Glee Episode 505 Recap: The End of Twerk Should Really Be The End Of Will Schuster’s Career

Welcome to the fifth episode of the fifth season of Glee, a dramatic television show about fourteen girls competing viscously and erotically for the title of America’s Next Top Model while stealing granola bars, lighting their heads on fire and looking at their assholes in the mirror. This week, everybody sang songs about darkness and put their butts in each other’s faces.

and you're gonna hear me meow

and you’re gonna hear me meow

“The End of Twerk,” like so many Glee episodes, was tonally uneven, emotionally off-kilter and pushed all the wrong envelopes. Also, William Schuster deserves to spend the rest of his life in the rubber room. I’d like to quote Autostraddle Contributing Editor Mey who pointed out on her tumblr, “Tonight’s Glee was so patently offensive I could barely believe it.” Yup.


We open in Lima, Ohio, at McKinley High School, an institution for children suffering emotional trauma after riding The Beast at King’s Island. Blaine Warbler’s alone in an empty classroom, hopping about like a sugar-high toddler doing lunges with a ferret in his pants.

whatever i don't need kurt, i can just autostraddle this chair

whatever i don’t need kurt, i can just autostraddle and engage in frottage with this chair all the live-long day

Tina, Blaine’s #1 Space Invader, is filming her gay with a mobile device, and thus we zoom in to said mobile device and then zoom out to see all of the Glee Club watching Blaine’s bootyliciousness and having a laugh.

aw, kittens playing in the snow!

aw, kittens playing in the snow!

Sir William, Worst Teacher In The Entire World, feels inspired by Blaine’s melodious keister and launches into an irrational monologue about how the Glee Clubs’ collective reaction to Blaine’s Booty Ball is evidence that Blaine’s Booty Ball is onto something, and he’s not talking about Kurt’s you-know-what.

Sir William: “That’s the kind of reaction we need from the judges if we’re gonna one-up Throat Explosion at Nationals. We need to edge up our “America’s sweetheart” image a bit. Show the judges that we’re not afraid to rebel.”

Ah yes, and what better way to “rebel” than to follow in the problematic footsteps of Miley Cyrus! Marley-Kate says she’s not confident she can twerk, but Sir William promises, “have no fear, your twerk-torial is here.” At which point I’m absolutely petrified, as well as confident that this twerktorial will never be as good as Kaylah’s Twerkshop (CONFIRMED: Kaylah herself has declared the upcoming twerktorial “terrible.”)

damn i need to stop shoving my q-tips up there so hard

damn i need to stop shoving my q-tips up there so hard


Cut to the Auditorium, where New Puck and Fake Quinn are delivering aforementioned twerktorial, which opens with New Puck’s assertion that although twerking began in “the Atlanta club scene,” it’s now “global.” Like warming!

so then you've got a grapefruit in one hand, and a breast implant in the other - amirite fellas?

so then you’ve got a grapefruit in one hand, and a breast implant in the other —

Fake Quinn pops her nubile ass to Artie’s delight and Sam declares twerking “White Chocolate’s signature move,” because of course it is. Sir William complements Unique for being a twerking “natural,” to which she declares:

Unique: “I been twerking in my bedroom since I was six to Miss Beyonce.”

You guys, when I was six… Beyonce was also six.

stop it! stop peeing on me! no stop it!

stop it! stop peeing on me! no stop it!


We then slap on some earmuffs, furl a scratchy striped scarf around our vampire-ravaged necks, build a sled out of an abandoned coffee table and a stop sign, and scooch our way over to New York, New York, land of Carrie Bradshaw’s exes, where Rachel’s getting her haircut, probably at DRAMATICS NYC.

it's just like, i want girls, when they look at me, to know that i'm gay. without even having to ask.

it’s just like, i want girls when they look at me, to know that i’m gay. without even having to ask. you know?

Rachel says she wants something brand-new and different. Like this, probs:

some amazing photoshop

But before we’re gifted with a sneak-peek of her undercut, we cut immediately to Broadway Rehearsal, where Mike Dexter and Paolo Who Won a Tony are hanging out on a chaise lounge.

it's true, i slept with romi klinger and she lent me her hat!

it’s true, i slept with romi klinger and she lent me her hat!

