Well, if there’s anything I like more than getting punched in the face by a gorilla, it’s a good old-fashioned Darren Criss power-hour injected with a generous dose of Public Service Announcements regarding The Dangers of Texting While Doing Anything Else Besides Sitting Alone In a Cold Dark Room.
Luckily, this week, Glee delivered all that and a bag of discontinued Tortilla Ranch Fritos from The Dollar Tree!
Does anybody else think Glee‘s been picking songs first, plots second? See — by maintaining an ever-growing oft-shifting stable of loosely-defined ambient second-tier characters, Glee’s set itself up to be able to tell pretty much any story it wants to in order to make that week’s Current Crappy Pop Song work. The fact that most Glee kids offer ambiguous information (at best) about their family structure (unless it was a defining element of Season One) means one can invent siblings, parents, grandparents or long-lost cousins out of the deep blue nothing and plop them on screen willy-nilly to juice up iTunes sales and participate in duets that couldn’t happen between two main characters — which is why it’s even worse when they do this and it fails. Much like “fetch,” sometimes you just can’t make “Somebody That I Used To Know” happen.
Anyhow, as much as I hate men, I’m alternately baffled and intrigued and adorkabled-out regarding the Blaine/Kurt union, and if we as a Nation truly required a Darren Criss Solo Episode, I would’ve la-la-la-loved to see the lovebirds in action doing something revelatory, maybe even something that makes sense (aka not Operation Rocksalt)! But nah. NAH! Let’s find out what’s going on with Blaine and THIS GUY instead:
We open in the Semi-Hallowed Hallways of McKinley High, where Rachel’s wondering if she and her human rucksack boyfriend would’ve unwisely tied the Knot howevermany days/weeks/storylines ago had Quinn not gotten T-Boned en route to the Injustice of the Peace.
Finn suggests marrying on the pitcher’s mound at Wrigley Field after Nationals in Chicago, which seems a bit snug and about one-tenth as awesome as marrying on Oprah’s back porch, but before we can hash out the ins/outs of a ceremony at the Field Museum, Rachel interrupts that she just can’t stop thinking about Quinn.
Is this a blatant attempt to hypnotize Faberry Shippers into not noticing how bad this episode sucks? Or a genuine moment of character development for these two ladies that will actually be followed up on in future episodes/seasons? I’d like to think it’s the latter, but am concerned it could be the former.
Regardless — Quinn shows up right then/there, wearing a white bustier and a wheelchair.
Artie, pleased as punch to have a buddy on his ozone level (I feel the same way about making other tall female friends), saddles her side, wheel-to-wheel, while Quinn announces that this is the absolute best day of her life ever! Quinn loves being temporarily diffabled! It’s even better than being pregnant, but not quite as fun as being goth.
Let’s sing about it — IRONICALLY! How about “I’m Still Standing,” which is Still Standing In My Head?
Following the rousing number, Quinn takes center stage:
Quinn: “Here’s a message for your board, Mr. Shue — don’t text and drive, ever. It’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever done in my life… besides sleeping with Puck.”
Quinn then says she’s got some air to clear regarding ambiguous rumors which, if her next line conforms to any kind of logical procession of language, all concern her vagina. “My plumbing still works, which is awesome,” she strangely ensures the class, then explains her spine something something and she’ll be able to walk again like super-super-soon for real.
This week’s Adults’ Storylines Do The Darndest Things runaround involves Sue’s fetus. Figgins has promoted Roz to co-coach of the Cheerios, citing Sue’s inability to properly coach while With Child, or something, and Sue makes Figgins pretty-promise that he’ll return Sue’s solo-coaching-spot to Sue if Sue makes the Glee Club win nationals and the $10,000 prize that goes along with it. You know, school financing is JUST FASCINATING!!! Year after year after episode after episode, I’m on the edge of my seat, taffy firmly in-mouth, breath baited with anticipation to hear more about budget cuts!!
There’s also some razamatazz involving the gender of Sue’s baby and the fact that it will be diffabled in some way, like her sister and Becky, or something, which I’m certain has been contrived specifically to make it impossible for me to make fun of Sue’s fetus without being an asshole.
(Sidenote: I talk about money problems all day but I watch television to escape all that and ideally to bask in the glow of lesbians making out and charismatic teenagers singing/dancing. Glee‘s persistent reliance on financially-focussed storylines increases the already-ominous dark cloud of financial doom that hangs over one’s head in April and I really wish they’d stop! It’s a good topic for a few episodes, but a lame running gag.)
