Glee: Hit It on the Nose

Oh Glee. Glee, Glee, Glee, Glee, Glee, Glee, Glee. What ever are we going to do with you? Last night you were bigger or badder than ever. Or was it just big? Or was it just bad? I can barely even tell anymore.

What did you all think of last night's episode of Glee? I have a feeling its going to be divisive and the people who love to love the show and people who hate to hate it are going to be yet again at odds. What did I think of it? It was fine. I think this is the Glee we're going to settle into when the brilliance of the first season meets all the problems of the second season to find some great so-so-iness somewhere in the middle. So last night, it was fine. It was just fine. It was missing anything really hilarious—no Sue Motherfucking Sylvester, barely any Brittany—just a story about loving who you are and a bunch of too-long musical numbers.

So, Will Schuester is teaching the gleemurs (thanks, Richard) how to dance because their dancing sucks, and especially Finn's. We know this because the show always makes fun of it, and if they make fun of one of their problems it means its not a problem anymore, it just miraculously disappears. That is a Glee Truth. Anyway, Finn smacks Rachel in her nose and she breaks it. Rachel's doctor tells her that since its broken he can give her a nose job to make it look cute and fix her deviated septum which will make her a better singer. Everyone thinks this is a stupid idea but Rachel. But she wants Quinn's nose. Who wouldn't? It's kind of a perfect nose.

Any mention of Glee and mashups (barf) makes my stomach do horrible things, but this mashup (vomit) actually wasn't that bad. I'm going to go so far as to say this mashup (heave) of TLC's "Unpretty" and "I Feel Pretty" from West Side Story wouldn't make Lisa "Left Eye" Lopez roll over in her grave. OK, it was actually good. It fit the context of the "Rachel wants Quinn's nose" story, it was shot interestingly and it was just on the right side of heavy-handed. And it had that classic dose of Glee irony that we have been missing lately. Rachel is singing "I Feel Pretty" when she's supposed to be the ugly one and Quinn is singing "Unpretty" when she's supposed to be the second coming of Homecoming Barbie. It's as if Rachel only feels pretty imagining herself as someone else and Quinn, no matter how beautiful, knows that there is something ugly deep inside her.

Since Rachel isn't the only one with issues, Will is working with Emma to try to get her over her OCD, which she refuses to admit she has. Between that and the nose, Will decides on his "assignment" for the week. I'm so sick of these fucking assignments. Can't we find a new framing device, please? This is not the way any Glee Club in the whole world is run. They pick four songs, learn them, dance them to death until they get good, and then go compete. Why not show us more of that and just throw the other songs in there to highlight the action? Anyway, the assignment is to sing the new Lady Gaga song, because a new Gaga single means a Gaga song they haven't done yet and they must collect the whole set. Lady Gaga songs on Glee are the new Star Wars glasses from Burger King. Just wait until Katy Perry drops a new album and they do every track off it the first day it's on the street.

Anyway, they're going to sing "Born This Way" and they're all going to wear T-shirts that describe the one thing about themselves that they hate. When introducing the idea, Emma wears a shirt that says "Ginger." Will is all pissed off cause he wants it to say OCD so that Emma will hate it so much she'll want to change it. There is a bit of a mixed message here. They're supposed to be flaunting the negative attributes they were born with—brown eyes, big noses, red hair—and singing about how that's what makes them fierce. That's cool. But Emma' has to put OCD on her shirt to show everyone that she wants to change it. That she wasn't born that way. I'm totally confused.

So, everyone wants to be prom queen—Quinn to show how fierce she is, Lauren to prove how awesome she is, and Santana to prove she's not a lesbian or something. Quinn is just putting up posters and campaigning. Lauren is trying to ruin Quinn to get the crown, but Santana, she takes it to a whole different level. First she figures out that Karofsky is gay, then she blackmails him into being her boyfriend so that everyone will think that they're both straight, then she gets him to apologize to the Glee Club and Kurt and start an anti-bullying task force because if Kurt comes back to school somehow she'll be prom queen. The only place where this would make actual sense is on an episode of Gossip Girl, but we need Kurt to come back, so we go with it.

Somehow because of prom queen or something, Finn does a number called "I Gotta Be Me," made famous by Sammy Davis Jr and, once again, it is about how Finn is a bad dancer. It's a fine song surprisingly well sung with some great dance moves by Mike Chang's Abs. What annoys me is that all season Finn has been trying to get popular again, to be something he's not, to bend himself to other people's expectations, and now because Rachel wants a nose job he's all like "Oh, nevermind. I gotta be me." Way to flesh out the rationalization for this number.

That's it for Finn's story this week. I just noticed last night that all the heterosexual boys on this show don't get any attention. It's all about the gays and the ladies. Not like that's the worst thing, but if I was Sam and I hadn't gotten any attention for something other than my mouth since the episode where I debuted, I'd be a little pissed.