Rachel removes her snowcap to reveal a brand-new bob, and both men are aghast ’cause haircuts and lipstick and vagazzles et al must be run by Mike Dexter first.

me. yes. me. i'm the man. nope, nope, my eyes are up here. that's right. here i am, i am man, you are woman, make me a sandwich, listen to me talk. thank you.

me. yes. me. i’m the man. nope, nope, my eyes are up here. that’s right. here i am, i am man, you are woman, make me a sandwich, listen to me talk. thank you.

Rachel’s like, look, my boyfriend literally just inexplicably dropped dead and besides everybody knows Broadway shows are the #1 employer of wig professionals so maybe we can all just move the fuck on. Thus Rachel and Paolo Who Won a Tony launch into “I Am Woman, You Are Man,” just in case anybody was confused, re: gender identities of Rachel and Paolo Who Won A Tony.

hey! i'm old enough to be your father!

hey! i’m old enough to be your father!

Mike Dexter is so awestruck by her performance that he declares undying love for her special haircut.


We then buy our Mom’s old minivan with no middle seat and janky air conditioning, fill ‘er up with overpriced gasoline, and emit fossil fuels into our hearts and souls all the way across Pennsylvania until at last reaching Lima, Ohio, where Unique’s overdosed on Diet Coke and requires a mid-class bathroom pass.

hi yes, if you don't mind, i'd like to be excused from this show?

hi yes, if you don’t mind, i’d like to be excused from this show? i feel like the writers don’t really know anything about how it feels to be me and it’s just really getting ridiculous, you know?

Alas, Unique’s plan to sneak unseen into the little girls’s room is foiled by New Santana, who’s in there taste-testing lip gloss and chatting with the mirror about her plot to kill Snow White.

New Santana: Stop right there, voice of Elmo. Do you honestly expect me to believe you stumbled in here by accident?
Unique: Please don’t tell anyone. I’m afraid to use the boy’s bathroom. I can’t. I just don’t feel comfortable in there. I make sure to only come here during class so nobody finds out or gets upset.

do not go into that stall, there's a fetus in it!

do not go into that stall, there’s a fetus in it!

New Santana assures Unique that her secret’s safe with her, which it obviously isn’t, as we’re then transitioned into what Unique’s voiceover describes as the “Great McKinley Bathroom Gender Riot of 2013.” Said gender riot entails the following: New Santana discovers the boys’ room is a hot spot for riding the hobby horse with New Puck undetected.

stand still you have an eyelash

stand still you have an eyelash

Stoner Bret discovers the girls’ room smells better and allegedly has heated seats (You know who actually does have heated toilet seats? Google.) (AND THEY’RE AMAZING).

whoaaaaaa why's that girl in that stall door talking to the devil and shit

whoaaaaaa is that whole machine filled with tampons??????

Then, the girls, who must’ve spent their entire lives until this very moment with their heads buried in quicksand, “realize that boys never had to wait in line” and began using the boy’s room for their lady business.

who wants to see the fetus

come on ladies we have to see the fetus eventually, may as well be now

Then ALL HELL BREAKS LOOSE and the bathrooms become crazy rave dance clubs, which is EXACTLY what Bill O’Reilly said would happen if you let trans* kids in the bathroom.

kitty ears at noon? nope.

bunny ears and unicorn paws at noon? nope.

here this is what it's gonna be like when we fuck later and i squirt all over your duvet

here this is what it’s gonna be like when we fuck later and i squirt all over your duvet

this is sort of like when they opened a nightclub in that building in "the office"

this is sort of like when they opened a nightclub in that building in “the office”

What does any of this have to do with anything? Nothing. What does this have to do with the legal battle ravaging our country at present regarding whether or not trans* folks can use the g*ddamn bathroom? Nothing!


 

We then hop into one of those thingamajigs they used to send Moses down the river and float on back to New York, New York, where Rachel arrives home at the Bushwick Barbie Dreamhouse Loft to find Kurt’s shocked out of his soft socks that Rachel chopped her luxurious mane of Jewish hair into a little bob of Jewish hair. Then she whips off the wig and reveals it was all just playtime, so I guess she was just at the hair salon to visit Shane.

and don't let me catch you wearing this wig and pretending to be Samantha Mathis

and don’t let me catch you wearing this wig and talking to yourself like Joey Potter

Rachel tells Kurt that he’s become super-boring ’cause all he does is drink smoothies, watch television and skype with Blaine, but not even sexy skyping, just the regular kind of skyping.