Thus we smear over to Booty Camp, which’s been on hiatus since the last time it was used to advance subplot.
Kurt was mercifully released from whatever Vegas stripshow required him to dress like Mango Goes To T-Ball Camp and, like the other helpless children, isn’t pleasing Sue with his disinterest in becoming bootylicious.
Sue calls Finn “granny panties,” which’s epically accurate.
Sue: “Hey Mercedes, who ya texting?”
Mercedes: “I’m not texting anyone… I’m.. donating to the Obama campaign?”
[Sue hurls the phone into the auditorium, shattering $400 of pure phone goodness into a million little pieces]
Mercedes: “AH! My drawing!”
Back in the Semi-Hallowed Hallways of McKinley High, Kurt’s verklempt re: the magical invention and subsequent arrival of Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother, who Blaine’s never spoken about to Kurt, ever, ’cause Glee couples never talk about anything, ever, besides Finn + Rachel who talk about everything, constantly. Communication and emotional support don’t lend themselves to gratuitous solo power ballads, so.
Turns out Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother, Cooper, stars in a popular credit report commercial which, unlike actual credit report commercials, has seduced the groins and nipples of the entire heartland.
Kurt: “Blaine, your brother’s the best-looking man in North America.”
Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother turns everybody into a helpless softened-butter-pillar of sexual desire, even Sue Sylvester. And thus, Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother drive-by seduces passersby while explaining the reason for his visit to Blaine — he’s prepping for Round Two of the Free Credit Rating Campaign which’ll be extra-dark. What better place to connect with people who need free credit ratings than in The Heartland?
As Casanova Cooper fades into the ether, Blaine dejectedly states, “Yeah, that’s why I never really talk about my brother,” while Kurt gazes ahead as a pornographic movie starring Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother and Ricky Martin rolls through his brain. Poor sad Blaine.
Brittany & Santana, fingers erotically locked, stroll through the library for a loud meeting about Senior Skip Day.
My money’s on Cedar Pont, America’s Roller Coast, which’s located a mere two hours from Lima, Ohio! Or, perhaps Kings Island, also a mere two hours from Lima, Ohio?
Kurt proposes a Gershwin/Soundehim Scavenger Hunt (“sounds like torture”-Santana), Mike Chang desires a Footloose marathon, Mercedes suggests a non-alcoholic pub crawl and dearest Brit-Brit…
Brittany: “It’s springtime. I would like to see something give birth.”
Meanwhile, Rachel’s suffering intense emotional turmoil, preventing her from discussing baby otters or Into the Woods-themed scavenger hunts:
Rachel: “Quinn I’m so sorry. It was my wedding you were going to and me that you were texting and now we’re all sitting here talking about the day that’s supposed to be the most amazing and unforgettable days of our high school lives and we’re — we’re completely ignoring the fact that she’s sitting in that chair! It’s not right and it shouldn’t be like this.”
1. Hyperbole police called, Berry, and you’ve gotta pick one! Which is the most amazing and unforgettable day of our high school life?
B. Your Wedding
C. The Senior Musical
2. You’re all sitting in chairs, you fucking weirdo!
Anyhow, Quinn’s the epitome of epic togetherness and Godly compassion, reassuring Rachel that —
Quinn: “Maybe not, but this is the way it is, my accident, which is not your fault by the way, does not define me or ruin our senior year. I meant what I said in the choir room, I’m not gonna dwell on this and neither should any of you.”
“C’mere,” says Quinn in her “big sister knows best” voice, embracing Rachel for several gif-ready moments of tender semi-erotic tenderness.
So, Six Flags it is!
The kids bail and Puck tells Finn he’s gonna move to LA after graduation and start a pool-cleaning business, ’cause there are 800,000 pools in California and Steve Jobs wasn’t taken seriously in high school but then he became rich and is now dead, just like Abraham Lincoln, and Finn should start thinking about himself for once instead of blindly following Rachel to New York where she’ll almost certainly fall in love with a Julliard violinist and kick his lumbering potato-body out of bed forever and ever. Or whatever.
Raise your hand if you don’t give a shit. Okay now put your hand down and scroll to the next scene of this recap.
Back to Glee Club, where Sue scrawls LAZY IDIOTS on the whiteboard — surely the finest scrawling that has ever been scrawled — and introduces Casanova Cooper to hypnotize everybody and announce his Acting Master Class.
