Welcome to the ninth recap of the fifth season of Glee, an American Western comedy series about the fictional “Bar None Dude Ranch,” staffed by the children of former astronauts who sport alternative lifestyle haircuts, are addicted to Diet Coke, and enjoy painting each other’s toenails with watercolors. The show includes singing, square dancing, smizing, sploshing, boyfriend jeans, patriarchal spellcheck, Faygo, bacterial vaginosis, cosplay, snow days, crystal meth, showgirls, and $8 hot dogs.
This week on Glee, everybody was really mean to each other! The theme of this week’s episode is “songs applied wildly out of context.”
I apologize for the extreme lateness and overall mediocrity of this recap! It has been a crazy week because Alex was here, and Lesbians Who Tech was happening in San Francisco, and then today I flew to Washington DC for the LGBT Journalists Convening and I had to write this in a recap! Next week will be better I swear, especially IF SANTANA’S GIRLFRIEND EVER SHOWS UP.
We open in Fake Ellen’s Stardust Diner, where Santana’s butting heads with a tourist who thinks that Santana is Mexican and that her Moons Over My Hammie Scramble Special isn’t warm enough.
Santana removes the offending food item and Rachel admits she’s surprised Santana didn’t open up a can of Lima Heights Adjacent Whoop-Ass on The Disgruntled Tourist, to which Santana replies, “I need this job. I’m saving up to buy a noose to hang myself with.”
Santana laments that New York’s yet to discover her amazingness, seeing as her apparently new-bestie’s already landed a starring role on Broadway and all Santana’s got is a yeast infection (commercial). What Santana doesn’t know is that this isn’t actually New York, it’s an Imaginary New York, where Rachel’s got the time to attend school full-time, waitress, be in a band, and star in a Broadway musical! In this imaginary agentless New York, it’s entirely possible that Santana’s Big Break could arrive immediately, perhaps in this very episode. Pretty much everything is possible except lesbian sex. Santana apologizes for complaining to Rachel, who insists it’s okay ’cause “they’re friends.”
Santana: “I think I just have this weird guilt trip thing about being friends with you because I was so awful to you in high school. Quinn and Britt hated you too, which was mostly just because you sucked so bad and walked weirdly with that ‘feet pointing out’ thing.* I made Quinn look like the boss, but I was really running the “Hate on Rachel” Parade.”
Rachel says that’s all in the past because now they have lesbian sex JUST KIDDING it’s all in the past because whatever, and Santana says she hates being the least successful of their apartment’s tenants and Rachel says what Santana really needs to cheer her up is to get her nails done and stand in the background of Rachel’s upcoming shoot for New York Magazine!
Santana: “I really hope that I can be as cool as you when the roles are reversed. You’re a really good friend.”
* If you hang out with a lot of ballet dancers, like I did once upon a time, you may one day find yourself walking this very same way.
We then insert our giant feet into surly Doc Martens, leap onto our stylish motorcycles, and zoom all the way back to Lima, Ohio, home to North Carolina Furniture Express, where Artie and Tina are skipping Official Lunch to have a Private Lunch in the Auditorium.
Tina complains that she got waitlisted at Brown and, because McKinley apparently has the worst guidance counselor of all time, only applied to Ohio State and “that dumb vet school” for backup. Artie insists she’ll get in to Brown and can go hang out with our writer Helen and our fashion editor Lizz.
We then segue into a rousing light rock number that reminds me of being at the dentist.
We’re then plunged rudely back into the murky depths of reality’s merciless slings and arrows, because Becky is loudly summoning Artie and Tina to The Lair of Sue Sylvester, who will inform the winsome duo that they’re tied for Valedictorian. Then the writer looks the viewer in the eye, and then winks with that eye:
Sue: Now, unlike some members of the Glee Club who come and go for months at a time with no explanation, you two losers are always in that choir room, even if for an entire week the only thing you have to do is say something inconsequential like, “Kitty’s right” or “Blaine, are you serious?”
Tina and Artie must compete for valedictorian by wrestling in a giant tub of Butterscotch pudding JUST KIDDING they have to present their speeches to a panel of idiots and the idiots will choose who is no longer in the running to be America’s Next Top Valedictorian.
We then affix our private parts to a zipline with a carabeener and zoom swiftly back to New York, New York, home to Amsterdam Video where I bought my first vibrator, where Rachel and Santana are hanging out at the Fake Julliard set pretending to be at a fashion shoot for New York Magazine.
This one time I was photographed for New York Magazine but I had to do my own makeup and then they killed my story and I never got to see the photographs. This was especially devastating for Haviland, who was in a lot of the photographs, because she loves being in photographs, but less devastating for my girlfriend at the time, who thought cameras stole your soul or something. Anyhow where was I?
Oh yeah, then they sing Brave. Rachel’s dressed like Lil Orphan Annie Goes Goth Disco and everybody else is modeling the 1996 YM Magazine Prom Dress Collection.
Also, Intern Grace snagged you a sneak peak of the New York Magazine cover:
We then bobsled all the way back to Lima, Ohio, home to 679 people named Robert, where Artie won’t let Tina just be valedictorian! But she needs this to get into Brown! But she was just elected Prom Queen! But colleges hate Prom Queens! So they have to yell terrible things at each other!
Artie says that “everyone” has been “talking” about how an alien invaded Tina’s body between seasons and made her into a desperate shallow bitch who vapo-raped Blaine, and Tina says that Fake Quinn can’t possibly love Artie and is using him for a “sick charity project.” Don’t worry I looked on Charity Watch and “pretending to fall in love with somebody for no real reason” wasn’t listed, so we’re in the clear, but Tina is being really mean, so.
