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Nose Jobs, Cabooseys, and Lebanese Beards – A Recap of Glee’s “Born this Way”

Welcome back to McKinley High, Willy Wonka Kurt!  Oh, how we missed your weird hats and increasingly bizarre wardrobe choices.  May you never be saddled with the ignominy of a school dress code EVER AGAIN!

After last week’s “meh” episode, I think many of us Glee fans were hoping that this week’s Gaga-inspired 90-minute extravaganza would pack enough of an emotional, feel-good, punch to make us forget that “Night of Neglect” ever aired.  And I’m proud to say, for this Gleek, at least, “Born this Way” delivered BIG TIME! 

From the slightly preachy (but still important) overarching theme of acceptance, to the variety of fun and well-produced musical numbers, to the genuinely heartfelt, character-driven moments, this was an episode that hit every single mark that “Night of Neglect” missed. 

So, what are we waiting for?  Grab a chair, put on that unflattering white t-shirt that exposes your deepest darkest insecurities, and let’s get on with the recap!

It’s Booty Camp Time!  (Sorry, Rachel’s Nose.)

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Warning:  Do NOT try this at home!

It’s almost time for Nationals.  And our Glee kids need to work on their dance moves!  This sounds like a job for Mister Schue’s Rump-Shakin’ Booty Camp!

Yep, Will definitely strikes me as one of those people, who always make weird facial expressions, when they dance.  . .

Unfortunately, for one Gleester that shall remain nameless . . .

And shirtless . . .

 The term “dancing” actually means “wobbling around Weeble-style, while flapping your arms impatiently, like a bird who’s too fat to fly.”

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This, of course, is SUPER embarrassing for Finn.  But it’s even more unfortunate for Rachel, who has the bad luck of dancing behind Finn at Booty Camp . . .

If I didn’t know any better, I would think she was laughing at Finn’s dancing . . .

Finn accompanies Rachel to the doctor, who confirms her biggest fear: Her nose is broken.  (Way to go, FINN!)  On the bright side, Doctor Schnoz says this would be a PERFECT opportunity for Rachel to get a nose job to fix her “deviated septum.”  (Isn’t that what they ALL say?)

Finn is completely against the idea of Rachel getting a nose job.  (Then again, he might just be afraid she will ask him to pay for it, since this is, after all, ALL HIS FAULT.)  Rachel, however, upon hearing that having the surgery might actually expand her vocal range, while making her more marketable as an actress, due to her “enhanced appearance,” seems open to the idea .  . .

I smell a Life Lesson approaching . . .

Puffy Pyramid Nipples (and other things we’d like to change about the Glee kids.)

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“Come on Finn!  Let me cop a feel!  My first girlfriend was in love with YOU, and my second one ended up being a lesbian.  You are pretty much my only hope of getting to Second Base, before I graduate.”

Rachel’s Nose Job Dilemma sparks controversy among the Glee kids.  (Riiight, because whether someone chooses to have cosmetic surgery, should TOTALLY be up to the members of their after-school club.)  Heading up Team Schnoz Keeper we have Mr. Schue, Puck, and, of course, Finn. 

 Batting for Team for Team Schnoz Chopper Upper are Mercedes (who believes that the thing that makes you different, is also the one that crushes your spirit) and Santana. 

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In classic Santana Style, the latter proceeds to detail all the things that, according to her, the other Glee kids SHOULD want to change about themselves . . .

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Santana Lopez:  Making people feel like crap, since 1994 . . .

You can always count on Sue Sylvester and Santana Lopez to fulfill Glee‘s weekly quota of Politically Incorrect / Slightly Racist / Definitely Prejudiced jokes.  But since Sue was “absent” this week, Santana got stuck doin the job, all by herself.  Fortunately, she got them all out of the way in a single scene.  Always one for efficiency (I expect she’s this way in bed, as well.  Right Brittany?), Santana potentially offends the entire Asian, Jewish, and “differently abled” population, by calling Tina out, for the shape of her eyes, Rachel, for the size of her nose, and the wheelchair-bound Artie, for the generally not “useful” nature of his legs.

But my favorite diss of all, just so happened to be the one directed at Finn . . . and his “Puffy Pyramid Nipples.”   But Santana didn’t just name Finn’s rare “nipular condition,” she went on to describe it in great detail.  “They look like they’re filled with custard. You could dust them with powdered sugar, and they could pass for some sort of dessert.”

*clears throat*

All this talk about dessert, must have made Trouty Mouth Bieber Wanna Be Sam very horny hungry, because he uses this as an opportunity to fondle Finn’s man boobs.  (See picture at the top of this section.) 

Sam Evans:  Inappropriately grabbing at other people’s nips since 1996.

Since we are already on the topic of equating food with sex . . .

Come on Baby, Pop Scrub my Cherry . . .

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Ever since LAST WEEK, when Will (1) got dumped by Gwyneth Paltrow; and (2) found out that Emma was single again AND had never consummated her marriage to Dr. Carl, he has CLEARLY been putting some serious effort into breaking the wrought iron padlock on Emma Pillsbury’s pantalones!  I mean, why ELSE would he spend multiple lunch hours SCRUBBING EMMA’S FRUIT FOR HER?

 “Rub my raspberries, Will, HARDER . . . HARDER!”

Alas, I think our Schue is starting to get a bit impatient with the virginal object of his affections.  And so, he broaches with Emma the subject of her getting laid professional help for her obsessive compulsive disorder.  Unfortunately, like most addicts, Emma is not quite willing to admit that she has a Sex Grape Washing Problem.  “I wasn’t born this way,” Emma explains, as if that changes ANYTHING!

But WAIT . . . maybe it DOES!

“The Glee kids shouldn’t be insecure about their trouty mouths, eagle beaks, and puffy pyramid nipples!  Because they were BORN THIS WAY,” Will thinks to himself.  (Hey, isn’t that the title of a LADY GAGA SONG?)

