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A 2010 Musical Gleeview – My Picks for Glee’s Top Ten Musical Moments from Season 2 (so far)

New Year’s Eve is a time for getting so wasted that you forget your own name reflection.  As 2010 comes to a close, many of us will undoubtedly spend time crying into our tenth glass of champagne    making out with that dude in the corner with the tongue ring  looking back on the past year, and seeing how it “measures up” to previous years.  And I’ll be the first one to admit that all the gut checking and personal evaluation that we tend to do during these last few days of the year .  . . well . . . it kind of sucks. 

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But you know what doesn’t suck . . . evaluating TV shows, instead! 🙂

If you read entertainment magazines at all, or just spend time talking to TV viewers, you probably already know that Glee, while still a ratings darling, in every sense of the word, has, for many, fallen short of the high expectations it created for itself, during its spectacular premiere season.  (That vastly overused term “Sophomore Slump” has even been bandied about.)  And while I agree with a lot of the criticisms that have recently been lodged against the show, I still think that Glee gave us fans a lot to love this year . . .

But I’m going to talk about the musical performances, instead. 😉

What follows are (in no particular order) my picks for the Top Ten Musical Moments from the first half of Glee’s second season:

(1) “One Love” – Puck Puckerman and Artie Abrams (originally sung by Bob Marley)

One of my biggest complaints about the second season of Glee had to do with its CRIMINAL underuse of my FAVORITE character on the show, Mark Salling’s Bad Ass Bully with a Heart of Gold, Puck.  Yes, I do realize that Mark Salling was absent from the show for a few episodes, while he was promoting his own album.  But would it have KILLED the writers to throw the poor guy a bone or two, in the storyline department?  Wasn’t it bad enough they took his girlfriend, Quinn, away, and inexplicably paired her with that Macauley Culkin-look alike?

But I digress.  Puck’s single solo of the season thus far, came in the form of a mellow Bob Marley cover, sung while strumming on an acoustic guitar, during lunchtime, at McKinley High.  At first blush, one would think that Salling’s Puck and Kevin McHale’s Artie would be an odd choice to sing this particular duet.  Yet, Puck’s rebel mystique and crushed velvet voice  complimented Kevin McHale’s Artie’s Elvis Costello-esque geek chic mystique surprisingly well.  See for yourself!

You see?  A little Puck can go a LONG way in making this blogger happy! 🙂

 

(2) “Forget You” – Holly Holiday (originally sung by Cee Lo)

Initially, when I read that (1) the often stodgy-seeming Gwyneth Paltrow would be guest starring on Glee, to promote her star turn in the upcoming music-heavy film, Courtry Strong; and (2) she would be performing a neutered version of Cee Lo’s “F*&k You,” (a song who’s success is largely based on its ingenious pairing of an innocent Motown backbeat with highly explicit lyrics) I was extremely skeptical.  Yet, when the actual episode aired, I was surprised by the inherent likeability and youthful energy Paltrow put into the Holiday character.  And “Forget You,” while admittedly no where near as awesome as the original “F*&k You,” was fun and compulsively watchable in its own unique way.  After all, Cee Lo’s version of the song doesn’t feature Heather Morris’ Brittany doing “The Robot,” in time with the music!

Check it out!

(3) “Sweet Transvestite” – Mercedes Jones (originally sung by Tim Curry)

Speaking of neutered versions of racy songs that surprisingly didn’t suck on Glee . . . many Rocky Horror Picture Show fans were initially up in arms, upon hearing that Glee writers chose a FEMALE to play the iconic Dr. Frank-N-Furter (a role made famous by actor, Tim Curry, in the original film, thirty-five years earlier) in their incarnation of the cult-classic musical.  And yet, while the bizarre way the show’s writers chose to censor this song boggles my mind (She couldn’t say “transsexual?”  But “transvestite” was OK?), as Mercedes, Amber Riley put a clever twist on the well-loved song, giving it a spunky feminine naughtiness that was entirely her own . . .

(4) “Teenage Dream” – Blaine and the Warblers (originally sung by Katy Perry)

Going along with my “if you want to change the entire meaning of a song, simply change the sex of the singer” theme, I was super impressed by Darren Criss’ Blaine and his Dalton Academy Warbler’s rendition of Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream” in Glee‘s sixth episode, entitled “Never Been Kissed.”  While the original song is poppy, syrupy sweet, and generally “girlicious,” this Glee version is old-school snappy (something you could picture Frank Sinatra or Sammy Davis Jr. singing), thought-provoking, and, yes, VERY, VERY GAY. 

(Then again, that last characteristic may have more to do with the Warblers — in their Harry Potter Gryffindor robes, singing about “skintight jeans,” and dancing like Carlton from the Fresh Prince of Bel Air — than with the song itself.)

(5)  “Just the Way You Are” – Finn Hudson (originally sung by Bruno Mars)

In the eighth episode of Glee‘s second season, entitled “Furt,” Kurt’s dad, Burt, and Finn’s mom, Carol, got married amongst the entire cast of Glee and some underpaid extras  family and friends.  During the reception, in a sweet and highly emotional moment, Finn, who, up to this point had always been kind of a homophobe, embraced (both literally and metaphorically) his new homosexual stepbrother, Kurt, by dedicating the above-referenced Bruno Mars song to him.  The result was a poignant and uplifting musical extravaganza that you can witness in its entirety here.

(6) “Me Against the Music” – Brittany S. Pearce and Santana Lopez (originally sung by Britney Spears and Madonna)

In contrast to the previously listed songs on this countdown — most of which were selected for their unique interpretations of popular music — this musical number was selected due to the obvious appreciation that its creators have for the original version.  When it originally aired, the Britney Spears’ themed “Brittany/Britney” episode of Glee was much maligned for its almost complete lack of a cohesive storyline, and its synthetic (and at times just plain weird) Extended Music Video on Acid (or, perhaps more appropriately, Laughing Gas) quality. 

And yet, it was this episode that was responsible for finally displaying to Glee fans the long hidden talents of Heather Morris.  Who knew the daffy and childlike Brittany had such hot moves, or such a sweet, pop song-friendly voice?  The performance (which was part of a dream sequence, shared by both Brittany, herself, and Naya Rivera’s Santana) is an almost frame-by -rame recreation of the original “Me Against the Music” video, performed by Britney Spears and Madonna.  In this incarnation, Brittany gives a surprising amount of grace and class to the role of pop tart, Spears, while Santana expertly embodies the older, more sophisticated, Madonna.

(7)  “Baby It’s Cold Outside” – Kurt Hummel and Blaine  (originally sung by Everybody and Their Mother)

I’m not usually a fan of Christmas music.  But even I have to admit that Chris Colfer’s Kurt and Darren Criss’ Blaine did a bang-up job of breathing fresh new life into a VERY OVERPLAYED holiday anthem.  Not only does the song look and sound different, because it is being sung by two men (as opposed to a male and a female), it also features an oddly ironic and humorous tone, thanks to Colfer’s and Criss’ playful intonations and liberal use of self-aware facial mugging. 

Kurt and Blaine are sweet with one another, and have an obvious romantic chemistry.  And yet, they aren’t taking themselves or the song too seriously, which I, as a Holiday Song Cynic, found extremely refreshing.  Filmed in the living room-like confines of Dalton Academy’ s study lounge (complete with working fireplace and Yulelog), the mood of the performance is as casual and comforting as its two likeable leads.

(8 ) “Stop in the Name of Love / Free Your Mind” Mashup – The Glee Boys (originally sung by The Supremes – “Stop in the Name of Love” and En Vogue “Free Your Mind”)

Glee‘s mashups tend to be either hit or miss with me.  And, lately, I think the show has started to go a bit overboard with its seemingly compulsive need to throw ANY two completely unrelated songs together just because the producers think it might “sound cool.”  But, for me, this particular mashup REALLY WORKED. 