Rachel: Do you remember in high school how everything felt so urgent? Like if we didn’t just go for it we’d lose our chance forever?
Kurt: Yes it was very stressful.
Rachel: I want to feel that way again.

what do you mean i eat all the chocolate chip cookie dough bits and leave you with a tub of vanilla ice cream craters?

what do you mean i eat all the chocolate chip cookie dough bits and leave you with a tub of vanilla ice cream craters?

She’ll feel it again soon enough — the part of your twenties that comes right after college feels like that, too, I think, because you’re all grabbing for something again, like how in high school you were grabbing for the best college or otherwise impressive post-secondary-school plan and it’s the synchronicity – how so many people you know are reaching for the same thing at the same time. It’s a panic, really, which is motivational if you’re confident, and paralyzing if you’re not. Which is when you learn so much in life comes down to confidence. Which is petrifying.

see! right there out the window! i swear kurt they're doing naked yoga across the street

see! right there out the window! i swear kurt they’re doing naked yoga across the street

Kurt caves and agrees to do something wild and crazy, like drink a bottle of Limoncello, which btw was once how we identified Rock Bottom, as in, “we are so out of alcohol that I’m just gonna drink this fucking limoncello until I die.”

oooo that junior mint is minty fresh as hell

oooo that junior mint is minty fresh as hell

I could stay here, just to hear them breathing, and never return to Lima. Look I know I’m biased — as I’ve likely mentioned in past recaps, when I was Rachel’s age, I was living in an overpriced two-bedroom in New York City with my gay best friend (an actor) and a girl I was pretty good friends with in high school (a musician) and all of us were reaching hard and fast for something, anything, that would make us feel “worth it” and special and talented as much as high school did, and so in so many ways this is my story and I can’t help but want to see more of it, and always. But COME ON REGARDLESS OF ALL THAT, THIS SHOW IS SO MUCH BETTER THAN THE LIMA SHOW. Next year; Unique, Tina, Artie and Blaine should move to New York and McKinley should vanish into the ether.


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Riese is the 33-year-old CEO, CFO and Editor-in-Chief of Autostraddle.com as well as an award-winning writer, blogger, fictionist, copywriter, video-maker and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York City, and now lives in The Bay Area. Her work has appeared in nine books including "The Bigger the Better The Tighter The Sweater: 21 Funny Women on Beauty, Body Image & Other Hazards Of Being Female," magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are!

Riese has written 1747 articles for us.

31 Comments

  1. Thumb up 6

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    I just. I cannot even. I CANNOT. On the one hand, Unique’s rendition of If I Were a Boy is perfect and heartbreaking, and yes, I totally cried. On the other hand, EVERYTHING ELSE. God, I couldn’t even get all the way through the video of Blurred Lines, I was so skeeved out. Also… none of that was twerking. WHITE PEOPLE JUST NEED TO STOP WITH THE SO-CALLED TWERKING.

  2. Thumb up 9

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    Everything about this makes me cringe. The sad reality of our world is that people will watch this and see nothing wrong. They won’t see how transphobic the treatment of Unique’s character is. Or just the general terribleness of it all.

  3. Thumb up 5

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    I don’t understand how Unique singing “if I were a boy” could be so good and make me cry, but the rest of her storyline was so bad. How did they even manage that?

    And new-Santana’s slut-shaming talk was super annoying.

  4. Thumb up 6

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    Every part of my former teacher self wants to go through the TV and throttle Will Schuester. So far this season he’s… stolen a grief memento from another student AND implicated another student in this, harassed a girl with an eating disorder over not wanting wear a bikini, and sung Blurred Lines to his students. Also with no more Ms. Pillsbury, there isn’t anyone to balance out his crazy and tell him when he’s being an awful human being.

    My only hope is that maybe Glee is building him up to be awful and will end the show by sending him to a jail where Nathan Lane has already headed up a prison choir and he has no job to do.

    Also, I loved Unique’s version of If I Was a Boy, but Nellie Veithemer’s from the Glee Project still has a special place in my heart.

    • Thumb up 1

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      I’m so glad I’m not the only one holding out hope that they’re building him up to be awful, not just to us (feminists, smart people), but to everyone.

      I know it’s the most wishful of wishful thinking but… his behavior has been truly upsetting and over the top. It’s bizarre. I wonder what the actor thinks of his character.