“I was born with a slab of raw meat on my head . . .”

And so begins Schue’s quest to teach his Glee kids a lesson about ACCEPTANCE . . . through singing, of course!

Santana Saves the Gay Day!

While most of the Glee kids seem to be struggling with insecurities based on their personal appearance, Santana is coping with a much deeper issue, her closeted homosexuality.  Public labels aside, our Queen B*tch still wants very badly to reunite with the love of her life Brittany, who is still dating Artie.  And, somehow, Santana thinks if she wins the title of Prom Queen, she will also win back Brittany.    But how does someone so HORRIFICALLY MEAN get elected to Prom Queen?  Well, by doing something REALLY nice, of course!

Santana decides that if she wants to win the support of her fellow Gleeks, she needs to get Kurt out of Dalton Academy, and back into New Directions, in time for Nationals.  But to do that, she needs to “tame” Big Bully Karofsky.  When Santana catches Karofsky ogling Sam’s ASS in the hallways at school, she develops an idea . . .

Santofsky?

Santana invites Karofsky out to lunch, and gives it to him “straight.”  “I know you are gay . . . I saw you checking out Sam’s ass,” she tells him matter-of-factly.  Though Karofsky initially denies Santana’s accusations, when she comes out of the closet to HIM, and offers that the two gays be eachother’s “beards,” in order to use their joint popularity to win Prom King and Queen, Karofsky agrees.  Of course, the fact that Santana threatens to OUT the guy in front of the whole school, if he doesn’t comply with her demands, certainly adds to the persuasion aspect.

“I SO want to Slushee you, right now!”

At Santana’s instruction, Karofsky issues a not particularly heartfelt, but VERY convincing, apology to the Glee kids for bullying them all.  He claims to have been “cured” of all meanness, by the love of a good lesbian woman.  Together, Santana and Karofsky vow to put  a stop to bullying in their school, by starting a sort of Anti-Bullying Guardian Angel Association called . . . get this . . . the “Bully Whips,” complete with RIDICULOUS UNIFORMS, who’s flashy hideousness would make Kurt proud . . .

“Those Bully Whips berets are ‘GORGE’, but a bit plain for my taste.  Do you think they come in rainbow colors?”

Speaking of Kurt, in furtherance of Santana’s Master Plan, Karofsky reaches out to him, by way of an apology.  Promptly, another school meeting is called to determine if Kurt feels safe enough under the same roof as Karofsky to return to McKinley High.  Kurt’s awesome dad, Burt, is in attendance . . .

 . . .  as is Doctor Arzt from Lost Karofsky’s dad, Principal Figgins, and the seemingly omnipresent Mr. Schue . . .

After hearing promises from both Karofsky, himself, and the “reformed bully’s” father, that he is a “changed man,” Kurt asks to speak to Karofsky privately.

“You’re not going to try and kiss me again, are you, Karofsky?  Because, in case you haven’t noticed, I have an INSANELY HOT BOYFRIEND, now.  Just sayin.'”

Kurt may be young, but he’s had enough life experience to know bullsh*t, when he smells it.  And so, with some gentle anal probing, Kurt eventually gets Karofsky to come clean about his and Santana’s nefarious plans to rule McKinley High from the inside of a closet.  Kurt is admittedly impressed . . .

“It’s all so deliciously EEEEEVVVIIILLLL!”  Mwah-ha-ha-ha!”

However, Kurt still thinks the viewing audience Karofsky must become educated in the Ways of the Gay.  And so, as a condition of Kurt’s returning to McKinley High, he makes Karofsky promise to start with him a chapter of PFLAG – Parents, Friends, and Family of Lesbians and Gays.  Karofsky agrees, and the Public Service Announcement Portion of the Episode is almost over.

Cut to the next day, where all the paperwork has miraculously been filed, Burt Hummel received a FULL refund on his MASSIVE private school tuition payment, and Kurt is back at McKinley High . . .  somewhere only he knows . . .

But WAIT!  Blaine is there TOO . . . and so are the REST OF THE WARBLERS!

 “How could that be?  I thought the Warblers were only allowed off campus for musical competitions and select trips to the Gap?”

Random Warbler 1:  “What’s with all these men in long hair, skirts, and makeup?  Is this a Drag Queen School?”

Random Warbler 2:  “Umm, actually . . . I think those are REAL girls.”

Random Warbler 1:  “Blaine?  I have a feeling we are not in Dalton anymore.”

Now, isn’t this sweet?  Blaine, who by now has undoubtedly forced his poor enslaved Warblers to sing for so many of his crushes, they are probably all plotting to kill him in his sleep, has commandeered his posse to sing a fond farewell to erstwhile Dalton-ite Kurt, to the tune of Keane’s “Somewhere Only We Know.”

“Hop inside my Extra Large Mouth, and I will take you for a ride you will never forget.”

I’m going to paste a link to this performance here.   Be prepared to be moved to tears, and Ugly Cry Faces . . .

 “I can’t believe Kurt is leaving the Warblers!”

“I can’t believe they didn’t put me in this scene!”

After the song, Kurt gives Blaine one final embrace, before sort of, but not really, saying goodbye to him until 3:00 p.m., when they will meet in Blaine’s bedroom and make sweet, sweet love to one another.

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So, I guess it’s fitting that the next scene features Kurt singing Sunset Boulevard’s “As if We Never Said Goodbye.”  (Although, actually, the song’s lyrics seem to more accurately reflect Kurt’s feelings about McKinley High, than Blaine.)

(To be honest, I was never a big fan of the “Show Tunes,” so I kind of tuned out on this one.  I liked the sentiment though!)

In other news . . .

Follow Your Heart (Not Your Nose.)

So, remember when I told you that Rachel was considering getting a nose job to fix her “deviated septum?”  Well, as it turns out, she doesn’t want just ANY OLD NOSE, she wants Quinn’s nose.  Rachel even goes so far as to invite Quinn with her to her Rhinoplasty consultation, so that Rachel could ascertain what she would look like with Quinn’s nose on her face.  (It’s kind of like that movie Face Off . . . only with less Nicholas Cage.)