Who would have thought that a 60’s squeaky clean pop tune like “Stop in the Name of Love” would complement En Vogues’ Angry Anthem for Racial and Sexual Tolerance so well?  The fact that the song is performed as a tribute to one of my new favorite Glee characters, Coach Shannon Beiste . . .

. . . and features the typically ripped t-shirt and leater-clad Puck in a POWDER BLUE SUIT, only adds to its charm!

(9) “Telephone” – Rachel Berry and Sunshine Corazon (originally sung by Beyonce and Lady Gaga)

When Fox started promoting Glee’s Second Season, much press was given to the recent addition of Internet sensation and Filipino pop star Charice to the cast.  The actress had her primetime debut in the first episode of the Second Season.  She played Sunshine Corazon, a 9th grade foreign exchange student with an innocent charming demeanor and a powerful singing voice. 

The Sunshine character was featured in not one, but TWO songs during that episode, which was entitled “Audition.”  During those two performances, she quickly proved herself to be everything she was hyped up to be, and then some.  Then, inexplicably, the character TRANSFERRED SCHOOLS!  She hasn’t been seen or heard from since!  Talk about a TEASE!

“You mean to tell me that I flew halfway across the world for under TWENTY MINUTES of screen time?  WTF?”

Fox’s bait-and-switch tactics notwithstanding, Charice’s Sunshine Corazon, along with Lea Michele’s Rachel Berry, starred in what was, in my opinion, one of the most fun and creative musical performances of the first half of the second season.  I strongly suspect that when Beyonce and Lady Gaga wrote and performed the music video for “Telephone” they never envisioned that one of the most popular covers of the song would be filmed in a high school bathroom! 

“Whatchu talkin’ about, Glee?”

In terms of the song, Lea Michele’s voice complements Charice’s perfectly, as if the two were born to sing together.  But the performance actually made this list for two definitively non-musical reasons: (1) the clever way in which Sunshine’s bubbly cuteness is used to highlight Rachel Berry’s b*tchface, and increasingly grating diva dramatics; and (2) the AWESOME ending of the video, where Jane Lynch’s Sue Sylvester tells the girls to “SHUT UP!”  (You see, while I’m at home, watching Glee on my couch, I tell Rachel Berry to “SHUT UP” at least once, during just about every single episode of Glee!  In that moment, I felt like Sue Sylvester read my mind.)

Either Rachel Berry is really angry at me right now, for making the above comment, or she is just extremely constipated.

In case you are interested in checking out Sunshine Corazon’s also fabulous performance of “Listen” (from the musical Dreamgirls ), which was also featured in this episode, you can find it here.

10) “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” – Kurt Hummel (originally sung by The Beatles)

In an episode entitled “Grilled Cheesus” — which was arguably the most controversial hour in the Glee’s short history — Kurt’s father Burt suffers a heart attack, and falls into a coma.  Burt’s hospitalization calls to the forefront the Glee kids widely varying feelings about God and religion.  Kurt himself just so happens to be an atheist, a fact that deeply troubles some of the more religious characters on the show, who wish to provide him comfort and solace in the only way they know how, through prayer. 

In a Five-Hanky Speech, toward the end of the episode, Kurt explains to his classmates that, while he doesn’t believe in God, he does believe in his father, and the strength of their extremely close relationship.  For him, this worldly relationship surpasses any sort of spiritual one. Kurt then breaks into a sorrowful rendition of The Beatles, “I Wanna Hold Your Hand.” 

As Kurt sings, the performance is intercut with fond memories Kurt has of his father and his childhood.  During those scenes, Young Kurt is played by a 13-year old actor named Adam Kolkin.  The two actors look so much alike, it’s truly shocking that they are not related.  (Way to GO, Casting Directors!  You get a cookie! :))

The cumulative impact of Kurt’s speech, his musical performance, and those heart-wrenching flashback scenes was something that stayed with me, long after the final credits rolled on this episode.

So, there you have it, my Top Ten Musical Moments from the first half of Glee‘s Second Season.  Did I miss any of your favorites? 

[www.juliekushner.com]

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Filed under Glee, music, Top Ten Lists

Missing Your Favorite TV Shows This Summer? No Problem! Just Watch Other People Make Fun of Them on YouTube!

 

I’m not gonna lie!  It’s hard to be a TV Recapper during the summer months, because . . . well . . . there isn’t all that much to recap.  Now, if this had been, say five years ago, I would be forced to spend my non-recapping months doing things like: reading the classics, doing volunteer work, learning to play the cello, and becoming a productive member of society . . .

Fortunately, thanks to the advent of YouTube, I can simply continue to be the directionless miscreant I have always been (only tanner)!

 

Now, during the proper television viewing season, I generally enjoy watching and recapping shows like: Gossip Girl, the now-defunct Lost, Glee, The Vampire Diaries, and Mad Men.  (I also have kind of a thing for vampires, and will often make desperate attempts to throw “fangy” references into all my posts, even those that have absolutely nothing to do with “undead.”)

It was a love for the above-referenced shows (and vampires) that sent me to YouTube in search of videos I could watch that would dull the pain of summer hiatus.  Granted, the video clips I found weren’t quite as satisfying as seeing new episodes of my favorite television shows themselves.  But, hey, at least they made me giggle. 

So, without further adieu, I proudly present to you:  YouTube Videos That Make Fun of Television Shows I Like To Watch!

1) Glee

Have you ever watched Glee, and thought to yourself, “Wow that Rachel chick sure is a nutjob!  I’d hide my pet bunny, if she was ever in my house!”

If so, this film is for YOU!

2) Mad Men

Speaking of sick and twisted, remember that scene from Season 3 of Mad Men, where that annoying British guy randomly got his foot run over by a lawnmower right in the middle of the office?  Ever wonder what that scene would sound like when replayed to the tune of Imogen Heap’s Hide and Seek, a.k.a. That Song TheyAlways Play on Teen Dramas Whenever Something Dramatic Happens?  Wonder no more . . .

3) The Vampire Diaries

Somewhere, in an alternate universe, Stefan and Damon Salvatore are NOT vampire brothers fighting for the love of the same girl.  Rather, they are ambiguously gay roommates, with an annoying habit of breaking into song at inopportune moments . . . (Thanks to Amy over at ImaginaryMen for sharing this FABULOUS video with me!)

[Click the internal link to watch.  You’ll like it, I promise!]

4) Buffy the Vampire Slayer / The Twilight Series

 

Perhaps in that SAME alternate universe, where Stefan and Damon are living “homosexually ever after,” Edward Cullen is NOT the “cute and sparkly” vampire who won Bella Swan’s heart.  Rather, he is a creepy stalker vampire with a dangerous hard-on for a certain slayer we all know and love . . .

5) Gossip Girl / Supernatural

If you are anything like me, you were beyond depressed during the Gossip Girl Season 3 finale, when Chuck Bass threw away his chance at happiness with Blair Waldorf, for a paltry tumble in the hay with that skanky hobag, Jenny Humphrey.  Of course, we ALL want those two crazy kids, C&B, to reconcile pronto.  However, if Blair absolutely MUST get involved with a rebound guy, at least let him be someone manly, someone who is not afraid to battle a few demons (both internal and external) to protect the heart of his lady love . . . someone like Supernatural‘s Dean Winchester.

6) Lost

And, finally, this one goes out to all of you folks that were really mad that the flash-sideways world on Lost ended up being nothing more than purgatory (even though the writers promised it wouldn’t be).  It’s for you folks who would have preferred a more “scientific”explanation for all that on and off island “time shifting” the castaways suffered through for six seasons.  This is also for the select few of you who shelled out the big bucks for those ridiculously over-priced Lost Happy Meal toys.  Apparently, someone out there put them to better use, than YOU did . . .

Well, that’s all, folks . . . at least until the next time I inevitably run out of things to recap . . .

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Filed under Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Glee, Gossip Girl, Lost, Mad Men, The Vampire Diaries, Twilight

A Very, Very, VERY Sentimental Journey – A Recap of Glee’s Season Finale “Journey”

I’m not going to say that the The Sopranos finale was the first time I heard about or listened to the band, Journey, but it was pretty darn close.  Just in case you were curious, THIS is Journey . . .

