¡Hola, todos! ¿Cómo disfrutó usted del episodio de Glee esta semana? ¿Pensó que fue maravilloso, o realmente embarazoso? ¡A propósito, yo he estado tomando Hago clase española de Schuester! ¿Todo es impresionado muy usted?
¿Quién tiró ese zapato en mí?
OK, OK! I will continue in English! Look, my Spanish sucks, too, but at least I am not attempting to teach it. Fun fact learned from Glee, you do not need any credentials in your chosen subject to become a professional teacher. So if I ever decide to quit my job as a librarian, I’m sure some high school somewhere will be very happy to have me teach calculus. (My undergraduate degree was in English.) Funny, my dad was a teacher, and he has master’s degrees in both Divination and History. But I guess his situation was unusual. Or he would not be caught dead at McKinley.
So, let’s begin with something really painful and embarrassing to watch!
As the episode begins, Will is singing about a cockroach. He is wearing an outfit that the tourist shops on the border in Brownsville sell to particularly stupid gringos, and he’s doing his level best to entertain his Spanish class, convince himself that he actually has a passing command of the Spanish language, and turn Santana absolutely green with disgust. Helping him in this humiliating display are Finn, who is too stupid to know any better, Puck, who may be under the impression that singing in bad Spanish will win him points with the ladies, and Artie, who is having WAY too much fun with those maracas. I notice that Kurt, last seen in Spanish, oh…. last week… has run away in sheer horror and disgust, and does not take part in this scene, despite the opportunity for truly, flamboyantly hideous fashion.
I am unsure why Santana, who is presented as a fluent Spanish speaker, is in this class; maybe it’s an easy way to raise her grade point average. On the other hand, while I cannot tell, I have been told that Naya’s Spanish… is uh…. not what it might be, so maybe she came in trying to improve her vocabulary and try to make her abuela love her again, and instead she gets tacky cockroach serenades. Madre de Dios!
About halfway through this cartoonish escapade Will, who was named Teacher of the Year back in the pilot when Glee was good, realizes that his students…. hate this. I mean, their faces are frozen in the gazes of the damned, and he’s the devil that brought them there. He realizes, possibly for the first time ever, that he sucks as a teacher, and he’s ashamed. Maybe he should have stayed on Broadway with April after all. He sings pretty well, although the character has become so unlikable and dull so often that RIB just won’t even focus on him anymore. Of course, the nasty little secret that the universe is hiding from Will is that he ALWAYS sucks as a teacher, and that’s why they set foot in New York with no set list, but he’s just figuring this out now, and only about Spanish.
One of the zombies in Will’s horrified class of the damned made an appeal to Figgins to stop the torture, so Will is called into the Principal’s office in what must qualify as the first example of Figgins doing his job well in the entire history of Glee. He says that William’s skills have been brought into question, and asks him to please remove that awful sombrero that is twice the size of the school football stadium. It appears that the history teacher has been forced into retirement. Figgins kindly refers to her circumstances as “memory problems” but as the poor doddering old fool shows us her idyllic vision of a world entirely engulfed in the triumphant swastika of the Third Reich, I suspect insanity and a sweet little side dose of delusions of mass genocide that would, just incidentally, kill off about half the Glee Club if she got her way, including every character I actually care about at all.
Anyway, the crazy old Nazi sympathizer was a tenured teacher and now that she’s gone one tenured spot has opened up so that all the staff members of McKinley can fight for it like hungry hyenas. Of course, this is not how tenure actually works in the real world, but McKinley exists in a really Escher-like alternative universe so we just need to go with it. If they ever decide to have all the cast members start sitting on the ceiling during lunch, we just have to go with that, too. You see, the writers just go with the first burst of creative instinct. Research on these topics would inhibit the flow of sustained hilarity, musical moneymaking, and moralistic pontificating.
Of course, the fact that Will is insulting and offending his students with his stereotypical garbage lesson plans is not really the best segue into a discussion about tenure. Will should be trying to figure out how to keep his job next week, not how to coast on it for life. Will is stupid enough to think Figgins is putting the tenure forth as an actual goal, but it’s just a manipulative tease. Will has a public relations problem. He needs to turn that around in the classroom. Maybe he should learn some Spanish. When one considers that Will is competing for tenure against people who do things like throw rival teachers down a flight of stairs and shoot students out of cannons, maybe this is a bona fide opportunity.
In a futile attempt to become an acceptable Spanish teacher, Will enrolls in a night class run by… Senor Martinez. Hubba Hubba. I had forgotten that Ricky Martin was quite that attractive. Yes, I think I need to brush up on my Spanish skills, too. For work, you understand. What, he’s gay, you say? Hey, I’m married. I have no need to touch, but it’s really nice to look, and being gay never prevented me from enjoying the scenery before.
So Will’s new Spanish teacher teaches Spanish better than he does, is hotter than he is, is generally less than a douchebag than he is, and arguably sings as well. Will, don’t EVER introduce this guy to Emma! One lady asks him how to be kind of rude to her maid. (Hey, lady, she cleans your toilet. Let her use it, and then buy her lunch.) One guy is under the vague impression that “Gordita” is actually a word. But Martinez has loftier goals. He wants to makes these folks understand that pretty soon all their neighbors will be speaking Spanish, and they had better be able to communicate. But he’s nicer and more charming about this than I am. And yes, he has beautiful teeth. Surprisingly enough, this is actually relevant, although I don’t think Will figured out how to ask about the insurance plan. Will offers to buy him a cup of cafe… he can’t even offer that entire sentence in Spanish, and even I can do that.
