? That's an interesting idea. Jane did that Rod Remington romantic arc so well, so it's something I've always wanted to find for her. How would Sue date? I'm interested in that."
Remington, true Gleeks will remember is the anchor WOHN News 8 in Lima, Ohio, whom Sylvester fell for on set of her "Sue's Corner" special segment.
Murphy told TV Guide that she'll not only find love -- she'll get a new/old rival, too. Courtesy of Oxygen's "The Glee Project."
"The winner of 'The Glee Project' is the person who she hates the most in the history of the show," Murphy teased. "She is going to destroy their life."
Murphy had earlier teased that character, telling E! Online, "The reality show has cast a character that is very exciting. I can't even tell you whether it's a guy or a girl, but we are very, very excited about the prospect of bring on this new person. It going to be really, really good, and totally interesting something we had totally not thought of."
But, as it turns out, the choice was easy once presented.
"The person that won, for me, the reason why I chose them was because they had the exact same thing that Lea Michele has, that Chris Colfer has, that Darren Criss has, which is they are a star and I want to write for them," Murphy told TV Guide. "They just inspired me and they inspired the rest of the regulars of the Glee cast, many of whom were mentors during the show. I would go to them and I would say, 'Help me cast this. What do you guys think?'"
As for non-cast members, don't expect the show to continue with the heavy stream of guest stars it featured season two.
"We're not going to have any guest stars," Murphy told TV Line. "And we're going to do fewer songs."
There's also that question of replacing rising senior stars, something he spoke about with Ryan Seacrest last week.
"We've got Matt Morrison and Jane Lynch who will stay and be the male and female lynchpins of the series, but I think the fun thing about the show is it's a celebration of youth and talent and I think that just like with the original cast, I think finding those young unknown people and giving them an opportunity to break into the business and become stars is a really fun and exciting thing and is the spirit of the series," he said on Seacrest's radio show.
Murphy addressed those in a conversation with The Hollywood Reporter, though he remained coy about the mechanics of replacing stars.
"You know, people have been asking me that a lot. The thing that I'm saying officially is, yes I do have a plan," he teased. "The great thing about season three is we're writing toward something [the characters' senior years in high school]. There is a conclusion, which is great for a writer. We literally just started [planning out the season]. So I don't know for sure what will happen with those characters I love and everybody else has loved. We haven't really made that decision."
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