Is it just me, or does the one on the far right bear a striking resemblance to Sue Sylvester?

Yet, now, between that controversial fade-to-black “Tony Soprano loves onion rings.  Let’s listen to Don’t Stop Believing, before we sort of, kind of, quite possibly die” series finale, and Glee‘s Journey extravaganza at Regionals, the aforementioned 80’s hairband has officially become the Lords of the Primetime Finale!  And having watched this season’s final episode of Glee (appropriately entitled “Journey”), I can certainly see why . . .

If At First You Don’t Succeed, Cry, Cry (and cry, and cry, and cry) . . . AGAIN!

The episode began with a SHOCKING revelation! 

Well . . . at least . . . it would have been shocking, if it wasn’t revealed during the episode promos.  You see, the winner of the Regional Glee Club competition was to be decided by a panel of four “celebrity judges.”  (Why four?  Wouldn’t it make more sense to have an ODD number of judges, in the event of a tiebreaker?) 

WHO is the fourth judge, you ask?  None other than THIS lovely lady . . .

 . . . who, seemingly, hates the Glee kids’ little singing and dancing butts.  This, of course, complicates matters, seeing as, Glee must “place” at Regionals, in order to retain school funding for their club.

Understandably, hearing that news bums out our Glee kids, who have already spent a majority of the second half of this season bummed out about something or other.  Lucky for Quinn, she gets to escape to Hot Porno Flashback land — specifically, the time when she and a still Mohawk-ed Puck did the nasty in her bedroom, while she was drunk on wine coolers.  Of course, she was still wearing her cheerleading uniform at the time.  Obviously, Quinn is too young to remember Monica Lewinsky, and the important life lesson she taught us, back in the day: “Sex acts are for the NAKED ONLY.  Clothes just get in the way, and, eventually get you into trouble.”

“I did NOT have sexual relations with that cheerleader!”

While the Glee kids are at Mr. Schuester’s house for pizza, they all cry about how much they will miss Glee club, once it’s gone.  Will tries to keep his composure during the meeting, for the kids’ sake.  However, later, while driving alone in his car, Will hears “Don’t Stop Believing,” and can no longer fight his emotions.    Kudos to Matthew Morrison for making this scene raw and real, and not feeling the need to “cry pretty.”  Because, let me tell you, for a cute guy, that was some UGLY ASS crying  . . .

“I don’t understand, he was eating onion rings, and everything was FINE!  Then it just ENDED, without explanation!  If only Meadow Soprano was better at parallel parking, things might have been different!

Upon witnessing this heartfelt, teary scene, I couldn’t help but be reminded of ANOTHER male actor, who is also highly adept at UGLY CRY FACE . . .

“I wish they played Journey music, when Joey Potter dumped ME.  It would have helped to ease my pain!”

Then, because it’s the season finale, and ALL Would-Be Couples must make out in the season finale they truly believe they can lead the Glee Club to greatness, Finn and Rachel decide to makeout in the middle of the high school hallway.

Just moments later, having been energized and inspired by his Ugly Face Cry, Mr. Schuester informs the kids that they will be doing a Journey medley at Regionals . . .  because the “journey is more important than the destination,” or something like that.  We all know how insufferably cheesy Mr. Schue can get, when it’s time for him to reveal the “Lesson of the Day.”

“Hey look!   It’s Will Schuester’s Dad, Mr. Rogers!  It all makes so much sense now.”

Welcome to Regionals, Baby!

As promised, at the Regionals competition, OUR Glee group, New Directions, sings a Journey medley containing, three songs: “Faithfully,” “Anyway You Want It,” and, of course, the song that first made this show legendary, “Don’t Stop Believing.”  The entire performance was phenomenal, and certainly exceeded all of MY expectations.  Even Finn’s awkward dancing was slightly less irksome tonight.  (Props to the script writers for not-so-subtly pointing out how VERY BAD he actually is.)  Oh, and you know who FINALLY got a solo?  THIS Guy . . .

I know, I know.  That was a totally lame excuse to include a Shirtless Mark Salling pic in this recap.  But, COME ON, this is my last opportunity to do this ALL SUMMER!  You can’t honestly blame me for trying to make the best of it.

Immediately, after New Directions finishes its performance, Quinn’s estranged mother approaches her, and tells her VERY pregnant daughter that she wants her back in her life.

I would love to say that Mama Fabray’s “change of heart” came from a completely unselfish place.  However, I imagine it had a lot to do with the fact that Daddy Fabray ran off with some “tattooed freak.”

Sound familiar?

Speaking of Jesse James, or, rather, Jesse St. James, while Quinn is being rushed off to the hospital to give birth (her water breaks, while she is reuniting with her mother),  Jesse and his EVIL crew, Vocal Adrenaline, perform their medley of songs by Queen.  We actually only get to hear “Bohemian Rhapsody.”  However, we can assume that, at some point, the group performed “Another One Bites the Dust,” also by Queen, seeing as we heard that one in last week’s episode.  Personally, I would have preferred to see this uptight bunch rock out to “Fat Bottomed Girls”  . . . but that’s just me.

I realize that Jonathan Groff is supposed to be this “big time” Broadway star, so I’m going to chalk this up to his interpretation of the “Jesse” character.  However, it must be said that this dude makes some truly WEIRD and PISSED OFF faces, when he sings and dances . . .

The Constipated Pianist

 “Bohemian Rhapsody” is a notoriously LONG song, that has about a MILLION different parts to it.  However, either Vocal Adrenaline are the World’s Slowest Singers, or Quinn gave birth to Mutant Speedy Pop Out Baby (It would certainly explain Quinn’s rapidly expanding, decreasing, and expanding again waistline).  Because, while Vocal Adrenaline was singing, New Directions had time to:

 (1) drive Quinn to the hospital;

(2) watch her go into labor and give birth;

 (3) complete all the legal paper work necessary to process an impromptu adoption (more on that later);

(4) drive back to the competition in perfect hair and makeup; and

(5) be ready and waiting on stage for the award announcements.

But I’m getting a bit ahead of myself here.  You see, the writers brilliantly (or disturbingly, depending on how you feel about these sort of things) juxtaposed Quinn’s giving birth . . .

“They’ve only been singing for about two minutes.  You have PLENTY of time to give me an epidural!”

 . . . with Vocal Adrenaline’s preformance of “Bohemian Rhapsody.”  So when Quinn gave birth to Baby Beth . . .

 . . . Vocal Adrenaline symbolically “gave birth” to Jesse . . .

EWWWWWWWWW!

 . . . which left me wondering, which Vocal Adrenaline star was lucky enough to play the “afterbirth?”

“I’m melting!  I’m melting!”

Speaking of that heartless witch of a Vocal Adrenaline coach, Shelby Corcoran, Rachel approaches her biological mom after the competition, and suggests she “team coach” New Directions with Will.  But Shelby HATES the idea.  She wants to have a NEW KID, so she has absolutely NO TIME to waste on her VERY VERY OLD ONE.  So, of course, Quinn and Puck HAVE to give Shelby their kid, because screwing up ONE childhood, is clearly not enough for this broad!

“I’ll get you my Quinney!  And your Baby Beth too!”

And the Winner Isn’t . . .

Meanwhile, Sue Sylvester and her panel of “celebrity” judges . . .

Yeah, I was confused too  . . .

 .  . . duke it out amongst themselves to determine who should win Regionals.  Surprisingly, Sue keeps her mouth shut through most of the deliberations, except to deflect some insults thrown her way by the other judges, Olivia Newton John, Josh Groban, and that random news guy from one of the early episodes, Rod Remmington.  And when Sue Sylvester is the NICEST one in the room, you know you’ve got a pretty unlikeable bunch.    The other three judges seem split exactly down the middle, with Olivia Newton John preferring the porn-name sounding “Aural Intensity,” who performed a cover of one of her songs, Rod enjoying Jesse and his Vocal Adrenaline kids, and Josh seeming to prefer OUR New Directions kids.