We’re then rushed into a frantic two-way call between Blaine and his psychotic fiance, Kurt Hummel, who thinks Adam Lambert’s trying to take over the band ’cause he wrote a song and had an idea and mentioned the band in an interview. Blaine advises Kurt keep his friends close but his enemies even closer, which I think means that Kurt and Adam Lambert should have sex.
Kurt reminds his roomies that rehearsal’s happening tonight but Rachel’s gotta miss it ’cause she’s gotta hit up understudy auditions. Santana says she’s not rehearsing if Rachel’s not rehearsing and I guess we’re pretending Dani’s not in this band anymore, I blame femme invisibility.
We then crawl on our hands and knees, following a tiny carrot dangled above our clamoring yaps by a string carried by a merciless master, all the way to Lima, Ohio, where Will can’t decide which of these frenzied fruitcakes will snag the second solo at National Geographic World Olympics Challenge Context of The World Nationals Free Skate Competition. Tina and Artie both want it, of course, which means they must engage in a sing-off.
Thus, Artie and Tina launch into “Never Gonna Get It.”
Riese: WHAT I love this song.
Alex: Well, they’re about to ruin it for you.
At the end of the number, Tina gets so aggro that she knocks Artie out of his wheelchair, which makes everybody feel terrible and sad, including me.
Here’s the song:
We then walk calmly and patiently while listening to NPR podcasts on our iPods all the way back to the Barbie Dreamhouse Bushwick Loft where Kurt has summoned Adam Lambert to his home to poison him.
Kurt asks Adam Lambert how long he’s been performing and all these other questions that are cover-up questions for his actual question, which is, “are you trying to take over my band?”
Kurt: Dare I say it, you might just be the breakout star of Pamela Lansbury!
Adam Lambert in Kurt’s imagination: Yeah, well, I am.
Adam Lambert For Real: Come on now, I mean… everybody’s bringing something essential to the mix.
Kurt: Right, right. Said Beyonce right before she left Destiny’s Child.
Adam Lambert In Some Dimension: She was better…
Adam Lambert says his first gig was You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown, and then he took singing lessons and then he learned guitar. Kurt says he’d like to learn guitar from Adam Lambert because he is a guitar God, and Adam Lambert says Kurt needs to buy a guitar. Okay.
We cut to a Broadway theater in some strange universe where there are no talented people in New York City, despite the fact that New York City is literally TEEMING with talented female singers with extensive training and heaps of experience and immense drive who would sell their first and second born children to a pack of wolves in exchange for a chance to sing one line in the background of a mediocre musical number in an Off-Off-Off Broadway revival of Annie Get Your Gun. In this universe, everybody who auditions to be understudy is terrible.
Rachel: “I mean, no wonder you hired me for this part. No one can sing in this town.”
Just when all hope seems lost — who should show up but Lesbian Lover Santana Lopez!
Santana Lopez waltzes into the auditorium singing Rachel’s signature song, “Don’t Rain on My Parade,” and she NAILS IT as Rachel dies inside and also on the outside. I mean, doing Rachel’s song is a little ballsy.
Mike Dexter is blown away by the performance. “One high school produced both of you?” asks Mike. If he met Mr. Schuster, he’d be even more impressed.
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I have a serious AS commenter crush on you.
Hey girl, hey!!!
Adam Lambert singing I Believe In A Thing Called Love is something I’ve wanted in my life since 2009. That’s all I have to contribute.
Can the girl band in the guitar store become Pamela Lansbury’s new rivals because…damn.
“McKinley apparently has the worst guidance counselor of all time” She’s too busy making pamphlets and sexing the worst teacher of all time.
If I was Rachel I’d be insecure about having Santana as an understudy as well, Rachel totally got pwned in that Brave song. In performance and appearance.
The show includes singing, square dancing, smizing, sploshing, boyfriend jeans, patriarchal spellcheck, Faygo, bacterial vaginosis, cosplay, snow days, crystal meth, showgirls, and $8 hot dogs.
THIS SHOW HAS EVERYTHING:
I can’t get enough of Grumpy Cat in that fucking bowtie polo sitch.
I was practically yelling at my computer the entire time I was watching the Rachel/Santana drama… Rachel had insisted she didn’t need an understudy the entire episode. Until, of course, Santana became her understudy. And then it became a big deal all of a sudden. If you’re not going to need an understudy why does it MATTER?! If you’re so sure that your understudy is never going to be needed, then why are you have a temper-tantrum that a troublesome-two-year-old would be jealous of?! Rachel is such a dramatic little wench.
I mean, if this was real life, there’s absolutely no possibility that Rachel won’t need an understudy. The show could run for years and with eight performances a week, and there’s no way that at no point during those years that she wouldn’t need a cover, ever. but seriously being the lead in a broadway musical is the hugest thing, and she’ll be getting paid WAY more than santana will — there’s nothing comparable about their situations at all. Rachel has the superior position by a longshot! somebody has to be her understudy, after all, why not have it be a friend? santana’s position is very definitively FAR below hers, in perhaps the most obvious way possible.
I WAS HOPING FOR AN ALL ABOUT EVE JOKE AND THEN IT WAS THERE
My sister wisely pointed out that if this was real life Rachel would WANT a damn understudy. No one wants to do 8 shows a week with no break for a minimum of 8 months. Bitch please.
Unpopular opinion but Rachel’s Rain On My Parade was significantly better than Santana’s. Sure, Naya has an amazing voice, but she had 0 emotion or character while singing in. Even years later, I still get chills watching Rachel sing the first time. I couldn’t finish Santana’s version because it’s boring.
Although I appreciate the jab. Well-played, Lopez.
Agreed. I mean, Naya Rivera is amazing, but compared to Lea Michele’s version of that song… Meh.
Although every time they mention Quinn now I want to stab myself in the face, I’m just waiting for Pezberry to happen. This is getting ridiculous.