  5. Thumb up 5

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    Couldn’t help but yell at the screen as Ryder stood up to “defend” Unique and I was reminded of his exceptionally trans*phobic response to her crush last season.

    This was so validating to read after probably the worst episode of Glee they’ve ever done.

  6. Thumb up 2

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    The cheeseball part of my soul really just wants to watch talented people sing and dance to songs that I know. But the cheese melts under all of the transphobia, racism, biphobia, sexism, general creepitude and assholery, etc. Also, I’ve officially gotten too old to know most of the music. Therefore I can’t watch this show anymore. But I really like your recaps.
    According to the super reliable internetz some junior mints are vegan now. I need to go find some.

  7. Thumb up 2

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    I just cannot with this show anymore. As soon as I heard they were going to do “Blurred Lines” (or as it should be correctly named: the date rape song) I turned to my girlfriend and said “I bet someone will sing it and then someone else will point out it’s rape-y and then Glee will pat itself on the back for being somewhat aware of the awfulness but still rake in the iTunes money.” And to be honest, I’m terrible at predicting shit like this. That’s how predictably terrible this show has gotten.

    However I do still love the NYC bits. Could someone magically cut just those bits together so I never have to look at Will Scheuster’s ever again?

  8. Thumb up 4

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    “IT’S JUST LIKE, I WANT GIRLS WHEN THEY LOOK AT ME, TO KNOW THAT I’M GAY. WITHOUT EVEN HAVING TO ASK. YOU KNOW?” is what the voices inside my head are screaming every time I tell my hairstylist something like “I don’t know, maybe…. wispier this time?”

  9. Thumb up 1

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    This episode makes me wonder where they are going to draw the line with all of this.

    They=the writers who think this is ok, the actors who consent to do it (I know it’s really difficult once you’ve signed a contract, but those have to be renewed at some point right? Also I know it is complicated when it will mean losing a reliable source of income etc.), and the people who watch the show who need to hold Glee accountable via their viewership and iTunes accounts.

    I used to enjoy Glee’s songs because they (usually, somewhat) applied to what was going on in the show and they were catchy…but now that’s all overshadowed by the show that I can’t even enjoy the catchiness anymore.
    Can we just have a NYC spin-off? I feel like that’s the natural progression of the show anyway, since it was primarily focused on the “original six” cast members, especially Rachel. But that’s going back to season 1 and as far as Ryan Murphy is concerned that’s a long time ago in a galaxy far far away…

    Also in regards to one of the captions, All I want for Christmas is Quinn Fabray with a strap on. Can someone please tell Santa?

  10. Thumb up 1

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    I am so confused as to how I missed the abuse storylines… Didn’t realize they bothered to give Ryder and Kitty depth last season.

    But Will has becoming increasingly inappropriate. He’s made me uncomfortable for a long time now (the Rocky Horror episode comes to mind) but now it’s ridiculous. Protesting totally reasonable dress codes? Suspending a girl from Glee Club for not violating those dress codes? Saying that girl’s choice to not make herself uncomfortable for others’ entertainment is a selfish “agenda”? And then everything that happened in this episode. Completely ridiculous.

    Meanwhile, I missed Santana in a major way. Seems like she would’ve fit in perfectly to the “let’s do something crazy!” storyline.

  11. Thumb up 1

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    Riese, it’s amazing how your reviews of such an awful show are still enjoyable to read. I haven’t watched the show in years but still read your recaps.
    If they ever decide to just follow the characters in NYC and no more McKinley I might consider watching again, but until then I’ll just read your recaps..

  12. Thumb up 2

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    “JUST IGNORE ALL THOSE PICTURES OF WAVY-HAIRED GIRLS RUNNING AROUND IN THE WOODS ON THE WALLS IN THERE, PROMISE I’M NOT ‘A.'”

    FuuuuuUUUUUCCKKKk. That was the funniest thing.

    I imagine that when Ryan Murphy interviews people to write for this show, it goes something like this: “Do you think that people should be able to joke about anything they want, no matter how offensive or triggering it may be to other people? No? Good answer, good answer. And do you think that a writer should be able to write about any hot button issue, ESPECIALLY when they pertain to minorities who aren’t gay cis white men, without having to do any research or give any thought to the fallout that might come from misrepresenting such an important topic? Yes? Wow, you’re really acing this interview.”

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