Oh, look! The old Glee is BACK! No, I don’t mean the old old Glee, which came back strong in episode six, providing familiar season-one chestnuts like “entertainment” and “logic” and “events in the lives of characters” — I mean the newer old Glee from earlier in this season, when all the episodes had the dramatic tension and character development of a bar of soap with a hair on it. It’s one of those again. And even worse, they won’t even give bar-of-soap-with-a-hair-on-it a writing credit (even though it OBVIOUSLY wrote this entire episode), because WGA-ORD-31C states that: “Union protections do not apply to cleansers, scented oils, or sentient sundry toiletries of any kind.” Whatevs. I’m filing a grievance.
Anyway, it took me like two hours to watch this episode, because I kept pausing it to go pour chocolate milk really slowly as an avoidance tactic. Hey, did you know they make chocolate whipping cream now? Like, in a carton? And then you whip it and it’s whipped cream but it’s chocolate? That’s some crazy stuff, food scientists! Crazy stuff. What’s next — strawberry milk??? Ha-ha. That’ll be the day. Well, it’s been fun this week, gang! I feel like we pretty much covered all of Glee, so I’m going to go ahead and eat a spoonful of chocolate whipping cream and pretend that it’s food (it comes from a bean, you guys!), then take two and a half Ambien and just snuggle like it’s my job until Thursday. Cool?
No? Hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Fine. Fine. We shall recap. You guys are a lot harder to trick than bar-of-soap-with-a-hair-on-it. But one of these days.
So Santana is in trouble for slapping Finn in the face because he told everyone she was a lesbian (true) because she told everyone he was fat (STILL I ASK: WHY?). But since this is Glee, and since the theme of this episode is “violently ripping a vulnerable gay teenager out of the closet,” everyone decides to do exactly the opposite of what their characters did in the previous episode. Out of nowhere, Finn comes to Santana’s defense and is all, “Psych, she didn’t slap me! See? My face is as immovable and hamlike as ever!” And Santana’s like, “Say whaaaaaat?” And Finn goes, “The truth is, I think you’re awesome. And when you hide who you truly are, you hide some of that awesomeness with it.” YOKEY DOKEY.
Then Finn invents something called — oh my God — “LADY MUSIC WEEK” (it is literally written in all-caps on a whiteboard), a dignified feminist celebration during which everyone is supposed to sing “music created by ladies for ladies” directly into Santana’s big lesbian face to make her feel better about how much she loves touching other people’s lady-vaginas. Because: APPROPRIATE.
Let me back up. Rachel is the worst person on earth. That fucking student council election is still happening (in case you forgot, Kurt “needs” to “win” the “election” to get into musical theater “college” because they “care” about “politics”), and here is Rachel’s inner monologue about it: “Nobody cares. They’re all so lost in their own worlds that they can’t see how important this is to ME! Elections have consequences. The consequence of Brittany winning this election is that I’ll have to move to New York without my best gay — what if I need an emergency makeover, or a last-minute souflee?”
Yes. What WILL Rachel do without her “best gay”? (I don’t know — treat other people like humans instead of accessories?) Fortunately, seeing as Glee has always been a staunch champion for the dignity of LGBTQ people everywhere, they don’t let Rachel’s dismissive “best gay” comment go unanswered. No. Enter Kurt. International gay role model. Wearing a studded leather codpiece as a bib — like some fastidious fucking baby–Felix Unger-in-the–Village People who doesn’t want to spill Gerber peas on his tiny, tiny diaper-chaps (organic dry cleaning ain’t free!).
Then Kurt suggests that he should stuff the ballot boxes in order to win the election, and everyone is like, “no.” Moving on.
Back at LADY MUSIC WEEK (nice of the men to give us little ladies a whole week, by the way!), Finn offers a rousing plug for gayness being a choice: “You at least have a group of people who will support your choice to be whoever you want to be.” (To be fair — because I am! I am fair! — later in the episode someone counters, “It’s not a choice, idiot.” But I just want to point out that language matters, and clumsy language about issues involving “choice” can be particularly destructive.) In this scene, Kurt is wearing a terrible roll-neck sweater, which rapidly reveals itself to be a terrible ROLL-NECK ONE-SLEEVE CROPPED PONCHO, which simultaneously ruined and saved my life. He and Blaine sing the first song of the episode: P!nk’s “Perfect,” backed up by that weird band of nameless indentured servants who apparently have to live in the band room until they pay off their grandfathers’ debts to the motherland. The song is cute. Santana becomes visibly more gay.
Over in that other election, Sue realizes that she needs to prove to Ohio’s rabid throngs of bigots that she is not some dirty gross lesbian: “I need 20ccs of man candy, stat!” Sue’s “hookup list” is probably the only funny joke in this episode. Here it is in full, with Sue’s commentary:
Dan Quayle (“TOO NEEDY”)
Stephen Baldwin (“train wreck”)
Oliver North (“Biter”)
Matt Lauer (“Too much crying”)
Johnny Cochran (“Pretty sure he’s dead”)
“Better luck next time, David Boreanaz.”
Touché, Glee. I concede this point (making the “good riff” score infinity to negative-infinity-plus-one).
