Glee? I love you. Thank you for getting your shit together.
There was so much good stuff, I don’t even know where to start with this episode.
New Directions “seem to plan their lives like their setlist: they pretty much figure it out the night before.” It’s still the introductory voiceover and I’m already much amused. Looks like today is a day where I like self-ironic Glee!
Sue: “What’s wrong with Down Syndrome?” - Becky (in a mocking tone of voice): “What’s wrong with Down Syndrome?” Perfect, perfect moment. Sue is there to make Will and Emma (and the viewers) aware of their prejudice. And Becky KNOWS what is wrong with Down Syndrome: namely, how it makes other people treat her. And she’s not going to pretend they’re usually treating her with respect. And she’s angry about that.
“We were able to achieve a successful emission.” OMG. Emma. Also: OMG, Will.
There were a lot of Neckbrace Cheerio appearances this week.
Someone performs a song just for fun. Have we seen this before in the choir room?
Weird statistics are a thing this week.
Tina has stopped being angry and is now just sad. And apparently, that gets her what she wants: she gets emotional attention from Blaine and Sam, special events are created just for her, she’s seen as sexually desirable (although she still has to put up with some awful attitude from Sam for that), she gets to sing solos… Curious to see where that will take her.
Rachel is in houndstooth again. Can we talk about this pattern? Or has that happened already when these costumes were still sp0ilers and I missed it? She also sticks to a black-and-white color scheme the entire episode.
Rachel is also still obsessed with “Showgirls” and calls Santana a “Gina Gershon junior.” This reference intrigues me for another reason, though. Because Gina Gershon also played the butch lesbian Corky in “Bound” by the Wachowski siblings. I’d bet money that Rachel does NOT know that (since she really seems clueless about lesbian culture), but the Glee writers just might!
Apparently, Rachel has a whole band on retainer that only exists to do her bidding. It’s just like the band people at WMHS!
Her narration of herself about how she exploited Elliott’s good will by playing the victim-slash-diva is hilarious, if (still) baffling in its obliviousness of anyone’s needs and wants but her own.
Elliott also sews! Now gimme all the shop talk and outfit-making collaboration scenes with Kurt.
He also has three golden top hats above his bed. (“One, two, three, not only you and me…”) (Also, woohoo, new places to do set meta about!)
Rachel: “…and I have a new best gay!” - Elliott: “Uh, haha, yeah, I kinda hate that term. Makes me feel like a pet.” Whoohoo!!! It was about time someone said that! Elliott, I love you. Please stay forever.
I’m sort of intrigued by the fact that Rachel treats Elliot like she would treat a heterosexual dude. She’s embracing him like a long-lost lover when he lets her into his apartment, she plays it all seductive during “Barracuda,” and she uses him to do more heterosexual posing during “Gloria.” From that I conclude that she has cast Kurt in a differently-gendered role than Elliott, because IIRC she never treated him that way. But she did treat Finn that way. And Jesse. (I want to say more about gender in Kurt vs. Elliott but I don’t have the words yet.)
Blaine pretends he wants to see if the graduation gowns fit and then has to admit he really wants to see how they LOOK.
Tina: “I don’t wanna fade away.” Well. I’m not sure that she won’t.
Blaine talks about heroism and Sam wants to sneak a cow into the school. (This reminds me that I wanted to analyze Tina and Artie’s speeches from 5x09.)
Also, Blaine suggests a lock-in (for which he wants to get approval - oh, Blaine), and Sam says, “sounds dangerous!,” and I’m thinking, “you’re both Katys.”
Sue tells an epic story of her pre-impregnation, quasi-religious relaxation that involves serenading by Kenny G at the foot of her and Michael Bolton’s bed. Beiste puts it a little less poetically: “You gotta calm her down before you knock her up.” She also advises Will to “make it all natural.” And I am deeply amused by how unnatural and disgusting all the heterosexuality in this episode is made out to be. Well done, Glee creators, very well done.
Tina has an epic breakdown in the hall, complete with crying and falling to the floor where she continues to wallow until Blaine and Sam promise to make a lock-down for just the three of them happen. And then Sam asks her if her boobs are getting bigger and she replies, delighted that he noticed, “yes, yes they are!” And Blaine is just rolling his eyes in desparation. (I think I’ll read this and the previous moment as “what sexist dudes WISH would happen in reaction to their sexist objectification.” I’m also going to pretent that there is a heterosexual Glee writer who has won a bet and now got to write himself a wish fulfillment scene. Because then I don’t have to ask myself WHY Tina has given up every last bit of a feminist attitude…)
Santana has not only a huge framed poster of her Yeast-I-Stat commercial on her wall (Santana, I love you), but also pictures of groups of same-y-looking girls/women (replacing the Cheerios?), what looks like a Kamasutra illustration on her dresser, and not just one but three(!) Mexican Día de los Muertes figurines (hello, another-person-with-a-special-relationship-to-death?!).
Also, it was about time they made fun of Santana’s hair and exposed the weave for a weave.