¿Puedo invitarte a una taza de café? Don’t hit me if I got that wrong. I do not teach Spanish, or speak more than the occasional phrase. Unfortunately, he doesn’t take him anywhere interesting - they go to the staff lounge.
David Martinez finds the school depressing at night, and we encounter something quite appalling. He is a fluent Spanish speaker, but McKinley won’t give him a job teaching Spanish in the daytime, because… Will has that job. While singing La Cucaracha. Ponder this a moment. This was just a terrible, terrible episode for Will. Some of the worst character assassination I’ve ever seen on this series, and that’s quite a statement to make. David asks Will in Spanish why he’s taking a Spanish class, and Will can’t understand him. So much for Teacher of the Year 2009. This actually makes me kind of sad. Will’s never been my FAVORITE character, but I did not used to cringe every time I saw him. It’s kind of like what they did to Finn last year.
David used to be a professional tooth model, which is why he knows so much about dentists and insurance, and in that capacity he never had cigarettes, beets, or… coffee. Aren’t they sharing a cup of coffee? Well, apparently, he decided he was spending so much time flossing he was missing his life. So he gave up what was likely to have been quite a lucrative gig smiling at people to… teach night school at McKinley. He wants to Make a Difference! He wants to teach kids! He wants to help them find their duende. (Will is thinking, “What’s a duende? Do we need to check the Lost and Found?”) David is enthusiastic about the Glee Club; apparently people retain information better through music, which may explain why crucial parts of my early education were provided by Schoolhouse Rock and I treasure those silly songs to this day. My daughter, singing her education for another century, apparently has learned all the state capitals from the Animaniacs. David explains that if Will were to have the Glee Club sing all Spanish songs that week, they might actually learn some Spanish. (Now, mind you, “La Cucaracha” was a sung Spanish lesson. Maybe the problem was the hat.) So now Will decides that he’s going to make the kids sing in Spanish all week to get himself out of trouble. Maybe he’ll be Teacher of the Year again! I’m thinking… noooooo…….
In another corner of the world, Sue is providing a contrast to Will that might explain why he has not been fired yet. There are still people in this world worse than him. Sue is suggesting that the virile young men of Glee stop masturbating in private for fun and put that sperm to good use by donating the proceeds of their hormones to the local fertility clinic. But not Artie, because he’s in a wheelchair, which is meaningless, and… sniffle… she doesn’t want Kurt to donate, either. “Let the strangeness end with you.” (Within twenty-five seconds of this pronouncement, tumblr was awash with the protests and invitations of people who want to have Chris Colfer’s babies. Given his preferences, sperm donation seems the most likely route.) Will, relieved to see a bigger trainwreck than himself, puts on his Disapproving Face and confronts her. It turns out that Sue visited the clinic and figured out that a lot of the guys who were willing to come in a cup for money were not… prime stud material. So, since the guys at the sperm bank were losers, she thought she’s find a winner in… the… McKinley…. Glee Club.
Sue wants to have a baby. OK, Kurt can’t procreate, but you can, woman? My guess is that Kurt botched his attempt to murder and bury Sue a few episodes back and she has returned with a grudge, because that nice woman from two episodes is gone. Sue points out that she does have quite a strong maternal instinct, and she backs it up… fairly well, actually… by pointing out how nurturing she has attempted to be to both Jean and Becky. Not that this has served Becky well, mind you. Thanks goodness Becky actually has parents… maybe it’s not too late for her. Will is not quite sure how to say this, but… he’s not sure Sue can have a baby, because… uh… she’s not… REALLY in her twenties. Or thirties. Or forties.
Sue had her eggs frozen in the late 70’s, back before that was possible. Apparently, there were some very forward thinkers in the staff of the local Kroger back then, and let’s just hope they didn’t mistake that box for something else and thaw it around 1988, or throw it away once the technology actually became available to freeze eggs and they realized they were doing it wrong. Sue, who is at least a two-time National Champion cheerleading coach, is sure she will get tenure by the end of the week as long as she does not throw anybody downstairs again. She’s ready to inflict her mothering skills on some poor, helpless little egg that’s been languishing in Kroger for thirty years waiting for somebody to love it. Will is not so sure tenure is going to go to Sue, because… he’s… met her… but then, she may still have those pictures of herself in bed with Figgins. She doesn’t think Will should get tenure, but she’d like for him to make a special donation to the Make Sue a Mother Foundation. Before Will can tell her exactly how exciting he finds this idea, Becky reappears. Figgins wants to see her in his office. Figgins is having a busy day.
Sue thinks she’s gotten her tenure, but the news is not so rosy. Somebody has been complaining about Sue. What, NOW people are complaining? For the first time in three years? Some anonymous student… Sue’s not buying this. She sees Roz sitting on the couch, smugly admiring her own bronze medal in an obsolete sport that never really made sense. Of course, Sue spent most of the last scene doing touch-up on her trophies. These two are a pair. Roz, not satisfied to be in charge of Synchronized Swimming, offered some critiques about the Cheerios. See, Cheerios did not win Nationals last year. Of course, that has nothing to do with Sue’s routines and everything to do with the fact that she alienated all her best members… and Kurt was at Dalton, unable to sing for her… but in Glee, continuity gets in the way of the itunes sales, so let’s let it go.
