Sunday, August 31, 2014

Doctor Who: Into the Dalek

The producers have tried something with Doctor Who that we haven't seen in 15 months: A regular, 45 - minute episode. Since The Name of the Doctor was broadcast back on May 18, 2013, we've had only three episodes, and they've all been major events - a huge anniversary, a blockbuster regeneration, and a blockbuster New Doctor episode. For the first time in over a year, it was business as usual, with an ordinary episode - that just happened to be pretty extraordinary.  I thought this might have been the most flawless work Doctor Who has done since Season Six, at least.

Leave it to the Daleks to up the game considerably.

We begin in the middle of battle; an entire fleet of the nasty little pepperpots are using a lone human spaceship as target practice, and the young pilot inside the craft is probably wondering why she didn't choose something safer to do with her life, such as bounty hunting or bomb defusal. Her co-pilot, who also happens to be her brother, is dead, she's surrounded by asteroids that have seemed to join the Dalek force as an enormous band of mercenaries, and then, just as it seems her number is up, she gets the scariest jolt of her life:

She materializes inside the Tardis, to be greeted by the universes' most ungracious host, the Doctor.  One minute she's being attacked by killing machines, and the next minute she's being frowned upon by Those Eyebrows. Talk about out of the frying pan, into the fire.

What would any sane person in that situation do? She reaches for her gun, of course. Who wouldn't?

The Eyebrows regard her quietly and calmly as he strides across the Tardis bearing two cups of coffee - neither of which, it turns out, were meant for her. Like I said, the Universes' most ungracious host. Of course, who can blame him? Even the Queen's own butler might be hard pressed to provide refreshments to an armed and grieving hysterical guest who is prepared to shoot her way out of the hospitality he wishes to provide. She didn't even say thank you.

The Doctor counters her terrified attack stance with icy, matter-of-fact statements, lightly laced with a delicate layer of exasperated contempt. "I materialized a time capsule exactly round you and saved your life one second before your ship exploded, but do please keep crying."

Funny how this doesn't  make her feel any better. The soldier, whose name is Journey Blue, demands that the Doctor take her back to her command capsule.

Grumpy Doctor Grandpa (always happens with the first incarnation in any regeneration cycle, apparently) decides this ungrateful child needs some schooling in basic manners, and makes her say please. But he still doesn't give her any coffee.

Once back at her command capsule, the Aristotle, Journey Blue learns that the Tardis is smaller on the outside and the Doctor learns that the Aristotle is actually a hospital - without any doctors. And apparently, without any real common sense; aboard the Aristotle, the standard reward for saving the life of an officer is immediate execution. Apparently Journey learned her gratitude skills from her superiors.  "He might be a duplicate" explains the commander, Journey Blue's Uncle. Well damn, and the Doctor just stopped having all those post-regenerative hallucinations and dizzy spells.

Journey points out that Eyebrows is a Doctor, and they have a patient.  As the group marches towards sick bay the Doctor grumbles about things he doesn't like, (soldiers) and coos over things he does like - most notably, the moleculon nanoscaler, a device that shrinks people down to the size of bacteria so that they can operate on patients from the inside. The Doctor thinks this is a great idea for a movie and a terrible idea for a proctologist. Our dark, grumpy Doctor is also a very dryly funny Doctor, and he's becoming more and more one of my favorites every time he opens his mean little mouth.

Once the Doctor sees his patient, however, he may be ready to take his chances with the Aristotle's firing squad.

The credits roll.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Doctor Who, Season Eight: Deep Breath

....And I'm back. I've been waiting months to find a show I was enthusiastic enough to blog about, and now I've got it - a new season of...

New season, new Doctor, and a refreshing new direction in which we learn, after seven series of flirting with companions, that the Doctor is not our boyfriend after all.

It only took him a thousand years to figure that out, finally.


We open with a freakishly over-sized Tyrannosaurus Rex (or, since the beast is female,  possibly a Tyrannosaurus Regina,) who is rampaging in terrified fury through Victorian London. At least she's not a dinosaur on a spaceship. As the ordinary folk scramble in terror and try to avoid becoming dino chow, three odd little characters rush through the scene with a more analytical approach. There's a lovely young woman named Jenny, something that appears to be a giant walking, talking potato, and Madame Vastra, lesbian Silurian. As Vastra gazes up at the magnificent lady lizard, I wonder if she's possibly fallen in love. (Watch out, Jenny.) Moments later, they realize the dino is choking on something, and it spews out a big blue box.

