Glee Recap: Tats, Tongues, and Twerking


Managing Editor

First of all, holy warnings before the episode, Fox. Calm yourself.

Let’s all give a warm welcome back to the recurring character of “Blaine’s ass,” which is highly featured for most of the episode but makes its first appearance as Tina continues to cross boundaries and sneakily records him twerking his way around the choir room.

He’s embarrassed by the video, but Will is game for anything inappropriate and decides that twerking at Nationals might be just the thing to “edge up their image.” The kids are excited and all begin to joyously do something that is mostly not twerking. Jake and Kitty give a brief history and tutorial, but everyone is varying degrees of bad at it and Sue sees them practicing.

Rachel shows up to Funny Girl rehearsal with a short bob haircut that angers the director. She insists that it’s both era-appropriate and necessary for her attempt to shake things up after the hellish month she’s had. After a run through of “You are Woman, I am Man” that isn’t really useful as anything other than a preview of what Lea will sound like when she is inevitably cast in a revival of the show, the director agrees that the hair was a good choice.

Unique runs into Bree while trying to use the girls’ bathroom and instead of Bree recognizing her struggle, she uses it as an excuse to go into the boys’ bathroom and set in motion “The great McKinley bathroom gender riot of 2013.” The sequence is funny in the escalating bathroom shenanigans and an always welcome appearance from Stoner Brett, but I can’t really get past Bree’s treatment of Unique enough to enjoy it. She’s just. Awful.

Psych, Rachel’s haircut was a wig. When Kurt flips out a little on what could’ve happened if the director hadn’t liked it, Rachel says he’s become boring – all he does is go to school and work and Skype with Blaine (and not even sexy Skyping! They just talk and go to sleep, but let’s all admit that’s pretty adorable in its own right) – and tells him they both need to take risks. Kurt appropriately guesses that her new Carpe Diem attitude is a result of Finn’s death, but nonetheless agrees to go do something crazy.

I’m glad that they have tropes like “Sue’s Corner” to set up conflicts without the pesky need for character interaction and dialogue. Sue pledges to “end the pandemic” of twerking by submitting legislation that will ban it in Ohio schools. This, of course, outrages the students. Will says that Sue has drawn a line in the sand and they have to blur it, “like that Alan Thicke song.” No, everyone says, that is definitely not what that song is about. But Will cannot be deterred, and so he leads the school in a performance of “Blurred Lines.”

I.

Alright.

I included this song on a wish list for the season, as a Blaine/Artie/Santana performance with no conceived context. It wasn’t because I love the message behind the song, it was purely from a musical standpoint. We all know it’s problematic. But…They’ve somehow found a way to make the song more problematic. I can’t pick what the worst part is: Is it Will singing and dancing while high school kids grind on each other? Is it Jake singing it to the girl he is currently cheating on while the girl he is cheating with dances around them?

Let’s just say that it’s all of it, but give props to the extra backup dancers they brought in for the performance. I miss Mike Chang.

Besides, this isn’t the worst thing Glee has ever done. Heck, it isn’t even the worst thing Will has ever done. Do we not remember this?

Sue tries to explain to Will how inappropriate the song was and fires Will, which he cheerfully refuses to accept and proclaims he’ll appeal to the school board. So now Will has latched onto a dumb idea, Sue has overreacted to it, and Will has overreacted to her overreaction. Ahhh, feels like season one. I wonder if we’ll get Sue having a change of heart and proving she isn’t so bad after all.

  • LB

    Your recaps are always me favorite thing after watching the episode. I’m very satisfied with the way they are treating Unique- I have been expecting much worse since day one. It is really refreshing to see Ryder sticking up for her after “If I Were A Boy” and Will (eventually) giving up twerking for her. Overall it was a great, lightweight episode that was still chock full of character development. Thanks for making me smile!

  • Liz J

    Your question about Unique: I ultimately felt like the story in this episode didn’t quite connect with me, but it’s not because of Unique or how Alex Newell plays her. I love Unique, I think she’s funny and badass and yet vulnerable. I feel like seeing her on my screen has legitimately given me a new appreciation of transgender people and a respect for what they have to deal with. Even though I have considered myself an LGBT ally for a while, she has further opened my eyes to something I didn’t really understand before. All props to Unique.

    I think the reason why I didn’t fully connect with Unique’s story was Will. Ironically, it’s because Will was actually really cool to her in this episode. But he’s been SUCH a creep for SO long, being nice in that way was out of character, and it pissed me off. My reaction was literally, “oh look, there’s Will saying the things he SHOULD have said to Kurt three years ago when he was getting the crap beat out of him.” And yes, people grow. But Schue? He has only gotten progressively WORSE in the last three years.

    So, that’s why I didn’t fully appreciate Unique’s story in this episode. It reminded me so much of Kurt’s Season 2 storyline, but condensed into about five minutes. Which I realize is not a fair comparison for a whole bunch of reasons, but that’s my gut reaction.

    Remove Schue from the situation and I really like Unique. I think she’s funny and interesting and she feels REAL. As much as I want the show to go to New York and forget all about the New Kids, I really do like her. And despite myself, I wish they would at least tell us how that whole catfishing nonsense resolved. I don’t need Unique and Ryder to get together or anything, but they spent SO much time on that stupid story last year, had the dramatic confrontation, and have now decided it basically didn’t happen.

    Oh, Glee.