Welcome back, everyone! I never got a chance to watch last week's big wedding episode of Glee, so I apologize for the delay, but here we go.
There was no real indication, within the narrative, that there was going to be a wedding on Glee. And indeed, while most shows would have spent an entire season building up to the big day, Burt Hummel (Mike O'Malley) and Carole Hudson (Romy Rosemont) have gone from proposal to reception in the course of about 35 minutes. Elsewhere in this episode, Kurt's bullying issues with Karofsky finally come to a head, providing a pretty heavy subplot in which the entire glee club tries to protect Kurt. And Sue decides she's going to marry herself, and things get tough when her Nazi-hunting mother (Carol Burnett) drops by.
There was a lot going on in this episode, and I feel that it suffered from trying to accomplish so much. There were some interesting moments in the main wedding plot, including not one but two Bruno Mars songs (let me get this straight: last year's "Theatricality" episode is considered a Lady Gaga tribute when only two songs are used, but this one isn't billed as a Bruno Mars tribute. Is it because they said "Lady Gaga" fifty million times in the former?). I'm actually glad they chose to use "Marry You," obvious as it is, but its better than throwing in some other song that's only ostensibly about marriage, as they've done in the past. But for the most part, as I said before, it felt rushed, as if Murphy didn't want to spend any time with buildup and just jump straight into the ceremony.
Let's also be honest: Sue's marriage to herself is one of, if not the, dumbest thing this show has done yet. It never made sense to begin with, and didn't even deserve to be considered for a one-liner. What we get is a stupid subplot that only gets stupider as the episode crawls on, wasting the superior talents of Jane Lynch and guest-star Carol Burnett, who at least gets a lovely (but pointless) song. Of course, Murphy also gave us "Britney/Brittany" this year, which has me nervous that he may be the one who kills this show's creativity.
Kurt's subplot was well-done, however, and may have been the episode's saving grace for me. There was real tension in the interactions between Kurt and Karofsky, and it was refreshing to see everyone come to his defense, particularly Sam in the locker room in what was actually a pretty intense fight (by Glee's standards). It was great to see everyone show Kurt that they accept him as he is, especially Finn, who obviously still has some work to do with his own homophobia but is making progress by finally accepting Kurt as a brother. And all of this leads up to those killer final two minutes: Kurt announces that he's transferring to Dalton Academy, where he'll be competing against the New Directions at Sectionals. It was a moment that some may have seen coming, but it still had plenty of shock value, and it was perfectly executed.
Overall, it was a weaker episode, but I can definitely say that I'm excited for this week's Sectionals episode. Here's hoping that the show takes what it's started here and runs with it (guarded optimism, mind you).
- Also stupid: Sam's promise ring proposal to Quinn when they're not even dating. That was a beyond creepy move.
- Coincidently, I found out just yesterday that some friends of mine are going to be getting married. So mazel tov, Ian and Emily!
- Has anyone else noticed how the show has been slowly shying away from Rachel? She isn't featured nearly as much as she was last year, and probably for good reason too. Which is a shame, because Lea Michele is seriously talented, though I'm sure she'll get a big musical number next week.
- I've written before about how well-drawn a character Kurt is, but not enough people talk about Burt. Despite being a minor character who only appears in a few episodes, he's surprisingly deep and nuanced, balancing his own rubberneck manliness with a touching, honest love and acceptance of his more-effeminate son. In fact, I'd say that the Kurt-Burt relationship is easily the show's best, and give credit to the excellent Mike O'Malley for that.
- Wit 'n' Wisdom of Sue Sylvester: "By the power invested in me by a website, I now pronounce you Sue and Sue. You may kiss yourself."