Roz thinks ticket sales at the school sporting events are down because the cheerleaders are doing antiquated dance moves. Well, given that McKinley actually does have a competent football coach, there may be some truth to this. It isn’t that watching McKinley play football is depressing anymore. Roz wants Sue to admit that she’s got one foot in the grave and the other in Sunny Side Old Folks Home and let a Bronze Medal Winner add some GROOOOOOOWWWWWWLLLLLL!
Santana is shaking her maracas and attempting not to look amused as Will enters the choir room with his new plot to seem impressive now in motion. The question of the day: where do you think you’ll be in the year 2030? Kurt and Rachel, both flying high on the ego boost of their NYADA letters, sing “Broadway!” at the same time, and Kurt adds “Twinsies!” because he’s about six. Artie hopes to walk, and I hope he’s right. Puck expects, not to be to be the foremost pool cleaning mogul in Ohio, as I had hoped, but in jail, or dead. Suddenly his motivations to become Shelby’s husband and Beth’s dad take on a heartwrenching quality as I see what he thought he was trying to run away from. Rachel grimaces, but nobody else even looks up. This Glee Club is very selective about who they choose to rain with love and support in difficult times. Blaine does not offer his two cents, because he is in bed with a terrible eye injury and will miss this episode. They dedicated an entire episode to explaining why Blaine will miss this one because it was just THAT important.
Will says that what ever they are doing, they are going to have to do it in Spanish. (Rachel does not believe him.) The culture is changing, and that shift to Spanish needs to be reflected in the choir room. Santana begins contemplating murder. So THIS week, the kids will all be singing songs written and sung by somebody Latin, or English songs that have a word or two of Spanish thrown in, because there is no real integrity to this assignment, and Santana can smell it. Why now? Because it’s long overdue? No, because Will has a self-serving angle. He suddenly loves all things Latin, and will until he doesn’t get that tenure. Kurt is skeptical and Santana is downright annoyed because Will has no Latin friends until Dreamboat Martinez bounces into the room and Sugar starts ovulating. And Kurt begins to twitch with baby penguin hormones. Cutest. Smile. Ever. says even Artie, who was straight last time I checked. Sugar begins to drool. She’s delightful when she does not sing or talk. “I have MANY Latin friends!” says Will, who now has one Latin acquaintance who is not his student. Puck does not entirely understand the point to this, so Will explains the assignment: To sing in Spanish! Now with Extra Duende! Duende is his new vocabulary word! He will be using it every five seconds! Duendeduendeduendedoofus! It means to be a dwarf with Spanish soul and passion, and he’s so contrived David’s getting uncomfortable so he decides to seduce everybody. Er, show everybody. Oh dear god, please yes! Apparently the absence of Blaine means that Kurt gets to be funny, as he begins to visibly pant.
Twist David’s arm. There, he’s willing to sing. He’s not a lifelong professional singer, oh, no, not this guy, no La Vida Loca here. (I was… strangely distressed at this. Maybe he will come back and try again.) He’s just going to mention, off hand, that… “I’m sexy and I know it.” Do tell, Ricky. Do tell. Will wants the kids to be kind to David, but there is no need for this encouragement to be civil to the most exciting thing that has hit the Glee choir room in some time.
Five seconds into the number I expect several of the girls to start giving him money. Even Santana is flirty. Kurt gets very enclosed and nervously sensual…. there’s a lot of sexy manhood in the air and he’s all by himself, poor baby… like a Victorian lady who has just met a really attractive naked man. Rachel pants and Finn gets annoyed. . Even Rory is mildly entertaining. Finn and Puck try to get their sexy body rolls on and I want them both to stop. Will is unnerved at how well this is going. David passes by Kurt and Kurt nearly passes out.
This song is horrible… but the performance is wonderful, and the Glee Club reactions are the most fun we’ve seen from these kids in weeks. More of this type of song, please! By the second chorus he’s got everybody dancing GLEEfully, doing the wiggle, and Kurt does a flip in a chair that caused a minor internet sex riot. He clearly REALLY misses Blaine. Finn covers the bass player with a box head so he can’t see the passion that follows: we have the group orgy!
Not really. The song ends, and everybody has had enough duende for the day. Will congratulates David in terrible Spanish.
Mercedes is in Emma’s office. She’s having a terrible crisis of conscience, so she’s attending couples therapy with… Sam. Who is apparently bunking at Finn and Kurt’s, so I guess that either the new house has a LOT of extra bedrooms, or that whole weird can’t share a bedroom with a gay guy/ crushing on a straight guy thing is now completely solved and they had better never EVER dredge it up from the deeps. Mercedes WAS dating Sam, but then RIB fired him so Mercedes starting dating this other guy that she really likes, but she’s the only one in the entire world, and then they kissed because of the Power of Song, and Mercedes is trying to figure out how to solve this without hurting anybody. Sweetie, that possibility is long gone, especially since Shane is not really a character and there is no suspense at all to this storyline. NONE.
Emma is eager to show off her new set of pamphlets, which apparently she writes herself. She is apparently not interested in keeping from hurting people’s feelings. She offers Mercedes “So Your Two-Timin’ Ho” and offers Sam the partner pamphlet, “So You’re Dating a Two-Timing Ho.” When Shane gets in, he will be giving “So Your Girlfriend is a Two-Timin’ Ho” and Figgins is printing up a pamphlet for Emma, “Please Stop Giving My Students Pamphlets Featuring Racial Slurs.”
