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Glee S1E9: Wheels

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Rolling on a river, kittens.

We're not gonna lie to you. Despite our endless cheering for this show, our viewing experience quite often is vocalized thus: "Wait, what?" "Why is she --?" "Didn't they just --?" "Who would do --?" And ends thus: "You know what? I'm just gonna go with it."

Well, last night's episode was the first time we didn't have that reaction. Oh sure, they're still pushing the implausible baby daddy storyline, but this time the characters involved are all acting like, well, like real people would act in such an implausible situation. For the first time, we actually felt a little tension there and wondered how it was going to be resolved and who was going to wind up hurt. Don't get us wrong, we'll bet you a dollar that it'll all come out by the season finale and Quinn and Puck will wind up together, but for the first time we were actually curious about how they were going to get to that point.

Even more encouraging is that the writers seem to have gotten a better handle on each of the characters and they're blooming right in front of our eyes. Sue Sylvester isn't just a crazy fascist; Artie isn't just "wheelchair guy"; Tina isn't just "stuttering girl"; Kurt isn't just -- well, okay, Kurt IS the gay one, but they added some layers to that and honestly, any scene between him and his father is a scene worth watching. They play off each other so well and their individual pain is both subtle and utterly believable. Also, blonde girl has a name! Britney! And a personality! Dumb Blonde! Okay, maybe they need to work on that one in terms of fleshing it out, but they did manage to wring a "I can't believe they just said that" politically incorrect joke out of it with the revelation that she copies her math answers off the girl with the developmental disability.

And speaking of disabilities, they've only really lightly touched on what it's really like to be an outsider, especially in high school. Mostly, they've just played it for laughs, but we're not going to deny that we teared up a little at Artie's cute rendition of "Dancing with Myself."



But then we really lost it when Sue visited her sister. Didn't see that one coming at all. And for some odd reason, it really works for the character. Somehow, her previous flashes of sheer insanity and nastiness don't actually contradict the warm, loving Sue we saw briefly last night. Credit must be paid to the awesome Jane Lynch, who nailed that scene.

Honestly, we were just happy to see a show that didn't COMPLETELY revolve around the most attractive members of the cast. It's not that we want them to ignore Quinn, Puck, Rachel and Finn (not to mention Will, Emma, and Terri), but a little bit of a spotlight on the so-called "lesser" characters was desperately needed, especially Tina and Artie. Their "date" was incredibly sweet, but this being Glee, had to end somewhat badly. We really hope they pick up on this plotline and don't leave it dangling.

Also, Kurt and Rachel in a diva-off! Who doesn't love that? The outcome was pretty much predetermined but they added a nice twist on it by having Kurt reveal he deliberately flubbed the note for his father's sake. That's an examination of being gay that you don't normally see on television: how far out of the closet can I go before I pay a price? It's a question that every struggling gay person has to answer at some point.

And finally, as the minutes wound down on the show, we were afraid we were going to be left without a big number to take us home. We should have known better:

Where did they get that ramp? How did they all master their wheelchairs so quickly? Where is the musical accompaniment coming from? You know what? We're just gonna go with it. Because we honestly think this episode was the best of the series so far.


[Screencaps: Projectrungay.blogspot.com - Videos: hulu.com/photobucket.com]



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125 comments:

I really liked this episode too -- enjoyed the few surprises


i loved the show last night.

i laughed & cried. the difference in sue's face when she was sitting with her sister was a beautiful thing. kurt & his father, another beautiful moment.


I saw Wicked in Chicago a couple of years ago and I didn't even remember that song. I thought the whole show was mostly forgettable. But I did love the diva-off.


Can't believe, TLo, that you didn't mention Kurt's line when his father asks him for help with a car repair: "Okay, but first let me change. This is an Alexander McQueen." I immediately thought of this blog.


can't wait to watch it on Hulu tonight. especially after reading this!!!!!!


Loved it all. Maybe Artie will realize that being exceptionally shy is a handicap too. Or maybe it doesn't matter.

The diva-off was divine, Kurt and his Dad are perfect, and Sue rocks.


I was initially annoyed that Kurt and Rachel couldn't just audition for the solo in the first place. Because honestly? Just handing everything to Rachel right off the bat is not going to make her any easier to deal with. Then I decided to back-burner that thought, suspend my disbelief, and cope. I ended up really enjoying this episode, and it was seriously amazing to get some unexpected character developments at long last.

...though I'm not loving Will so much these days. The whole, "Here, Rachel, you're gonna sing the lead since we can't rearrange an entire song to suit Mercedes and no, gay kid, you don't get a say in this either," didn't do him any favors.


"I'm filled with ennui."

I had heard about this show, that it was good, saw that you were blogging it but this was my first view and I was pretty blown away.

Good writing and acting , and yes, totally agree that its refreshing that its not centered on the beautiful people.
Right on Terry ! The McQueen line was hilarious.

Myra Flection


it was touching, had an amazing musical number, had a after-school-special msg, along with some fantastic chemistry between quinn and puck, and fine acting on part of Kurt.

wundabar!


Also! Where is Kurt getting the funds for his fabulous wardrobe if his father is a mechanic? I can understand the car he got for his sweet sixteen, but Papa Kurt has to be a lot more loaded than he lets on if his kid can afford all that couture.

See, this is me not suspending my disbelief again, and what a horrible, horrible habit it is.


Oh, and even if he hadn't blown the high F, I thought the girl nailed that song. Kid's got pipes !

Myra Flection


I love Glee to death, and I enjoyed last night's episode, but did anyone else feel that last night was less "pushing the envelope" and more "forcing the point?" It was great to see them tackling all the issues that they did, but I thought the whole episode felt convoluted and a tad heavy. I wish they would have spread these storylines out instead of packing them all into one ep. It will be interesting to see if the new storylines introduced last night will continue to develop, or if this was all just for one big "awareness" episode.


During the airing of this episode, our local Fox news kept advertising an upcoming story on "the controversy over tonight's episode of Glee." I kept trying to guess what the controversy would be...when Artie talked about his penis? the spiked cupcakes? the portrayal of a developmentaly disabled student? Your guess is as good as mine...I didn't watch the news story.


I liked the episode but it definitely had some What-the-Heck moments for me.

Being in Theater I understand what Will is talking about with the "experience" of traveling to competitions together in the bus but given the school's obvious financial situation I don't see why 3 or so parents couldn't have volunteered to drive vans or large SUVs with 4-5 kids in each one. However, the payoff when they decided to donate the money to a ramp for the auditorium was worth it.

Quinn is being pretty ridiculous with the whole "get a job, my parents can never know" routine. Yes, someone in her situation would probably be scared to death of the consequences but if she is going to yell at Finn to grow up then she needs to realize that her parents will find out sooner or later and they could probably help her with the medical bills.

The date was extremely cute and Tina revealing that she had been faking the stutter for years was extremely brave. Artie's reaction to it was pretty immature. He basically revealed that he wanted to be with her because she had a disability like him and that by not having one they couldn't relate. The Glee experience (should have) taught them both that you can be friends with people who aren't traditionally "different" so why would Artie suddenly exclude Tina for not being as different as he is.