Given all that, it makes sense that Quinn and Rachel decided to take time off from fighting over Finn and decided to fight over Puck sing a duet mashup of TLC’s “I Feel Pretty” and Westside Story’s “I Feel Pretty.”  Oh yeah . . . this one made me cry too!

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You can find a link to their performance here.  (Just be sure to have your Kleenex handy!)

It’s not until Rachel passes out PICTURES OF HERSELF wearing her new nose, that Team Schnoz Keeper REALLY starts to up its game.  First, Finn tells Rachel she is beautiful.   (All together now:  “Awwww!”)

thenm, Tina tells Rachel that she has decided to be an Asian Sex Symbol, and proceeds to make out with Mike Chang in front of everyone! 

(OK . . . so that wasn’t really helpful to Rachel.  But, honestly, this is about as useful as we’ve seen these two character be, in the past season and a half.)

Then Puck accosts Rachel in the Lady’s Room to tell her that chopping off her nose would be an affront to Hot Jews EVERYWHERE!

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(BTW, I’ve officially joined the ever-growing ranks of Team Puckleberry.  And I’m proud!)

But what really seems to ultimately change Rachel’s mind about Schnoz-Gate is the possibility of hot sex with fellow Hot Jew, Puck  . . . . The Mall?

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With Kurt’s help, Puck stages a Barbra-vention at the Eagle Rock Plaza Mall in Glendale, California. some mall in Ohio.

 

 

What’s a Barbra-vention, you ask?  Well, basically, it’s a remake of Artie’s Safety Dance Number (which took place at the SAME MALL)  where Puck, Kurt, and a whole bunch of strangers, dance around the food court to Duck Sauce’s song “Barbra Streisand.”

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Rock on, PUCK!

Never heard of the Barbra Streisand song?  Oh, it’s a very eloquent tune . . . and by “eloquent” I mean it contains THREE WORDS (well . . . actually, one name, one consonant, and one vowel).  Please allow me to teach it to you.  It goes, “Woooooooooo Woooooooo, BARBRA STREISAND.”  And . . . that’s it. 

No, I’m NOT kidding you, Damon Salvatore!  It’s actually a pretty good song.  But I must admit, hearing it didn’t make me not want a nose job.  To each his own, I guess . . .

Long story short, Rachel ended up not getting a nose job.  Team Schnoz Keepers, for the WIN . . . and, of course, Barbra Streisand. 

In other sing-y and dance-y news (And, yes, I recognize what a LAME segway that was!), Finn and Mike showed off their respective lack of singing and dancing ability in their performance of Sammy Davis Jr.’s “Gotta Be Me.”  During the performance, Finn sang well and danced REALLY badly, while Mike dance well, but didn’t sing at all.  In other words, it was exactly like EVERY OTHER MUSIC NUMBER IN WHICH MIKE CHANG HAS TAKEN PART SINCE THE PILOT . . .

You can check out a link to the performance here:

(Now, don’t get me wrong.  I don’t have anything at all against Sammy Davis, Jr., may he Rest in Peace.  But, since this week’s Glee song selection did appear to be a bit 60’s tune heavy, does anybody else think Genesis’ “I Can’t Dance” would have been a slightly modern (and way more fun) choice for this duo?  Just a thought . . .)

But it wasn’t just the students at McKinley High who were staring down their insecurities, Emma Pillsbury was too!

Who’s Down with OCD?  (Yeah, you know Emma!)

(By the way, special thanks MUST go out to the Wemma Love Tumblr for (perhaps unknowingly) helping me out MAJORLY with this recap.  Every awesome Will and Emma GIF you see here, undoubtedly comes from THERE.  So, if Wemma is your SHIP, you now know where to sail . . .)

So, as you recall, Will has spent much of the episode trying to get Emma to admit she’s got a problem with the Excessive Cleanliness Thing, and that it is keeping her from having hot Schue Sex living a happy and productive life.  But when Will encourages Emma to join the rest of the class in making a t-shirt that portrays her biggest insecurity, she DOESN’T (at least, initially) choose “OCD.”  Instead, she chooses . . . THIS . . .

At lunch, Will REALLY lets Emma have it for the whole Ginger / OCD Thing!  In fact, he gets all up her grill with his dirty, unwashed fruit, and accuses her of being an “expert of deflection,” who’s afraid to face her own biggest insecurities.

“My fruits may be dirty, but I assure you that my tongue is very clean.”

The Tough Love seems to work on Emma, who, at Will’s coaxing, seeks professional help for her compulsions, even going as far as to accept medication to minimize their symptoms.  At the end of the episode, Emma DOES find the courage to proudly wear her “OCD” t-shirt.  After getting INSANELY turned on by watching Emma “strip” into said shirt (Dont’ hold your breath Schuester . . . those legs have been closed for 32 years.  And it’s going to take a lot more than some choice words and a pill to pry them open.), Will happily grabs her ungloved (baby steps!) hand, and leads her on to the dance floor.  And, for those of you wondering what WILL’s biggest insecurity is, well . . . wonder no more!

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(It gives the term Butt Face a whole new meaning!)

Speaking of Butt Faces . . . In Lauren Zizes’ news . . .  (I’m sorry, guys.  She just REALLY bugs me.)

Quinn Gets the Sympathy Vote (?)

Now, if you went to (or currently go to) high school with girls like Quinn and Santana, you are probably not surprised that either of these girls has their heart set on Prom Queen.  But you MAY be surprised to hear that Lauren Zizes wants the title as well.  After all, she was Little Miss Toddler’s in Tiaras back when she was three.  So clearly, she has the pedigree for the job . . .

Being the Whipped Puppy he seems to become, everytime he comes within three feet of Zizes, Puck decides to help Lauren win the crown.

