Glee 3x07 "I Kissed a Girl"

Best friend Kay made an entry about Glee in a recent post in her LiveJournal. Of the many dead-on things she said, there is one thing above all that is worth pointing out…

“I don't get joy from the show anymore.”

Sing it, sister. Call me sometime…

Keep that in mind for a second and let’s play another round of “Nostalgic Glee.” Think back to when Kurt came out of the closet to Burt early on in the show’s run. That episode, and Kurt in particular, was hilarious (“I’m Kurt Hummel and I would like to audition for the role of kicker”), appropriately dramatic and sweet. Remember, this show was once the feel-good show of the year.

Naya Rivera just burns through
camera lens like matches.
By comparison, let’s look at “The Santana Show” this week. Was she hilarious? Not really; her bitchiness in the face of so many people trying to help her was a new level of low (even for her) and really depressing.

Oh sure, there was some sweet scenes. But let’s get the ugly out of the way…that scene with Santana’s grandmother was AWFUL. It’s fine for the show to indulge in stereotypes and clich├ęs, but Abuela was every possible one wrapped into one character. The entire scene, the whole three minutes, was such an obvious, cheap trick resulting in Santana in tears. Was anyone engaged or particularly interested in this scene, given the seriousness of the subject matter? I wasn’t; underwhelmed and bored is more like it. Santana just rambled while Grandmother sat there stoically. Really?

The show also has a history of parents and teachers, pretty much everyone except Burt and Carol, being immature, inappropriate, pathetic or flat-out terrible. Enough already; we get it. Why they did not show Santana’s parents is beyond me; talk about a missed opportunity. Oh right, having supportive, kind parents is not melodramatic enough; silly me…

As bad as that was, there was actually an even more cringe-worthy scene and a piece of dialogue. Take it away Finn…

"I don’t want you to die."

Oh boy. Let me remind you again, this was once a feel-good show with a darkly-comedic undertone. Last season, the heavy-handed use of social commentary and a too serious gay-bullying storyline had a hand in the show’s precipitous fall. What should we make of this? When “heavy-handed” is an understatement, you know there is a glaringly bad issue. Some writer somewhere wrote the scene, an entire crew, actors included, made the scene and the scene made it through the entire editing process to wind up in the final reel. Did anyone ever say “what the hell is this?”

Apparently not.

Our accents may sometimes trip up.
It is Glee though, so it does not matter.
More venting…yes please. I do not know what to make of Finn this episode; but then again, this character was always jostled around when it came to the gay storylines. For the most part, he gets unfairly treated what with him being antagonized to the extreme (Kurt’s initial fawning/scheming and Santana’s nastiness most notably). With screaming the “F” word to Kurt, being scapegoated during Karofsky-gate right before the Burt/Carol wedding, his animosity towards Blaine and outing Santana last week, he is, by default, made to look anti-gay (despite some brief moments of redemption). That was clearly not the intention because this week, he was all but one step away from getting a tattoo of a rainbow flag on his body with his affection towards Santana. Wait, what…

I love that the show addresses many angles of teenage homosexuality in such a mainstream platform, but Kurt and Santana, after they both had some amazing scenes before, during and shortly after coming out, irritate me and weigh the show down with the dourness of it all. It was way better back when they were supporting characters and scenes exploring their situation were a real treat. Now, they spearhead a good portion of the show and the mediocrity of their character arches reflect that the Glee creators are incapable of incorporating the subject manner without the need to teach a lesson or shoehorn in a recent newspaper headline or statistic. You want to make a point Glee creators? Give the characters believable dialogue, let the scenes flow naturally and let subtlety speak volumes. Don’t try to create melodrama and churn out clunky scenes with the hope that the audience wants to be educated.

Suggestive Cha-Cha Train/Conga Line!
I think I have run my mouth off enough. No; wait, one more issue. Sorry; my word vomit is catching up with the show. Every plot wrapped up off-camera and even the storylines that could have long-term potential, all wrapped up by the episode’s end. Talk about a pacing problem; it is like the anti-The Walking Dead. It is obvious why; the folks of Glee are always insistent on concluding most of the plots before Sectionals, while leaving us with a cliffhanger or two (in this case, Rachel’s DQ and Puck telling Quinn about his affair with Shelby).

Bad ideas all around; the production of West Side Story lasted an episode, which was very weird considering auditioning and casting took up more time then rehearsing and opening night. Santana’s coming-out wrapped up after all that build-up; not to mention, it was only a fraction of the length (and depth) of Kurt’s story. Both elections wrapped up (although to be fair, the student election ran its course), but the Burt vs. Sue throw down ended before it ever really began. Where did this Burt winning come from?

Ugh, hit it musical numbers a.k.a the episode’s saving grace. No kidding; the music and staging has been on point for nearly the entire season.

Cute outfits and a cute number. I may have ragged on the “Kurt and Bullying” thing, but I do sympathize for him losing the election and his application looking weaker as a result (even though they act like his acceptance damn near hinged on it).

My favorite Puck number in a long time. I also love the glances and cut-shots; each reaction in itself advances the plot forward.

Puck and Shelby sleeping together was something, wasn’t it? Also, when did the former become the wise one of the group, calling out Quinn and Shelby left and right. I mostly agreed with him on everything, like Shelby’s tough exterior crumbling down and Quinn’s downfall from the moment he impregnated her.

This is a brilliant reimagining of “Girls Just Want To Have Fun,” even though I am not a fan of the number itself. Cory Monteith sounds like he took a valium and started singing. Santana’s reaction throughout the song was good; that is one department Rivera really excels at.

Love the staging and love the number. Team Bieste for the win.

The idea of another love triangle forming does not excite me really. However, I can give it some time; for one, Cooter is a nice guy and Coach Bieste would let her insecurities put a halt in the romance. My only issue is that the writers constantly belittle her with her protein consumption, constant weight-lifting and…butchness. It would not kill them to lay off her a little; it is getting way to repetitive.

Fierce as hell and a lot of energy. Katy Perry should blow kiss the cast of Glee for constantly doing her numbers justice.

And another one of Tina’s solos is covered again. If they redo “True Colors,” I might weep.

Also good, but I was more impressed with how the number not only fit Santana’s story, but Shelby’s and Kurt’s.

- I do not give the ensemble enough credit; the cast is filled with a lot of acting talent. Home-runs all around, I say…

- Now that the electon is over, what does that mean for Sue, other then eating up Coach Bieste’s man? Jane Lynch continues to be underutilized, but then again, Sue Sylvester’s glory days have been long behind her.

- I did like the twist that Rachel is off the New Directions for Sectionals. I have to admit, them winning at Sectionals does not seem like such a foregone conclusion now. That is a major credit to the show.

- Yes, I saw the preview for next week. No, I was not excited for Sam’s return; but my attitude is shifting…him being a stripper, exotic dancer or whatever looks ridiculous and amusing. Considering the show defers to overly serious, if not dull, that can only be a welcome sight.

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