I think Kurt is probably the only 100% sympathetic character left (which is fine, nobody is perfect). He honestly seems to consider others feelings and his willingness to give up the solo for his Father.

I love the song Defying Gravity, one of my favorites but the "diva-off" really made it obvious how vanilla Rachel's voice is. Idina Menzel is one of the greatest singers out there but its not just her voice, its the emotion that she brings, especially to that song. Kurt lacked the talent, but I could see the emotion in his performance. I think that's something to work on. Plus, doing a legendary (in musical theater anyways) song like that is probably biting off more than they can chew.

Wow that was a lot of nit-picking...I still love this show think for the most part its perfect...Sue was incredible in this episode, for example.


Oh man. The scene between Sue and her sister was just beautifully rendered. I teared up, and my husband (a beer-and-football kinda guy) admitted he felt a little lump in his throat, too.

I REALLY loved this episode. Like you two already said, it was so nice to see the secondary characters get a little attention. =D


I don't know about you guys, but I am getting all hot and bothered by Artie.


I wasn't all that thrilled with this episode. Defying Gravity was a let-down, as was the revelation about Tina's stuttering.

I adored the lines that pointed out Britney's dumbness (she lost her wheelchair, she doesn't know which is her right hand, etc.).

Kurt and his dad had some winner lines too.
Dad: "You're feelin' down about this, huh?"
Kurt: "I'm filled with ennui"
Dad: "So . . . you're *really* feeling down about this?"

Even with all the "just go with it" moments that happen in this show, some things I just couldn't get my head around. Although Puck going to Sandy and making the "special" cupcakes was both implausible and hilarious.


Anonymous at 12:13: You didn't remember "Defying Gravity" from Wicked?? That is THE song from the show.


Dear Glee, please give Artie more solo singing time. His voice is one of the best on the show.


During the airing of this episode, our local Fox news kept advertising an upcoming story on "the controversy over tonight's episode of Glee." I kept trying to guess what the controversy would be...when Artie talked about his penis? the spiked cupcakes? the portrayal of a developmentaly disabled student? Your guess is as good as mine...I didn't watch the news story.

"Disabled want more performers to truly fit roles"
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/33829977/ns/entertainment-television/


Agree that this was the best ep so far because of the fleshing out of the characters. Can't wait for more of this.

Loved the moments between Kurt and his Dad, especially changing into the coveralls so he wouldn't mess up the Alexander McQueen sweater! Dug Artie singing Dancing with Myself. And who doesn't love a diva showdown!

Best moment was revealing another inch of the soft side of Sue this week as with the last episode. Jane Lynch never disappoints! BTW, loved the line about her auditioning for Baywatch!


I loved this episode to pieces, despite how rather dramatic it was. It's the kind of pacing and mixture of comedy and serious plot/character development that I really want to see continue into future episodes (though I would sacrifice a goat to the fabulous powers that be if it would stop Rachel from being so overtly selfish with solos. I would think her character would have developed past that by now).

I'm a little disappointed with Artie's attitude towards the end and Will's initial dismissal of everyone but Rachel, but I loved everyone else. Even dumb Brittany because even though maybe she was being nice because she copied off of the girl during class, I thought it was really cute how Brittany unintentionally bought the girl a cupcake.

Also loved Kurt's father. I'm a bit shamed to say I wasn't expecting him to be portrayed as so supportive and awesome, but I'm very happy to have my expectations blown away.


I love Wicked so much (it's my favorite musical) and I wasn't in love with this version but I did generally like it and it was no question that Rachel would be the one to really end up singing it. I really liked this episode because it did focus on some other people for once and it just made me love Sue even more because she can be very warm (I did almost cry at that part).


If Chris Colter doesn't get scads of love thrown his way, I hereby volunteer to have a hissy fit on his behalf. Jane Lynch has been getting lots of Emmy rumbles (and all well deserved) but Kurt? That is some masterful and REAL acting, there.

Oh, and Puck? How YOU doin?


I feel as though I could have bought Sue's redemption arc if her one-dimensional bitchiness hadn't been rammed down our throats (not that I mind that, I think I actually prefer my Sue to be a one-dimensional ball of crazy). Had we not been party to her diary entries, I could see her having an emotional, softer side. However, how does someone who writes things about the "bi-curious machinations of a cabal of doughy, misshapen teens" or dreams of buying a hovercraft?

I don't know. And Sue is my favorite character, so I didn't really like this inconsistency at all. The only storylines I liked, actually, were Artie's and Kurts. I understand the need for realism in a teen pregnancy school, but I don't remember the amount of shrill bitchfacing that comes out of Quinn's mouth from the teen mothers at my high school.

I thought the episode was okay. Not the best, by far, but okay. Less after-school special moments would help a lot.


@ Laura

I also didn't watch Fox news, but I know that there was a small controversy about a non-wheelchair bound actor playing Artie. There was criticism that since the actor's defining feature is that he's in a wheelchair, that they should have used an actor who was actually wheelchair bound.

Other then that, I loved this episode!! There were some really touching moments and I'm dying to know if Sue is going to keep the mentally disadvantaged student on her cheer team!


Jane Lynch had me bawling, which I never thought could happen. But her scene with her sister, followed by Kurt's interaction with his father - I was a wet mess.

Things like that make me fall head-over-heels in love with a show.

Artie's line about his penis was AMAZING, and that boy needs to be allowed to sing more often. I'm in love with "Dancing With Myself".


okay...i am a first time poster...
i watch the episode then i read you guys...
man oh man i cried with kurt and his dad. they really got me n this one. really.


Yes the controversy is Artie is not played by a parpalegic

The key thing for me as far as the Sue story is not only it gives her layers but it also explains partly her attitude towards Will. She summed it up. That girl does not want to be treated as any differently than the "normal" kids. Sue will bend rules to give this girl a chance but she will work her as hard as any other cheerio.

To me Sue likely percieves Will as 1 of those patronizing phony liberals that needs to "save" every minority. To some extent that perception is valid.

Sue deosn't need to advertize her love for her down syndrome sister or treat her as someone different. Her sister likely played a factor in Sue's hard exterior. She had to quickly learn to adapt like Curt for them to survive

Frank


Artie's swing-style rendition of "Dancing With Myself" is officially my favorite solo number of the show to date. Kevin McHale has an awesome voice, and he really needs to be dragged out of the background more often. More beautiful than the line about "full use of the penis" was the whole, "DAMMIT, why did I say that?" sequence of facial expressions after Tina bailed.

Also, the "Defying Gravity" plotline was based on an experience Chris Colfer had in high school, where they wouldn't let him perform it because it was a girl's song.

Much like Dollhouse(yes, I went there), this is a much stronger show when it rests on the shoulders of its ensemble than when it relies solely on its principals.


I loved when Sue's sister said "you're famous!" and she quickly shoots back softly "You got that right" being both playful and a little curt, like she is. Jane Lynch is really a supreme actress!


Loved every single thing about last night. Proud Mary was my favorite performance so far.

And was only a little let down by "Defying Gravity". Idina just rocked it so hard originally.


Sobbed buckets when Sue visited her sister. Love any storyline involving Kurt.

