OK, let’s get the basics of this week’s [[Glee (TV Series)|Glee]] out of the way pretty quickly. Puck arrives at school without Mohawk, instantly loses his street cred, and chooses to date Mercedes because she’s a Cheerio and he hopes her coolness will rub off on him. Meanwhile, Rachel Berry loses her voice – the Laryngitis of the title – and descends into self-pity, requiring a jolt from friendly Finn to shake her out of her funk.
Kurt Hummel continues to be mortally offended that his macho, checkered shirt wearing father is doing ‘guy things’ with Finn. OK, not the ‘guy things’ Kurt would like to be doing with Finn, but the point is he’s jealous. OK?
One of these story threads doesn’t work, and it’s the “Puck luvs Mercedes” one. OK, we know that Mercedes has her self-confidence issues, but to knowingly go out with Puck because he needs to be perceived as cool again? It’s a flimsy plot, and it just doesn’t hold a candle to the other two storylines.
Kurt, for instance, decides to start wearing trucker-chic: baseball caps and denim. Lots of denim. And because of his sudden swing to hetero, Brittany offers to date him, just to maintain her “fooled around with everybody in school” track record. He even sings a John Mellancamp song, prompting Schuester to warn him about being true to himself.
The storyline feels like a minor rehash of what we had a couple of weeks back, but the payoff is glorious: Kurt gets to sing a modified version of Rose’s Turn, delivered in an angry tone against his name in HUGE lights. And it’s just at this point that his father returns to see him on stage the two have a heart to heart.
The more bizarre subplot is Finn taking Rachel to see his paralyzed friend to give her a blast of perspective. The first visit doesn’t work so well. I was kind of horrified that Finn would drop that on Rachel without any warning, so the scene was a bit of a (probably intentional) train wreck. However, when Rachel returns for a solo visit, there’s a beautiful little sequence where the two sing U2’s One. It segues into a Glee club performance of the same song which is full of joy and unity. It’s one of those delirious moments that Glee does so well, that makes you wish the whole world was a musical and you could burst into song at any time.
Quick footnote: I was on the lookout for sycophantic dialogue this week, like we got with Madonna and Olivia Newton John. Mercifully, there was none. Thank you, Glee.
Quotes from this episode
- Sue Sylvester gives Kurt some lifestyle advice.: “So you like show tunes. It doesn’t mean you’re gay. It just means you’re awful.”
- Puck: “I’m a sex shark. If I stop moving, I die.”
- Rachel clearly can’t handle being sick: “I’m like Tinkerbell, Finn, I need applause to live.”
- Kurt: “What do boys’ lips taste like?” Brittany: “Usually dip, sometimes they taste like burgers – or my armpits.”