Glee "Thanksgiving" Review: The Slap Heard 'Round the World

By MaryAnn Sleasman

Nov 30, 2012

Glee S04E08: “Thanksgiving”

Like most holiday reunions, Glee’s “Thanksgiving”—which was only a week late, not bad—reminded us that holiday reunions are only full of the warm and fuzzies until you remember why you hated talking to these people in the first place. Quinn (QUINN!), Puck Sr., Mike, Mercedes, and Santana all returned to celebrate the national day of gluttony with their families and mentor the new faces in New Directions. Finn paired them off with their respective mini-mes and Quinn’s sad regression to barely tolerable became apparent when she and Psycho Kitty became like OMG BFFs!

At almost halfway through the fourth season, Dianna Agron has been the most noticeably absent alumni. For as much as she was missed, the uncertainty of when she would eventually return made for some great suspense and with her heir apparent, Kitty, growing more and more terrible, I had hoped that Quinn’s return would bring with it an attitude adjustment of the most epic proportions. Instead, sadly, Quinn fell for Kitty’s charms hook, line, and sinker. Hate u, Kitty.

The campaign to kill or severely incapacitate Marley through the wonders of eating disorders was brought to you by laxatives this week. Glee’s Season 4 obsession with poop is fascinating. Santana jumped right into her mentor role with sincere enthusiasm that bordered on motherly overbearingness and confronted Marley about the pills she found while digging through her purse. Armed with the knowledge that Kitty is a psycho, Santana went to Quinn, who defended Kitty and said she was sweet. “Secret Nazi sorority” sisters stick together!

And then... the slap heard ‘round the world. Once the nostalgia kicks in, graduation may make you weirdly fond of classmates you never really liked, but it’s not going to magically turn you into best friends forever. Santana and Quinn’s old issues came up, fueled by new wrongs. Santana called Quinn out on being a snob, all pleased with herself for making it to Yale and maintaining her flawless academic record, while still holding on to her resentment for Puck Sr., rarely visiting their spawn, and banging her professor. Quinn countered with the old classic, “EVERYONE IS JUST JEALOUS OF MY AWESOMENESS,” and said that Santana wasn’t living her dream in Kentucky, which was really just a polite way of calling her a wuss and probably a loser.

With my one shining hope for the Kitty cat to be declawed neutralized, she was free to continue her onslaught of friendly destruction. Marley looked sicker and weaker throughout the episode, to the point that her shocking collapse during “Gangnam Style” wasn’t that shocking at all. HATE U, KITTY.

In New York, Rachel and Kurt did the “we’re too good for Ohio” thing and decided to wallow in their singles angst together. Rachel tried to give Brody the cold shoulder when Cassandra left him in charge of Dance 101 while she probably slept off a hangover, and Brody told Rachel to stop acting like a high schooler. It was a beautiful moment, the sort of tough love every college freshman needs—like being instructed to stop wearing your ID card on a lanyard around your neck like a tool or being advised to leave your marching band varsity jacket in the back of your closet, preferably if that closet is located in your parents’ basement.

Their truce led to, as Kurt put it, “using a turkey as a courtship device.” Little known fact: fondling cold poultry flesh is a total turn-on. Who knew?

Of course, the real party began when Sarah Jessica Parker showed up as Isabelle with an entourage of fellow “orphans.” Her relationship with Kurt is really kind of cute and I’m glad that someone finally told him to stop being an ass and at least TALK to Blaine. It’s not like he was any happier NOT talking to him, you know?

Musical Notes

– My Glee Playlist: the alumni performance of “Homeward Bound/Home” was super pretty and Kurt and Isabelle’s “Let’s Have a Kiki” (Scissor Sisters FTW!) was fun until Rachel ruined it.

– I liked the Warblers’ performance better even before Marley passed out. Sorry not sorry. Just, for all the build-up to this supposedly amazing dance routine from New Directions, it just wasn’t all that great. Maybe the best was meant to come after Marley fainted? If that’s the case: HATE. U. KITTY.

– Kitty’s hero worship of Quinn is so creepy that I’m kind of waiting for the part where Kitty goes all Annie Wilkes on her.

– “Speak of the devil I knocked up.” Kinda hope that particular devil sticks around, though. I missed her smarm.

– Blaine and Kurt took tentative steps toward reconciliation when Kurt, at Isabelle’s encouragement, called Blaine before the sectionals performance and said that even though he can’t forgive him right now, they’re still best friends and he’d like to see Blaine at Christmas. Eee! My preciouses!

– Unique’s parents want to send her to a camp for little boys who like to wear dresses, yet the last time we saw them, they seemed pretty alright with their kid’s life choice. They were worried about Unique’s safety, not her wardrobe. You DO realize that parents being concerned that society won’t understand their child doesn’t necessarily mean that they want to CHANGE that child, right Glee?

– So I guess New Directions isn’t going to win sectionals this year? How does this bode for the rest of the competition season?

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  • AdaHui Dec 21, 2012

    Highlight of the episode was the Alumni song right off the bat. Then the rest of the show went downhill from there. Rachel is even more super annoying than ever and as much as enjoy Brody, their little relationship makes me want to puke. Kurt is pretty much the only good part of the New York scene. Kitty is still the most horrific person on the show and I want to see her get hit by a bus and never return. I do enjoy the new relationship between Jake and Ryder and the triangle(~ish) with Marley but this whole thing with Marley actually still being naive enough to listen to Kitty is unbearable. And Gangnam Style was a horrible choice. Thank god for The Warblers.