Soon after deliberations are complete, we learn that New Directions finished THIRD in the competition, with Vocal Adrenaline bringing in the win.  Of course, the kids are crushed, believing their Glee club dreams are finished . . .

A Kiss, Two Songs, A Truce, MUCH MORE Tears . . .

Back at school, Will finds ex-girlfriend Emma (now dating a dentist) screaming at Principal Figgins about his decision to disband Glee club.  (Not that Principal F has made ANY decisions this year, without someone’s hand up his ass, making his mouth move . . . I’ve seen slugs with more gumption than this guy!)  Will sees this exchange, and apparently finds it SUPER HOT, because he promptly tells Emma he loves her, and makes out with her because that’s what ALL Would-Be Couples do during season finales he really cares.

His mouth still wet from Emma’s super sanitized spit, Will enters the school auditorium to find his entire Glee club sitting before him.  In a scene that ACTUALLY had ME crying, the kids tell Will how much he has meant to them as a teacher.  They further explain that, even if there is no more Glee Club, Will’s lessons will always be in their hearts. The crew then sing “To Sir With Love.” And, by the time, they are finished, there is truly not a dry eye in the house.

Not even the eyes of Sue Sylvester!

Through flashbacks, we find out that, in a surprising show of decency, Sue HAD actually voted for New Directions to win at Regionals (which makes it all the more confusing that they LOST, especially considering that (1) Josh Groban also seemed to be on board with them winning; and (2) the other two judges each had a different favorite candidate.)

Feeling a bit guilty about the loss of New Directions, Sue strong-arms Principal Figgins (see what I mean about the hand up the butt?) into reinstating Glee club for ANOTHER YEAR!

Upon hearing the good news, Will decides to call a temporary truce with Sue!

 

Take note, Middle East!  If THEY can do it, so can YOU!

Will is so happy, he sings “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” with Puck, which was touching and sweet, if not exactly “manly.”

“Hey, Puck!  When we’re done here, do you wanna go shopping with me?  There are these ruby red slippers at the new mall that I’ve just been DYING to try on.  It’s right up the yellow brick road . . .”

So, there you have it, folks.  Our first season of Glee has come and gone, and a long, hot Glee-less summer awaits.  Something tells me, I’m going to be singing to myself A LOT more in the coming months . . .

See ya next year, fellow Gleeks!

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Filed under Glee

The One Where Jesse Conveniently Turns Evil, and Everybody Keeps Saying the Word “Funky” – A Recap of Glee’s “Funk”

Awww, I’m sorry Jesse St. James!  Drawing on your face like that was immature and wrong (not to mention, bad for your complexion).  You know what else is “immature and wrong?”  Quitting the school you just transferred to a week or so ago, because people were “mean to you” there, and cracking eggs on your ex-girlfriend’s head because YOUR FRIENDS told you to . .  . Guess that means, we’re even.  Here’s hoping your face breaks out from all the scribbling I did on it . . .

Don’t you hate it when your boyfriend transfers schools to get away from you, and then breaks up with you in front of ALL of your friends, by singing a Queen cover song, that not-so-subtly implies you were just another notch on the bedpost for him?  Yeah, we really feel for you Rachel!  But whatever you do, PLEASE don’t break out the Suicidal Beanie Baby dress again!

You and that lamb on your head have so much to live for!

There was a lot of talk amongst Glee fans this week, about how the show’s producers switched this week’s episode, “Funk” with last week’s “Theatricality,” so that the Gaga-themed episode would coincide with the American Idol Finale.  Many attributed that random switcheroo to the off-putting weirdness that ultimately developed into what I would hereby like to refer to as “Jesse-gate.”  However, seeing as Jesse didn’t appear AT ALL in “Theatricality.”   And, in the episode prior to that, he was being all sorts of sweet to Rachel, and even told Ms. Corcoran he cared about the head Gleek, I’m not sure that switch was completely to blame here.  Simon Cowell agrees with me . . .

 . . . but Randy and Paula clearly don’t.  (Hey Paula!  You’re not even on Idol any more!  You no longer get a say in these types of disputes!)

Exploring Jesse-gate

As I’ve already suggested above, this week’s installlment of Glee opens with our Glee kids’ nemesis, Vocal Adrenaline, breaking into their auditorium.   The purpose of the break-in, you ask?  Well, it appears that Vocal Adrenaline heard a rumor that New Directions was poised to beat them at Regionals, and wanted to psych out their biggest competition.  This also gave Vocal Adrenaline’s not-so-former star, Jesse St. James the opportunity to be a poorly constructed plot device inform the Glee kids that he was back working for the enemy, and that he and Rachel were totally dunzo.  And just in case Jesse’s big speech wasn’t enough to nail the final coffin into his temporary relationship, he had to go and do this . . .

Careful Jesse!  Something tells me microphones aren’t the ONLY thing that girl has had in her mouth, recently . . .

Now, don’t get me wrong, “Another One Bites the Dust” was good.  It just wasn’t my favorite Vocal Adrenaline performance.  For that, I’d have to go with “Highway to Hell.”  In this song’s defense, the fact that I was shouting four letter words at Jesse the entire time the group was performing, probably didn’t help matters . . .

As if this whole abusive and completely illogical scene wasn’t hard enough to watch, later on in the episode, Rachel receives a call from Jesse, telling her to meet him the parking lot.  She runs out all happy and slow motion style, which, by the way, I DON’T UNDERSTAND AT ALL, seeing as the dude COMPLETELY humiliated her just moments earlier.  And that’s when THIS happens . . .

There were two things (aside from the obvious, of course) that really irked me about the “Rachel egging scene.”  First, how FRIGGIN OLD do those Vocal Adrenaline kids look?  Aside from Jesse, these guys seriously look to be pushing about middle age!  It’s like that Chinese Olympic gymnast controversy in reverse.

“Yeah, if you believe those Vocal Adrenaline ‘kids’ are 16, then we’re 45!”

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m ALL FOR twenty-something’s playing teens . . .

 (Yes, I’m looking at you, my sexy Puck Man!)  However, when your “high school kids” look like they are about ready to register for AARP benefits, THAT is a problem!

My second issue with the scene came into play when Jesse said “I loved you” to Rachel, before cracking that egg on her head.  Jesse, what exactly did Rachel DO to make you NOT “love” her anymore?  I mean come on!  The beanie baby dress wasn’t THAT bad!

Hmm .  .  . then again . . .

Will Schuester has a cute butt.  Alert the media!

 I guess one positive (depending on how you felt about this particular plotline) of Rachel getting her heart stomped on by the conveniently turned-evil, Jesse, was that it inspired Will to seek revenge on Sue Sylvester.  His maniacal plan of genius?  To get her to FALL IN LOVE with him . . .

 . . . only so he could DUMP her before her Cheerleading Cheerios were set to compete in Nationals.  This whole plotline was BIZARRE on SO MANY LEVELS.  For one thing, it seemed so ENTIRELY out of character for Will to even CONCEIVE of pulling this off, let alone actually do it.  For another, Sue just doesn’t strike me as the type of gal who would fall in love, over little more than a few good butt wiggles and some free protein powder, particularly with the guy she seemed so intent on MURDERING in EVERY OTHER EPISODE.  On a positive note, the plot device did bring us THIS . . .

Thanks MikkoBayani!

Seriously, I don’t think I’ve EVER seen as tight and adorable an ASS as the one Matthew Morrison was showing off in this scene.  I know some pretty fit girls who couldn’t pull off wearing THOSE pants . . .   Then again, should I have expected anything less from this guy?

