Glee 3x04 "Pot O' Gold"

I suppose I should go easy on this episode of Glee since it is the first episode back after a hiatus. Also, with the last episode being absurdly amazing, this hour was abound to disappoint.

Well, if it was trying to disappoint – mission accomplished. It was not that bad, but the unevenness of it all was not a welcome sight.

Being a Ryan Murphy show, it is no surprise that the entire female ensemble was hung out to dry. Let’s run them down; every female was either selfish or self-centered (Rachel, Mercedes), a raging bitch (Quinn, Santana, Sue, stereotypical black women throwing a brick), kind of pathetic (Tina, Shelby) or moronic to the point of insufferable (Brittany, Sugar). Oh sure; some characters had some redeeming moments; but a lot of bad development all-around.

Working off of that…

Truth be told, Damian McGinty did better then I expected. He got in some funny lines and looks like he is in high school, which is about the only thing that distinguishes him from the 21 and over crowd. The thing is, he was clearly one of the weakest on The Glee Project, but the Glee folk (namely, Ryan Murphy) created excuses and ignored their double and triple standards to waive him forward to a seven-episode arc. Say what you will about Lindsay Pearce, at least she BROUGHT it to the performing when she had to.

Granted, nearly every number was problematic and that was not McGinty’s fault. In fact, this was the first time they messed up in the music department all season (which explains my frustration). This number was cute, but the staging was AWFUL. Have you seen what the glee club has endured, like say, slushies, deaththreats, hazing, repeated rejection…you know, amongst other things. Rory gets slightly turned down by Brittany and shoved into a few lockers; let’s have him sing his painful and heartbroken lament to “Bein’ Green.” That’s totally on the same playing field.

In short, the producers decided to go with cheap audience manipulation instead of letting it come naturally, like when Mercedes sang “Spotlight” or Mike Chang danced with his mother. I could spot the puppet strings from a mile away.

Well, Santana unleashed her claws to some great lines and more fun. As long as her character remains interesting (i.e her closet lesbianism and fawning over Brittany offsets her off-the-charts nastiness), I will still capital-L Love her.

How about another number?

Lay off the autotune, will ya? Even so, the number was a good idea that went awry. First off, more audience manipulation with the stud-swooning serenade. Second, the number lasted a little over a minute and had nothing, but wide-eye glances. Uninspired much…

At least the whole Puck and Shelby makes sense (and a HELL of a lot more interesting then Puck/Lauren last year). For one, he has a history of plowing moms and of course he would run into the arms of anyone showing the slightest bit of support (meaning, anyone not-Quinn). Shelby’s vulnerabilities seem a little inconsistent given she was a beast of choir director and a strong, driven women. However, I can buy into it (Idina Menzel’s acting certainly doesn’t hurt). That kiss at the end was a welcome curveball; they had to do something with Mark Salling and Menzel’s wicked chemistry.

Wow, that pun was not intended.

This to me was the highlight of the episode. It has been a while since Jane Lynch had some really juicy lines; I laughed at almost everything that came out of her mouth. In fact, for all of my complaints of mediocrity, it was pretty funny episode throughout.

While Burt Hummel is too flawless for words (literally), why nitpick? The character has been the portrait of the perfect father since day one and each one of his appearances only reinforce that. Hey; maybe this election will keep him a recurring presence on the show. Can’t complain about that…

But yes, a dark hour for the show as the seams holding it together were tested. Balancing the entire ensemble was a struggle by throwing in another character into the mix, as well as having some returning cast members featured more prominently. The music missed the mark (with some notable exceptions) and at no point this week was there anything to match the character-defining moments, emotional whallops or entertainment value that we could come to expect from Glee. Try again next week!

The last of the music numbers and some more comments:

I liked this number on the meta textual reference alone, given that both Darren Criss and Kevin McHale were featured in the original Katy Perry video. The number also benefited by being a nice touch of harmless fun; Criss was hilarious here.

By the way, I did enjoy all the meta references the episode offered; there was enough to start a drinking game.

Fabulous; my other favorite number of the episode. No surprise that these powerhouse girls would bring sass and flair to spare.

Absolutely terrible. McGinty’s narrow range was exposed here as he went for that falsetto. And why does he get two solo numbers in his first episode when nearly everyone else in the cast has not even had one? We saw more of Rory in this one episode then we have seen of Tina or Artie all season. Yikes.

Same time; next week Glee...

No comments: