But wait, it gets even more bonkers! Sue has created a Saw puppet of herself, riding a tricycle and wearing a tracksuit, and that thing comes riding into the elevator with a gift basket of wine and cheese and tells Kurt and Blaine in a creepy-as-hell robot voice that they’ve got to kiss on the mouth or they’re going to die in here and be forced to eat one another. They pretend to kiss, but that doesn’t cut it. So she pedals away and leaves them in their steamy elevator with their romantic picnic basket.
They lounge around, taking off their clothes a little at a time, affectionally watching each other nap, trying to escape, and finally deciding to play Celebrity. Fun facts: They planned to name their celebrity child Fettuccine Alfredo. Kurt’s ironic rapper name would be MC Hot Chocolate. Blaine thinks Dave eats too much ice cream.
Mentioning Dave’s name is what ruins the moment for Kurt, and also causes him to almost vomit. Sue’s Saw doll comes wheeling back in, talking about how Kurt and Blaine are being selfish for depriving the world of the romance it so desperately needs/deserves, so she’s going to drug them to make out with each other.
Y’all, what the lump is even happening? And why? Why? I don’t just mean these scenes; I mean this whole season. New characters we’ll never get to know replacing longtime fan favorite characters who never got a proper sendoff. Recycling plot lines that were already tiresome the third time we rehashed them back in season one. Nearly everyone acting out of character, even by Glee‘s loosy-goosey standards of what it means to be in-character. Mostly these ham-fisted meta storylines that feel like they’re attacking the fans whose lives were actually changed by these characters.
One of the weirdest things about The L Word is that the fifth season was the best one of the whole run. It was so meta it was basically like swallowing your own head, but it was also weirdly wonderful. Self-referential TV done right is a very fun thing to watch. 30 Rock. Arrested Development. Community. But for it to be enjoyable, the audience has to be able to laugh at themselves while also feeling like they’re in on the joke.
Glee’s final season feels like an alternate universe historical dramedy about how the captain of the Titanic refused to acknowledge that his majestic vessel had smashed into an iceberg until nearly everyone had thrown themselves overboard into the freezing ocean, at which time he strapped dynamite to the parts of his ark that were still afloat and stood on the deck shouting and fuck you everyone who believed this ship was unsinkable, and fuck you to everyone who told me it was filling up with water, too! while the whole giant boat exploded into nautical smithereens and was devoured by a gay leviathan at the bottom of the sea.
(I wouldn’t feel bitter about staying home on a Friday night to watch that show, but it’d have to have real sea monsters.)
Lezbihonest, Glee has never handled criticism well. Most of its meta moments have been about flipping off superfans (Lesbian Blogger Community, anyone?) or have disingenuously assumed that mentioning a legitimate cultural criticism of the show inside the show is the same as fixing the problem. Like the time Will grinded up on all his students while singing Robin Thicke‘s “Blurred Lines” and afterward Artie was all, “You do realize this song is about date rape, right?” So you know it’s a song about date rape but you still paid for the rights to it so you can make a billion dollars selling singles of it on iTunes while also kicking royalties back to the guy who wrote it while also couching it in a storyline where the grown man teacher who dry humped his students while singing it is actually a hero? That’s so Glee!
Somehow, though, this frustrates me even more. It’s basically just Sue Sylvester saying out loud everything people have called Glee out on over the years while having her act like she’s trapped in some kind of dissociative Faustian nightmare. It’s like Glee is mocking shippers and also every person who had enough fortitude and liquor to make it this far. The world did desperately need the romance of these two characters. It changed everything. It needed Santana and it needed Brittany, too. People have been so vocal about these couples because they actually needed them. Why is Glee mocking the people whose whole lives have been made so much better because they finally got to see themselves reflected on TV? I just can’t wrap my head around why you would create a thing people love and then chastise them for loving it.
Anyway, Kurt and Blaine say they’ll make out, just for Sue, just so they can get out of this elevator. They know they’re lying. They’re doing it because they want to do it. But that’s what they tell themselves. When they finally do kiss, all open-mouthed and hungry, the Sue doll throws her hands into the air, and it’s filmed like the fourth wall perspective of a TV viewer. Even my girlfriend, who doesn’t even watch this show but is a film editor, looked up from playing Candy Crush to roll her eyes at this scene. (Not the kiss, the filmed perspective of the Sue puppet as TV viewer/shipper thing.) Luckily, Tumblr will fix this and Photoshop Sue’s arms right out of it.
Once Kurt and Blaine are free, they race to the auditorium to watch the final day of Invitationals.