Eventually, Sue succumbs to the Charms of the Hot Ass, and agrees to go on a date with Will.  But then he pulls a Jesse, and stands her up.  And suddenly, Sue is so heartbroken that the guy she hates,  hates her back, that she holes up in her house, and cancels Cheerleading Nationals.  The Cheerios got pretty torn up over it, which, in itself, provided for some light comedy, in the form of Brittany’s inside out cheerleading uniform and ridiculous “I’m sad” hair-do.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t manage a screencap on that one.  So you will just have to take my word for it. 

Ultimately, Will apologizes to Sue.  She gets out of bed, and goes on to win Nationals with her Cheerios.  And they all lived happily ever after?

Funk Master Puck is SOOOO NOT a Loser!

In order to retaliate for Vocal Adrenaline’s acts of violence against the Gleeks, Puck and Finn decide to put their differences aside and band together to get revenge.  Their plan?  Slash the tires of the ENTIRE Vocal Adrenaline team, all of whom just so happen to drive identical Range Rovers with super obnoxious “Voc Ad” vanity plates.  (Man, what a perk!  No wonder these 40-year olds don’t want to graduate!)

In a surprising show of decency, Bad Mommy Corcoran . . .

 . . . gives up the opportunity to have Puck and Finn expelled from school, provided they pay for the damages they caused.  So, these two Bad Ass Dudes get jobs working at Sheets’ N’ Things, working for none-other-than the Former Mrs. Schuester . . .

 . . . who kind of seems like she has the hots for Finn, because he looks like her Ex-Husband did when HE was 27 16.  Pretty random, right?  But at least it gave us the opportunity to see this . . .

Thanks bangbangxo!

“Losers” never looked so pretty!  Later, Finn and Puck perform together AGAIN (along with Mercedes) in the Glee choir room.  This time, instead of a Beck song, they choose one by Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch . . .

 . . . and during the number, Puck got so excited, he started HUMPING THE FLOOR!

And while it wasn’t a BAD performance, it just didn’t feel true to its roots.  After all, when covering a song sung by a former underwear model, isn’t shirtlessness kind of required?  To prove my point, here is the music video for the ORIGINAL “Good Vibrations.”

Thanks highwishs!

Quinn Febray and the Case of the Disappearing, than Reappearing, than Disappearing Again, Baby Bump

Someone once said that you could judge how well the stock market would do in a given year, based solely on what length of women’s skirts was in fashion at the time.  Using that same logic, I’ve come to believe that you can judge the success of a Glee episode based solely on (1) the size of Quinn’s baby bump that week; and (2) which Glee cast member she was bunking with at the time.  This week, Quinn’s baby bump was fairly small for her solo number “It’s a Man’s, Man’s Man’s World.”  Then it looked insanely large / about to pop during the finale number, “Give up the Funk.” 

Watch and compare for yourselves . . .

Thanks Mr. GleeMusicTV3!

(Oh, and in the words of Artie . . . the “Unwed Motherhood” Backup Dancers?  “Kind of disturbing . . .”)

Thanks again MikkoBayani!

Oh, and Quinn is randomly living with MERCEDES now . . . her fourth home since the season began.  Make of that what you will!

That’s all she wrote folks!  Tune in next week for the Season Finale, when, given the recent trend in their personalities, Jesse and his Middle-Aged Vocal  Adrenaline team mates will probably start devil worshipping and try to offer Rachel up as a human sacrifice .  . .

All snarky comments aside, I CAN’T WAIT!  My Gleeks better WIN THIS THING!

 

 

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Oh My Gaga! – A Recap of Glee’s “Theatricality”

  

OK.  I have a bit of a confession to make  . . . Here it goes . . . I’m not exactly a huge fan of Lady Gaga.  Don’t get me wrong.  It’s not that I don’t think she’s sublimely talented.  I DO!  Much like her predecessor, Madonna, Lady Gaga is a masterful self-marketer.  The girl is constantly reinventing herself.  She, therefore, can keep her music relevant, in a fast-paced, quick-change, ADHD world.  She even made Hello Kitty, cool again!

It’s just that . . . how do I put this kindly . . . that girl scares the STUFFING OUT OF ME!  I think it started when she made that bizarro Paparazzi video.  You know, the one where she dressed up like a depraved, totally effed up, version of Minnie Mouse  . . .

. . . and KILLED an eyepatch-wearing Alexander Skarsgard!

I DON’T UNDERSTAND!  I thought vampires were supposed to be IMMUNE to poison!

In fact, up until last night ;), the ONLY version of Poker Face residing on my iPod was Chris Daughtry’s acoustic cover of the song (which, if you’ve never heard it before, is AWESOME, in my humble opinion.)

This was all, of course, BEFORE I watched last night’s episode of Glee, which, I’ll admit, left me a bit “gaga” for Gaga.  Let’s recap, shall we?

Tina Dresses “Goth” / Has Parents Who Hate Kristen Stewart .  . .

When the episode begins, Principal Figgins is berating Tina, for what he describes as her “goth vampire” style of dressing.  Now, I’m going to have to disagree with him here.  I wouldn’t classify Tina’s look as goth or vampire!  It’s actually more ’80’s punk, than anything else . . .

Discrepancy aside, the opening scene was pure WIN for me, because it (1) gave the often-underused Jenna Ushkowitz an opportunity to show off her comedic chops; (2) exposed Principal Figgin’s deep-seated fear of vampires (This will undoubtedly come in handy later.) . . .

 . . . and (3) included some light Kristen Stewart bashing (“My parents think Kristen Stewart is a bitch,” says Tina)

 .  . . which, as far as I’m concerned, NEVER gets old!  (Just keep on toking, Bella Swan!)

Anyway, Mr. Schuester . . .

 . . . inspired by his outrage over Principal Figgins refusal to let Tina dress the way she wants (Speaking of which, don’t YOU wish that you had a cute teacher to personally accompany YOU, and hold YOUR hand, everytime YOU got in trouble?), decides to give the Gleeks a Gaga-inspired assignment.  In order to complete the assignment, the crew would be required to (1) dress-up really weird; and (2) sing a song by This Week’s Musical Sponsor either Lady Gaga or Kiss.

Rachel Confronts Her Bio Mom / Wears a Dress Made of Suicidal Beanie Babies . . .

While spying on their chief rivals, Vocal Adrenaline . . .

 (which reminds me, WHERE WAS JESSE THIS WEEK?  And, no, you can’t say, “on vacation,” like you did to explain his absence two weeks ago, Glee!  Because NO ONE gets that much off time in high school!  Not even local celebrities who recently transferred into the school, solely to bring about a mother / daughter reunion.  You know what?  I smell a little neglect here!  I’m calling CHILD SERVICES!”)

See? He’s wandering the streets of New York City ALONE! And probably panhandling!  And quite possibly getting involved in prostitution!  Have his parents no shame?

 . . . but I digress . . .

So, while Rachel, Quinn and Mercedes are spying on Vocal Adrenaline’s sectional rehearsals, they catch it’s coach randomly belting out her own rendition of Barbara Streisand’s Funny Girl to show off illustrate to her students the importance of theatricality.  Upon hearing the song, Rachel instantly recognizes Shelby’s voice as that of her mother (who she recently heard singing on a tape Jesse gave her).  Rachel then immediately confronts Shelby, informing her, right in front of her class, that she is in fact, her daughter.

That would certainly explain the uncanny resemblance . . .

And I have to say, for someone who went through the trouble of having one of her prize students SWITCH SCHOOLS to make sure Rachel learned her true identity, Shelby didn’t seem all that happy to have been found.  In fact, on first meeting, Shelby was downright COLD to Rachel, refusing to sit in the same row as her in the auditorium, while the two engaged in their first “heart-to-heart.”

What a TOTAL WITCH!

Rachel is so distraught over the awkward encounter, that she comes to school wearing a dress made of STAPLED BEANIE BABIES. (Stuffed animal abuse, anyone?) .  The outfit is so hideous, that not even the beanie babies want to be a part of it.  They’s rather jump to their DEATHS, instead. 

 “Annnnnd  . . . we have a jumper!”  Kurt quips, as a frog beanie baby successfully escapes Rachel’s dress, only to, mere moments later, meet an untimely death on the choir room floor!