Gotta wonder how the newspapers reported this the next day. Gotta wonder why it didn't make the history books.  The Tardis slams down conveniently near Vastra and her party, and one particularly clueless guy (Oh, look! It's the local detective! Where's Sherlock Holmes when you need him?) declares that the big lizard currently stomping buildings and people to pieces has laid an egg.

Vastra sneers at him because he doesn't realize it's a police box, and I stop to consider that these Victorian folks probably don't know what a police box is, either. Or if they do, they just know it as that big blue thing that always seems to appear right as the entire world goes completely insane. Yet another reason to be scared out of their wits.

The walking potato man, who will heretofore be referred to as Strax, orders the occupants of the box to surrender to the glory of the Sontaran Empire, and the man inside pokes his head just long enough to tell Mr. Potato Head to shush. Probably something Strax hears a lot, actually.

It is, of course, the Doctor, although none of the Paternoster Gang are sure yet because he looks very different from the last time they saw him. The Doctor doesn't recognize Strax, either, confusing him with one of the Seven Dwarves. He does recognize Vastra ("the green one) and Jenny ("the not-green-one") but he is still very disoriented in his post-regenerative haze. Moments later, Clara stumbles in a daze from the Tardis, probably wondering why she traded in an idyllic classroom of menacing delinquents for these ghastly adventures, especially since this new Doctor who does not resemble her cuddly young friend has forgotten her name. The Impossible Girl is now the Asking Questions One. (But does she ask the right questions?)

The Doctor sees that he has not actually managed to escape from the dinosaur, so he tries a new approach: "not flirting". He'll be not flirting with more than one person this episode, even if he does refer to the dino as his lady friend at least once. After a few more moments of incoherent rambling, the Doctor passes out.

Regeneration is a bitch, isn't it? At least he didn't try to strangle anybody this time, and he's not set right with a simple cup of tea (although this first scene for Capaldi borrows really, really heavily from The Christmas Invasion.)  As Clara informs the Paternoster Gang that this older man with a new face is the Doctor, Vastra puts on her best Brigadier hat and murmurs "Here we go again," and the credits roll.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Dr. Who: "The End of the World." Retrospective Recap, Season One, Episode Two

Right then!

In the last episode the Doctor met Rose and they battled evil plastic creatures intent on destroying the earth in Rose's own era.  But that's just child's play. The Doctor enticed Rose away from Micky's clinging, not only by merely Not Being Micky, but through promises of time travel, and he aims to deliver.  So, where does she want to go? A hundred years in the future? BOOOOORING! No, let's do this wibbly wobbly timey wimey thing right... (sorry, wrong Doctor.) He spins some dials and causes the TARDIS to make funny noises, and before they know it, he's beckoning for her to step outside the little box into... a pretty dull looking hallway. Rose is a bit crestfallen at first, because the mere movement from one place to another has lost most of its excitement value, but the Doctor isn't done yet. He lowers the shutters of a window portal to show her Earth, looking much as it does in the present day... but it is not present day.  He's taken her five billion years into the future, and the evening's planned entertainment is the death of planet Earth.

What, you thought the destruction of the world was at hand with the Nestene Consciousness? Certainly not. The world can't possibly really end until this date in the future, because the Doctor knows the day exists. As they watch, the sun expands, filling the sky with reddish heat.  "Welcome to the end of the world" says the Doctor dramatically.  Rose looks at him as if he caused it, and begins to rethink this whole time traveling arrangement she's gotten herself into.

As the expanding sun glows threateningly on the horizon, a host of spaceships dock at a station that looking forbiddingly like a hypodermic needle and a soothing, welcoming voice reminds them that use of weapons, teleportation and religion is forbidden on Platform One. Earth death is scheduled for 15:39.  Drinks to follow.  Nice of the universe to work the event into their hospitality schedule.

The Doctor assures Rose that they will be seeing plenty of strange aliens - and by aliens, he means people who do not resemble humans as he does -  and that the richest and most powerful beings around are gathering to watch the planet burn.  Fun times! Surely the intergalactic social event of the millenium. 

Monday, July 22, 2013

Dr. Who Retrospective: Season One, Episode One "Rose"

 Fifty years ago, a crochety old man on a planet far, far away stole a strange blue box, and a legendary program was born - the British sci-fi show Dr. Who.