PUCK:  “Hey, Selfish!  Ever think of doing something for ME, for a change?”

LAUREN:  “Oh, you’re still here?  I could have sworn our characters would be broken up by now.”

PUCK: “Word.”

Initially, Lauren actually looks like she has a good shot at winning the title.  After all, she’s clearly a fan favorite among the outcasts and misfits.  But then, Lauren has to go and fight dirty, by digging up an old picture of Quinn from her middle school days, and posting it all over the school . . .


Ummm .  . . yeah, so apparently Quinn’s real name is “Lucy”, and she used to be (gasp!) not-so-hot.  She also was given the unfortunate nickname Lucy Caboosey, by some of her crueler classmates.  So, when it came time to go to high school, Quinn changed schools . . . and her name . . . and her NOSE (How do ya like them apples, Rachel?)  She also, obviously, went on a MAJOR starvation diet.  And that’s how Quinn became the shallow biatch we know and love(?) today. 

Well, of course, Quinn is MORTIFIED to have this intel out in the open . . .

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As luck (and karma) would have it, however, Lauren’s plan to ruin Quinn’s chances at becoming Prom Queen end up backfiring!

(I know!  I can’t believe I’m actually rooting for Quinn, either!  I guess my frustration with Glee’s recent Zizes Overload does this to me.)

Once the school sees what Quinn USED to look like, they instinctively find her more likeable and relatable.  Suddenly, she’s gone from being someone to despite and envy, to an Inspirational Figure.  (Take THAT, ZIZES!) 

In a sweet final moment of the episode, Finn turns to girlfriend, Quinn, and shows him the Lucy Caboosey picture he now keeps in his wallet.  “This is the only picture I have of you, where I can really see you,” he explains.  

Then they makeout . . .

 . . . which kind of makes me want to go dig up photographs of MY AWKWARD STAGE (assuming I’m not still in it), so that I can show  incriminating pictures of myself to hot boys, and they will start making out with ME too!  (Hey, it could happen!)

Born this Way . . .

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Moments before the final dance number of the evening, which, as promised by The Schue at the beginning of the episode, is to the tune of Lady Gaga’s “Born this Way,” we get to see what everybody put on their Insecurities T-shirts.  I think my favorite of these came from Brittany (who’s shirt said “I’m with Stoopid, with an arrow pointing to her head) and Puck (who’s shirt ALSO said “I’m with Stoopid, with an arrow pointing to his other head).  L

ess impressive was Artie’s shirt that said “Four Eyes” (Zzzzz), and Tina’s shirt that said “Brown Eyes”  (Really?  Because, last I checked, THREE QUARTERS of the population has those).  Here are is a composite of the rest of the Gleek’s shirts .  . .  (Thanks oddles, GLEEIFS Tumblr!)

Not taking part in the dance number is a pouty Santana, who is still lodged firmly in the closet, despite the fact that Brittany made her a “Lebanese” t-shirt.  (Get it?  Lebanese?  Don’t forget, this is Brittany we are talking about here!)

Santana: You don’t get a say in who I date anymore.
Brittany: Why not? Because I’m dating somebody? Because you’re Lebanese, and I think I’m bi-curious?
Santana: No, because I said I love you. You didn’t say you love me back.
Brittany: I do love you.  Clearly, you don’t love you as much as I do, or you’d put this shirt on, and you would dance with me.

Wait . . . did she say “dance?”

Although there was no Horizontal Mambo for Brittana this week, there was a final tribute to Lady Gaga.  And you can enjoy it, in all its “Be Yourself” Glory, by clicking on this external link:

So, my fellow Gleeks . . . tell me . . . what’s on YOUR Insecurities T-shirt? 😉

[www.juliekushner.com]

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Welcome Football Fans! – A Recap of Glee’s “The Sue Sylvester Shuffle”

Question:  What do Football, Fights, Zombies, Cannon Balls, and Flaming Boobs, have in common? 

If you answered that all of these things were included Glee‘s Post-Superbowl Extravaganza episode, to help the show appeal to male sports fans, you are ABSOLUTELY right! 

Interestingly enough, the change in target audience, did not at all seem to hamper the show’s quality.  In fact, dare I say, making Glee more “Boy Friendly,” may have actually improved it. 

I mean, sure, the episode was certainly not perfect.  It lacked cohesion, and certain scenes seemed to appear completely out of nowhere (I’m looking at YOU, “Bills, Bills, Bills”).  Yet, overall, it was a fun-filled hour, one who’s main theme — about football players risking their popularity to perform in Glee club — seemed to be a gentle, but deliberate, nod to the football fans who were watching.  And the message was clear:  “It’s OK, if you’re enjoying this.”

So, what are we waiting for, let’s get recapping!

Your Boobs are on FIRE (and Your Cannon has Fibromyalgia!)

We open on the Cheerios performing an obnoxiously over-produced, Half-Time show-esque, dance number to Katy Perry’s “California Gurls.”  During the number, the girls wore blue hair, as a homage to Katy herself.  They also wore pointed cones on their chests, as a homage to early 90’s Madonna (?).  From the girls’ Boob Cones, shot fiery sparklers (because boys like HOT boobs). 

 Behind the girls, were a few guys doing bike flips off a ramp.  Of course, no one was paying attention to them — no GUYS, anyway — because of the girls and their Flaming Boobs . . .

If Flaming Boobs aren’t exactly your thing, and you weren’t a fan of the opening number, you weren’t alone.  Because Sue Sylvester didn’t like it either, “I’m bored,” she whines into he megaphone, after the song wraps. 

(As if knowing that Sue is talking about them, upon hearing these words, the Flaming Boobs fizzle out, unceremoniously.)

Isn’t Becky a member of the Cheerios?  If so, why wasn’t she in this number?  Does anyone else find this vaguely offensive?

After that, Sue makes a not particularly funny joke that runs on WAY too long.  It involves (1) the benefits of stuffing one’s bra with chicken cutlets;  and (2) having cheerleaders intermittently hit one another in the face with them . . .