Coach Beiste, giddy as a schoolgirl over her budding romance with that guy from Major League II, devours a turducken in the cafeteria. Two things stand out to me in this scene: (1) Coach Beiste is officially my favorite character on this show, and her story line is the only one I care about (and possibly the only coherent story line going on right now at all). And (2) OH MY GOD, COACH BEISTE LOVES POULTRY SO MUCH. She loves it sooooooooo much! I feel like when she looks at Cooter Mankins she just sees a big turkey leg with a hat on it.
In the episode’s second song (Melissa Etheridge’s “I’m the Only One”), Puck performs a sexy guitar jam for Shelby in front of everyone, which makes Quinn suspicious because it is totally obvious and gross that they are boning. So Quinn says to Puck, “If you come over on Friday, you get to have sex with me.” And then Puck delivers the snap heard ‘round the world: “Turns out, you’re kind of nuts. You’re higher maintenance than Berry and pretty much the most selfish person I’ve ever met in my life. So thanks for the offer, but I’d rather raw-dog a beehive.” Then I ran around the room yelling “OOOOOOOOO!!!” in a circle for an hour and a half. Thanks, Puck. If you come over on Friday, you get to have sex with my half-empty carton of chocolate whipping cream. (I will be asleep.)
Santana asks Finn why he’s suddenly being so nice to her, and he tells her it’s because he’s afraid she’s going to kill herself for being gay (throwing in an adorable plug for the It Gets Better Project — hi, Dan!), even though Santana is the least suicidal character since, I don’t know, that Care Bear who is also a lion whose power is being brave in the heart. Oh, and also because Finn lost his virginity to Santana, and he doesn’t like the idea of having lost his virginity to someone who is both gay and dead, I guess. Santana’s like “okay, whatevs,” and then Finn sings a creepy ballad version of “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” (which seems sure to become a staple at the funerals of teenage girls killed by drunk drivers and stuff). Then everyone cries. It’s sweet.
Coach Beiste goes to the chicken restaurant, where she lives, to eat more chickens. But she discovers Sue Sylvester on a date with her true love, Cooter Mankins!!! Oh no! “Shannon,” explains Cooter Mankins, “I didn’t think you were interested! I mean every time I gather up the courage to ask you out on a date, we end up lifting weights at the gym or going to a protein seminar.” It is a heartbreak that not even chicken can cure (haha, JK, chicken cures everything).
Then comes the best musical number in the history of Glee: COACH BEISTE SINGING “JOLENE.” (Don’t worry, I already downloaded it and cried like eight times.) Coach Beiste wanders around the locker room all forlorn, watching Sue apply glamorous hairspray to her golden hair: “I cannot compete with you, Jolene.” Ummmmm, EXCEPT AT CAGE-FIGHTING AND JAR-OPENING. I love Coach Beiste so much. Fuck Cooter.
Speaking of fucking cooters (SORRY!!!), song No. 5 is “I Kissed a Girl” (remember: being a gay dude is an actual thing, but lesbians “just wanna have fun” and get attention like Katy Perry). This is Santana’s big coming-out moment — the culmination of her “journey” over the course of the last couple of episodes. She is fully gay now! Good for everyone!
Kurt wins the election, but it turns out that Rachel stuffed the ballot boxes, so Kurt loses the election. Rachel is a dick. She gets banned from sectionals. Moving on!
That Quinn-Puck baby slipped and cut its face on its own tooth, so Shelby immediately calls up Puck for hot post-baby-injury sex. But then he’s like, “Let’s do sex again now!” and she’s like “Well, naw, because you were born in the nineties and I am a normal human woman.” Puck does not like that at all, so he says: “This was your chance to get in on the ground floor of something really special: ME. But you’re too much of a coward to go for it.” Yeah, Shelby. He has a pool-cleaning business. And he knows the QUADRATIC EQUATION. Big mistake. Huge.
Yay, best scene ever! Time for Santana to go tell her abuelita about her megagayness! “Abuelita,” she says, “Escuchame, please. I love girls the way that I’m supposed to feel about boys.” Silence. Abuelita makes sour-face for a hella long time. Then Abuelita says, “Everyone has secrets, Santana. They’re called secrets for a reason. I want you to leave this house. I don’t ever want to see you again.” Ohhhhhhhh, shit!!! Santana’s abuelita is an even bigger dick than Mike Chang’s overbearing Asian father!!! (Why does this show think immigrants are such assholes, by the way?) “The sin isn’t in the thing,” Abuelita explains, “it’s in the scandal when people talk about it aloud.” Whatever you say, Abuelita. Makes perfect sense.
Puck goes to have angry non-Shelby sex with Quinn, but instead she tricks him into thinking she’s NOT a sociopath for literally 30 seconds, so he instantly tells her that huge secret about how he’s intercoursing with their choir teacher. I look forward to being bored by the aftermath of that obvious mistake.
In the next scene, I would just like to point out that Artie is wearing a sweater vest with a bicycle embroidered on it. This seems like a cruel sartorial choice, as the bicycle is the most leg-powered of all vehicular transports. What’s next — Coach Beiste wearing a sweatshirt with a picture of herself NOT eating a chicken on it? Have some compassion, Glee.
For the final song of the episode, Santana sings “a song that gives me hope and gives me strength” — k.d. lang’s “Constant Craving (for Vagina!!!).” Shelby joins in, because of her constant craving for Puck, and then Kurt joins in (wearing a ribbed turtleneck poncho), because of his constant craving for MORE PONCHOS.
Next week’s Glee: Kurt comes out as ponchosexual; Abuelita is not pleased.