Glee Club cajoles Blaine and Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother into a musical number —
Blaine: “Oh no no no no no. Please don’t make me do that.”
Kurt: “Oh no, Blaine, you have to. You’re both so handsome and good.”
— and thus we break into a Duran-Duran mashup which showcases their teeth, belting ability, and overall lust for life, and the children clap and sing like bunnies having orgasms on a hill in Sweden.
Cut to Breadsticks, where Blaine and Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother are imbibing beverages and salad while Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother imparts unwelcome acting advice onto his young sweater-vested sibling.
Casanova Cooper: “So, nice job on the song today. Really nice.”
Blaine: “Thank you!”
Casanova Cooper: “You were a little pitchy on Rio, though, and your dance moves lacked a theme.”
Blaine: “My theme was dancing, I guess.”
Cooper then rattles of some nonsense about the fingers being the eyes of the body and Blaine understandably launches into a long-harbored complaint regarding Cooper constantly telling Blaine what he’s doing wrong and how much he sucks, which smears nicely into an Adorable Blaine flashback — young gay dances enthusiastically like nobody’s watching, only to be interrupted by the brother, who was watching, like Big Brother, the name of this episode:
Young Cooper: “Your balance is completely off.”
Young Blaine: “I just learned to walk three years ago.”
Maybe this is how Blaine got so humble and empathetic, or whatever. Anyhow, NEXT!
Ah, fantastic – we sashay over to an ambiguous outdoor school area where Artie, heart a-flutter with affection and sisterhood towards his newly-handicapable friend, challenges Quinn to man up Jason Street style and roll that chair up the ramp.
Artie: “Push, push!”
Quinn: “That sounds familiar!”
Arte: “It’s just like having a baby. Come on.”
It’s one of many scenes that suggests Quinn’s been, in some sense, revived as a human being — she’s confident, regardless of circumstances, and has shed the false presumption that she’s better than everyone else. She’s just a girl in the world in a wheelchair trying to get up a ramp. And aren’t we all, Quinn, aren’t we all. (Not really, but anyway)
Then Artie implores Quinn to ditch Senior Ditch Day, ’cause Six Flags is allegedly a drag for kids in wheelchairs.
Back to Glee Club where Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother instructs a room of possibly-drugged children on the ins and outs of the biz, like posing for headshots, eschewing New York (“Broadway is dead”) for Hollywood, and preparing for your first callback.
What happens in this scene happens a lot in Glee — handsome guest star arrives in Glee Club and consequently children of all genders, sexual orientations and IQ levels are reduced to blundering illogical idiots. It’s like they’ve got superpowers or something.
Anyhow, Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother is full of hilarious wisdom:
Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother: “Gotta figure out — is it comedic, or is it dramatic? Often it’s hard to tell, right? So do what I do: ask the director. “Is this scene comedic or dramatic”?”
Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother’s number-one trick, however, which he clearly learned from Santana Lopez, is that things are more dramatic when you point…
…and to that point, he shuffles the children into an impromptu scene study using his sides from a foiled NCIS audition and really it’s all quite amusing except for the look on Blaine’s face and his understandable confusion regarding why this fine group of semi-intelligent weirdos have all become drooling blockheads at the site of an objectively attractive man, if you’re into that kind of thing.
Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother: “The secret to great acting — ignoring whatever the other actor is doing. Eye contact with a scene partner is incredibly distracting, I try to tune them out entirely. Sometimes I wear earplugs. That way I don’t get distracted by what they’re doing, and I can focus on the awesome acting choices I’ve planned ahead of time, like eating a roast beef sandwich.”
Blaine and Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother tread into a public fight during which it’d be super-lovely for Blaine’s boyfriend Kurt to stand up for his boyfriend Blaine but he doesn’t and I’m not sure if I should hate Kurt for that, or just hate The Show.
Somewhere in the Ohio Mountains of Greater Lima’s First Wives Club Compound, Finn and Puck are fixing a pool while drinking homosexual virgin-cocktails and fielding inappropriate sexual oral gumdrops from a Blonde in a Swimsuit who is probably the same age as the actors playing these teenaged boys, but do you actually even care about this scene? Of course not. All you need to know is that Puck thinks Finn should think about Finn for once and go huff chlorine together. I agree.