Her insults about Rachel still center on Rachel’s perceived lack of attractiveness (here framed as thinness and a lack of sex appeal) and femininity (here framed as a “whiskery chin”).
“In the beginning it’s all sunshine and giggles and stickers…” Stickers? That sounds more like kindergarten, not high school.
And Elliott is all, “WHAT is going ON with you people?! Clearly, you’re all insane, if perhaps in a rather entertaining sort of way.”
I want an audiovisual gif of Santana’s “whoooaaa.”
Elliott apparently is New York City’s resident Voice Of Reason.
Curious to see what Auntie Snix’ scheme for getting Elliott some money is. Next week?
The Almighty Trebleclef! Superheroes are back! Nightbird voiceover! <3 <3 <3
Tina (in red and blue): “You made this way more difficult than it needed to be. Just for the record.” - Sam: “Any excuse to put on that costume.” - Blaine: “Last chance I get to put it on! Unless I’m in some creepy kind of fetish club.” Deconstructing Nightbird! (Also, what I gather from this is that Blaine goes to fetish clubs in his Nightbird costume.)
That is an epic senior lock-in indeed. All the references! Breakfast Club. Rebels Without A Cause. (What’s with the chin faces?)
Blaine gets the “I’m too depressed to even open this pamphlet” pamphlet. 4x04-4x07 anyone?
Sam offers condoms, but Blaine and Tina find themselves not compatible.
Cheerio uniforms! And Sam in a dress!
“Immunize!” poster with Rosie the Riveter image.
I expect a gazillion gifs and photomontages with Cheerio!Blaine in that victory pose.
Becky brought a Twister game and a bag of “Face Slap Energy Boost” energy drinks (in other words: drugs). And continues to blackmail them into including her in the senior lock-in.
By the way, Tina is wearing red Dorothy shoes now. That is a thing now, right? Last week we had Rachel and Santana, now there’s Tina…
The craft room is back!
Will: “You worry too much.” - Emma: “You’re just figuring that out NOW?!” Emma, I love you.
Blablabla, my baby, blablabla, one true love, blablabla, I will have a son, blablabla. Shut up, Will.
I can’t help but notice that both Will and Emma keep painting the same tiny bit of wall. Yes, I know, Glee production probably doesn’t allow for multiple takes of all-wall paint rolling, but it does distract me and I want to yell at them that their wall will be uneven and patchy and Emma will hate it.
Emma wants to watch “Ever After.” I approve of her choice of romantic movie (and Will better does, too). Also, they’re eating popcorn from what looks like a pretend-popcorn bucket that really is a piece of two-dimensional cardboard.
Why is Emma’s voice almost inaudible?
Blaine really is ridiculously polite. “Time-out. I’m getting a cramp in my leg.” And probably he’s also fed up with getting sexual advances from a girl yet AGAIN.
I like sexy Becky. I just wish she’d get to be sexy with someone who wants her back. (Is Becky the New Tina?)
“Sam?” *Actual fucking CRICKETS.* “Tina?” *More crickets* (Glee sound department, let me love you.)
The astronomy classroom is back! And OF COURSE this is where Tina and Sam make out. (But that is no energy drink there on the table. I suppose the energy drinks were stand-ins for alcopops then?)
Poor Blaine. All that heterosexuality, and he is sooo disgusted by it all. It would be funnier for me, though, if he wasn’t MOST disgusted by FEMALE (hetero)sexuality.
“What about Nurse Penny, Sam? Did you just forget about her?” Yes, this week, I’m all for the Glee self-irony.
I adore Blaine for using “our little family” and “friendly threesome” in the same sentence.
Drama queen!Blaine is the best Blaine. I’m already looking forward to all the gifs.
Rachel is never, ever, ever getting back together with Santanaletting Santana get her Fanny going to let Santana play the role of Fanny Brice. (SCNR.)
And Kurt is just watching the Pezberry drama, resigned to his fate. He tries to reign Rachel in when she gets too over-the-top even for her own standards, but he doesn’t get through. But he does get through to Elliott, who gets to finally put an end to the high-school-esque drama. Thank gods.
“Gloria” is brilliant in both line distribution and choreography. I don’t have time to dissect the song, but I want to point out that Rachel continues to do pseudo-heterosexual posing with her “new best gay friend,” while Santana interacts with him entirely nonsexually.
Interesting (and sexist) that Elliott tells them they’re both PRETTY when they wanted to know who was BETTER (presumably as a SINGER). But I still want to kiss him for refusing to be drawn into their drama. That was a great smackdown of everyone involved, including Kurt. (But who said “ha!”? Santana?)
There is a LOT of turquoise clothing in this episode. Emma, Tina, Kurt, and Santana all wear it. Have we figured out the new color scheme yet?
“…and then, lo and behold, the two of you run off during our fun night of shenanigans and mischief and you turn it into some kind of creepy [teeth?]-sucking slurpathon, which I still can’t get out of my head.” As I said, drama queen!Blaine is the best Blaine.