But still wondering: When is Quinn going to look preggers?


Now, see, I thought that it was obviously Kurt's solo from the beginning. I felt like his performance had more of the intent and emotion of the song than her's. Rachel sang it exactly like she sings every other damn song, and granted, she has a lovely voice, but that song is KURT'S. I was so disappointed when he flubbed the F.

I'm still not sure what I feel about the "Softer Side of Sue". Brilliant? Bogus? The part about her I liked was her absolute honesty (except with her diary, of course) and her inability (or rather, unwillingness) to edit her own thoughts before they come falling out of her mouth. I didn't really feel like the scene with her sister added up, character-wise.

On the other hand, I was wiping away tears. Oh, Glee, you fiendish and confusing mistress!


I have the attention span of a fruitfly, but I was absolutely glued to the set on last night's episode.

And why come whenever I saw those wrenching scenes between Kurt and his father, I kept thinking, "What is TLo gonna say about this?"

I'm not gay (not that there's anything wrong with it, duh!) but that was one of the "realest" scenes that I've seen on television in a long time.

The look of a loving, but disappointed Dad who is struggling to be accepting of his son, who desperately is looking for approval from the man who is not used to the youngster's life choices. Those scenes were absolutely brilliant and beautiful.


I watched this show for the first time last night, based on the TLo recommendation. And was very impressed with what i saw.

given that PR will be ending soon (and in a disappointing manner consistent with the entire season, I'm sure) Glee may make it onto my limited tv watching schedule.

Love your recap boys!

srq


This show just keeps getting better and better. I'm glad they fleshed out Jane Lynch's character more, she's less of a cartoon now.

The scene with Kurt and his dad was brilliant! So incredibly well done.


When I'm watching Glee, I'll every once in a while start to wonder whether in a choral setting, you'd prefer a voice like Kurt's, which is simpler and probably blends more easily, or Rachel's, which has a lot more complexity and interest as a solo. But mostly I just like to sit back and enjoy. I found their version of "Proud Mary" unexpectedly moving. And I loved "Dancing with Myself." I wondered just how much they had messed with Artie's voice, but he took what I'd always thought of as a loud, exuberant (and awesome) rock song and made it into a sensitive cabaret number.

By the way, I'd like to flip the bird to the Phillies. If you were going to lose the series to the (ugh) Yankees, could you not have done so before making me miss TWO Wednesday nights of Glee?


Because I can never shut up after just one statement... I would really love to find out what Sue's parents were like. Sue having a developmentally disabled sibling suddenly makes her character make sense on a lot of levels. Did her parents pressure her to be successful, because they felt like her older sister couldn't have the kind of career that makes for keeping up with the Joneses? Or was Sue vying for their attention? Is it a combination of both?

I also saw the first shades of the Sue that Jane Lynch was hinting at in this interview. I know I was surprised by her musical selection.


My favorite scenes of the episode were between Kurt and his father. Whoever finalized the casting nailed it when it came to those two actors.

@embouchement
re: the expensive wardrobe
Mechanics who own their own usually do well, especially if they stay busy. (Based on what I've heard from older family members.)Maybe Kurt's allowance is hefty, or his dad just gives in and allows him to buy -almost- whatever he wants. (No "knee length" sweaters, though.)


Terry Weyna
11/12/09 12:15 PM Can't believe, TLo, that you didn't mention Kurt's line when his father asks him for help with a car repair: "Okay, but first let me change. This is an Alexander McQueen." I immediately thought of this blog.




I know, right?


I had decided I was going to watch this episode and if the writing wasn't better/more coherent start just fast forwarding to the musical numbers.

They've kept me on the train for a little longer, but the show still feels like it is written by a committee and hasn't decided yet what it's going to be. If you're going to have people suspend disbelief for the musical numbers (ie accept the level of professionalism, the sound editing, the backing musicians) which I am happy to do, the characters need to have some internal consistency. Also, you can't keep going back to the same well for story when you're 9 episodes in. I knew Puck was going to put drugs in the cupcakes, but I kept thinking, "It's not possible, we've already had an episode where the student body is secretly drugged."

So, I'm still hanging in because there is much to like. And because Jane Lynch is completely amazing.


This episode was a big ball of contradictions for me:
1) Kurt & His Dad...best part of it for me. Two men who don't quite understand each other, but both are willing to sacrifice to make the other one happy. Its not something you see much, and it a sweet counterpoint to all the grown-ups on the show who can't seem to ever think of anyone other than themselves and their own needs.

2)Sue and her sister - I just didn't see why the scene was needed AT ALL. I mean, can't we presume that Sue (and all the other characters for that matter) have lives outside of WMHS? What did that scene add to the story of the Glee club? It is no information the other characters on the show have access to, or that impacts them, so why show it? We love Sue for her pure diva-ness, for her unrepentant nastiness and drive, this added nothing to me.

3) All I kept thinking was, doesn't Quinn's family have insurance? In what world would a doctor's office not bill the insurance first, or request payment at the time of the visit? I understand they want to show the consequences of the pregnancy, but the contortions they are going through are just ridiculous.

4) The secondary characters having plot lines, and singing roles make me very happy. But I wish they could be less awkward about how they handle it. This show was very much MINOR CHARACTER DAY, and they ignored all the other storylines.

5) And seriously...Mr. Shue is a horrible teacher. As entitled and annoying as Rachel is, she was right that he handles the Glee Club badly. Shouldn't all solos be up for audition? Why harp on telling Rachel not to expect to be the soloist all the time for the first few shows only to automatically hand her EVERY solo since? Then make her compete for it in the most humiliating way?


Loved this episode muchly. I like that Sue is human. I think Brit is hilarious. I liked watching Puck's softer side come out, and I liked his interactions with Quinn. I love that the lesser-seen cast members got to shine in this one. I love that I finally really heard Kurt, Artie and Tina sing (well, Tina again).

Didn't love Artie's reaction to Tina's confession. Not only do I think it's ridiculous and makes no sense, but it's also hardly comparable to his condition. People get help for stutters all the time (some attempts are more successful than others). It's not anywhere near the same as being unable to use your legs. So for him to act like they have nothing in common anymore is so obscenely ridiculous that I immediately stopped loving Artie as they are now portraying him. I mean, what if they started dating and she sought a speech therapist to help her with her stutter? Would he break up with her because she was no longer "different"? She's still an outcast and people still look at her weird. So while it was kinda odd that she faked having a stutter, it's nothing to get so pissy about.

Man, that scene made me so angry (clearly). But I loved the Kurt + dad scenes so much. His dad is such a sweetheart. I love their relationship and how hard his dad tries for him while recognizing he's not "that good at this stuff" (honey, I think you're doing a GRAND job at handling it). And I was in tears during the Sylvester sisters scene. I adore Jane Lynch, and I hope she gets awarded for her awesome performances on this show.


About Kurt's wardrobe: I figure he's got his mother's life insurance and a talent for Ebay. He's got a whole lot going for himself, that boy.


Oh, and as mentioned in the post above my first one, Will is a HORRID teacher. I mean, every week he does something else ridiculous with his students. And I get being fair to everyone in glee club, but you don't do that in a way that is detrimental to another student. He is just ridiculous, and I'm liking him less and less.