Chickens were NOT amused.

Quinn wisely notes that there was nothing necessarily wrong with the dance number.  Rather, Sue herself has simply become completely impossible to please.  And no matter how extravagant the Cheerios numbers become, she will continuously want to top herself.

Sue doesn’t entirely disagree with this statement  But that doesn’t mean she isn’t going to try and “improve” the Cheerios’ performance, in any way she can  And so, while watching a cartoon featuring someone getting shot out of a cannonball, our “favorite” Cheerleading Coach comes up with an idea . . .

She will shoot one of her Cheerios out of a cannon, during the Cheerleading Championships!  Specifically, THIS Cheerio . . .

“I don’t want to die yet . .  . at least not until One Tree Hill gets canceled next year,” Brittany whines, upon learning that she is the “lucky” human cannonball.

Hmmm . . . Brooke Davis didn’t like something I wrote above . . . Maybe it was those two words I crossed out . . .

Fortunately for Brittany, she gets a brief reprieve from certain death.  This is because Sue is willing to use a Brittany-looking doll for the “trial run.”

To Brittany’s horror, her Poor Unfortunate Doll Doppelganger gets blown to itty bitty bits of Blonde.  Seeing this undoubtedly makes Brittany wish she had chosen a show with a brighter future to measure her lifespan by . . . Two and a Half Men  American Idol one of the 500 different versions of Law and Order, perhaps?

When Sue learns that she will need Brittany’s consent in order to make her explode, the “kindly mentor” secures it by giving Brittany a “We miss you,” card, purportedly written by the cannon, in crayon, no less.  Later, Sue tells a still uncertain Brittany a sob story about how the cannon has two growing baby cannons at home, and one on the way.   (Mama Cannon has fibromyalgia, so she can’t work.) 

 Eventually, Brittany agrees to literally sign her life away on Sue’s Consent Form.  Of course, she signs using an “X” because she doesn’t know how to spell her name, apparently.  (Sometimes they go a bit too far with the whole “Brittany is dumb” thing.  Don’t you think?)

Jocks versus Gleeks, Take 252

It’s a tale as old as high school:  popular versus unpopular, jocks versus geeks, football players versus gleeks.  But at McKinley High, it’s way worse.  For one thing, half the Glee club is also on either the football team, or on the cheerleading squad.  This makes the school’s social hierarchy . . . confusing . . . to say the least.

“So we are Gleeks . . . and we are Footballers.  Does this mean we have to Slushee ourselves?”

Additionally, Slushees ruin clothing, which is a HUGE problem for the Cheerios and Football players, none of whom seem to own any other clothing aside from their probably VERY smelly uniforms . . . 

Up until this point, however, the McKinley High Football team has been able to limit their Gleeks versus Jocks rivalry to off the field.  However, when a fight erupts between Finn and Karofsky that spreads through the entire football team, causing them to LOSE their game, Coach Beiste knows that serious measures must be taken. 

And so, she turns to her new Kissing Buddy, Will Schuester, for help.

Will’s grand “Plan” involves Beiste requiring the entire football team to be part of Glee club for an entire week.  The non-Gleeky footballers, not surprisingly, balk at the idea.   Azimio for one, refuses to sing showtunes, because they were written by his “oppressors.”  

Realizing that a bit of persuasion will be needed to get the football players on board, Will invites Rachel and Puck to perform Lady Antebellum’s “Need You Now” for the now doubly large Glee Crew.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I love me some Puckleberry duets, and seeing Puck strum that guitar, while crooning softly to ANY song, is enough to make my toes curl.  But, honestly, considering the purpose of this duet was to convince a bunch of football players that Glee Club was cool, a slow romantic country ditty seems a particularly odd musical choice.  I mean, why didn’t they pick a song the football players would understand, like . . . say, “We are the Champions,” or “Eye of the Tiger,” or “We Will Rock You,”  or “Mama Said Knock You Out?”

Given the poor choice in song, I wasn’t too surprised when Azimio snarkily remarked that “The girl in the mohawk has a nice voice,” thereby prompting the entire Glee club and football team to erupt into a knock down dragout fight. 

“Oh, NO you didn’t just make fun of my AWESOME Mohawk?”

One GOOD thing that comes out if this brawl, is the reunion of former besties Puck and Finn, who decide to put aside their differences (and by “differences” I mean their tendency to swap Rachel and Quinn with one another, every other week like trading cards) and unite to promote unity amongst the football team and Glee club.  The bromantic buddies cement their partnership with a solid fist bump, of course.  (How very manly of them!)

Sue Sylvester is SCARY, and so are zombies . . .

It’s a good thing Finn and Puck decided to unite.  Because it looks like they are going to need all the help they can get!  When Principal Figgins balks at Sue’s decision to shoot Brittany out of cannon, she suddenly turns into The Hulk, and inexplicably starts throwing furniture around Mr. Figgins office, and later the gym locker room . . .

Will and the rest of the faculty begin to wonder whether Sue has finally gone off the deep end, for good.  But Sue stops throwing things around long enough to calmly explain to them, that she has moved the date of the cheerleading championships to the same day as the football championships.  This means, not only that the football team has no cheerleaders to perform its halftime show . . .

Shocking, I know . . .

 . . . but that Quinn, Santana and Brittany are once again forced to choose between Glee club and the Cheerios.  (Of course, if they attend the football game, according to Sue, they will be off the squad.)

Will comes up with the idea that the FOOTBALL players, who are honorary Glee club members this week, anyway, will perform their own halftime show, along with the rest of the Glee Club.  Coincidentally, this will NOT be the first time, the McKinley High Football players dance during a game.  Remember the whole “Put A Ring On It,” fiasco during Season 1?

Most of the football team would probably prefer that you forgot this.

What songs will the Gleeks / Footballers be performing THIS TIME you ask?  A Mashup between Michael Jackson’s Thriller and Yeah, Yeah, Yeah’s “Heads Will Roll,” of course.