I discovered it last month.  Yep, always late to the party.  But what a party it is scheduled to be! Most shows don't survive for fifty years; who knew that the secret to longevity was to kill off the main character, revive him, and completely revamp the cast every three or four years or so?

In honor of Dr. Who's 50th Anniversary, I am going to attempt to crank up my recap machine once more and go through every episode of the revamped series, revived in 2005 and starring Christopher Eccleston, David Tennant and Matt Smith in successive years and regenerations.  The Doctor's strange longevity is the key to the success of this franchise, and he's the lynchpin on which the whole thing lives or dies, so of course, the first person we meet in the very first episode of the reboot is...


Apparently, Rose must get up at 7:30 each morning, and so she does, already looking gorgeous and freshly made up as she grabs her car keys, kisses her mum goodbye and heads to her job at Harrod's.  So sorry.  It's not Harrod's.  It's Henrik's. Apparently they don't have offensively crass and omnipresent product placement on British television. Well, that's one thing it's got going for it. At any rate, Rose works in a shop that has mannequins.  Who knows?  If she'd been a florist, maybe the entire series would have ended up entirely differently.

Rose has a sweet, cute, very normal lunch with her sweet, cute, very normal boyfriend and then at closing time realizes she must go down to the dark, spooky basement of Not Harrod's to give the lottery money to some poor sap named Wilson.  Hi, Wilson.  Bye, Wilson.  We hardly knew ye.  Watch out for the guy with the weird screwdriver.  People seem to die a lot when he's around.

At any rate, Rose delves deeper and deeper into the dark, scary basement looking for a man who isn't there, and suddenly finds herself locked in.  This is the exact moment when Rose's life ceases forever to be normal or even sane. There are no people around, but there sure seem to be a lot of mannequins.  Creepy mannequins.  Moving mannequins.  Mannequins moving towards her. First one, then another, then a whole street gang of half-dressed plastic men begin crowding in on Rose as she screams at somebody named Derek.  If she thinks Derek is able to make plastic zombies who want to take over the world, I want to meet this guy and find out what he's been up to. Just as Rose is about to give up hope - she gets a little bit more resourceful later on - she feels a warm hand in her own, and hears a friendly voice hiss a command: "RUN!"

Rose, meet the most delightfully dangerous person you will ever know.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Rest in Peace, Cory Monteith 1982 - 2013

As my enthusiasm for Glee waned and my tone in writing recaps became increasingly bitter, I decided it was best to set this blog aside for awhile. I knew it would probably take an event of horrific importance to make me return to this particular subject.

I am terribly sorry to say that such an event has in fact occurred.

Glee fans all over the world are shocked and horrified today to hear of the death of Cory Monteith, who played Finn Hudson for four years.

Photo provided by Kristen Dos Santos

Cory Monteith was one of the truly bright lights that kept Glee going, even as the quality of the scripts began to falter.  He was one of the four people playing teenagers on the show (along with Lea Michele, Chris Colfer and Naya Rivera) who brought the level of acting talent required to keep the fans truly invested in the fate of the characters.  Even when I found a script lacking, or I found myself frustrated with Finn's life choices, I was always impressed with the power and the conviction Cory brought to his scenes.

My heart goes out to his family, his friends, and the fans who are as personally invested in Finn and in Cory as I once was in Kurt and Chris. Most of all, my heart goes out to Lea Michele.  I cannot begin to fathom her loss at the moment.

A few of the best Finn Hudson quotes from Glee:

When I first joined, I thought you were kind of insane. I mean, you talk a lot more than you should, and to be honest with you, I looked under the bed and made sure that you weren't hanging out under there. But then, I heard you sing. I don't know how to say this, but you touched something in me. Right here. 

"The Rhodes Not Taken"
[to Rachel] You're the most talented person I know. Even more than that guy at the mall who can juggle chainsaws. 

"Journey to Regionals"
Rachel: Break a leg. 
Finn: I love you.

Thank you, Cory, for the magic, the music and the memories. 

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Movie Review - Struck By Lightning

Movie Review - Struck by Lightning by Chris Colfer

I have just finished watching "Struck by Lightning", the new movie written by and starring Chris Colfer, now available for rent on Amazon and I-Tunes.