Meanwhile in conversations about selfishness, Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother wants Blaine to skip school and help him run lines for an audition for a Michael Bay flick but Blaine’s like, “you fucking idiot, that is the worst reason to skip school I’ve ever heard,” but not in so many words.
All this semi-forced conflict stirs to the anger-climax necessary to warrant a cover of Christina Aguliera’s “Fighter” by Darren Criss, Teen Hearththrob:
The idea here is that Blaine’s plagued by the psuedo-success of his handsome big brother who visits once every-other moon cycle and that Darren Criss works out a lot:
Although paling in comparison to the inappropriateness of this episode’s crowning musical number, the song’s barely appropriate for the situation. I would’ve voted for “Because Of You,” but nobody asks me what I want on Glee, not ever.
Back in the Semi-Hallowed Hallways of McKinley High, Quinn, dressed like Paula Deen, snags Finn in a compromising position —
Quinn: “Hey! What are you doing?”
Finn: “Texting –”
Quinn: “While walking. Texting while walking. That’s exactly how I started.”
“Texting while walking” is the marijuana of mobile-related PSAs — one day you’re texting while walking, the next day you’re texting while blasting heroin into your virginal veins.
Also, there’s only one hallway in this entire school, what’s the BFD, Quinn? And also also also —
SENIOR DITCH DAY AT SIX FLAGS! I hope it’s a Senior Ditch Weekend, since the closest Six Flags is nearly five hours away, unlike (as aforementioned) Cedar Point, America’s Roller Coast and my favorite amusement park on the planet besides Disney World.
Artie’s hauling Quinn via public transit to a special fun-park for handicapable kids where they can roll down ramps and watch teenagers with one leg skateboard and feel empowered, which is pretty cool and interesting.
Meanwhile in what can only possibly be CHICAGO — the kids, squealing with hormonal delight, tumble joyfully from their bus, arms and legs and eyeballs bursting with roller coaster anticipation.
They strap it in for a wild rollercoaster ride, which’s cute because all the characters sort of fade and become the actors and also Santana and Brittany hold hands, and we like that a lot, don’t we?
… and I have no idea why I’m so hung up on this, I think ’cause I really wanted them to go to Cedar Point, like all self-respecting Senior Ditchers in the Midwest do. Anyhow!
Artie congratulates himself on getting Quinn to the fun-park to enjoy “people having a good time in the same situation” as her, but Quinn insists she’s gonna be walking in like, a week or eight weeks or something quite soon, and Artie rains on that parade with a “Look, I’ve been where you are, I know how it feels, but you can’t keep denying–” which is unnecessary and weird. Naturally, Quinn points out that actually she’s not like him, but she says it in the strangest bitchiest way possible, which’s maybe ’cause that’s her first line of defense — being bitchy — it’s what she always used before she became a Better Person.
Quinn: “I’m not denying anything. You’re not me, okay. I’m not like you. This isn’t my life. I’m going to Yale, I’m getting out of Lima, I’m gonna walk again.”
Everybody knows you can’t get out of Lima or go to Yale in a wheelchair, you’ve gotta do it on two feet! (WHAT?!)
Anyhow, Quinn turns from Artie and rolls offscreen defiantly despite the fact that they’re taking the same bus and therefore will be sitting in the same location in approximately two minutes.
Back in the Quasi-Hallowed Hallways of McKinley High, Teen Jesus, still shoeless and obnoxiously coiffed, helps Quinn with some dropped books and offers to wheel her to class, like in that poem about the beach where Jesus carries somebody and leaves one set of footprints.
Teen Jesus opines that he’s been praying for Quinndolyn, as is his way, and Quinn retorts —
Quinn: “I’ve been praying to walk again as well.”
Teen Jesus: “Oh, I don’t pray for you to walk, I ask god to help you accept whatever your journey may be–”
Quinn: “I appreciate your prayers, I do. But when you’re done praying you need to get up off your knees and walk away.”
1. THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID
Quinn snaps out of the bitch-zone immediately with an apology and a reprimand muttered to herself of “self-obsessed bitch.”
Teen Jesus says “it’s cool” which inspires Quinn to tell him he’s really inspiring and would “be inspiring to a few other people I know,” which’s such a bizarre leap that I almost love it for gifting us with a short fake contrived situation to get Teen Jesus into Glee Club rather than a long drawn-out fake contrived situation to get Teen Jesus into Glee Club.