R.I.P. “Legs!”  We hardly knew, ye!

After the rest of the group is done bashing on Poor Rachel, the Girls (and Kurt) peform their portion of Mr. Schuester’s assignment, a fun and flashy cover of Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance.”   And while I couldn’t find a clip of the crew performing the song on the show, I was able to find a decent recording of the Glee cast performing the number LIVE on Tour in Los Angeles.  (Just take what you see, and imagine it with MORE cast close-ups, and a bit less “shaky cam.”)

(Thanks so much for sharing this with us, YuckFoutube!)

I think my favorite part of the whole song is when Kurt (Chris Colfer) belts out, “Because I’m a freak, BABY!”  (Classic!)

You might have noticed, that in the video, Lea Michelle, who plays Rachel, is wearing an outfit that is decidedly NOT the Suicidal Beanie Baby Dress I screencapped for you, above.  That is because, in the scene following her performance, Mommy Not-So-Dearest, Shelby, actually does something NICE for a change, by hooking Rachel up with a Gaga-inspired outfit that doesn’t include on it a bevy of warning labels, about babies accidentally swallowing foreign objects . . .

You know, if it didn’t have that weapon-esque jagged edge sticking out the side of it, I might ACTUALLY wear something like this . . .

After receiving some REALLY BAD advice from Mr. Schuester, Witchy Shelby decides to, more or less, “break-up” with her long lost daughter.  Her rationale for doing so seemed really warped to me . . . something about Rachel being TOO OLD to start a relationship with.  (Ummm, yeah, because 16 is positively ANCIENT!) 

Happy Sweet 16, Rachel!  Did you remember to put on your Depends?

However, I’m thinking that Shelby’s asshat actions were little more than a plot device, aimed toward ensuring that Mother and Daughter have an emotional and permanent reunion, come Season Finale time.  Therefore, I will refrain from calling Shelby too many evil names, just yet . . .

As a parting, “I’m sorry for being the Worst Mother Ever,” gift, Shelby offers Rachel a cup . . . with a star on it . . . for in case she gets “thisty.”

I know, I know . . . It didn’t look like this . . . I’m trying to make a not-so-subtle point here, OK?

You see, if Shelby DOESN’T reunite with Rachel in the Season Finale, I’m willing to bet that the next time “Thirsty Rachel” uses her “star cup,” is on her twenty-first birthday, when she totes it along with her, in her purse, on her bar crawl.  And with each of the 21 shots she pours into it, she will raise her glass, and SING, in an increasingly inebriated manner “F-U Mommy!”

My personal anger at Shelby aside, I must admit that the Mother-Daughter duet to Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face” was the second most poignant moment in the entire episode.  (I’ll get to the MOST poignant, in just a bit.)  Aside from Idina Menzel and Lea Michelle having the most beautiful voices ON THE PLANET, I just loved how many layers this song had.  And how deft the two accomplished actresses were at subtly revealing them. 

On the surface, “Poker Face” is a light and fun song that uses the game of poker, as a thinly veiled metaphor for sexuality.  Shelby and Rachel have fun with this bawdy side to the song, smiling and winking at one another, during the particularly risque parts.  (Example: “I’m bluffin’ with my muffin . . .”)

On a deeper level, “Poker Face” is a song about hiding one’s true emotions, in order to protect onesself, a tactic we all use every once in a while, both in poker, and in life.  When Rachel sings the line, “She don’t wanna love nobody,” you can see the sadness in her face, as she recognizes her mother’s inability to provide her with the affection she needs.

Later when the women are singing, “I’m marvelous,” to one another,  we all know that isn’t really true, and that they are just saving face.  It’s heartbreaking to watch, yet beautiful at the same time.

Finn Experiments with Makeup / Calls Kurt the F- Word / Gets His Ass Handed to Him By Kurt’s Dad / Wears a Red Shower Curtain

Speaking of Misguided Mommies, Finn’s TOTALLY put him on the spot, by dragging him, eyes closed, to La Casa de Burt and Kurt, and informing him that he would be moving in there, RIGHT IN FRONT of Kurt and his dad!  To make matters even more awkward, Finn and Kurt were going to be sharing a room together . . . at age 16.  (A house with two-and-a-half-baths and NO GUEST ROOM!  What’s up with that, Burt?)

Then again, it does work for SOME people, I guess . . .

Back at school, Finn and the Glee boys get all decked out in full Kiss regalia and sing “Shout it Out Loud.”  A song I had NEVER heard before. 

Up until last night, I was familiar with precisely ONE Kiss song:  “Rock and Roll All Night.”  Now, I know two more (I’ll get to the second one in a bit).  Thanks for the education, Glee!

Finn and Kurt continue to bicker throughout most of the episode, regarding the respective merits of conformity versus individuality.  However, the poopy really hits the fan when Finn describes Kurt’s room decorations as “faggy,” and Kurt’s dad, Burt, overhears him.  Remember when I said, the scene between Shelby and Rachel was the SECOND most poignant scene in this episode?  Well, this was the first . . .

Kurt stands in the corner, arms wrapped protectively across his chest, barely holding back his tears, as he watches his “Man’s Man” father stand up for him, for the first time.  Burt tells Finn that by using those words, he is implying that homosexuality is something shameful and wrong.  Kurt flinches, as Burt explains that, when he was Finn’s age, he too used the term in a similarly derogatory manner.  Burt then expresses his disappointment in Finn, and unceremoniously kicks him out of the house, explaining, “I can’t have your poison here.”

After a cowed Finn stalks off, Burt turns to Kurt and tells him “[Your room] looks great.”

In a moment that got me all teary, Burt then places his hand on Kurt’s shoulder.  Kurt grabs it for a second, in silent thanks, then lets it go, as his father exits the room.  As far as I’m concerned, both Mike O’Malley, who plays Burt, and Chris Colfer, deserve Emmys for this scene.

To prove his loyalty to Kurt, and show that he’s learned his lesson about tolerating individuality, Finn protects Kurt from a couple of guys I will hereinafter refer to as “The Mean Boys” . . . (One of whom talks and gesticulates like a Poor Man’s Jerry Seinfeld . . .)

“What’s the deal with the name Lady Gaga?  I just don’t get it.  Is she a lady or a baby?”

Did I mention Finn stood up to the Mean Boys, while dressed like this?

Remember earlier, when I said that the “Minnie Mouse” costume was the most disturbing Lady Gaga costume EVER?  I stand corrected . . .

Puck Acts Like a Chauvinist / Feels Guilty About It / Sings a Sweet Song / Still Kind of Acts Like a Chauvinist / But Looks Really Hot Doing It

Awww, Puck!  Sweet ignornant Puck!  Don’t you know that naming your child after a brand of hard liquor pretty much guarantees that she will become an alcoholic later in life?

I mean, you might as well abandon her for 16-years, and then pop back into her life, only to give her a “Star Cup,” before leaving again . . .

Oooh, she looks really mad!  She might even send the Flying Monkeys after me!

Rather than be “thrilled” by Puck’s choice of baby name, as he suspected she would be, Quinn tells her Baby Daddy, in no uncertain terms, that she is giving up his kid to a family that WON’T name him after something that bears a warning label, specifically geared toward pregnant people.

Puck tries to make it up to her, by explaining that he had a bad home life.  Apparently, his father was too busy being “cool” to spend time with him.  Then, because this is Glee, after all.  He breaks into song.  The song he chooses is yet another Kiss song.  This one was called “Beth.”  And, like I said, I’d never heard another Kiss song, aside from “Rock and Roll all Night,” prior to the airing of this episode.  Except . . . something about this song, sounded SO FAMILIAR to me.  And I couldn’t figure out why.  Then, I remembered . . .

Remember that scene in the movie Role Models (which, if you haven’t seen it, you should skip this next paragraph, because I’m TOTALLY about to spoil the ending)?