I would like to start this review by making a confession.  If you look through the archive of this blog, you may find that there is no review or any kind of commentary for Chris' first children's book, Land of Stories.  There's a reason for that.  I didn't really care for it all that much and didn't feel like broadcasting that piece of information. I mention it now only because I want to make this absolutely clear:  I am not about to give Struck By Lightning the praise that is coming because I'm a Chris Colfer fan.  I do not necessarily love everything he does.  But I will tell you, very honestly, that this funny, quirky, wise and ultimately very bittersweet movie is without question the best work he's ever done.

Move over, Kurt Hummel.  Carson Phillips is now the shining star of Chris Colfer's career, for one dazzling and painful reason.  The writing for Struck by Lightning is much, MUCH better than it is for Glee.

This review will get a little spoiler-y although it is not a recap, so I will present it after the jump.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Glee Episode Recap: "Glee... Actually" Kurt's Story

Happy Holidays, Hummelberry
Glee Episode Recap:  "Glee, Actually." - Kurt's Story

Go here for Part One:  Artie's Story. 

Puck's story, Bram's Story and Marley's Story will come as I have time. 

This episode was written  by Matthew Hogsden, who also wrote Kissed a Girl. He has written a resolution to the Klaine rift that I do not think works well.  In this episode, as in that one, Matthew had a specific, tricky task to carry out.  He had to take a particular character on a very difficult personal journey from anger and pain over being hurt to grace and acceptance of a particular delicate situation. In both cases, he did get mostly from point A to point B, but in each case, he did it by having that acceptance be forced on the character from outside rather than coaxing it out from within.  And that's too bad, because the script for the Thanksgiving episode set up a resolution for this that I thought was going to be almost pitch perfect.

Rachel is packing for her holiday trip to Lima, and she is trying to coax Kurt into coming with her, at least on the Rosie O'Donnell Gay Holiday Cruise. Kurt has made the very strange decision to spend Christmas entirely by himself, despite his earlier offer to take Blaine ice skating. Either Matthew forgot that Kurt had already set this up, or Kurt's had a fit of self-pity, or Kurt suddenly realized that he really does not ice skate at all well and he's going to look really awkward.

Kurt tells Rachel that Burt, Carole and Finn are going to see Carole's sister, and I still am not hearing why it's better for him to spend the holiday sulking by himself. Maybe Isabelle has invited him to another Kiki?  What about Blaine? Kurt's saving his money?  Or saving himself some very mixed emotions, more likely. I can't tell if Matthew really thinks Kurt has decided he can't go home because he has to pay tuition now, or if it's masking something else.  There was a LOT of that going on in this story this week. At any rate, he's reneged on the skating date he set up with Blaine, and I wonder if Burt knows this, and how much he knows about this.

Speaking of Burt.... (Bang, bang bang.) Kurt opens the door. Surprise! There Burt is, hidden behind the tree he's bought as a gift in a scene that is almost screen for screen exactly like the sequence with which Blaine arrived bearing flowers back during The Breakup. Only difference - Kurt does not actually kiss his daddy, because you know, that would be weird.

People like to surprise Kurt by appearing out of nowhere with large plants

They set up the tree, and we learn more sweet moments about the Hummel family.  Kurt's mother - the woman who still has no name, after four seasons of Glee - used to buy the tree, but the Christmas after she died, Burt forgot. Then he found little Kurt hanging his mother's perfume bottle - this is a beautiful touch - on his own window shade and decided he needed to drive Kurt through a snow storm in the middle of the night on Christmas Eve to buy him a tree.  But they got there safely, because at least he was not texting while he was driving in the snow storm, and besides, how much tragedy can one family take?

Wait, don't answer that yet.

So they got back with the tree and they put it up, and it was the first time Kurt smiled since his mom died.  I sincerely hope she died in the late autumn, or it's just going to be too sad for words.

Kurt interrupts the latest installment of the pity party to enjoy some other Hummel treasures; apparently the Hummels all took a Christmas trip to Dollywood, and Rachel went with them. I guess this must have been last year, since both Rachel and Burt went on that trip. Burt also dragged Kurt to Nascar at some point.  There's a flashback I would like to see. Burt gives Rachel a new Christmas memory - a shiny, glittery Big Apple - as her uh, Hannukah present, and with that, Rachel is done for the episode. For the show's lead character, she sure has been underused.