“Santana and I are both professionals.” Ahahaha! Yeah, right.
And good for you, Kurt, for taking Elliott’s approach as an example and throwing BOTH Rachel and Santana out of the band.
Why doesn’t Dani get a last name? Or is she just “Dani” like Madonna or Cher?
Also, Callbacks is back! More New York locations for the win!
The pattern on Santana’s skirt looks like her crotch has a roaring tiger-face on it [but fashionofglee tells me it’s a bug]. Clearly, she’s dressed for battle, what with the leather top and all. Both her and Rachel are in black-and-white, but Rachel’s rigidity is finally unraveling. The stripes on her shirt have become softer, and the edges have started to fray.
I googled One Three Hill because I was sure it was a reference I didn’t get. And indeed, there is a TV series called “One Tree Hill” about two half-brothers who begin as heartless enemies and become caring brothers over time. Such as Rachel and Kurt did and Rachel and Santana will? Because clearly what Kurt is talking about (and what the band is singing about) is majorly related to Rachel and Santana as well, as we can easily tell by the fact that the band also wears black-and-white.
And can I just say that I LOVE the fact that Kurt gets to have an all-queer band, and none of the members is romantically/sexually involved with another? Even if it is just for a minute? He sooo needs some LGBTQ community that is not his boyfriend. I just wish Santana would get the same.
I also love the fact that Rachel can’t quite believe that the trio actually is successful without her (or Santana). This must be a first because they truly DON’T NEED her (unlike New Directions, at least in-universe). But they still WANT her (as is later made clear) - provided she and Santana get their stuff sorted out.
And Rachel DOES manage to take a first step towards reconciliation with Santana. In a shirt with holes along the arms (a black one this time) and a black-and-white skirt that continues the softening of her harsh either/or patterns (Ha! I figured it out! THAT’s what all the black-and-white outfits were about! Note to self: make a proper post about this.)
That is a GOOD talk, Santana and Rachel. Please let us see more talks like this, Glee.
And pleeeeaaaase Rachel, do listen to what Santana says here because she is RIGHT. Even if your moment of potential bonding was interrupted, and Kurt made a snippy comment about your conflict and previous communication style, and all of that threw you right back into the whole mess. (But sadly, I don’t think this is over yet.)
Hahaha, unexpected kissing happens all the time at WMHS. Well-observed, Blaine.
Artie is pissed, and rightly so. Especially after his whole episode of bonding with Tina last week.
And I’m going to argue that WILL SCHUESTER is speaking for the Glee writers post-5x03 for once: “I was planning on ordering dinner in and working you guys deep into the night, but then I realized that worrying too much about what you’re trying to accomplish actually gets in the way of what you’re trying to accomplish.”
But why is everyone in that choir room, including the band(!) (except Kitty in her Cheerio uniform) wearing shades of blue, turquoise, and green? Should we analyze this further? Like, who is ONLY wearing blue and who is wearing other shades? Or do we take it as a general meta moment of sadness over saying goodbye to McKinley?
And they do manage to make up with Artie and let him be right. Which is good. Because Artie (or any of the Glee people) alone IS sad.
Okay, and now Sam, Blaine, Tina, and Artie are in shades of beige and brown, which seems to be the color of leaving McKinley (and also of overcoming grief). Also, Artie gets to have a new kind of pattern on his shirt (a forest?), which makes me look forward to his eventual post-graduation wardrobe change.
Kurt (in flowers and pale pink and his gray vest from both “I Have Nothing” in 3x17 and Artie’s AU in 4x10) still doesn’t entirely fit with the rock-style of both Elliott (in a Joy Division t-shirt!) and Dani, but I’m still glad that he has chosen them for now. Curious to see if their style differences will become an issue musically.
The lyrics split and staging of “Hold On” is also interesting. Kurt is all about change (and not doing things like they did them in Lima), Santana accepts responsibility for the mess she’s in (and makes do with whoever is there), and Rachel stays alone and still can’t see anything but her pain.
Threeway showcircle returns!
Emma is wearing PANTS. But honey? It’s going to be YOUR baby, too, not just Will’s. And I didn’t think I’d ever say that, but Will’s complete happiness at learning that Emma is pregnant is actually a little bit infectuous. And I much approve of that Terri reference. (But I will miss Emma so much.)
So. Whatever the Glee creators did between 5x08 and 5x09, it worked, and I’m loving Glee all over again.
And yes, the New York stories work very well indeed, and I’m glad we’re getting more connections between the people there and more places and more intersecting stories. I also much enjoy the look of Glee New York.
That said, the nightly tour of shenanigans and mischief through the empty school in Lima, plus all the nostalgic hilarity and all the self-references and self-irony were also awesome this week.
(I have no idea when I’ll get to check my dashboard, but I don’t see me having much time for discussion this week. In fact, I’ll be happy if I even get to catch up on scrolling through everything since Monday night. Mostly because I’m away from Friday to Monday. So a lack of presence on my part does not indicate a lack of interest in talking to you about Glee…)