Emma excuses the inexcusable by explaining that these offensive titles get their attention. It really makes you want to read on and gather evidence to sue the school guidance counselor. Mercedes insists that she does not sleep around; she just wants to listen to her heart, even though it appears fairly obvious that Her Heart has set up a billboard saying “DUMP SHANE! THERE’S NO FUTURE IN THIS! HE HASN’T EVEN SUNG TO YOU, AND HE’S NOT IN THE GLEE CLUB!” Emma thinks that if Mercedes really wants to listen to her heart, she needs to freeze Sam out completely for one week. No emails, no tweets, no texts. Only Glee Club songs allowed, which they will be using with a vengeance. Note that she does not suggest that Mercedes similarly avoid Shane, so it’s not quite perfect advice. She is not really advocating that Mercedes listen to her heart, but merely that she stop listening to Sam’s. This is not advice to be honest with herself, but to quit cheating on her boyfriend.
Emma has forgotten that they are both in Glee Club.
The Cheerios, led by Roz, have perfected a new routine that encourages prostitution. It’s the lewdest thing I’ve ever seen on Glee. Dinga diggity dang. Becky loves it. Roz is very pleased with them. Sue looks like she just swallowed a lemon. Roz suggests that the Cheerios like this booty call anthem more than they do the stale white bread moves that Sue advocates. Sue dislikes Roz, maybe because she’s almost as crass and nasty and funny as Sue used to be, and maybe because she knows Roz wants her job when Sue goes on maternity leave.
Roz loses it at the idea that Sue is going on maternity leave. With WHOSE vagina? (Actually, Roz, it’s not the vagina that’s in question. This woman may be a sports coach, but she lacks basic knowledge of anatomy.) Roz, who seems to be a little confused as to how this all works, believes that Sue’s advanced age will make a modern-day Athena burst from her loins, fully grown and ready for combat in the modern business world. (Actually, that might make for quite a scene on Glee! She’d be famous! This would be better than OctoMom!) And yes, Roz is after Sue’s job. Sue won some trophies A Long Time Ago (two years, and it is conceivably possible that she might do it again) whereas Roz was an Olympian who won a bronze medal in a dead sport four years ago, and will never do it again. She had noodles with the President and a threesome with Michael Phelps, which will probably also never happen again. Sue needs to wake up and smell the menopause; apparently, menopause now signals the end of a woman’s professional and personal life and dreams. Nice message, Glee. I think I will choose to ignore it. Sue chooses to ignore it, too.
And then Ian gives us the first of several wonderful Friendship Presents that we will see in this episode. Apparently, the friendship of Kurt and Mercedes is not completely lost in the rubble of hormones that this their romances. The Three Divas: Together Again. Rachel, Mercedes,and Kurt are all sitting on a bed, watching a kinky threesome featuring a girl, a werewolf, and a vampire that sparkles. They trade junk food and contemplate the great, compelling question of our time: Should Bella choose the juiced up wolf or the depressed vampire? Or should she just drive a stake through her own heart and save us all the trouble? Mercedes sees her own struggle in the eternal vapid indecision of Bella, but Rachel is Team Edward. She just KNOWS who her true love is. It’s the dead guy who should be drinking people for supper, but Stephenie Meyer somehow made him a GOOD vampire and I forgot exactly how. You see, I read about half a chapter of Twilight before giving up. Rachel says that true love chooses you, which is certainly quite an argument for running off with the first moron who expresses any interest at all… and that’s actually what all three of these very lonely kids have done at different times.
Kurt is grateful to the ladies for spending time with him while Blaine recovers. You see, we must understand exactly where Blaine is. It’s THAT important. Why can’t Kurt watch Twilight with Blaine? Wouldn’t Blaine like the company? Or does Blaine dislike Twilight? If Blaine were a vampire, would he glitter in the sunlight? Inquiring minds want to know about Blaine even when Blaine is gone. However… why are the girls being so weird and serious? “Our periods don’t come until the end of the month.”
Giving us fodder to debate for days. We can attribute this to:
1. Ian have a mean sense of humor, and giving an insult to Kurt.
2. Kurt making gentle fun of his gloomy friends.
3. Kurt actually being so in tune with them that their mood swings become his mood swings (this does actually happen with some guys, and they get labor pains, too… for real!). Now, if he starts bleeding, get a doctor, STAT.
I choose option number 2, for now. His snark caused Rachel to make an annoyed little face. I think he was teasing her. Then, she decides to explain why she’s being so weird and serious. She pulls out the engagement ring. “SHUT UP!” screams Kurt, echoing the sentiments of people all over the sane world. Mercedes thinks Rachel has lost her mind, and Kurt indignantly howls “WhaddaboudNYAGUH! with a mouthful of french fries. Rachel assures them that she is prepared to face struggles until her inevitable stardom, but Finn has always been part of her dreams. She knows she’s going to be a huge star and she’s always going to be with Finn. And Finn has no idea what he wants to do with himself. But here’s the kicker. She wants them to keep this a secret. Kurt wants to yell at Finn, because he realizes what a bad idea this is, but Rachel stops him cold. What would he do if Blaine proposed?
Kurt’s reaction is a Rorshack test. He says nothing, and contemplates this, while all around him people all over the internet insist that he is thinking exactly what they want him to think about this idea. I myself see primarily surprise and some ambivalence; he sees her point, but is not necessarily certain to say yes at the drop of a hat. For all we know, he’s considering the idea that they could get married at all. That whole question is a little more loaded for gay couples than it is for straight.