Did I mention that the crew will be going to do the entire performance dressed like Football-Playing Zombies?  (Oh yes, because in addition to being able to dance an entire music number, during the ONLY break they will have during a two-hour game, these footballers, are also, apparently, experts at the application of zombie makeup!)

Interestingly enough, this is how I look sometimes when I first wake up in the morning . . .

As for the Cheerios, sadly, Sue Sylvester bullies them into quitting the Glee Club, so that they can attend the cheerleading competition.

This causes Finn to want to lecture the girls about their Bad Life Choices, like the disappointed DAD he is.  It also prompts Quinn’s not-for-long!  beau Sam to rush to the girls’ defense.  In an attempt to stay relevent to this show Macauley Culkin also challenges Finn for the position of “unofficial” Glee Club leader.  Nice try, freshman! 

Honestly, the whole fight is contrived and ridiculously stupid.  But Quinn of course, who realizes the two men are REALLY fighting over her, finds the whole thing to be incredibly HOT . . .

“Now, if you guys would kindly take off your shirts and pants right now, I’d be SOO much happier!”

Pissing contests for Quinn’s affection aside, the footballers and the Gleeks begin to rehearse their half-time number.  And I’ll be darned if they don’t do a pretty great job at it.  Interestingly enough, it’s Gay Homophobic Bully Karofsky who shows the MOST musical talent of the footballers!  So much talent, in fact, that Will suggests that HE join Glee club, for real!

Karofsky is AWE-SOME!”

To most fans surprise, Karofsky doesn’t actually seem to HATE the idea.  He even suggests that the Glee crew start off with a warm-up number, to ensure that the halftime show itself is absolutely perfect.  For the warm-up, the Glee kids choose the song “She’s Not There,” which was appropriately originally sung by a band called The Zombies.

Things take a bad turn, however, when, after performing this number, the FOOTBALL players get slusheed by . . . get this . . . the HOCKEY PLAYERS, who “cleverly” argue that the football team has just been “turned gay,” because they performed a musical number dressed as the undead.  (Honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever heard the word “gay” uttered this many times in a single hour, since I watched that movie on Logo last week.)   Of couse, the “gay” accusation totally freaks out the footballers, particularly the ACTUALLY gay, Karofsky . . .

This unfortunate incident prompts the football players to REFUSE to perform at the Halftime show, even though doing so will mean that they can’t participate in the Championship Game.  (LOSERS!)  Suddenly, the football team is at risk of forfeiting the game, due to not having enough players to compete.  Coach Beiste tries to recruit new players from the rest of the school.  However, no one seems interested in crossing the Homophobe Picket Line.

And We Are Singing About “Bills” Now, Because . . .

And it is when we are our darkest hour at McKinley High, that the producers decide to inexplicably cut to Dalton Academy.   There, in the EXACT SAME LOUNGE where we shoot ALL of our Dalton Academy Scenes, as always, Blaine is singing solo, and the rest of silent Warblers, Kurt included, are dancing around him like the faceless, personality-less minions / disciples they are  . . . 

(Oh, Kurt!  I know you want in this guy’s pants.  But you can’t honestly say that his Diva Theatrics don’t piss you off, just the slightest bit?  Especially after he waxed poetic about how everybody was part of a TEAM at this school.  The Kurt I know would NEVER accept this kind of treatment!  No matter how sexy it’s source!)

So, anyway, in typical Warblers fashion, the group dances uncomfortably around Blaine, as he croons Destiny’s Child’s “Bills, Bills, Bills.”  Not only does the song sound REALLY awkward coming from a bunch of dudes, it also seems completely out of context in this football / zombie-themed episode.  On a positive note, Darren Criss’/ Blaine’s singing is pretty solid, making what would be a pretty annoying song, actually fairly palatable.

But don’t take my word for it.  See for yourself: 

 After their “song practice” Blaine and his loyal puppy dog, Kurt, head out to lunch with new gal pals, Mercedes and Rachel, who, in light of recent events, are MAJORLY depressed about the state of their Glee club, and football team . . .

I was more than a bit worried about Kurt applying for Stepford Hubby status, when he asserted that “We [i.e. Blaine and I] love football.”  However, when he qualified that “Blaine loves football.  I love scarfs”  I felt a bit better.

As it turns out, though, Blaine actually DOES like football! 

“Who knew?”

In fact, Blaine’s vast knowledge of pigskin (no pun intended) actually ends up coming in quite handy, when he informs Rachel of precisely how many football players are needed in order not to forfeit a game.  This gives Rachel an idea.  THE GLEE GIRLS CAN PLAY FOOTBALL!  (Or, rather, they can lie down on the field, while the guys play, so they don’t get disqualified.  How’s THAT for femisist rights!) 

Let’s Hear it for the GIRLS!

Though reluctant at first, the remaining footballers ultimately agree to Rachel’s suggestion . . .

Though the girls initially planned on just LAYING on the field the whole time, a couple of them, actually ended up HELPING the team!  For example, Lauren Zizes, with her WRESTLING background, had sheer force and intimidation on her side, making her a WAY more frightening football player than most of the guys she played alongside . . .

Now THAT is seriously scary!

But it was Tina Cohen Chang who REALLY shocked her teammates, by running nearly half the field, before being very roughly sacked by a member of the opposing team.  Though her beau, Mike, was obviously extremely concerned for her well-being, as she lay on the field unconscious . . .

“Sh*&t!”

 . . . he needn’t have worried.   Because, within just a few moments, Tina was up and mumbling, “Did we win yet?”

Tina was ultimately carried off the field, a True Hero!  (Now that’s some SERIOUS girl power!  I knew you wouldn’t let me down, Glee!)

Tina’s and Lauren’s surprisingly extraordinary footballer skills aside, the team was still losing miserably, just moments before halftime.   And so, temporarily putting Sam in charge of the team, Finn and Puck decide to salvage the rest of the game, by convincing the rest of the football players, as well as cheerleaders Quinn, Santana, and Brittany, to participate in the halftime show.  Finn worked on the cheerleaders, managing to grab them, just moments before they went on the bus toward the competition. 

Speaking quickly, he told the girls mostly stuff they already knew.  Namely, (1) Sue Sylvester doesn’t really care about them, and is typically mean to them;  (2) that she doesn’t care if Brittany DIES; and (3) that the girls are strong enough to withstand the miniscule popularity decrease they might suffer from not being cheerleaders anymore; (4) it’s hightime they wore something other than those stupid uniforms, for a change.  The girls agree because that’s what the plot requires hem to do, and jointly tell Sue that they are quitting the Cheerios. 

 “You are all my stars!  If you leave, I will have no performance,” Sue notes, admitting for the first time just how important these girls are to her success.

“Sucks for you,” snaps back Quinn, as the trio follows Finn back toward the football field.

Predictability aside, it was great scene.  And, I’m not going to lie.  Watching it, made me do something like THIS . . .

Karofsky For the WIN!  (well . . . almost)

As for Puck, he had NEARLY as much luck with the football players, ultimately getting all of them, except for Karofsky, to suit up and participate in the halftime show, which TOTALLY rocked, by the way . . .

The performance was SO rousing in fact, that Karofsky eventually sucked up his pride, and joined in mid-song.  He didn’t have any zombie makeup on of course, but it was still pretty awesome.

You can LISTEN to the song here:

After Beiste gives the rest of the football team the OK to compete, they go on to WIN THE GAME . . .

 .  . . but only because the team’s SCARY zombie makeup, and creepy repetitive chanting of “BRRAAAAAIIIINS,” freaks the crap out of the opposing team.  Nothing like playing FAIR, right?

Of course, my favorite part of all of it, had to be when one of the kids on the other team started screaming, “He bit me!  That zombie kid bit me!”  (Now THAT was hilarious!)

Lest you think Karofsky’s about to run out and join the Glee team, after that one rousing performance . . . think again!

“Why would I want to change?  I’m on top now,” asserts Karofsky, when Finn gives him his formal Gleek invitation (provided he head over to Dalton and personally apologize to Kurt, first, of course). 

Note: A  lot of fans were annoyed by this.  But I personally thought it was the right move, on the part of the writers.  For Karofsky to morph from Evil Homophobic Bully to Proud Glee Club star, in a single episode, would be completely unrealistic, in my opinion.  Not to mention, I doubt the rest of the Glee Club would accept him into their circle so easily, after what he did to Kurt — nor SHOULD THEY! 

The mere thought of it makes me weepy . . .

That being said, I do think the Karofsky character is on the path toward redemption.  And I’m very eager to see where his arc goes.  Right now, Karofsky is probably one of the most complex characters on this show.

Finn may not have had that much luck with Karofsky, but he did WAY better with Quinn, who, despite dating Macauley Culkin’s twin Sam for the past few episodes, spent the entire hour eye f*&king Finn.  She then concluded the episod,  by planting a fat wet one on his lips, right in the center of the school hallway . . .

Whatever Finn’s feelings for the recently dumped Rachel might be, you could tell that our resident Alpha Male was TRULY effected by Quinn’s kiss.  Note how the Smitten Boy kept his eyes closed for a full three seconds after she tongued him, as if not wanting his Wet Dream to end!  Now, whatever your couple loyalties are on this show, you have to admit, it was kind of adorable . . .

And given that this coming Tuesday is the show’s Valentine’s Day episode, we can be sure that this won’t be the last we will hear about that game-changing kiss.

Awww, don’t feel left out, Puck!  I’ll totally make out with YOU!

And that was Glee’s Super Bowl Spectacular.  Did you watch?  If so, what did you think?  Did you find the placement of “Bills, Bills, Bills” as awkward an unnecessary as I did?  Are you a fan of this sort-of new and improved Karofsky?  Are you on Team Fuinn?  Feel free to sound off in the comment section, below!

[www.juliekushner.com]

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Will Schuester and The Case of the Mysterious Glist – A Recap of Glee’s “Bad Reputation”

So, what exactly is a “Glist?”  Well, according to Sue Sylvester, it’s a “weekly ranking of  . . . Glee club members, based on a hotness quotient of sexual promiscuity . . . You get a point for each act of perpetuated depravity.” 

As you can see from the above screencap, in the Glist’s premiere week, Quinn, Santana, and Puck topped the list, with Brittany, Jesse, and Finn, taking positions 4, 5, and 6, respectively.  What you cannot see from this screencap (because I couldn’t find a SINGLE shot that fit everything in), was that Rachel rounded up the rear, with a score of -5!  And Mercedes, Kurt, Tina, and Artie didn’t make the Glist AT ALL!

Which begs the question?  WHO CREATED THE GLIST (and why)?  This was the mystery Will Schuester was tasked with solving at the beginning of this week’s installment of Glee, entitled “Bad Reputation.”  As for the Glee kids, they were less concerned with figuring out who made the Glist, and more concerned with “moving up on it.”  “Maybe if we seen a little more dangerous, people will stop flushing my glasses down the toilet,” suggested Artie, hopefully.

(Poor Artie!  Having your glasses flushed down the toilet HAS to suck!  Then again, doesn’t  No Glasses-Artie look a bit like a young Harry Connick, Jr.?)

It’s almost uncanny, right?  They are even wearing the SAME SHIRT!

This week’s episode was all about what it takes to revive (or create) a “bad reputation.”  And while the characters were all struggling with that, in their own way, they were also singing songs.  What songs, you ask? “Awesomely Bad” Songs, of course!  Songs that were once “great” (at least according to Mr. Schuester), but had since fallen into disrepute. Like, for example, Ice, Ice Baby, which was originally sung by this guy . . .

Now we know where Puck has been getting his hair care tips!