It’s the scene after Paul Rudd, Sean William Scott, and those two kids win the LARPing competition (during which they all dressed up like Kiss, by the way . . . IT ALL MAKES SENSE NOW!)  Anyway, at the Larping After Party (Because you know how wild and crazy those LARPers can get!), Paul Rudd’s character, Danny Donahue, stands on a car, and sings a song to his girlfriend . . . who just so happens to be named BETH.  Yeah, this is the SAME SONG! 

 Glee just taught me all sorts of things I didn’t know, this week!

After the song, Puck approaches a teary-eyed Quinn, and offers to be present when their baby is born (Awww!).  He also DEMANDS that it be named Beth!

Now, don’t get me wrong.  Beth is a FABULOUS name for a baby girl.  But what the heck made Puck think that,  just because he sang ONE sweet song, that Quinn should be REQUIRED to name the baby after it?  Doesn’t SHE have a say in all this?  More importantly, don’t the ADOPTIVE PARENTS, who are going to  . . . you know . . . RAISE THE BABY, have a say?  WTF, Puck?

If you weren’t so sexy, I’d be REALLY mad at you right now!

Oh, and I almost forgot, the Principal ultimately allowed Tina to continue to dress like .  . . whatever it is she normally dresses like  . . . but only after she threatened to suck his blood, vampire style . . .

That’s all she wrote, folks!  In the words of Mr. Schuester, “Next stop, Sectionals!”

 

 

 

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Don’t Cry for Me, Sue Sylvester!: A Recap of Glee’s “Home”

  

Glad to see my girl, Mercedes, happy and smiling again!

This week’s installment of Glee might not have been the show’s most GLEE-FUL (Everyone was CRYING during it!), but it was certainly its most heartfelt.  As you can probably gather from the title, the episode’s theme was “home” (and just in case you didn’t get the theme from the title, the entire cast hit you on the head with it, sledgehammer style, by using the word, about every 5 minutes).

The “home” in question, referred to a house, in the literal sense, like the one Mr. Schuester was trying to sublet, pending his divorce.  It also referred to “home” in the more abstract sense, like the inner peace Mercedes had to regain, regarding her body.

“All this talk about HOME is making me HOMESICK, Toto!”

Let’s revisit, shall we? 

There’s No Place Like Inside Will Schuester’s Pants . . .

When the episode begins, the Glee club is homeless, due to Sue Sylvester’s commandeering of the auditorium for use by her Cheerios (of which, by now, half of the Glee kids just so happen to be members).  Ummm . . . to be honest, I’m not sure why this was such an issue.  I always thought the Gleeks held their practice sessions in the music room, you know, the one we always see them practicing in.  Anyway, as a result of this plot device unfortunate circumstance, Mr. Schuester (a.k.a Will) is forced to search for a temporary “home” for his Glee club, and randomly decides that the 1980’s would be a perfect place for them to go (last week, after all, was the Madonna episode). 

So, our favorite Glee coach travels back in time . . . to a roller rink . . . and to a previous episode of the show, guest starring Kristin Chenoweth . . .

Yes, boys and girls, you probably remember Kristin’s guest starring role on Glee, during the first half of the season, as the boozy songstress, April.  Well, now, apparently, April is back, and conveniently in charge of the roller rink that constitutes the “only possible” place for our Gleeks to practice (aside from the music room, of course).  April gallantly lets Will use the roller rink as Glee Club practice space.  She’s also willing to prospectively help him find a subletter for his home.  Why, you ask?  Because April is a girl, and everyone knows that all GIRLS on Glee (except for maybe, Sue Sylvester)desire a coveted spot inside the Schuester pantalones (a spot which is becoming increasingly less exclusive as the weeks progress)!

“Come on inside, ladies.  There’s room in here for EVERYBODY!”

April swings by Will’s place, ostensibly to check out the apartment, but ends up spending the night.  Surprisingly, these two don’t actually do it!

I know, Mr. Monkey, I was shocked too!

However, they did sing a couple of rousing show tunes together, about how lonely they both were.  And nothing says foreplay like SHOW TUNES!

After the foreplay show tunes singing, Will goes into Daddy mode, and self-righteously lectures April on how crappy her life is right now.  (Right, because YOU are the epitome of healthy living, Man Slut Will).  And to his credit, Will Schuester must be REALLY good at singing show tunes, because one talk with him is all it takes for April to decide to clean up her life and head out of town, but not before she buys the Glee club its auditorium, of course .  . .

Our Parents are Dating Eachother, So We Should TOTALLY Date TOO . . .

“You’re so TENSE future step-brother.  Maybe a full body massage would help.”

Speaking of pantalones, I’m not exactly sure what gave Kurt the brilliant idea that, if you have a crush on someone, becoming related to them is the PERFECT way to get them to do it with you (particularly if that person is straight, and you are gay)!  And yet, that was precisely our boy Kurt’s dastardly plan at the beginning of this episode.  We watch as Kurt deftly orchestrates the coupling of his widower father (played by Mike O’Malley) with Finn’s widowed mom.  And, wouldn’t you know it, these two fall completely in love, during the course of a SINGLE EPISODE!

Finn, who sees any “moving on” he and his mother might do, as a direct betrayal of his deceased dad, is not too happy with this new state of affairs.  And he lets both Finn and his mother know it, in no uncertain terms.  I love how when a very hurt Kurt sings “A House is Not a Home” directly to Finn during Glee practice, Puck mouths to Finn “Are you gay?”  (It might have been wise for Kurt to ask Finn this same question, before he started going through all this trouble!)

To further complicate matters, when Kurt and Finn, and their respective parents, all go out to eat together, Kurt’s dad starts talking football with Finn, which makes Kurt, who has always desired a closer relationship with his “man’s man” father, extremely jealous.  But . . . wait . . . isn’t Kurt on the football team too?

Did Kurt not WIN a football game for his school, by distracting the opposing team with his hypnotic “Single Ladies” dance, just a few months ago?

I mean that’s gotta count for something, right?  During the episode, Kurt comes to terms with his relationship with his father, while Finn comes to terms with the loss of his.  Ultimately, Finn allows Kurt’s dad to sit in his father’s sacred chair, while the two bond over a college football game.  Kurt looks on wistfully, but with a new understanding of the situation.

What it takes to be Beautiful . . .

“Just for cheering, not for EATING!”

Poor Mercedes!  The minute Sue Sylvester calls her and Kurt into her office, we just know she’s in for some trouble.   “How do you two not have a show on Bravo?”  Sue inquires, as the spunky pair banters with one another, just seconds before Sue rips their hearts out.  (And, she’s RIGHT!  I would TOTALLY watch a Bravo show starring these two!)

Check out Kurt and Mercedes in Bravo’s new hit show “Girl Talk,” on Thursday nights (right after Project Runway)

In preparation from an upcoming interview with a premiere journalist, Sue Sylvester has given her newest Cheerio an ultimatum: “Lose ten pounds, or you’re off the squad.”

To her credit, Mercedes initially goes about losing the weight the right way, by ordering a healthy lo-cal lunch at the cafeteria.  Unfortunately, Mercedes’ “friends” intervene, giving her “advice,” ranging from the bad to the downright insulting.

“Don’t ruin this for me!” Kurt says.

“Would you rather feel bad and look good, or feel good and look bad?”  Santana asks, after suggesting that Mercedes drink a “meal replacement” shake, that will cause her to instantly regurgitate all her food.

“We like you no matter what you look like,” says Artie (good sentiment, poor delivery)

“I’m pretty sure my cat has been reading my diary,” says Brittany.

(LOVE this girl!  I’m so glad they’ve decided to upgrade her to series regular status.  She totally deserves it.)

 . . . and so does her cat. 

Mercedes soon begins starving herself, to the point where she faints in the lunchroom.  Surprisingly, the only person with anything remotely supportive to say to Mercedes throughout this entire ordeal is Quinn.

In a very touching scene, Quinn visits Mercedes in the nurse’s office, offers her a granola bar, and tells her she is beautiful.  “You’ve always been at home in your body.  I admired that about you,” Quinn counsels.

