Grease: Live was the best of the recent live broadcasts. Comparing this one to those others, they were snoozefests.
What worked here for me:
1. Integration of a live audience. Helped the show come alive.
2. Self-awareness of being a live show in 2016, not 1956. Instead of re-creating the stage play, we got nods to the movie and current pop culture. The behind the scenes opening with Jesse J and a selfie was inspired.
3. Social media integration. Facebook Live just overtook Twitter as the way to follow social media, during a live broadcast. I started following the hashtag on Twitter, then a lower thirds graphic directed me to Facebook to watch live during the breaks. Watching the show on TiVo made this easier, being able to pause the live broadcast. Facebook Live video showing behind the scenes and Mario Lopez talking with us was groundbreaking.
Facebook still needs to work on the sports stadium live tv watching interface. I don't know why they didn't integrate that for this.
Future live shows like this now have a new standard to live up to.