 One of Burt's presents to Kurt this Christmas appears to be willingness to sit through a Broadway musical.   I doubt this was Burt's idea.  So much for Kurt saving his money for NYADA. The Hummels go for hot chocolate, and Kurt sets many hearts a twitter and a tumblr by licking whipped cream off his fingers.  It's all very pleasant and warm and happy and fun, and therefore, there has to be an abrupt dynamic change, because Kurt's beginning to look happy and contented and we can't have that. So Burt drops a bomb - and it's the worst bomb of the season.  It's worse than all three breakups, New Directions losing Sectionals and Kurt's first NYADA letter combined.

Burt has prostate cancer.  Just like Ryan Murphy's deceased father did.

Burt's got CANCER???????????


Hey, Kurt you got into NYADA last week.  Didn't you know that you have to pay the price every time something good happens to you? (Now, what I want to know is... does this news affect Congressman Hummel and the national dialogue, or did Congressman Hummel lose his reelection campaign and is now a private citizen, or did Congressman Hummel disappear into the ether along with the April Rhodes Auditorium that can't possibly be taken from the Glee Club?)

Mike O'Malley actually warned us about this. We thought he was joking.Kurt thinks he's going to be sick, and at least half the audience does, too. Burt insists that he's not dying, because they caught it early thanks to his regular checkups, and I don't know if that's a PSA for middle aged people to see their doctors regularly or clever misdirection so that we can be shocked and saddened when we get to see Burt's funeral as the cliffhanger at the end of season five. Season Four, if the ratings don't pick up soon.

And with that shocking piece of news, Burt advises Kurt to hold the people he loves dear close no matter what.  That's actually not bad advice, considering that Kurt had planned to spend his Christmas sulking alone in his room, but there's a manipulative little catch to it that's really pretty weird and gross.  We don 't know what that is... just yet.

The Hummel men go home, and Kurt frets a bit until Burt tells him to chill so that they can have Christmas and pretend the Grim Reaper is not sitting outside the door, as he will be for every frame of Kurt's storyline from now on. Unless they drop it, because, you know... they might.  They dropped  Burt being in Congress.  Maybe they will drop the fact that he's got a potentially fatal illness.

Burt does not want to contemplate being an invalid at the moment, and I don't blame him. He would rather tease Kurt for his complete inability to enjoy televised basketball and exchange Christmas presents.  Sounds like a wise plan. Kurt's present to Burt is cheesy and charming - a NYADA hat and T-shirt, the emblems of his final triumph in New York City. "In Me-hee-co they would call me Senor Queso" - God, Burt always brings such a believable warmth to his scenes.  He humanizes this show immensely.  Or at least, Mike O'Malley does.

I am going to assume, because of my immense affection for Burt's character, that he has absolutely no understanding of what he's about to do to his son here. Burt has a present for Kurt as well - something beyond the tree, the surprise visit and the patience to see the Rockettes. And if he doesn't like it, he can return it. No, he can't.  That's the problem.  

The present is too big to put under the tree.

 The present was not brought up until the shadow of death entered this storyline and filled Kurt with the obligation to make his father happy at all costs. 

The present has been waiting and waiting for hours and hours to be slipped finally into the conversation.

The present is at Rockerfeller Center, quite possibly freezing his ass off.  Actually, the present has reason to be a little annoyed.

Does the present have a family that might want him around on Christmas Eve?  Speaking of holding the people who love you close, as opposed to lying in wait at the skating rink for a guy who actually avoided coming home for the holidays twice now to avoid seeing you face to face....  If this really is the present's best possible holiday plan, I feel kind of sorry for the present.

As Kurt arrives at the skating rink at Rockerfeller Center, he hears a familiar voice chirp "Package for Kurt Hummel!" and he turns around to see Blaine. Yep, Burt's present to Kurt on Christmas Eve is a reunion Kurt may or may not want with the ex-boyfriend who cheated on him, and the admonishment that he needs to hold his loved ones close, no matter what.

Package for Kurt Hummel!

 And if he doesn't like it, he can return it. No, he can't.  That's the problem.  You can't do that to a human being who has been waiting in the freezing cold for hours without being a complete turd.

This is where the episode really, really gets very weird for me, and I think it must have been a little weird for the actors, too.  See, the script tells us one warm, happy, story, and the acting tells us another creepy and worrisome story completely.