Rachel asks them again to keep this a secret. Mercedes, who can’t even decide what boy to commit to for the next four months, wonders if she’s making the right choice.
So now it’s time for Mercedes to sing. To Sam. You know, the guy she can’t talk to. She’s staring right at him, and he refuses to look at her for obvious reasons. But this self-discipline does not last. She’s right in front of him by the chorus, and he’s beginning to grin. Now she’s directly in his face, not communicating with him at all, no sir. Rachel is visibly touched by their lack of communication and everybody else applauds at how well they are avoiding each other. With lyrics like “I Don’t Want to Lose You Now”, the message is clear, even in Spanish.
I have a new pamphlet here called “So you are cheating on your school counselor’s counseling assignment.” I have already given a copy to Mercedes, and now, Sam gets one too, because he actually has NO conflicts regarding how this thing should turn out and turnabout is fair play. Besides, he did date her first. For his dastardly plan to undermine Emma and Shane, he has actually enlisted help. He’s got all the guys. And I mean, EVERYBODY in Glee Club with a penis is helping him. ALL of them. Every single one. (Except Blaine, who is bedridden because he got slushie in his eye. We must not forget about Blaine.) Thanks, Sam. We appreciate this. You always were less of a homophobic little twit than the rest of these losers. They’ve decked themselves out with boots so long and pointy they could double as kayaks and I am impressed that any of them can dance in these quirky things. Finn has elected to play the drums rather than dance. Really, exceptionally good call. Great drummer. Bad dancer. Actually, I think I have actually figured out what Finn should be doing with himself after high school, and it’s even musical. If he formed a band, maybe he could get Puck to play guitar and keep him from jail or death by 2030. At any rate, the boys are doing a rousing, fun version of Bomboleo and having a wonderful time. And of course, about forty seconds into the song Sam’s singing directly to Mercedes. Would she dance if he asked her to dance? Of course she would. She did. And it was a very lovely and memorable moment. Mercedes is grinning like a two - timing ho and she needs to dump Shane before this gets ridiculous. They aren’t even TRYING to keep this discreet.
Kurt admits why he agreed to be a boy today: he was in it for the boots. Of course. So remember, in order to get Kurt to play nice with the boys, just give him interesting things to wear. Finn, the local dummy, explains to Will, the local Spanish teacher, that the footwear in question are Mexican hipster boots and Dreamboat Martinez told them all about them. Santana thinks Dreamboat is the best Spanish teacher ever, and she’s about to go for the jugular. She has decided that Will must defend his Spanish Teacher Honor by… doing the same assignment he gave all these kids. Will breaks out in a cold sweat.
I don’t generally think of Emma as assertive, but she’s ready to tear Sue a new one in the Teacher’s Lounge. She presents her newest self-published pamphlet: Please don’t Hog My Fiancee’s Nog. Nog? Nog? That’s a new one. Or is it left over from the Christmas episode? Sue finds an insulting way to ask her to have a seat, so she can explain why she wants Will to be her baby daddy. Why Will? She hates his guts. Well, here’s the thing. Sue has a little itty bitty mean streak. She goes through her days with a throbbing sense of wild rage. Although she deemed Kurt unfit to be a father, she still wants to inflict her own parenting skills on a child with her own gene pool, so she thinks she can dilute the mean genes by introducing Will’s wussy genes. He has always risen up to her nasty moments and answered with kindness. If goodness and optimism are somehow genetic, that’s what she wants for little Sylvester or little Susie. Will is not going to donate his sperm to Sue, though. The kindness only goes so far. Emma gently says that she hopes Sue does have a child, and leaves.
You want to have a kid with somebody who consistently repays cruel behavior with kindness, Sue? You wanna rethink that whole Kurt thing, maybe? He’s eighteen, he’s legal now. Go have a few chats with David Karofsky, Sebastian Smythe and… well, Noah Puckerman and Finn Hudson, and then get back to me on that. Just a thought. It’s a shame Rachel’s a girl. She’d work, too.
Oh, and speaking of Dear Porcelain, here’s what I’m talking about. Kurt enters the weight room to confront Finn, who is working out. The dumbbell has a dumbbell. Yes, it’s too cheap and easy. Sorry. Kurt looks around like a First Lady who has just wandered into a crack house as Finn pleasantly invites him to help lift weights. Kurt does not work out. (Chris Colfer does, which is why they have to hide those firm little arms of his, but that’s another matter.) Kurt thinks Finn should put down the weights and pick up some college brochures he’s brought. Interestingly enough, they are all from New York. The instant he became a NYADA finalist, Kurt discovered there were other colleges in New York! YAY! Maybe he even applied to some? As safety schools? One of them has a football team! And they all have musical theater schools. (Psst… Kurt… Finn is not going to Musical Theater school.)
“College isn’t for everyone.”
“Neither is marriage.”