Sorry for the triple comments!

Just had to add:

Terry Weyna
11/12/09 12:15 PM Can't believe, TLo, that you didn't mention Kurt's line when his father asks him for help with a car repair: "Okay, but first let me change. This is an Alexander McQueen." I immediately thought of this blog.

Ditto, ditto, ditto. I even said something to Bryan Z's away message about it because I was so excited.


During the last number I kept thinking about you guys. Finn and Rachel had like, what, a one bar solo each? That song belonged to Artie, Tina and Mercedes.

Also, I want to be very clear, I still have the use of my penis.


My favorte part of watching the show is guessing which great lines TLo will quote. Gus, I hope you'll do so again.

My favorite line this week was when Puck gave Quinn the money left over after buying "dip and nunchucks."

Maybe I should change my name to Chicken Nunchucks. Or Nunchuck Barbie. Chickien Nunchuck Barbie.


I loved the scenes between Kurt and his dad and Sue and her sister. I think they gave us a lot of insight into both characters without spoonfeeding it to us. I also loved Sue's response to Will (who is really starting to annoy me) when she told him "You don't know the first thing about me."

Jane Lynch really is a marvelous actor.


I loved this show last night...I watched it TWICE and totally teared up BOTH times. Between Sue and her sister and all the stuff with Artie I was moved...best of the season too...and I agree with Terry - that was my favorite line and I thought of you guys when Kurt said it!


I felt like this episode was a letdown, and for several reasons:

First, I'm disappointed by the Softening of Sue. I understand the need for making her three-dimensional, and I don't object to her character's sister as being motivation for her behaviour, but there does seem to be a trend towards making her less outrageous and more sympathetic. I don't think this is necessarily a good thing.

Second, the music seemed somewhat flat and uninspired. Perhaps it's because I loathe Broadway and showtunes, but I think it had more to do with the lack of edgy material. Where were the inappropriate song choices? "Rollin' on a River" was just too twee for me - I get it, they're in wheelchairs and their big wheels keep on turnin'.

Finally, where is Fred Willard? This show is ready-made for his ribald comedic stylings. Perhaps as a romantic interest for Sue?


veritasema said...
This episode was a big ball of contradictions for me:....Sue and her sister - I just didn't see why the scene was needed AT ALL.

I felt the the Sue storyline underscores the whole Artie storyline about accessibility and acceptance.

Will wants to make a big point about being sensitive to Artie's physical needs and how important he needs to be included and treated as an equal.

Sue's situation with her sister is the counterpoint to Will's attitude. Sue clearly loves her sister and does what's needed to take care of her. But she doesn't seem to treat her as being different just because she's got down syndrome.

This ties to her treatment of the student. If she were to go easy on her , it would be come across as tokenism. it would be disrespectful then to the other members of her squad. Why she refuses to treat her any differently is connected liekly to her having grown up with a disabled sibling. Sue knows would how important it is for someone like her not to be treated differently.

Will would have coddled her just like to a degree he coddled Artie. Yes it was important for him to get the others to empathize with Artie but he really went overboard.

FFurther tying into all of this is Artie's reaction to Tina's confession and the situation with Curt. While other people need to "get" Artie's situation and limits, he needs to get that he is using it as an excuse not to pursue Tina. He is keeping peole at a distance. If he wants people to accept him and treat him as normal, he's got to treat himself that way first. He clearly defines himself as the handicapped kid. What is sad is Tina came to see him as beyond that.

Artie needs to be more like Curt. Curt said it himself. he had to learn to adapt to survive. He realizes there are repercussions still for him being open. While he will remain openly gay, he will do it with eyes wide open and with common sense.

Frank


just to address TLo's questions about the last number-I figured they used the ramps Sue had paid for. And for the second part (where the music was coming from) I used to play in pit orchestras and sometimes if there wasn't space for us on the stage and there wasn't a pit we'd play off stage in the wings and get miked through the sound system. So that could have happened there.


Our daughter has CP and is in a wheelchair. Our whole family was in tears! We noticed that Artie had a "stunt wheelchair performer." Whenever he was in the chair the rear anti-tip extensions were in place, but not on the fancier moves.

My younger daughter didn't understand why Sue's sister was in an institutional setting. This may be the answer to Sue's harsh personality. Her sister seemed to be functional enough to live at home...


So, when I saw the Artie and Tina moment, I understood Artie's initial reaction -- he thought he knew something about Tina and found out she had been lying. I don't think that being mad because he realized she was lying is immature, but I WOULD like to see if he gives her another chance. Also, he's a teenage boy, they tend to be immature sometimes.
I hope Artie and Tina can work something out. I can half-see a teary "I've been faking the stuttering" confession to the rest of the group with Artie's support in another few episodes.

I love, love, LOVE Kurt. He can be extremely insightful and mature. There are a lot of teenagers who do what they want, regardless of how it will affect family members -- Kurt could see how much the nastiness hurt his father.

And (I'm almost done I promise) I adore Brittany. She's so precious. Dumb as a brick, not at all insightful, but still a sweet person (I mean, how many top-tier cheerleaders in Cliche High School would really be friends with a special-needs kid if they didn't have to?). She's just precious. She makes me think of Rose Nylund, but a little smarter.


I loved this episode, I cried every scene with Kurt and his dad. My favorite line was "But you sing like a girl." I hope they have more of his dad.

I was irritated by the teen pregnancy story line for a number of reasons. There is too much disbelief to suspend. I am a nurse and a 16 year old can't be treated without parental consent unless it is a medical emergency, much less be sent a bill. Maybe at Planned parenthood or a Pregnancy Clinic, I've never worked in that type of setting. Her parents will know when she shows. And why can't Quinn get a job herself?

Love Sue Sylvester and that scene was very sweet.


Regarding the question about where Kurt comes up with the cash for Alexander McQueen sweaters, there are many ways to afford one. Outlet Centers, eBay, even Goodwill or Salvation Army are good places to get great stuff. It never occurred to me to question where he got his clothes from. After all, Christian Siriano said he didn't even have a bed because he spent all of his money on clothes. When you want something badly enough, you try to find a way to get it.


Frank, I see your point, I do. But I contend that Sue's actions towards the developmentally disabled student were the rebuke to Will. I don't think I needed to see what informed her actions.
Sue showed that accepting difference doesn't mean pointing a huge blinking sign, the way Will does. And the fact that Becky Johnson SMILED and skipped away from her one on one coaching session with Sue showed that Sue's approach was more valid. Rather than Will's ridiculousness.
Sue can be a complex creature of emotion and whim without knowing every last detail about her, and trying to make her warm and fuzzy.


This episode was by far my favorite- I bawled like a baby in some parts, laughed hysterically at others. Kurt continues to be my favorite character, with Artie running a close second. I am so happy about Glee!


Thank you, Anonymous 11/12/09 12:13 PM. "Wicked" is a deeply over-rated show. But the diva-off was wonderful.

Even better, though, was that moment of Kurt at the piano, marking off his goal on the keys, then working his way up to the high F. I remember having moments just like that back when I was still singing, and, for all the "Oh, who cares, this show's too fun, let's just go with it" of Glee, a scene like Kurt's at the piano is, for me, what makes the rest of the performances stick.