Having had body issues in the past, and having gained a new understanding about healthy eating, as a result of her pregnancy, Quinn is able to commiserate with Mercedes, and provide her with some good advice.  I love the journey the writers have taken with Quinn this season.  She has certainly come along way from the shallow self-righteous girl we knew from the pilot. 

At the pep rally, Mercedes surprises everyone by giving a heart-warming speech about the importance of feeling comfortable in your own skin.  She then asks the entire student body to join her in a rendition of Christina Aquilera’s Beautiful, that, in my opinion, was by far, the best performance of the evening.  (Then again, maybe that’s just because I’m not a big fan of show tunes.)  You can hear Mercedes, in all her glory, here:

After the performance, a nervous Sue Sylvester . . .

 . . . meets with the journalist, who she is convinced will berate her for the impromptu performance.  And, initially, it seems as though he will do just that.  “The minute I met you, I instantly disliked you . . . Twice you called me Rerun, and I was also beginning to think you were a little racist.”

NOT the journalist!

While the journalist initially had plans to expose Sue for her bad behavior, he was pleasantly surprised by what he saw during the pep rally.  Assuming that Sue had orchestrated the whole thing, he calls her a visionary, and promises to “open doors for her,” by writing a highly laudatory article about the cheerleading coach.  To Sue’s credit, she ACTUALLY looks like she feels kind of guilty about all the undeserved praise she is receiving.  But just like the other few times us viewers have been made privy to Sue’s softer side, I’m sure it won’t last very long . . .

  • That’s all folks.  It was definitely not my favorite Glee episode, but it had some good moments.  What did you think?  Are you excited about the prospect of Kurt and Finn as step-brothers?  Were you as shocked as I was that Jesse St. James had NO lines during this episode, and Rachel only had one?  Would you watch a Bravo show starring Mercedes and Kurt?  If you were Brittany’s cat, would you read her diary too?

 

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Too DIVA-licious? – A Recap of Glee’s “The Power of Madonna”

“Psst!  Sue!  I don’t really know how to tell you this . . . but your HIGH BEAMS are showing . . .”

Could there ever POSSIBLY be such a thing as TOO MUCH MADONNA?  The Verdict is still out for me on that one.  But one thing is for sure, Glee definitely put this question to the test,  during last night’s episode .  . . With a total of EIGHT musical numbers from the Madonna catalogue, and countless other Madge songs blaring in the background throughout the episode, there was literally little room for anything else during the hour.  In fact, the plot took SUCH a backseat during “The Power of Madonna,” that I felt less like I was watching a musical teen dramedy, and more like I was at concert featuring my favorite Madonna cover band . . .

In terms of the musical numbers, Glee TOTALLY outdid itself last night!  I have NO DOUBT that the show’s inevitable Madonna-themed album will remain in high rotation on my iPod for perpetuity.  And, as if that wasn’t enough, some of the costumes and choreography on these numbers were (dare I say it) BETTER than the original music videos on which they were based!  Here were my four fave performances of the evening . . .

1) Express Yourself

The first singing number of the evening, was a Girl Power-Infused, Pastel-Colored, Beltfest, that would have made the Divine Miss Madonna, herself, PROUD!  Sure the “rationale” behind the song, “BOYS are MEAN, GIRLS RULE!” was a bit cliche and juvenile, but the flawless performances by our female Gleeks, more than made up for this.  Once again, while, unfortunately, I can’t show you the musical number in its entirety, you can at least listen to it, HERE . . .

2) The Borderline / Open Your Heart Mash-up

While, the on-screen chemistry between Lea Michele and Jonathan Groff is admittedly sizzling, there is just something about the screentime she shares with Cory Monteith, that is incredibly honest and sweet.  Plus, now that these two have that sort of “unrequited love” thing going for them again, I may just have to go back to rooting for this couple to “re-couple.”  The “story” behind the mash-up, is that Rachel has just admitted to Finn that she is still dating Jesse St. James, star of Vocal Adrenaline, and the Gleeks’ arch rival.  Finn sort of/ kind of tries to be supportive, but more or less just ends up sulking.  (After all, don’t all boys only want what they can’t have?) 

 I imagine the number was supposed to be a sort of dream sequence, taking place jointly in the minds of both characters.  Otherwise, the Madonna music video-attired class mates bustling around in the background, and the LOUD SINGING IN THE LIBRARY  .  .  .

 (Really Glee?  Again?  McKinley High doesn’t have other places for its students to break into song . . . like, say . . . THE BATHROOM )

. . . would just be completely bizarre.  You can listen to the lovey-dovey, brooding fabulousness HERE . . .

3) Like a Virgin

Not to toot my own horn or anything  . . .

. . . But I TOTALLY called the use of this song, the minute Emma “came out” as a “Big Ole Virgin,” during last week’s episode.  In terms of a natural and seemless meshing between storyline and singing, “Like A Virgin” clearly won the award last night.  Three virginal Gleeks: Rachel, Finn, and Emma, all decided to do the DEED last night, with their respective sort-of significant others Jesse, Santana, and Will.  Only Finn actually did it.  (But he lied to Rachel, and said he didn’t.)  Conversely, Rachel DIDN’T DO IT, but told Finn that she did. 

Emma also didn’t do it (not quite sure WHY though . . . of the three relationships on-screen, this one seemed the healthiest, Will’s Man Sluttiness aside).  However, she DID decide to get “counseling” for her problem.  (I’m assuming when she says “problem,” she’s referring to her OCD, and not her Virginity, as the latter is SIGNIFICANTLY easier to “kick” than the former . . . just saying.  Also, it would kind of be a dick move on Will’s part, to refer Emma to a counselor, just so he could get laid . . . ).  Anyway, here’s the song . . .

4) Like a Prayer

Sure, the finale ensemble number had no correlation to the episode’s storylines whatsoever.  But, in this case, it sort of didn’t have to.  It just worked.  I LOVED how Kurt and Mercedes got oodles of solos, during this episode.  After all, my girl Mercedes kind of had a point when she griped that, lately, all they have been letting her character do is “belt the high notes at the end.”  (Something tells me — with these two now on the Cheerios, and a romantic storyline for Kurt on the horizon — that we are going to be seeing a lot more of this dynamic duo, in the coming weeks.) 

Oh, and are any of you ACTUALLY buying that Jesse St. James transferred schools and joined the Gleeks, just to be with Rachel (who he really just met), and not to please his Nazi Vocal Adrenaline Glee Coach, Ms. Corcoran?

A close (and very smart) friend of mine commented on how IDIOTIC Will Schuester was for BLINDLY going along with this.  And I think she has a point.  On the other hand, in a SANE world, who in their right mind would go so far as to TRANSFER SCHOOLS just to commit an undercover Glee Sting Operation for your coach?  REAL PEOPLE in the REAL WORLD simply wouldn’t even consider this an option to be concerned about.  Then again, this IS a school where teachers rufie their principals, so that they can blast Madonna through the speakers during school hours . . .

 . . . so maybe Mr. Schuester should have seen this one coming . . .

Speaking of Shady Glee Narc D-Bags, in addition to seeing Kurt and Mercedes in the forefront, during the final song, it was nice to see Jesse St. James withering away in the background.  Two weeks and that dude is already starting to grate on my nerves .  . .

In other news, we FINALLY learned the source of Sue Sylvester’s obsession with berating Will’s hair.  Apparently, following the release of Madonna’s 1986 True Blue album, Sue, then “age 6” (I’m thinking more like “age 16”), tried to bleach her hair and had a terrible accident, as a result.  This Hair Catastrophe has forced Sue to keep her hair short, ever since.  So, when it comes to Will’s highly-gelled coiff, Sue is simply jealous.  While this surely sucks for Sue, I can’t help but agree with Will, that her current ‘do is TOTALLY Florence Henderson!

A Very Brady Haircut!

Well, that’s all I’ve got!  See ya next week, Gleeks!

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