Stars: Dianna Agron, Chris Colfer, Jessalyn Gilsig, Jane Lynch, Jayma Mays, Kevin McHale, Lea Michele, Cory Monteith, Matthew Morrison, Amber Riley, Mark Salling, Jenna Ushkowitz
Writer: Ryan Murphy
Director: Bradley Buechler
Network: Fox, airs Tuesday nights
Original Telecast: February 15, 2011
Occasionally GLEE has the tendency to smack the audience over the head with the theme for the episode. This week ran the borderline with the title “Comeback”, and by rights every so often someone on screen would say that they were having a comeback, planning a comeback, or getting ready for a comeback. I’m not really sure why the audience has to have things spelled out for them in this manner, the show is cleverly written and entertaining, and certainly doesn’t need the mallet approach to get its point across.
This is my first GLEE review for ASSIGNMENT X, and I’m thrilled to be taking this show over! I loved GLEE from the first pilot they showed TV critics at the Television Critics Association, and I was a glee (well actually its called Spectrum show choir in my home town) kid so this series really had a resonance with me personally. I spent the best part of my High School career and then into college singing my way through school with scholarships and so when I saw GLEE, it took me back.
I love the dynamics that have been established for the characters of this series. You have some characters that you think would be complete stereotypes, and instead they have surprising depth and feeling, and all of the actors on the show really bring an A game to making these real people that you can care about. The music is often moving or flat out sing-along fun and yes, I did see the GLEE concert tour, and have the CDs and iPod downloads.
But enough about my love in general of the series, this week’s episode was good, but it wasn’t as strong as last week’s Valentine’s Day Special. The overreaching arc of this episode with Sue Sylvester (Jane Lynch) sitting in on Glee Club to try to find meaning in her life was OK, but it seemed remarkably shallow for a character we’ve seen be a very genuine person. The problem with the writing for Sue, is yes she is a hysterical character when she is being mean and bitchy; but you really love her for the realness and humanity we see as an audience for example in scenes with her sister. I love to see Sue Sylvester shine, so with her taking over a rival Glee club for the regionals, this should be an all-you can eat buffet of Sue-isms!
One of my favorite blossoming romances is Puck (Mark Salling) taking off after the bigger girl of the group, Lauren (Ashley Fink). Puck was such a sleaze in the first season. Yes, he was the bad boy and charming, but under the surface there really wasn’t much. Now that he is pursuing of a girl with less conventional beauty, it’s really a refreshing switch. I love the fact that a plus-size girl is a legitimate object of affection, and not some stupid teen prank make-over bad ABC After School Special.
I did realize something about Santana (Naya Rivera) this episode. I watched the latest episode of RU PAUL’S DRAG RACE right before GLEE, and noticed that Santana talks like a drag queen. Her razor edged tongue has more than a little bit of drag influenced shade throwing, and that’s OK, because she has some of the BEST slams on the show. Her critique of Sam (Chord Overstreet) and his looks and intelligence was blistering and funny at the same time.
Speaking of Sam, thanks to GLEE I have now been treated to a double dose of Justin Bieber. (Insert groans here) I had never really heard a Bieber song before, and any time I heard one playing in a store on a TV (ala Target’s videos) I scurried away. But, I was impressed with the boys of GLEE and the way they handled the tunes. They weren’t bad, and despite the fact that showing Bieber videos in Boy’s Town clubs might raise the NAMBLA alert level, I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that he has a HUGE gay following.
Speaking of all things gay, I sorely missed my favorite couple (or not couple based on last week’s discussion) Blaine (Darren Criss) and Kurt (Chris Colfer). I realize that not every episode can zip off to show the rival school and the Warblers, but they left it in a really precarious position last week and I need to know if they are giving it a shot as a couple.
This episode was solid, but not as solid as some, and not as bad as some of the wobbly ones. It had enjoyable moments, and some good music, and Brittany (Heather Morris) who is also a favorite of mine, got to become a trend setter! So much more to talk about, but I’ll stop there and save something for next week’s GLEE.
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CLICK HERE for ASSIGNMENT X’s interview with MATTHEW MORRISON