I whole-heartedly agree with you, T-Lo: the more of Kurt and his dad (and the less of the Shoemakers), the better the show. I adored the "ennui" exchange, I adored the look in Kurt's father's eyes when he related the phone call to Kurt, I adored that last moment, when the father realized what Kurt had done for him.


Anyone else out there want to toss a Slurpee into Rachel's face? She's driving me nuts, and while Lea Michele has a lovely set of pipes, the complete lack of emotional nuance in Rachel's performances makes me want to stick her in the back row until she learns to sing with heart.


The full solo version of Kurt singing Defying Gravity can be heard on Youtube, and he doesn't flub up the High F. It actually gave me goosebumps that he mangaed to hit it. It's not Idina Menzel, but come on people, this is guy who has hit puberty singing a very difficult second soprano song. That takes a lot of guts. You can listen to the full solo here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R-Cf8_f9g30&annotation_id=annotation_346346&feature=iv

Sue's moment with my sister, along with everyone else, really made me tear up. It was fantastic, and beautifully portayed.


This episode was very moving. I just wish it had been balanced by some humor.


Mimi said: "I don't know about you guys, but I am getting all hot and bothered by Artie."

Oh my yes. I've been in love with him from day one.

I'll agree with some who said that his reaction to Tina's confession was a bit immature, but yes, he is a teenage boy, and they are pretty immature pretty much all the time. I think he'll give her another chance. I'll be incredibly disappointed if he doesn't, actually.

His "I just want to be clear--I still have full use of my penis" line made me laugh so hard. I had trouble stopping. His deadpan delivery and Tina's reaction...I mean, what do you say to that? Haha.


[God, I just can't shut up, can I?]

My favorite part of the Sue revelation was not, for all of the wonderfulness of Ms. Lynch's performance, the scene with her sister, but how the whole thing showed what a jag-off Will is. He can't see beyond his damned nose. Beyond the fact that he's not doing that great a job with the glee club (c.f., the need for a parent to come in to tell him to at least give someone other than Rachel a chance), he's an ass all around (c.f., not taking the opportunity to tell poor, pining Emma they can't happen, right after Ken asks him to be a decent guy; assuming, horribly and stalkerishly, that Sue can only be up to no good with her new Cheerio). Using the usually nasty Sue to highlight Will's own nasty streak was, really, brilliant.


Sue bought the ramps!
Also I agree, last night's was probably the most genuine and best episode in the show so far.


@veritasema: Quinn didn't use her parents' insurance because she is tring to hide her pregnancy from them. I know, I know, it's impossible to hide a baby bump on a figure like hers, and no, I've no idea how she thinks she can keep this up, but it is the kind of delusional thinking some scared pregnant teens have.


I loved Artie's solo of "Dancing With Myself." I do wish the show had given a little recognition to the French band "Nouvelle Vague" who recorded that arrangement two or three years ago. When inspiration treads dangerously close to imitation, it's best to make sure your sources are all noted.

Kurt's version "Defying Gravity" was interesting indeed! Not only did he flub the high-F, But straining to match his vocal register to a female vocal range also limited his performance ability. But, that was probably intentional, since he was throwing it to Rachel. I do think they missed an opportunity to further comment on a guy singing a girl song by having the guy sing it like a girl.


I was much happier with this week's episode than I have been, and I think in large part it's due to Will's pronouncement that though they do a lot of pop songs, the judges want to see more show tunes and standards. Well, I agree! They still managed to get in Dancing With Myself and Proud Mary, but I guess those qualify as pop standards these days.

I have to let the underdeveloped bits and inconsistent characterizations sort of wash over me in order to enjoy it -- here Quinn's gimme some money stuff seemed weirdly motivated. I think they're great at setting things up and not as good on the follow-through, but I live in hope that we'll see some of these stories develop more.

Did like the Sue surprise ending, and felt it really earned its sentimentality. It also added lots of dimension to Sue, not just that she's treating her new Cheerio like she treats everyone else because she wants to treat her with respect as a capable human being, but also because it means that to a certain extent Sue is harsh because she cares.


@eric3000: Really? No humor?

"I just want to be clear: I still have full use of my penis," had me rolling. Then again, you're probably a lot more mentally mature than I. I'll go sit and the corner, play with my Transformers and comic books, and think about what's wrong with my finding that line so damned funny.


You are right about Jane Lynch. She made me cry with that one brief scene reading the book to her sister, and she ABSOLUTELY nailed it. I didn't expect that, and it was a nice new layer to the Sue character.

I also loved the scenes with Kurt and his Dad. I'm glad they are continuing to develop that story. Loved the line about the Alexander McQueen sweater.

I am so looking forward to buying the whole season on DVD. I downloaded the Glee soundtrack two days ago, and have had it on constant repeat ever since. I can't get enough of it.


OMG! OMG! OMG!

I was waiting to see if YALL thought it was too ABC Afterschool Specialish ...

Kids learn lessons about being different while fundraising for Special ED bus and handicapped ramps for school ...

But I thought it was a GREAT episode too!!! Sue and her sister ... and her line about not treating Cindi(?) any differently than she treats everyone else and her caustic remark to Will about not knowing her at all.

And Kurt and his father at the garage, and his wheelchair speech, loved how he crossed his legs and twirled his chair ... and then Rachel trying to storm out of the room in the wheel chair but hitting the door instead ... and the Diva off, which I hoped would be even more fabulous (I was disappointed that Kurt didn't shine) ... and then I cried when Kurt confessed he threw the contest for his father who is still dealing with losing Kurt's Mom ...

Oh, and Puck and his chronic cupcakes ... stuffing the money in his pants ... doing all the right things in all the wrong ways ... "Yes, I stole from the cupcake fund for my baby, but I earned it"

Oh, and Tina and Artie's cute date and their first cute kiss and Tina's confession ... And, "for the record, I still have a penis" comment ... And yes, both Artie's solo and the Rolling on the River were great ...

But I am such a GLEEK!


I think Artie payed for the ramp with the money. Remember he sais "I think I wanna buy a ramp for the auditorium." or something like that.


Best episode yet, hands down.

I really hope the writers keep fleshing out the other characters.


On the topic of music selections, way back (episode 2 I think), the kids complained they wanted more modern songs to sing. Yet they keep singing classic rock (Proud Mary, Someone to Love) and eighties stuff (Dancing with Myself). Wazzup? Could it be that Glee is geared to Boomers like moi?


First T/Lo, i love you guys.

I am a person with a disability who uses a wheelchair (not wheelchair bound, that's a horrible word) and this episode was awesome. Having them spend time in wheelchairs was a great idea and something we used to do at my University every year for disability awareness week. I loved it when Finn was getting hit in the head with bags and stuff that kind of thing happens to me all the time. And the fact that Puck and Finn used the wheelchair to get things had me laughing so hard. But I almost choked on my dinner when Artie made the comment about his penis. Knowing a lot of guys in chairs, this is definitely something they would want to make sure a girl knew. His reaction to Tina was a bit over the top but he's a teenager and desperately trying to find something in common with someone and he probably doesn't have a lot of options. An adult with a disability probably would not have this reaction.