ZING! Finn didn’t tell Kurt because he did not want Burt to know about the engagement, but Kurt makes an excellent observation here. An engagement they can’t tell anybody about… is an inherently bad idea. And the idea that Rachel is the only good thing going in Finn’s life is NOT a good reason to rush into marriage with her. Here Kurt becomes a wonderfully kind, supportive brother and a terrible talent scout. Despite her crazy, Kurt loves Rachel too, and thinks Finn would be lucky to marry her… eventually… but not yet. Kurt does not think Finn should be the loser who holds Rachel’s purse on the red carpet. (Well, at least now they are framing this as a situation where Finn would follow Rachel around rather than forcing her to stay with him in Lima. Progress, I guess.) Finn thinks he needs to be honest with himself about who he is, and Kurt immediately, helpfully, lovingly feeds him an image that is almost completely fabricated. He’ll be valuable to a musical theater school because he’s not like Rachel or Kurt (meaning interesting, intelligent, and talented?) He’s the hot, straight football player who can (kinda) sing and sort of dance (meaning that even kindly Kurt knows Finn cannot dance at all.) Yes, Glee is now presenting the straight white alpha male football doofus as an oppressed minority who is special, unique and unusually valuable. He’s unique in his utter cookie-cutter conventionality. However, Kurt hits one nail on the head: Finn proposed to Rachel because he gave up on himself, and that piece of wisdom is worth the whole conversation.
Gotta say this. It sure is nice to see two kid cast members who can both act in a scene together. It’s a whole different show when they feature the people who are actually good instead of the massive horde of mediocrity that they’ve amassed through the years of creative boredom. Here’s to the Hudmel brothers: may they talk more often… even if, over a year since his infatuation has ended, Kurt still sees Finn through the eyes of love more than the perspective of reality.
Sue catches up to Sandbags for some serious chat. Sue thinks Santana is the person who complained about her to Figgins, and that’s unacceptable because Santana is messing with the family that exists in Sue’s headcanon and, apparently, a box in the Kroger deep freeze. Santana is too amused by the idea of Sue as a mother to get angry about the false accusation. And once again, ladies, Sue’s vagina is not the body part in question here. THAT doesn’t go away when you hit fifty. It’s the stuff inside that doesn’t work the same way anymore, which is why Sue has her baby making ability in a box in the Kroger deep freeze. If she hasn’t had a hysterectomy, this might just work, and it HAS worked before. But Kroger was not involved. The oldest woman ever to give birth was seventy years old; the experience actually killed her. Sue’s prognosis is much better. (Although I can tell you first hand that pregnancy after a certain age gets quite a bit more difficult.) Obviously this episode was written by a man. Of course, I could say that about a lot of Glee episodes. Sensitivity does not run deep with these people. Will rushes up to find out how Sue is harassing his students today, and Sue announces that she’s found herself a NEW donor! A better one! Nyah, nyah, nyah nyah nyah! Will is aghast. Who’s more macho from Will Schuester?
Well, let’s see. Finn, Puck, Sam, Mike. Burt.
Santana. Yeah, I know. Fish in a barrel. Sorry. This script just makes it so obvious and easy.
Will is struggling with some basic vocabulary as the Pamphlet Princess strides happily into their living room with a brand new batch. It’s almost like she made cookies. Maybe it’s like really long fortune cookies. She’s on a roll, feeling very wise and prolific. Will is not interested. He’s got a big performance tomorrow and he’s trying to translate the song into Spanish the night before. So basically, he has not learned one damned thing from what happened at Nationals. Will, here’s an idea. Pick a song that’s ALREADY IN SPANISH and then REHEARSE IT AHEAD OF TIME. Hey, I’ll give you one off the top of my head. Sing De Colores. That’s easy. Every kid in Texas knows De Colores. Or sing Livin’ La Vida Loca. Maybe Dreamboat would be willing to teach it to you. Hell, sing Besame Mucho. If Sanjaya Malakar could manage a passable version of this song, surely you can. Will is still under the impression that he can get the kids to beg Figgins to give him tenure if he sings Spanish well. Well, maybe he’d have been a shoe-in for tenure if they’d done well at Nationals? Hmm? Or is that too painful a conversacion?
Emma tries to distract him from how hopeless he is by showing how clever she is. She sweetly offers him a pamphlet just for his situation called “Performance Anxiety - It’s Not Just for Teenage Boys”. (Emma makes a dirty joke in her pamphlet? The characterization of this woman just yoyos. Well, the characterization of all of them yoyos, so why am I not surprised?) Will does not have a sense of humor right now. HIM getting tenure is a Really Big Deal and he doesn’t have any patience for her little jokes about health insurance. And then Will falls into a deep, deep pit from which he may not ever recover. We have established in this episode that he sucks as a Spanish teacher. We’ve established for years now that he sucks as a Glee teacher. And now, it appears he sucks as a person. He wants her support in his job, but he does not have time to support her in hers. Will thinks her pamphlets are silly. She agrees that the titles are silly, but that’s the idea; she wants the kids to pick up the stupid pamphlet with the strange names and then read them for their great wisdom.
It occurs to me that Ian has taken a great deal of time in this script to explain a series of superficial sight gags. The pamphlets could just be funny back when Glee was a satire; now they have to have Deep Meaning behind them. At any rate, Emma thinks Will is being mean and he asks if she has a pamphlet for that. Emma looks at him for a minute, and it’s evident that she’s just dreamed up about ten new titles.
So Your Fiance Turned Out to be Moron.
Are You Sure You Really Want to Marry This Clown?
Independent Life: It Isn’t Just for Ugly Women Anymore
Forever Alone is Better than Forever Married to THAT
Oh, Go Ahead and Hog His Nog. I Don’t Want It Anyway.