Alright, where were we? Oh, Karofsky apologizes to Babygay Kurt who says that he doesn't believe in outing so he won't tell anyone his secret, but that he will believe that he's not going to hurt Kurt anymore, so he'll come back to McKinley High. Excellent, that plot device is out of the way.

Hey guys, did you know that The Warblers have a CD out this week? Yeah, it's called The Warblers Rule All the iTunes Downloads and you should totally go and download it on iTunes now. And guess what, it includes this song! It's by Keane and it is called "Somewhere Only We Know." It sounds like something off of the Grey's Anatomy soundtrack, but it's not. No, it's sung by the Warblers at lunch time at McKinley High because BG Kurt wouldn't go back to class at the beginning of the day. No, he will return smack dab in the middle of the day. And The Warblers can just show up because they wear prep school uniforms so that means they don't have to follow any rules. We learned that from Gossip Girl. Oh, and there just happens to be a grand piano in the courtyard. It's just there. These are all just normal things that happen. Yup, completely normal things that go on in every single high school in the universe. Yup. Totes MaGoats.

We're back from the commercial break and now Babygay Kurt is going to sing a very literal song called Sunset Boulevard called "As If We Never Said Goodbye." It's sung by Norma Desmond when she returns to Paramount Studios to talk to Cecil B. DeMille and when she gets on the set, it's as if she never said goodbye to any of it. This is exactly what Kurt is going through and it's amazing how well this song fits into the story. BG Kurt sings it very well, but it is a classic late-career Andrew Lloyd Weber turkey. It should be called "The Song That Never Says Goodbye" because every time you think it's about to end, there is another verse or chorus or coda or something else about whispers. Just end it.

Also, this is a completely extraneous number. This what they added in when Fox was like "Hey, that stupid show The Voice is going to premiere the same night as the Rachel Breaks Her Nose episode. Can you make it 90 minutes?" They said, "Sure! We'll just add in a 10 minute Kurt number that is tangentially related to the story from an obscure musical starring Glen Close." Problem solved! And why is he singing this to Glee Club? It's not part of the assignment. Is he just showing off? Why can't he just sing it roaming the halls and getting back to the normal life of a teenager? Why? Why? So many Whys!

Since this song had nothing to do with the story, where were we? Oh, Lauren dug up some dirt on Quinn and found out that she used to be a fat ugly person in middle school that everyone called Lucy Caboosey. That is pretty fucking awesome, actually, and it explains so much about Quinn, especially in relation to singing "Unpretty" earlier. It seems like Quinn has a classic case of "Former Fat Girl Syndrome." It can afflict men too, but its when someone has a drastically improved appearance but still sees themselves as a nasty fat girl and treats everyone like they see them as a nasty fat girl.

Kurt may not believe in outing, but Lauren does, especially when it's a former ugly who makes lives of all the ugly girls hell. And it's effective too, in that Quinn is happier once she's "out" and everyone realizes she's a real person rather than a blond automaton. She becomes an aspirational object, someone that people can emulate, rather than some far off standard that they'll never attain. Hurray for outing!

Rachel, though, is sick of being ugly and still wants to get her nose job. Then the crew comes up with a plan. Here it is.

Yes, they take her to the mall to do a "Barbara Streisand" flash mob. It's as if they producers were like, "Well, we have this mall set left over from that 'Safety Dance' scene from last season and we really should use it again. How about another flash mob?" Not only was the concept warmed over, it didn't make any sense. How is a flash mob supposed to convince Rachel not to get a nose job? Supposedly it's because she wants to emulate her idol Barbra Streisand and be beautiful in her own way. But how does this song and this flash mob convince her of that? The lyrics to this song could very well be "Milton Berle" or "Rodney Dangerfield" or "Fabiola Beracasa." The words don't mean anything. Still it convinces Rachel not to get a nose job. Mission accomplished. Now, if only they would stop doing these damn flash mobs so we could get to Sharper Image already!

What else is happening? Oh, Will finally convinces Emma to go see a shrink to talk about her OCD. Her first visit is a great scene, but for some reason I kept wishing her psychologist was someone more major, like Lynda Carter. So, Emma has finally decided that since she wasn't born with her OCD she needs to get rid of it. But if she does, what will her one character trait be? Maybe she's a bad dancer like Finn?

Then there is a really nice scene in the hallway with Santana and Brittany where Brit makes Santana a shirt that says "Lebanese" because she wants to support her Sapphic friend. Santana still hasn't accepted herself—or that Brittany rejected her for Artie—so she's having a tough time wearing the shirt. But then she is wearing the shirt at the end of the episode, so maybe she's getting closer to being out? Let's hope, cause if Lauren finds out, it's all over!

And then they sang the new Lady Gaga song. Singing the new Lady Gaga song is now Glee's raison d'être. That and telling us it's OK to be a loser. Thanks Glee. We still haven't figured out what to do with you, but at least now we know exactly what to expect.