Glee Season 1 Episode 20: Theatricality
We were a little surprised to see them take the Kurt/Finn storyline to this point. After all, it required Finn to act in a manner that would be totally normal for a 16-year-old straight boy faced with a new gay stepbrother who has a crush on him and doesn’t understand boundaries. The problem is, “totally normal” for a 16-year-old straight boy in that situation is, unfortunately, terribly offensive. There was no getting around it. In order for Finn to have a natural reaction to Kurt’s fawning over him, he was going to have to be portrayed as something of an asshole. Well, they went there and Burt Hummel got a scene for the ages.
In fact, the longer Burt’s tirade went on, the more impressed we were with their commitment to it. He said EVERYTHING that needed to be said on the subject and he packed the speech with enough emotion to leave us moist-eyed by the end. Go, Burt. Best Dad in the history of television.
But you know, it can’t be denied that Kurt pushed everything to this point. Which isn’t to say he should ever be subjected to words like “fag,” but we were happy to see that despite Finn’s awful tirade, he at least got to point out to Kurt that he had pushed too hard and he didn’t accept Finn for what he was. In other words, there were nuances to that scene that lifted it out of simple Afterschool Special lesson-teaching. Finn used a Bad Word and learned a lesson, but we’re going to need to see that Kurt learned a lesson too and plotting to trick your crush into becoming more than your crush is a dumb game to play.
In other news, GAGA!!! We’ll get to Poker Face in a minute, but ohmiGOD, that version of “Bad Romance” was just too, too much. What thrilled us more? Kurt’s lobster claw shoes or Santana’s amazing vocals? One thing’s for sure, that one’s definitely heading to the iPod later today.
As for the Kiss stuff? Well, “Shout it Out Loud” was fun. “Beth” always was the cheesiest (and subsequently, the most well known) of their songs, but it at least made some story sense, even if the message of the song was a bit at odds with the message of the scene. After all, you don’t declare that you’re going to be there for someone by singing a song about NOT being there for someone. Best not to think about it too much.
And best not to think about what a HORRIBLE BITCH Shelby Corcoran is. Seriously, that whole story was treated as some sort of bittersweet reunion and goodbye when all we could think was, “This woman needs to have charges pressed against her.” And where the hell were Rachel’s fathers? Sure we got a funny line about how they were moving Rachel’s therapist into the spare room but all that illustrated was the absurdity of their non-appearance. Their daughter’s long-lost mother makes contact against their will and that’s the sum total of their response to it? Stupid. It kind of ruined their inspired – if a little bizarre – cabaret version of Poker Face. Not exactly a mother-daughter bonding song but we guess that was kind of the point. They weren’t bonding. In fact, they had failed to bond. Still, we’ll take a scene with these two powerhouses exercising their vocal chords at one another any day.
In other Glee news, Tina fights for her goth rights and Finn once again decides he stands with the freaks against the bullies. Obviously this storyline isn’t going away and we wouldn’t expect it to. Realism certainly isn’t a goal for the show, but it would be weird if there weren’t repercussions for the freaks flying their freak flag so prominently. There’s going to be an inevitable jocks vs. gleeks showdown coming. We already know where Finn stands, but it’ll be interesting to see where, say, someone like Santana will stand when it all goes down.
Favorite lines of the night:
“My parents won’t even let me watch Twilight; my mom says she thinks Kristen Stewart seems like a bitch.”
“Let them think what they want. They’re Neanderthals; in three years they’ll be cleaning my septic tank.”
“You look terrible; I look awesome.”
“A Happy Meal, no onions. Or a chicken.”