I honestly think Matthew Hodgsden intended to write a tale in which Burt gives Kurt Blaine for Christmas and Kurt is happy to see him as that friendship is restored.  That's what the script gives us.  I would bet money that was Matthew's assignment. It was ABSOLUTELY the setup we had reason to expect after Kurt's wonderful conversation with Isabella at Thanksgiving.

However, Hodgsden made the same mistake here that he made with handling Santana's outing during Kissed a Girl.  Finn forced Santana to accept her sexuality on the terms Finn rather brutally dictated, rather than coaxing it out of her with understanding and kindness. Burt has just forced a reconciliation between Kurt and Blaine that Kurt must go along with because it has the scent of being a dying wish. And unfortunately, that is exactly how Chris played this entire sequence. Director Adam Shankman allowed it.  Kurt's body language toward Blaine the entire time is politely reserved and extremely conflicted, as if he's entered a charade that he must see to the end, regardless of his true feelings on the subject... and to his credit, Darren feeds off of the acting choices Chris is making here, reflecting both Blaine's very obvious, passionately continued longing and his fear of being rejected.

"You are happy to see me, right?" This line, well delivered, tentative, searching.
"Yeah, yeah.  Always." So many possible line readings.  There could have been warmth, there could have been a huge smile, there could have been that wondrous moment when Kurt realized he was telling the truth and the walls came down.  What we got was hesitation, reluctance, and finally, a decision to play this out with kindness and hopes that it might end up being true.

You are happy to see me, aren't you?
Don't believe me?  Look at his eyes, and then look at Blaine's. They tell the story. Kurt actually shook his head as he said "Always."

I wish very much that they had stayed the original plan laid out for us at Christmas - that Kurt goes home to Lima and voluntarily meets Blaine for the skating date that Kurt originally suggested. For that matter, they could have fixed this by saying that Kurt was very sad that he could not come home for Christmas because he had to save his money for NYADA, and that he was sad that he would not be able to keep his skating date with Blaine. In that case, Burt would have been giving him a present that we knew Kurt really wanted. If this scene had been chosen by Kurt rather than forced upon him, it would have been the heartwarming scene that the writing staff clearly had in mind.  The reconciliation is not only acceptable, but overdue and necessary, but the execution is pretty triggering, especially for a story arc that has been disregarding Kurt's feelings about the situation all autumn. 

So Kurt looks at Blaine like he's just been regifted with an ugly white elephant he's been trying to unload for months, because that's the actor's choice. Blaine cheerfully chirps that Burt flew him out to New York so that Blaine could see the surprised and happy look on Kurt's face... because that is in the writer's script. Then we learn that Blaine already knows about the cancer, as he offers to keep an eye on Burt for Kurt.  Another reason why this scene should have been in Lima rather than New York; that's Finn's line, not Blaine's.

In the meantime, they need to follow through on a Glee tradition that's actually been pretty awesome through the years - The Klistmas Klaine Kluet.  And they are dreaming of a White Christmas, but Baby, It's Cold Outside between them, still.  We have been told that they spent eleven hourse shooting this skating scene, and I am going to guess that it's because Chris may have had a very difficult time giving them workable footage.  As it is, we have a first verse with Darren, who is a passable skater, singing alone so that Kurt can get his bearings and get some skates on - remember that he did not even know that he was going to end up doing this. Then we have a lot of random shots of extras in on the ice doing nice tricks so that we can get the emphasis off the fact that Glee finally found something that Chris Colfer isn't good at.  That may also be why this duet is so much shorter than the other two.
As it is, Darren has to help him come to a stop so that Blaine can stare deeply into Kurt's eyes and Kurt can regard him quietly with courteous, icy reserve.

As the bells ring to summon in Christmas day, Blaine warmly promises Kurt that no matter what, whether they are a couple or not, they will always be together for each other - a line that would have been absolutely perfect, beautiful, forgiving and healing if it had been uttered by Kurt instead. He was the person who had to offer that conclusion.  This was not Blaine's case to make; it was the conclusion that Kurt needed to offer from his heart, not to accept with a hug and a shotgun of potential tragedy aimed at his head. That is literally the one line that could have saved this whole thing if they had given it to the right person.

They end this with a hug, and Burt watches on, believing that he's made his son happy this Christmas day.  After all, that's what the script clearly says. The director and actors do not appear to be quite on board with that. Unfortunately, this particular cartoon sums up the situation pretty well. 

Klaine: there for each other, but only as friends.... for now.