I saw all the hype over the disability advocates being mad and I get their point but the fact that this episode was written and aired at all is a great thing.

I too would love to see more of the ensemble cast and learn their back stories.

-KCM


Jane Lynch rocks as always. The fact that she treated that girl the same as the others was great. Not to nitpick, I'm sure there are exceptions, but incidents of Downs increases with maternal age, its more likely that Sue would have had a younger sister with Downs.


Yup. The Sue visit to sister and Kurt blindsides his dad with honesty scenes make this the best episode yet.

Yep, there was still a huge tolerance for suspension-of-disbelief required - but except for the stupid fake pregnancy sub plot, it doesn't bother me.


About Sue's sister- and oy, I feel like in the Mad Men discussion again!

Girls' League at my high school (I graduated in 1970) had a service project at the State School because one of the seniors had an older sister who had Down Syndrome; probability is with older maternal age, but low probability events happen.

And as for her being intitutionalized: the environment said "group home" to me rather than institution per se, and sometimes Down syndrome comes with cardiopulmonary conditions which lead older people to need nurshing-home level care most of their lives. Sue's sister may have been one of the last cohort of people with Down Syndrome who were institutionalized in infancy, she may have been of the group who were taught job skills and given an opportunity for independant living relatively late, and she may be old enough to need geriatric care. Becky's cheerful mainstreaming is something very recent in the way society deals with Down Syndrome and other developmental disabilities.


The facility where Sue's sister lives seemed to me to be a more medically-related place, not so much an "institution" of old. (I got the impression that the sister was not dressed and was in bed, so I assumed that she was there for a medical condition.)

My cousin's first child has Downs (Trisomy, I guess now, sorry If I'm behind the times, there) and she was 23 when he was born. She had three more children after, all genetically typical. Sure, maybe there would be some statistical likelihood of a younger sister, but I did think it was nice to see an actual mature adult with a developmental disability on TV. I don't know when I've seen anyone older than 20 with Downs anywhere...and that actress did a splendid job with her little scene. I hope the complaining disability "advocates" are also taking note that two excellent actresses with developmental/intellectual disabilities were cast here, and both did a wonderful job.


I was laughing out loud when Kurt's father mentioned the girl on the boys' wrestling team, the qucik cut of her flattening an opponent...


I also teared up during the scene with Sue and her sister.

This show just keeps getting better and better :)


I just got an error and my long and well thought-out post was erased, so I'll give the abridged version:

Did anyone notice that the employer who Rachel (that wench!) forced to hire Finn was Vork from Felicia Day's online series The Guild?

Artie's "I retain full use of my penis" line was PRICELESS. That's something guys just have to clarify, you know.

Kurt's scenes gave me a lump in my throat, and I don't usually cry. He's obviously the most genuine person on the show, and it's really tragic that he is the only one left without (as the saying goes) Somebody to Love.

Proud Mary proved that Glee doesn't need Rachel and Finn to hog the mic to be amazing. Can we keep up this trend?


First off, still love this show beyond all reason, and love TLo for blogging it.

Wanted to respond to a couple of comments like "Kurt lacked the talent," and that Chris/Kurt didn't sing with enough emotion or heart.

There's a significant difference between what Chris was doing and what Lea was doing. Chris was a man singing in the soprano range - as a counter tenor, using his well-developed falsetto voice. Lea was singing in her own range, in head & chest voice.

A counter tenor, or any falsetto, has a flutey sound, and considerably less color than head or chest voice. It's just the way it works, and it can sound odd to the ear. If they had transposed the song down to tenor range for Chris, we would have heard him in HIS head & chest, and THEN we could compare whether or not he can belt/emote/whatever like Lea. I hope that he sings in his lower register at some point, because I heard a really cool reedy quality on some of his lower notes last night. And his acting is so good, that I'm sure he has no problem emoting with his voice.

ALSO, loved seeing soft Sue. It reminds me of Wilhemina Slater on Ugly Betty -- she's primarily an irredeemable hag, but once in a while, they sneak in a story line that shows her to be human and vulnerable underneath. UB does it very well, and I hope Glee continues to do it. It kinda buckles you into the roller-coaster -- is she going to be evil? OH! or human? AW! Fun.


Did anyone notice that the employer who Rachel (that wench!) forced to hire Finn was Vork from Felicia Day's online series The Guild?

Yes, Bryan Z, I did...and I giggled uproarously. I guess his grandfather's checks came to an end.....or the neighbor's family yanked the plug on the shed.


I desperately love Artie, so this episode was amazing for me.


embouchement -- Yeah, I know what you mean. I've been asking that myself -- especially now that we know that his mother isn't around anymore, and thus there is no second income. A brand new SUV, a D&G raincoat, a Prada bag and a McQueen shirt seem implausible. My guess is that they're independently wealthy (mother's estate, maybe?), but his father still works as a mechanic because he enjoys it. Of course, the other possibility is that the people creating the show didn't stop to think that perhaps a single parent couldn't afford to buy his kid $400 shirts. Whoops.


I may have to go back and watch the pilot again, but I could swear Tina was originally introduced as the angst-filled lesbian character. Does anyone else remember that?

Did they decide to make Kurt the token gay instead?


Maybe I'm behind, but I just found out that "Defying Gravity" was written into the episode because the actor who plays Kurt ran into this problem in real life! He wanted to sing it and no one would let him because it was a girls' song:

http://tvwatch.people.com/2009/11/12/glees-chris-colfer-reveals-real-life-story-behind-kurts-diva-moment/


Carolyn, Tina sang I Kissed A Girl for her audition for New Directions, but she was never characterized as a lesbian.


my only complaint with last night's episode: I can am sick of being able to SEE everyone's makeup!


It occurred to me that the reason why Sue had put her sister into a home was that she couldn't give her the care shee needed. She's single, no other family (that we know of), and travels extensively for her Cheerios. I don't think she was shoving off a burden, I think she simply recognized she could take care of her sister.

Over her decades-long teaching career, two of my mom's students had elder siblings with Down Syndrome but did not have it themselves. It's not the usual way it happens, but it's also not that uncommon.


Every time Kurt opens his mouth I love him more. And is it just me or is his dad kinda hot?


I'm so glad that baseball is finally over!

Chicken Barbie - I also laughed out loud at Puck's $18 left after buying "dip and nunchucks".

I loved this episode so much. I enjoyed Sue and Kurt's storylines, and I adore "Defying Gravity." The song reminded me of the discussion here to have Idina Menzel play Rachel's biological mom - something I'm still hoping for.

I don't really get the Rachel hate. I love that she's unapologetically fame-hungry and I think Lea Michele has a great voice.


Alexander McQueen Reference = "TLo!"

The show was just so very on last night. I millionth Chris Colter's deserving of an Emmy nom - how many effete gay males do we see on television that have a passport stamped in Caricaturevania? Both Kurt and his dad (hi, Mike O'Malley! You are acting the hell out of this role.) are unbelievable together. So quiet, saying only what needs to be said - you can actually see how they are alike despite the differences. The scene with the piano and the phone call was Alan Parker directing Fame worthy.