In the auditorium, Dreamboat Martinez is showing off his duende again. Santana is on hand to help him, and once again, we have a situation where they are setting Santana up to sing opposite a really hot male because of the sex appeal factor, even though she’s supposed to be a lesbian. However, she does not get to sing with the person she’s actually sexually interested in, Brittany. That’s two episodes in a row that the resident lesbian character did a sexy duet with an actor who either is or is pretending to be gay. Even if we assume that David is straight, and honesty, there IS a ninety percent chance of that, then we have a situation where the gay actor pretending to be straight is singing a romantic duet with the straight actress pretending to be gay, and this show is not as progressive regarding homosexuals as it wants to pretend it is. This song is also not really following the assignment that closely. The song is by Madonna, who is not Hispanic, and it’s mostly in English. They changed one short portion to Spanish. From what I gather from commentary around the web, Naya cannot speak Spanish at all, so maybe this is why.
In the audience, Finn asks Shue why he’s wearing a shiny coat. He thought his teacher was Kurt for a moment. Will does not understand why David is here. It’s to sell Itunes, of course, but Santana says it’s because they are both hot. And gay. And singing straight. So it’s a big exercise in hypocrisy, which Glee specializes in, but wait… the real hypocrisy comes later, and it’s mind-blowing. Santana thinks her song was authentic and I think… honey, I live in Texas. I can’t speak more than ten words of Spanish, but I know enough to know there was nothing authentic about singing Madonna mostly in English. Give me a little “Por Un Amor” and I’ll be more impressed.
However, it WAS better than what follows. The floor now belongs to Will, and I really feel for Matt Morrison here. He has to humiliate himself by singing something truly offensive and awful for the second time this episode. Morrison’s a really talented guy. I hate that everything he is given to do sucks so badly.
At first, as the trumpets blare and Will lets out some ecstatic howls, I hope that he’s found his duende and we are going to see something interesting. Unfortunately, my heart sinks as soon as I realize he’s left all pretense of Latin music behind. At least Santana was singing about a place where Spanish is spoken; Will is indulging in Elvis Presley. And ever since I saw A Little Less Conversation gloriously butchered during a memorable Wild Card round on American Idol, I’ve never been able to hear this song with a straight face. I will say this; several of the kids in the audience are looking pretty supportive, and I almost feel the same way because at least he’s trying for once. Even though he has now taken the title of Worst Costume in the History of Glee away from Kurt’s Ewok outfit. Santana, however, is outraged. Outraged, I tell you. Not smug. Furious. It’s like she actually expected him to pull this off. Maybe she’s mad because he got Brittany to be the bull to his matador. Oh, look, he got Mike to do it, too! So he really does have the support of his kids! At the end, there IS applause - Sugar wants to be the bull now - but Santana just thinks it’s a lot of bull. And when he sees the look on her face, he realizes that Santana is the person who complained to Figgins. Gee, a bit slow on the uptake, Will.
Will is upset with her because she’s messing with adult things. Santana is upset with him because he’s messing with her education. And Santana goes off on another one of her rants. The moment she says “You don’t know enough to be embarrassed by the stereotypes you’re perpetuating”, however, she completely loses me. There are two reasons for this.
Glee lives on stereotypes. It’s their bread and butter. They can’t write a single episode without them. My own most beloved character had an entire story arc based entirely on people seeing him exclusively as a stereotype, and he fights the good fight to move beyond that kind of characterization on a regular basis. There are characters in Glee who have no personalities at all beyond the racist stereotype they embody, and now, all of a sudden, they’ve got one of the most racist characters on the show chewing out another person for perpetuating stereotypes? Santana, who never met a slur she wouldn’t use? Who lives to insult people using the crassest, tiniest little box she can stuff people into? Gay jokes, Asian jokes, cripple jokes, she’s made them, but she’s on Will’s case for dressing up like a matador? The whole rant took me completely out of the scene. The hypocrisy just slapped me upside the head. Then she asks Shue why he’s a Spanish teacher, and he admits that he took the job because it was the only teaching position open at the time.
That is NOT how staffing works in American Public High Schools, by the way. You have to be certified to teach certain courses, and yes, I am quite certain of that. No debate. This was wrong - really, really bad writing on Ian’s part. If Will were a substitute teacher, or even a private school teacher, it might be different, but he’s not.
Santana softens, and tells him something a great teacher once told her: “Without passion, you can’t succeed.” Will taught her that as her Glee Club teacher. That’s where his passion is. Of course, he’s not really all that good at that either, but this script would not work if anybody pointed that out. Besides, it’s a moot point. Glee Club Teacher is not a paid position. McKinley does not pay folks to teach the arts.
In the teacher’s lounge, Beiste is devouring her Chicken of the Day with Emma. She thinks something is GENIUS - not Will’s Regionals setlist, which apparently he’s actually been developing in advance this year, but Emma’s pamphlets. Emma wrote a pamphlet about washing one’s jockstrap called “Tain’t Misbehavin’” We get a Little Too Much Information about the personal hygiene of some of our favorite male Glee Clubbers, and Rory actually gets to say a line. He’s really turned into a glorified extra, hasn’t he? I guess they figured out too late that basic acting skill is kind of important for the cast of a television show. Dot actually has to utter the line “When I showed that to my Cooter”, meaning that her husband read the pamphlets and ordered a bunch for Ohio State. Now every fictional college football team in the fictional Big Ten is using Emma’s silly little pamphlets. Her passion literally saves lives! Or at least, makes them a little bit cleaner! Aren’t you proud of Emma, Will? Hey, why did the floor just open up and swallow him whole? Where did he go? Emma’s looking at him quietly. Wherever Will went, Emma pushed just a little.
