Glee "Glease" Review: Inducing Bulimia... *Are* There Worse Things Glee Could Do?

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Glee S04E06: “Glease”

Despite featuring an homage to one of the happier musicals to have graced Broadway, “Glease” was, when it came to the stories of Glee's own characters, quite the downer. In a vast improvement over his craptastic apology from last week, Finn put a little more feeling into his attempt to mend fences with Sue. Her rejection was to be expected—and once again, Sue Sylvester became public enemy numero uno with regard to the glee club, completing the post-graduation Glee reboot (Gleeboot?) that aimed to return the series to its roots—where the jocks are nasty, the freshmen are awkward, and everyone will be BFFs by the time they graduate.

Wade was stripped of his female role in Grease when Sue decided to call his parents—who were supportive of his dream to live life as Unique, but understandably concerned about how receptive (or not) their rural Ohio community would be to Unique playing the role of Rizzo. I was super stoked about Santana returning to McKinley for the show until we found out that she was returning to take Unique’s place. I was so happy for Unique and genuinely excited to see her in the role. Glee has struggled to tug at my heartstrings since, oh, about Season 2—which is sad because seriously, it’s not that hard—but on the rare occasions that the show manages to get me all worked up, it does it well. Poor Unique. Here’s hoping she gets her big moment later this season.

Back in New York, Rachel was excited about her first real big-kid off-Broadway audition. Nefarious dance teacher Cassandra July was apprehensive... and then suddenly oddly supportive. My alarm bells were going off, but with a weepy trainwreck Kurt lamenting the possibility of seeing Blaine for the first time since their break-up at the musical, and July offering to donate her Jet Blue frequent-flyer miles in the name of both scorned lovers attaining closure, Rachel decided to accompany Kurt to Lima for moral support.

I’m not at all surprised that Cassandra took the opportunity of Rachel’s absence to make a play on Brody, but the whole teacher-student dynamic is icky even though he’s in college. (I’ve seen it happen in real life. It’s icky in real life, too.) I WANT to say that I’m surprised that Brody would do that to Rachel, but frankly, we just don’t know him that well, nor have we seen enough of their relationship, whatever kind of relationship it currently is, to know or pass judgement. So. Sucks for Rachel. I guess. I actually enjoyed her scene with Finn after the show, where he went through the Four Types of Rachel Tears and called her out on crying over a boy, reflecting on the fact that he used to be the boy she cried over. I was disappointed that what began as a refreshingly civil conversation ended up devolving into Glee’s typically melodramatic “I never want to see you again” blah blah, but at least Finn and Rachel managed to accomplish more than Kurt and Blaine. Blaine attempted to explain himself. Kurt said he didn’t want to hear it. I’m torn because I understand that Kurt was hurt by Blaine’s fling, but I don’t think Kurt realized how hard his absence was on Blaine, and frankly, once he landed in New York, Kurt didn’t appear to be putting a whole lot of effort into their relationship. So those four are all still miserable, especially Rachel, because her contingency boyfriend isn’t panning out so swell.

Santana and Brittany briefly discussed the current state of their relationship. Santana was showing some regret during her rendition of “There Are Worse Things I Could Do,” and I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t think she actually knows what she wants. When Brittany said that she wasn’t seeing anyone, boy or girl, Santana initially seemed upset. She had encouraged Brittany move on the last time we saw them together. But then she said that she was also glad to hear that. YOU CAN’T HAVE IT BOTH WAYS, SANTANA. Brittany won’t move on if she thinks there’s even the tiniest chance of getting back together. If you really want her to move on, you need to make that clear.

Of course, I don’t think Santana actually wants Brittany to get over her, and I don’t think Santana is quite ready to move past Brittany herself. They’re actually the frontrunners in my mind for Glee Couple Most Likely to Kiss and Make Up... Eventually, along with Mike and Tina. What do you think?

And while you’re thinking about that, let’s talk about Kitty. HOLY. CRAP. Kitty is like, really evil, you guys. Upsettingly evil. She definitely crossed the line from Glee evil to psychological thriller evil and I honestly don’t think I find her fun anymore.

Still miffed and jealous about Marley winning the role of Sandy and, ever so briefly, Puck Jr.’s heart, not to mention ridiculously adorable newcomer Ryder’s affections, Kitty embarked on a campaign of terror meant to break Marley for good. She preyed on Marley’s insecurities about her appearance by altering Marley’s Sandy costume in the middle of the night to make it fight snugger and snugger. She could always be counted on for a snide comment and threw a slumber party purely to overwhelm crash-dieting Marley with donuts and other foods with flavor.

But the final straw for me was when Kitty pulled Marley into the bathroom to introduce her to the wonderful world of Bulimia. Altering the costumes? That was so ridiculous and over-the-top that it was funny. The rude comments? Expected. But what kind of monster actually deliberately plays on someone’s insecurities with the carefully calculated intention of inducing a serious eating disorder? We’ve seen the villains on Glee do some pretty horrific things in the past, but this was just unsettling. It might just be my own personal baggage showing, but I don’t take that kind of mental manipulation lightly. It takes a particularly frightening kind of person to so casually compromise another human being’s life over petty grievances, and Kitty’s redemption story better be AMAZING. Or maybe we'll eventually see the little sociopath undergo some hardcore therapy to work through her obvious issues.

So I really despise Kitty a lot right now, but Ryder, of all people, grew on me—mostly because he took a serious moment, catching Marley with her fingers down her throat, to make a poop joke. I can appreciate a guy who relies on humor in inappropriate situations.

Musical Notes

– My Glee playlist: Blaine’s “Beauty School Drop Out” because he makes a DAMN FINE Teen Angel, and the ensemble’s “You’re the One that I Want” because the ol’ switcheroo caught me off guard and made me go “aww” and I don’t go “aww” nearly as much as I used to while watching this show. Thanks, Glee. I needed that.

– “I love it. I promise I won’t pee in it.”

– I loved all the nods to the Grease movie—the sets, the Troy Donahue picture, even Tina’s Jan costume was spot-on. I know the stage version is sliiiightly different, but I haven’t seen it in years, so feel free to point out any references that you spotted!

– The show had to change the lyrics to "Greased Lightning" to get rid of phases like "the chicks'll cream" but then Marley-as-Sandy was able to smoke a fake cigarette on stage?

– Sue’s entire rant about why Schue couldn’t leave Finn in charge of the glee club while he was in Washington was inspired. Mean, of course, but INSPIRED. “It seems ridiculous to everybody in America except you.” Sue Sylvester, you complete me.

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