This post contains some spoilers
After an episode that felt “good enough” I move into this week’s all new hour of Glee hoping for the best. This week, I want to try and shake up my reviews of Glee, so I’m going to go by an all-new format. In this week’s review, I’m going to break down the latest episode into three formats: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly, along with some of the best quotes, and my favorite performances, both acting and musically. Let’s get started!
The Good: * The campaigns are finally over! – One of the hardest things to deal with this season on Glee is the overarching events that have been taking place besides the focus on Sectionals. With the students’ campaign, it was all about lies, pizazz, and backstabbing. It provided drama and some killed time, but that’s all it did. And, thankfully, with this week’s episode, we have a reason to care about the plotline. We finally get to see the election through Kurt’s eyes for the first time since it all began. We begin to realize just how important it is for him, and how much it means for him to win. It doesn’t work out the way we hope, so the heartfelt emotion underlys plenty.
*Santana is comortable with who she is! – It took awhile but the Wicked Witch of West Hall at McKinley has finally come out. And boy, it felt almost like a celebration. In fact, that’s exactly what Finn says this is. It leads to an overwhelming amount of fantastic musical numbers, and an actual melting away of her heart for a change. As the hour progresses, we get to truly see a more touching side of Santana, and the hard-to-love character may have actually won over quite a few people tonight.
The Bad: * Writers screw the pooch – The writers were a mess in more than a few ways this week. Where they really under-utilize their talents is the absence of truly getting the audience to connect with the characters. Glee is always at its best when they offer an emotional pathway to heartwarming character. This episode barely had that. There were a few blips on the radar, but that’s basically it. But, how is this the writers’ fault? Easy: the Puck/Shelby storyline was simply cramped in there for no good reason. We should have had more of an experience with Santana and her Abuela, building up the relationship, or at least showing the counter to that when she came out to her parents. With the omittance of those two scenes, and more of a focus on building a relationship that started off interesting, but has become a sex-fueled no-no, I’m starting to lose a vast amount of faith in the people who write these hours.
The Ugly: * Rachel makes the election disgustingly personal again – We’ve seen this happen with Rachel before, especially when she dropped out of the election race. We thought all was happy in her world, especially now that she got her gay brest friend back. It turns out that was a part of her “plan” all along. As Kurt worries that this won’t get him into NYADA, so does Rachel. In fact, she says that without Kurt, who would she find to do emergency makeovers, and other pointless things that are simply at her personal materialistic desire. Combine this with the hard-to-forgive Finn, and you may just have McKinley’s star couple having a vicious turn for the worst.
* Sue steals Beiste’s man as a last resort - With Sue on the cusp of losing, she decides she needs to nix the lesbian commericals by finding a man. She ends up stealing Beiste’s Cooter, who still feels confused with the football coach. In plenty of ways, it was unnecessary drama at best, while arguably still spicing up the storyline. But, mostly, its very disheartening given that most of the episode features the football coach very much smitten, and when we last left the budding relationship, it was very much in a good position. Now, it’s a war of the women, and a sure to be ugly one at that.
* Puck bones Shelby – What; that sentence alone isn’t enough? Well, how about we add the fact that not only does the sex happen so fast that its seen offscreen, but the moment alone that we can’t process the entire ordeal happens so fast that its so poorly managed. It provides an interesting development in the story, but really it should have simply been omitted this week. Then again, they’re in a time crunch in order to get everything done before always-rushed-Sectionals. It’s really lose/lose either way.
* Quinn is bats–t crazy - We knew the girl has a mean spirit, but wow: the girl goes from angry and angst-filled to just completely insane. With her failing against Shelby, she has some newfound attraction with Puck…perhaps a step in the right direction. That is, until we learn she only wants him to make another baby because she simply can’t Beth back. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the troubled youth actually tells Puck to put another baby in her. Thankfully, he acknowledges this and comforts her verbally, but its about high time that if this gets any worse, she needs to be embraced by a straight jacket.
Favorite Performances (Acting): * Dot-Marie Jones as Coach Beiste – How could you not fall in love with Beiste in this hour?! Not only did we see the more girly personality of the football coach, we see her emotions start to surface, see her heart broken, and see her finally stand up for herself against Sue, vowing to win back her man! Just some of the lines that Jones delivers is truly fantastic, not to mention her first ever musical performance is a great one, that both fit her plotline perfectly and was a comical outing worthy of a few chuckles.
* Naya Rivera as Santana – For the most part tonight, we see Santana’s guard begin to lower throughout the hour, and she tries to truly embrace herself and coming out of the closet. It’s this transformation from the cold hearted Cheerio to don’t-you-just-want-to-hug-her sweetheart with attitude that truly makes Rivera’s performance one of the best one’s for her character yet.
Favorite Performances (Musically): * “I’m the Only One” – Puck’s secret devotion to Shelby may not have been too great this week, but it did provide us with a kick ass musical number, that jolted the series with some very much needed rock and roll. Mark Salling’s crooning voice provides the perfect catalyst to kick it up a notch and give us a little of the genre that seems extremely under appreciated in the show.
* “Jolene” – Sung by Coach Beiste, who wouldn’t laugh at the song, or take it to heart? Once the spotlight hits Dot-Marie, you realize the manly woman is about to profess her feelings and heart in a way we haven’t really seen before. So, we get to see a heartbreaking song that’s also a bit comical given the two parties involved.
Favorite Quotes: “Are we talking lady on lady, or girl on girl? Because there’s a big difference.” – Puck
“I’d rather rawdog a beehive.” – Puck, to Quinn when she brings up sex.
“It’s a reporter from USA Today; newspaper for people who can’t read.” – Sue Sylvester excusing herself from her date.
“Santana, are you pregnant? Because I will beat you up with this chair!” – Abuela, to Santana as she’s coming out.
“I see you in a warm place like L.A. or Miami…or Toronto.” – Puck to Quinn.
Overall Verdict: “I Kissed a Girl” shows a slight improvement over the last episode, but still remains on that dull sort of path that fails to truly be in the upper ecchelon of the show. Great performances are abound, but the story is just lackluster, and is really the playing out of two storylines that I’m more than happy to see disappear. There are some great moments, and a few surprises to keep things interesting, but at the end of the day, it’s just not a great effort. It’s yet another good-enough hour.
3.5 out of 5 Stars