  • StephanieStra2 Dec 12, 2012

    Too bad Marley's issue got lost in the slap-fest, but it's very easy to miss the symptoms of an eating disorder unless you're with the person enough to see multiple signs. Santana saw the laxatives, but not the missing lunches, Jake saw those but who would think someone wasn't eating at all? If eating disorders were EASY to spot, we wouldn't lose nearly all those that we do - even famous ones, like Karen Carpenter. The week has been a bit busy in TV time to put things together, but I'm guessing that 4.10 or 4.11 will address the issue in much greater depth. So I'll wait and not throw a hissy that it wasn't addressed immediately. Look at the period of time for the bullying...story development with an ensemble cast - and now, 2 different locales - takes time. And can't ignore the holidays, either.

    Kurt & Rachel were doing the "we're too good for Ohio" thing; they were doing the "why put salt in our open wounds and ruin the holidays more" thing. And Kurt wasn't being an ass by not talking to Blaine, he was hiding to avoid further pain, which has been a Kurt trait from the beginning on emotionally painful subjects (remember when "the Talk" about sex came up? first when Blaine tried, then when Burt hung in and did?) Considering how much Blaine made of the texting/flirting (in public) and then, pushing Kurt to go to NYC (quite correctly), Blaine only made it a few weeks before he actually DID cheat. Most people might not have wanted to talk to their exes for a little bit, after that, you think?

    The Phone Call scene was GREAT! Both Criss and Colfer nailed it- And SJP coming in to shore up the slipping foundations...

    I wonder if we'll find that Sue railroaded the judges into ignoring a clause in the rules that exempted medical or hazardous condition issues. For example, if someone were having a seizure, are they supposed to perform over them? Or a fire in the building or a bomb threat? Really.

    Awww..I liked "Let's Have a Kiki" - though I was initially not liking the "Turkey Lurkey" mashup (/flashback to college drama club "Promises, Promises" trauma). And the Warblers' "Live While We're Young". were excellent, as always. Not sure about the "Home/Homeward Bound" mashup.

    HATE Hunter C and his "Whistle". Absolutely HATE Hunter C - not like the old Evil Sebastian, who I just disliked. It took a massive bit of willpower NOT to turn off the set or change channels when his huge, smarmy smile and that horrible song came on. The Warblers were fine, though I dislike the song.

    Wish Tina hadn't been the one tagged to start the "blame Marley" thing; she gets so little good air time. I don't like "Gangnam Style", but I liked what ND did with it and was glad Tina, Sam, Britt and Jake got some good time. No one MADE everyone leave the stage - someone could have tried to work up a replacement.

    This is, after all, a dramedy, with little correlation to real life. And where extreme scenarios are used plot devices. For example, ending the club's year because they lost the competition and destroying all music, records and trophies? Sure, when the football team's season is over, they're not entitled to use the field - but you don't destroy all their gear. So these are plot devices. Just enjoy the ride and see where it takes us :)

  • KayliaMetcalf Dec 07, 2012

    There was not one song I liked in the episode. Not one. :(

  • cute2thebeut Dec 07, 2012

    I mean Kitty didn't force the laxatives down her throat...

  • BigMac527 Dec 04, 2012

    ND gets DQ'd, everyone becomes sad. Then Finn finds out that there's a secondary competition for groups that didn't make it through Sectionals. This gives ND another chance to make it into Regionals and thus another chance to make it to Nationals.

  • irehawk20 Dec 03, 2012

    Quinn came back as the other alumni reunited!

    I'm glad Tina has a lead solo on doing an Asian rap during the performance! That's the way it should goes!

    But there was a problem at the end when Marley fainted. Probably it was Kitty, the mean girl nemesis of Marley, who cursed her with laxatives! If the New Directions got disqualified in this upcoming next episode, then we should kick Kitty out!

  • MarinaLopez Dec 03, 2012

    *Edit* Sorry, my mistake about her not being Korean. But I still stand by and say that it was racist.

  • AkiraHideyo Dec 02, 2012

    Ryan M should just put this show to sleep. That's just so much juice one can squeeze out of prunes.

  • MirandaPartri Dec 02, 2012

    That bloody Kiki song is right up there with the red cup song as most regrettable moment to have ever watched on TV for me. I love Glee, but my god, they pushed the line WAY too far with that one. Eugh!

  • brag0031 Dec 07, 2012

    Worst. Song. Ever. Then they follow that with the Menonite choir? WTF?

  • MarinaLopez Dec 03, 2012

    What about "Gangnam Style"? I'm sorry to Jenna U who plays Tina, but that song was awful to the tenth degree!

  • StefanoSeebin Dec 02, 2012

    Pushed the line? It was just harmless fun. Goodness. What's the real problem here?

  • MirandaPartri Dec 03, 2012

    It pushed way over the lame line, I'm aware it's harmless, but it was just so very cringe-worthy! lol

  • StefanoSeebin Dec 06, 2012

    It made my night personally. It brought back the earnest dorkiness Glee was built on, which is great, as the show has been taking itself too seriously as of late.

  • IakiSaravia Dec 02, 2012

    I got to say it for the rest of the glee guys: Quinn, Santana, and Puck weren't the only ones who won Nationals, Artie and all the other didn't get any action and they really do they part in that Competition. Why they didn't invite them to the bar!?

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