Sue's sister didn't phase me and wasn't out of tune. Jane Lynch and her amazing subtlety knocked it out from the first time she laid eyes on Becky. If you can say anything about the difference between Sue and Shu, it's that Sue - for her bluster - speaks volumes more in her actions. She's somebody who worked hard to get what she got - if she got it and nobody else is, that leaves her two options 1) either she is the most awesome being that ever lived and should be worshipped for figuring the secret out or 2) I figured it out, it wasn't that hard, why can't everybody else figure it out? And Shu kind of waltzes around like Snow White at times, little birds landing on his shoulder as his eyes bat their way out of being killed by the hunter.


Ms. Feasance said...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"Sue having a developmentally disabled sibling suddenly makes her character make sense on a lot of levels. Did her parents pressure her to be successful, because they felt like her older sister couldn't have the kind of career that makes for keeping up with the Joneses? Or was Sue vying for their attention?
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Or, did Sue grow up knowing from a young age that she was going to be responsible for her sister once her parents were no longer able to be? That's what I've seen in my (2) friends who've had a developmentally or severely physically disabled sibling - they have felt that responsibility looming since they were very young, and it definitely shaped their life choices.


Yep, best episode ever.


Love this show. I loved the staging of the diva-off. The way they had each of them stand, feet together, looking small and vulnerable.Perfect.


I agree, best episode so far. Thanks for the recap, guys.


"Anonymous
11/12/09 12:28 PM

Anonymous at 12:13: You didn't remember "Defying Gravity" from Wicked?? That is THE song from the show."

So I gathered. As I said, I found Wicked to be mostly forgettable and really heavy handed with the whole "message" I guess it was conveying. I did like that "Popular" song though. It just wasn't one of my favorite musicals. Sorry if I rained on your parade. No accounting for taste, huh?


@Anonymous
11/12/09 4:23 PM

Kurt's dad has his own mechanic shop....they can make some serious money.


Anonymous said...
I think Artie payed for the ramp with the money. Remember he sais "I think I wanna buy a ramp for the auditorium." or something like that.

11/12/09 2:12 PM

When they presented Artie with the cash from the cupcake sale, he told the glee club that he was fine riding to the contest in the car with his dad rather than come on the bus with the rest of the glee club, and said he wanted to spend it on a ramp for the school instead because there were other kids in wheelchairs as well.

In the very last scene, Shu is aghast as the principal tells him that Sue has just written a check for three ramps for the school, so the glee club can use its money for the special handicapped bus after all. The episode ends with Shu being totally gobsmacked and askind just what Sue is up to, and the principal saying who knows and telling him to just accept the good news.


Agreed. AH-MAZING. Artie and Tina, Kurt and Daddy, Sue and Sister....

And you didn't even mention how they were in wheelchairs the whole time OR how Rachel got Finn a job by pretending he was disabled and threatening to sue with the full force of the ACLU behind them!

Man, that was good.


I cried when Sue visited her sister.
She was determined to treat that girl the way she treated all of the Cheerios. And give her the opportunity her sister was never given.

Kurt and his Dad left me veklempt.


omg i literally cried after defying gravity and watching proud mary about 50 times!!!


Steve from Finland

Really enjoyed the TLo comment about "how far out of the closet can I go before I pay a price?"

But its sad that Will couldnt have understood that the song is much more powerful as a duet than just rachael. (Also, so much solo without any backup seems to defeat the idea of a group. PROUD MARY showed that duet and switching the lead vocals is much more compelling)

But do run to iTunes to get the special DEFYING GRAVITY EP which has it as a duet, solo by Kurt, solo by Rachael, plus Proud Mary and Dancing With Myself.

I have to say that I love that they are making the music from the show available so quickly!

Lastly, I agree that as much as I adore Jane Lynch, Chris Colfer (the boy who plays Kurt) is absolutely exceptional in his emotional honesty as well as the comic timing. What great casting of both him and his father.

(still waiting for Idina Menzel to show up as Rachael's surrogate mother!)

Thanks for the blog about this TLO.


Really? This was my LEAST favorite episode. I am not looking for heartstrings jerking from this show. I have ABC family for that.

I found it manipulative and irksome, I kept waiting for them to pull it out in the end with a "gotcha!" but no. Sue with a heart of gold? No way.


@ veritaseama


Quinn's family probably does have insurance, but she probably didn't tell the doctor about it because of the bill going to her parents. AND not every service rendered is billed at time of service. I'm DROWNING in bills from a knee injury where i got charged 900 for the ambulance, 300 for knee braces, and a 300 from the ER (which was originally 1,000). It makes perfect sense that she would get this large bill from her doctor after the service because they run through insurance AFTER the appointment is over.


anyway: LOVED this episode. LOVED artie, kurt, and sue. LOVE the version of Defying Gravity that is on the soundtrack with kurt and rachel singing.

i've already written an episode in my head about how sue became such a hardass because of people teasing her sister and stopping her sister from doing great things because of her disability and how tha drove sue to be the bitch she is. i thought that scene was touching and amazing. made my "allergies" act up.


Hi! I'm a Project Rungay posting virgin! I love your blog but I've never left a comment because I've felt like all I had to offer was a big "me too!" after everyone else's posts. I'm de-lurking just to add that I too loved Glee last night and I loved your recap just as much. As soon as I saw the girl with Down syndrome on my TV screen in last night's episode, I sucked in my breath and pretty much held it the whole episode. All too often I hear people make hurtful jokes about people with developmental disabilities. I suppose its an easy laugh that I don't seem to get. As a parent of a child with a developmental disability (Down syndrome), those jokes hurt so deeply. I won't even mention the name of a "comic" I heard on the radio the other day because I don't want to give her the satisfaction of the publicity, but she made the most disgusting jokes about people with disabilities and I was thinking, "how is this funny?!?!?" But obviously these jokes get laughs or these "comics" wouldn't be in business, right?

It is so wonderful when I come accross people like you guys, who are truly funny and don't need to resort to making fun of disabled people to get a laugh. I'm all for your brand of bitchy humor, but there is a line, and you guys clearly know where it is. Not only am I deeply grateful to Glee and Fox for portraying a person with Down syndrome as one who, like everyone else, just wants to be loved and accepted for who she is, but I'm also deeply grateful for people like you, who seem to also see things the way I do-- and this without having had the experience of having someone close to them have a disability (or have you guys?).

Anyway, love the blog! Keep up the good work!


I wanted to slap Quinn all night. First, why don't YOU get a job? Why no comments about what a 1950's gender stereotype throwback she is? "I need a may-an to protect and provide for me while I run around in my cheerleader uniform" -- what year is this!? Also, someone please peel those ridiculous eyelash extensions off her face. She looks like a drag queen.

Loved Artie's solo. And I'm sending out some serious love to Principal Figgins. He's hilarious!!


My only question (a minor quibble): if there was no ramp in the auditorium at the beginning of the episode (remember Finn says they have to carry Artie on stage every time?), then how did Artie get on the stage by himself when he's singing his solo of "Dancing with Myself"?

He asked to go there to get some instruments, but nobody else knows he's there besides Shu.

