Glee 3x09 "Extraordinary Merry Christmas"

Anyone who has kept up with my Glee reviews could probably tell that this episode was inevitably going to disappoint me. I can understand why some people could get a kick out of Glee getting their Xmas on; that factor is pretty much dependent on the music. I cannot stand Christmas songs of any kind, so it goes…

Ugly holiday sweater ambush. My eyes. They burn.
The fact that Matthew Morrison was directing the episode was not exciting me either. Nothing against him, but the problem with Glee was always with the writing (and direction is largely dependent on that). I suppose he did a fine job, but this Christmas special, or a Christmas special by nature, is basically an excuse for Glee to forgo the episodic conventions of which they barely attempt as it is (consistent characterization, tandem music/staging, focused plotlines or extensions by thereof) and just forget about that entirely. Because you know…IT’S CHRISTMAS...Echo…Echo…Echo

There is no greater reflection then that then how the characters were handled this episode. Rachel went back to being an obnoxious bitch (seriously) only to have a turn-around by the end. Artie became a “take-no-prisoners” director again, only to lighten up. Rory and Sam prove their utter uselessness by teaming up together. Above all, Sue, whom has not had a nice, sentimental bone in her body all season (remember, she was a man-eating, sociopath two episodes ago), was all sweet and altruistic once she trotted out a mention of her dead sister. Was I the only one who was nauseous over that? I was going to vomit so much, my neighbors would have thought Linda Blair came over for dinner.

To be fair, that was a great number and the staging was great.

Ugh, did I mention that he is useless? Sorry; I think Damian McGinty’s voice is way overrated.

Loved Lea’s voice here; she has been on her game lately.

Oh look, another original song. It was like Christmas meets Victorious or Camp Rock, with even more autotune and with even more money in Ryan Murphy’s pocket. You could practically hear the sounds of consumer and trend driven teen’s hearts melting as they charge the $1.29 to their (parents) credit card, just because their stud muffin Darren Criss Blaine and their diva Lea Michele Rachel are singing together while manically smiling and flirting like they are trying to hide some serious cocaine addictions. 2 good + 2 be = 4 gotten, ZOMG BFFles forevs and evs…

Sense the tone. Next?

Credit where its due, this was UTTERLY FABULOUS. For the fleeting ten or 12 minutes when a black and white, Judy Garland-inspired classic Hollywood Christmas Special came on, I thought the episode had turned around to be thoroughly entertaining.
All of the jokes landed, the performances were fantastic (“My Favorite Things” was KILLER; how much fun was it watching Lea, Darren, Amber and Chris getting their "Sound of Music" on) and Glee managed to be “in” on the joke and aware of its own absurdity.

Why so sad incongruous little one?
And then Rory entered and the entire sequence died. Can he be deported for killing the fabulousity? I’ll launch the campaign.

Good song; super adorable I suppose...

See you in the New Year Glee. Don’t come back until Santa fixes all of your plot/character problems; they need a lot of help to match the high level of music (ignoring some exceptions) you have been giving us. We can wait...

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