Guess what, we’re back at Booty Camp and Teen Jesus is gonna join Glee Club! Furthermore, Sugar is wearing a BANGIN’ outfit like the lovechild of Jane Fonda, Rainbow Brite and The Big Gay Pimp. Anyhow, Sue’s got some words about optimism, birth and adult friends, and says she’s gonna be nicer. Kurt is dressed like the mainsail on a Captain America spacecraft.
Sue: “I thought I was being kind. For instance, I said absolutely nothing about the implausible sexual tension between Mercedes and the Kentucky Fried Stripper. Or the sorry fact that you wasted untold millions on a laser show for yourself just so Sandbags could dance with the night school’s Polynesian janitor.”
Santana: “Actually, he was Puerto Rican.”
And that’s Santana’s second and final line of the episode!
Back in the semi-hallowed hallways of McKinley High, Kurt is oh-so-cutely attempting to charm his boyf with a tiny puppy-puppet named “Margaret Thatcher Dog,” acquired at Six Flags through a surely-delightful carnival game of some kind, which is adorable although not as adorable as moral support, which Kurt’s about to dish out in the losest sense of the word.
Kurt suggests Blaine amp up his love/affection for Cooper, just like how Kurt overcame the fact that he and his vaguely human stepbrother, Finn, who Kurt’s been related to for about two years max and barely ever interacts with, “pretty much disagree on everything” to totally love each other, which doesn’t even remotely parallel Blaine’s sitch but really, really, really WHO CARES, let’s move on —
“You only get one brother, Blaine,” says Kurt the Up-and-Coming Mathlete. Yeah, tell that to John Wayne Gacy’s sisters. Anyhow, barf barf barf, let’s get to the auditorium for the creepiest most asinine number of the night, a cover of “Somebody That I Used to Know” by Goyte, not to be confused with “Somebody That I Used To Know” by Elliot Smith, which could truly break a young boi’s heart in a way this creepy Flowers-In-The-Attic version never could.
This song has been stuck in my girlfriend’s head for like four weeks and we both hate it.
G-Chat, 4/10/2012, 11:49 AM
me: omg marni
guess what they’re covering on glee tonight
me: oh yes
marni: god i hate them for trying so obnoxiously to be current!
marni: so kurt and blaine break up?
me: no i don’t think they break up
marni: ugh i have to watch it now
me: aren’t you so excitant
for tonight’s episode
marni: he’s either singing it to an ex boyfriend or his brother
i think it’s his brother
which is weird
like his estranged older brother
me: oh yeah
played by somebody famous
i forget who
marni: he looks like a lowe but isn’t one
me: whoever that is
marni: god it’s in my head already and i haven’t even listened
Casanova Cooper: “We’re not just brothers, right? We’re friends, too?”
Blaine: “That’s…exactly what I’ve always wanted us to be, Coop.”
Blaine’s Beautiful Idiot Brother says his audition’s been cancelled, probably ’cause they found somebody better, and Blaine inexplicably offers to “show ’em” by creating/sending Michael Bay a video which, in a universe where one’s admission to an acting conservatory is made or broken by an actor’s student government record, just might work.
Back in the Barely-Hallowed Hallways of McKinley High, Finn confesses his simmering desire ditch The Big Apple in favor of cleaning pools and vaginal canals in the Napa Valley. Rachel’s like, “when you’re tired, you take a Napa, you don’t move to Napa.”
Actually she doesn’t say that, that’s from Sex and the City, and Finn didn’t specifically name Napa, which isn’t even near Los Angeles anyhow. Finn doesn’t know all the cities, he’s not an atlas. Bla bla bla, I hope they break up.
Rachel: “Finn, what are you doing?”
Finn: “Well I’m thinking about my future–”
Rachel: “I thought it was our future.”
Finn: “Of course it is, it’s our future but it feels like the convesation’s been a little one-sided lately…”
Hey, I’ve got an idea — why don’t you BREAK UP like all high school couples do after graduation when their dreams take them to separate geographical locations?
Rachel: “I’m going to New York. I need you with me, I can’t do this without you.”
What the WHAT? THAT IS A LIE, THAT IS A STUPID STUPID DUMB STUPID THING RACHEL BERRY WOULD NEVER, EVER, NOT EVER SAY OR THINK OR FEEL, EVER. Ugh, I wish Finn got hit by a truck. New Haven is really close to New York City, did you know that? I did.
Anyhow — this looks cute, doesn’t it?
How about this?
Oh and… this just in!!