Let’s see how everyone did, shall we?

Rachel Berry

Goal: To cast aside her squeaky clean reputation, and move up from last place on the Glist.

What she did: Tricked the three men in her life into starring with her in a music video, in which she was cast as the slutty siren, awakening all three men’s hidden sexual desires for her, in the process.

What she sang:  Run, Joey, Run by David Geddes and Total Eclipse of the Heart by Bonnie Tyler

I’ll admit that sometimes the “Rachel” character really irks me.  However, she was all kinds of awesome in this episode!  From her flirtatious dalliances with Puck (“Did you know when we were together, people called us Puckleberry?”  “Dating me  . . . gave you a sense of humanity.”) . . .

These two were SO HOT together tonight, that I almost forgot that Puck is with Quinn, and Rachel’s with  . . . that other guy.

. . .to the calculated trickery she employed to get all THREE main Glee guys (Puck, Finn, and Jesse) to star opposite her in what I am pretty sure was the most self-aggrandizing, campiest, music video EVER MADE .  . . and, ending with her angsty belting of Total Eclipse of the Heart, which she sang after all three men promptly deserted her for her selfish behavior.

As far as the Rachel and Jesse “break up,” (which occurred in the last few moments of the episode), I’m not really sure how I felt about it.  On one hand, I’m still pretty positive that Jesse’s REAL reason for transferring to McKinley, was to “narc” out the Glee kids to their main competition, and his former teammates, Vocal Adrenaline.  (Notice how, even though Jesse’s “sole” reason for coming to the school was to “be with Rachel,”  he decided to stay  at the school, even after they broke up?)  And yet, I also believe that as the season progresses, Jesse’s feelings for Rachel will eventually become real.    To further complicate matters, Jonathan Groff’s portrayal of Jesse, which heretofore has come across as a tad overblown and artificial, in my opinion, was significantly more understated and genuine this week.  So, while I wanted to not care about Jesse’s feelings being hurt this week, because I don’t trust him, I found myself caring, in spite of myself . . .

True Love?  Or Truly Convenient Plot Device . . .

Kurt, Mercedes, Artie, Tina and Brittany

Goal: To be featured on the Glist (or, in Brittany’s case, to break the top three)

What they did: Wore ugly pants and sang a cheesy song in the library; admitted to being the source of Sue Sylvester’s public embarrassment

What they sang:  You Can’t Touch This, by M.C. Hammer

So, this episode marks the THIRD time our Glee kids chose to break out into song in, of all places, THE LIBRARY! 

 I’m not exactly sure what made these guys think that wearing balloon pants and singing the Anthem to ’90’s Musical Ridiculousness would up their coolness quotient.  Whatever their thinking was, their plan TOTALLY backfired, when the school librarian loved the performance!  She even  invited the kids to perform the song for her church! 

 Kurt’s plan to admit to Sue that he had posted her private Let’s Get Physical (more on that later) video on YouTube, similarly backfired when she THANKED him for doing so.  However, given Mercedes’ kickass performance of Christina Aguilera’s Beautiful at the school pep rally, and Kurt’s football heroism earlier this season (he won the game for his team by distracting the opposition with his dance to Beyonce’s All the Single Ladies), I can’t imagine these two being invisible at McKinley High School for much longer . . .

Sue Sylvester

Goal: To redeem herself, after having become the school laughingstock

What she did: Made a music video with Olivia Newton John featuring sexy shirtless men!

What she sang: Let’s Get Physical by Olivia Newton John

The first time we see Sue Sylvester in this episode, a miniaturized version of her is shaking her booty and doing the Cabbage Patch, from inside the screen of a laptop computer, to the tune of Olivia Newton John’s Let’s Get Physical.  One of my main gripes with this episode is that WE NEVER GOT TO SEE THE WHOLE VIDEO, which CLEARLY would have been hilarious! 

Apparently, Kurt found the incriminating video amongst Sue’s hormone replacement pills, in a locked drawer in her office.  However, it was Finn’s idea to post the video on YouTube for the world to see.  News of the video spread like wildfire, and Sue soon found herself to be the subject of “slow motion laughter” and public ridicule.  Fortunately for Sue, Olivia Newton John herself got wind of Sue’s dance moves, and decided to remake an updated version of the music video for the song, in which she and Sue ultimately sang alongside one another. 

The music video was a hit!  And, while it was cute, I STILL would have preferred to see Sue’s embarrassing solo jazzercise version all the way through .  . . but that’s just me.

In other news, Emma . . .

 . . . learned of Will’s recent slut-capades with April and that Vocal Adrenaline coach from Sue Sylvester (who apparently rigged his home with hidden cameras?).  And, in a moment of highly uncharacteristic fury, our favorite OCD guidance counselor responded, by publicly berating him for his whorish tendencies.  Now Will has a reputation for being a Man Slut.

And if he wasn’t raking in the ladies before, they will certainly be coming out of the woodwork NOW!  After all, we all know how the ladies LOVE their Man Sluts!

Oh, and you know who ended up being responsible for creating the Glist?

Quinn!  Did you see that one coming?  You SHOULD HAVE!  She was, after all, Number 1 on the list.  Plus, the former Queen Bee’s popularity has taken a serious nosedive, since the whole “teen pregnancy thing” got out.  In a heartfelt moment, Quinn confides in Will about her feelings of loneliness and depression, regarding the loss of her peak social status.  Will comforts her, explaining that high school is only temporary, and “social status” really has more to do with self-confidence than anything else.  And I guess that was supposed to be the “moral of the story”  . . . or something.

All in all, this was a fun episode — probably my favorite one post-hiatus.  It offered the deft plotting, and solid character development, that, honestly, seemed a bit lacking in the last few episodes.  Sure, most of the songs wouldn’t make my “Must Download” list, but perhaps that was the point.  Like the characters in this episode, Glee had a reputation to revive this week, one for good storytelling.  And, in that respect, it certainly succeeded.

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