Like I said, minor quibble.

Still can't get this episode out of my head. Pure awesome all the way around.

Can't wait to buy these on DVD so I can watch them over and over with NO commercials.


Oh, man, I spent half the episode on the verge of tears. Kurt and his father just kill me every time they're together, whether it's funny ("I'm filled with ennui". "So . . . you're *really* feeling down about this?") or serious. I love that his father is so confused about Kurt's life, but loves him unconditionally, and would no doubt take a bullet for his son.

I think Artie blew Tina off because she casually faked a handicap, thus minimizing it, not because they no longer had something in common. But I'm pretty annoyed that the writers went that route. I don't see the point. I wanted to see a happy romance between those two.

RE: Will. He can be an ass, but he scored major points for making everyone in glee spend three hours a day in a wheelchair. They were acting like thoughtless teenagers, which is exactly what they are. So... teaching moment.

Sue and her sister did seem a little heavy-handed, but I don't care. It was still a great scene. And I loved her speech to Will at the end, about treating everyone equally.

Beth said... I feel as though I could have bought Sue's redemption arc if her one-dimensional bitchiness hadn't been rammed down our throats (not that I mind that, I think I actually prefer my Sue to be a one-dimensional ball of crazy). Had we not been party to her diary entries, I could see her having an emotional, softer side. However, how does someone who writes things about the "bi-curious machinations of a cabal of doughy, misshapen teens" or dreams of buying a hovercraft?

I don't know. And Sue is my favorite character, so I didn't really like this inconsistency at all.


I have no doubt Sue believes all those things she writes in her diary. I also think that Sue believes she'll be incredibly famous some day, and her brilliant journal will be published. She wouldn't want anyone to know she's a softie.


*Ms. Feasance's link to Jane Lynch interview--love the song Sue Sylvester has in her heart is "I Have Been To Paradise But I've Never Been To Me"

Love Curt's Dad.
Love Jane Lynch.
Love T-Lo.
Love Frank.

Artie, Tina and Mercedes need to sing more! Puck and Quin have better odds than Fin and Quin.


Pastel preppie wearing, ex-drama teacher to Puck "This is why I don't go to the aquarium!"


I am kind of irritated by the lack of semi-happy relationships on this show. I thought Artie and Tina were going to be together. Actually, I thought Puck and Rachel were going to be together for more than one episode too. But that just doesn't happen with Glee. Realistically I think Artie and Tina will give it another shot...but then again realistic has never really been an issue with this show.


How can no one not have commented on how badly Puck was rocking out in the background of Proud Mary? I don't know if it was character or if Mark Salling was just loving it, but his facial expressions (and Britney's) in the background were awesome.

Don't believe me? Look at him at 1:30 in the video. Hehe


I had to rewatch to remember all the great lines that no one's mentioned here:

"I'm pretty exclusively committed to my Mellencamp collection."

"You're irritating most of the time, but don't take that personally."

"You put on a blindfold and listen to my kid sing, and you'll swear you're hearing Ronnie Spector."


LOVE THIS SHOW. and i love this episode the best..from the opening scene to the last scene im teary eyed.. now if we can only campaign and make MARIAH sang with MERCEDES....


Not my favorite ep of the series but was very good, especially the ending with Sue and her sister.

Really disliked how Artie's date went. Where's a little compassion and forgiveness on Artie's part? Said a lot about those two characters and was not positive. I guess that's why we can call them "complex" now...


It's been a week from hell and I finally got to watch the show -- such a treat and then my favorite blog -- I love Puck and the best line of the show -- when caught fighting -- "I'm stressed over the bakesale."


yet another laura

I have to say, asmuch as there was to love about this episode, I think they crossed the line into "that is just not ok" a couple of times.

What I liked about the "make them sit in wheelchairs" bit was that they showed the people who can walk getting out of their chairs when they wanted to. But I really wish they had made sure that the audience got this- that sitting in awheelchair for a couple hours a day does not mean you suddenly, magically understand what it is like to have to use one yyour entire life.

That's also why I totally got Artie's reaction to Tina's revelation. It wasn't "I can't date you if you are not as different as I am". It was "I can't date someone who thinks that a disability is something that you can fake to get what you want". In Tina's case, what she wanted was to be left alone, and she used a fake disability as a way to get there. And Finn and Puck both did the same, faking a disability to get something. I understand that they (the writers) were trying to be funny, but there are to many people out there claiming that disabledpeople are "just faking to get special accomodations" for me to laugh at a joke that is based on the assumtion that this true.

That said, I loved Kurt with his father. These two have a great, believable chemistry on screen. Also loved the glances between Mercedes and Kurt. She has become such a great friend, and I love that they didnt go the "he didn't want me, sonow I hate him" route with her character.

I continue to be really confused by Quinn. I get that she is scared out of her mind, so I cut her a little slack for not thinking logically about things like howshe will continue to hide her pregnancy from her parents. But she has decied to give the baby up for adoption, yes? So why does she constantly say things to Finn that imply that the two of them will be the baby's parents? Not that she doesn't have a right to change her mind, but so far, we have not been told that she has?


Weighing in as the older sister of an adult woman with Down Syndrome - don't assume this makes Sue any "softer". I think this revelation provides valuable insight into her characte, because it points out why she has little patience for people who make excuses for themselves when she has lived her life with someone who has an actual disability.

Is Sue's over-the-top aggresively hateful behavior OK bc of her sibling relationship? Absolutely not - but it's certainly one way of coping.

While I found the scene in her sister's room a little heavy-handed - I think it is VERY unlikely Sue gets teary-eyed on every visit - I see why this was needed for this episode, and that it is likely Sue felt a little more vulnerable bc of her recent interaction with Becky.

I also had the sense Sue's sister was in some sort of medical care facility (looked like a nursing home) and was not "institutionalized".

PLUS. The scenes with Kurt and his Dad have been very moving, Puck cannot get enough screentime, and while Artie's reaction to Tina was disappointing, I think teenagers tend to be moral absolutists and it takes them a while to come around after receiving information that doesn't automatically fit in to the way they think people should behave.


I'm not convinced this whole Sue thing is real. Let's be honest.


How did they all master their wheelchairs so quickly?

Wheelchair Dancer says they didn't master their wheelchairs at all. She is a wheelchair user who is also a dancer.

I have to agree with Not Another Laura for much of the disability-related sections of this ep. I am totally on Artie's side but it annoyed me that the writing didn't make clear that was Tina was doing was SO inappropriate. People with disabilities, especially "invisible" disabilities (like longterm illnesses such as MS or lupus) or so-called psychological disabilities like stuttering, get accused of faking their disability on a regular basis. It's totally inappropriate to represent this as accurate in the show. A disability does not help you. It makes your life harder - even if you're a shy person with a stutter.

Here's an example that might help: the TV show NCIS pissed me off enough that I stopped watching it after the fourth or so season because they did about one "rape" episode per season, and in every single episode the survivor was actually lying about having been raped. This is a dangerous thing for a show to do because women are accused of lying about being raped all the time, including in court. It's not good for a show to reinforce this idea.

Also? People with disabilities are not "teachable moments."





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