In night school, Dreamboat is giving out little rewards to his students. The lady who wanted to say mean things to her maid can now conjugate them correctly. Will gets the prize for Most Improved. Yeah, wear that one with pride, Will. He doesn’t. He knows he should be better than he is. His students deserve a better Spanish teacher than Will. They deserve.. Dreamboat Martinez. Of course, Will has no power to hire or fire at McKinley… Oh, wait. What? Did Will just give his job to David? Does Figgins know about this? Can he do that? And what about his future and starting a family and tenure and all the stuff that’s got him so on edge he’s snapping at Emma? Ah, yes. Figgins has agreed to this, without setting eyes on David at all. The kids all want David to take Will’s job.
David is overcome with joy. His parents were immigrants, and they had to lie about their citizenship to go to high school. Now David is a teacher. What a country!
Well, that’s it for you then, Will. I guess maybe Rachel can run the Glee Club from now on? Goodbye Matt. Do you have any other projects lined up? Wait… Will, who has stepped aside because he is unqualified to teach Spanish, will remain at McKinley because he’s going to be teaching history. Well, there’s no danger of him imparting wrong information that perpetuates racist stereotypes because he’s unqualified to teach that, is there? But it’s OK. He watches The History Channel. Yeah, he’s got great passion for history. Coming up soon: a stirring lesson plan highlighting all of the Founding Fathers who were born in Ohio. There will be a quiz on Abraham Lincoln’s role in drafting the Declaration of Independence.
Becky is giving Sue fertility injections. She is to take them twice a day until the demon spawn hatches and devours the world. Becky has a guilty conscience, but Sue is two steps ahead of her. Becky was the one who lodged the complaint. Sue slipped into Figgin’s office to read the evaluation cards - I am surprised she didn’t have it bugged - and saw Becky’s complaint in crayon. It was either Becky or Brittany, and Becky is the better speller.
More to the point, Lauren Potter is turning out to be the better actress.
Becky was concerned that Sue was less focused on the Cheerios than she used to be. Could be true. I suspect that running for Congress might take away your competitive focus in other affairs. Maybe she’s just trying to find her duende. First the Congress, now the idea of having a baby. Sue does not think motherhood will dull her passion for winning or crushing her enemies; it will make her want them more. She praises Becky for being willing to make the tough calls, and Becky thinks she will be a great mom. Well, that’s one person who thinks so.
Mercedes is watching the clock hungrily. Three minutes to Sam… two minutes to Sam… In the hallway, Sam is doing the same. I am surprised they are so tense. Why didn’t they just sing to each other all week? It could have been the most romantic week of not talking ever. As the bell rings, Mercedes jumps up like she just got freed from prison as Summer Nights plays in the background. That is now Their Song. They see each other across the crowded hallway. It’s really, really, REALLY obvious what Mercedes’ heart is saying to her… look, if you are counting down the seconds until you can talk to a guy, he’s the one you want. Grease has a song about that, too. And just as they come together in slow motion, just as the music swells, just as they are close enough to touch, here comes SHANE, who appears to be completely clueless as to the little drama that’s been going on. It’s hard to tell if Shane understands what is taking place. I see Marcus’ eyes flicker a bit - Shane may have a clue, after all, but if he does he’s not the jealous type. Mercedes, however, appears to be the spineless type. She made lunch plans with Shane, and with the grief of a woman whose lover is being hauled off to the gulag, she finds herself turning away from Sam. Sam looks like he’s about to cry.
This is really a very crappy game she’s playing with both boys. Mercedes needs to own her own emotions and make a decision, because this is beginning to disturb me. That storyline should have ended in this episode.
As Emma comes home from work, she sees that Will has already made dinner - a lavish and elegant spread that piques her curiosity. What’s all this? Will, who is now seeking his duende in apologetics, has made her a pamphlet entitled “So You Were a Jerk to Your Fiance”. She critiques it, so he hands her another one: Congratulations! I Love You!” This is not, as it appears at first glance, a self-serving note congratulating her for choosing her man well. She has won the tenure position. Apparently, she’s the teacher at McKinley who sucks least badly. Maybe Beiste is still too new. Emma loves them. Will is belatedly very proud of Emma, and he wonders what to call her now that she’s got this cool advanced status that nobody will remember in two weeks. She chooses “Professor Dollface.”
Will says his first marriage did not work out because Terri did not believe in him. Well, no, Will. Your first marriage did not work out because Terri found out that you were in love with Professor Dollface and so she pretended to be pregnant so she wouldn’t lose you. And when you discovered the size of the lie, you ran like hell and nobody could blame you because she was batshit crazy. So now he didn’t believe in Emma. Well, don’t stop believing, Will. Sing a song about it. He wants to look back at all the great stuff Emma did to get to this moment - like not recommend safety schools for kids who want to go to NYADA - and make out. So they make out, because they are a straight couple on Glee.
Although I understand that a couple of lesbians may FINALLY get to share a kiss next week, because it is Valentine’s day after all, and most importantly, Blaine is back! Isn’t everybody really happy about that? Didn’t we all miss him! And you know the craziest thing about Blaine being gone this week?
Tina was also missing. Completely. She did not show up in a single scene. And not one character, not even Mike, said a single word about it. That’s… kind of crappy. Really.