Glee: Rolling Right Along

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Glee S03E15: "Big Brother"

Question: Should we be wearing neck braces while watching this show? There may not be a more whiplash-inducing event than Glee, and I'm including minor car accidents here. Before the most recent hiatus we were left with a multi-pronged cliffhanger that would've been shocking enough for a season finale, let alone just a regular midseason episode: Just as Rachel and Finn were about to tie the knot at city hall, a texting-while-driving Quinn got T-BONED in what looked to be a fatal accident. Yikes! And the episode was already devastating enough: Earlier in the hour, a rat-a-tat comedy scene involving Photoshopped images of Finn in high heels was immediately followed by a montage in which a character was physically bullied, cyber-bullied, and then decided to commit suicide. Seriously, the tone shifts Glee show takes are so drastic it's hard to know which extreme emotion we'll be feeling from scene to scene.

This week's episode, "Big Brother," maintained that tradition by following up Quinn's frightening cliffhanger with a bright 'n breezy scene of Diana Agron rolling through the hallways of McKinley in a wheelchair like it wasn't even a big deal. Sure, she'd broken her back and can no longer walk, but why dwell on such a bummer of a situation when there's a dual-wheelchair musical number to be had!

Friday Night Lights this was not. So after a spirited rendition of Elton John's "I'm Still Standing" (what high school student doesn't love THAT song?), Quinn assured everyone that she'll definitely be up and walking (and dancing!) in time for Nationals. Um, sure, lady. Although, considering how this show rolls, I half-expected her to be prancing around before Act 5.

Meanwhile Sue's still pregnant and woozy from all the hormones, but her prior offer to Will about helping New Directions win Nationals had apparently fallen by the wayside. It took the sudden threat of Coach Roz Washington taking over as co-coach of the Cheerios for Sue to get her act together and cut a deal with Principal Figgins: If New Directions wins Nationals, she'll get to keep her cheer coach supremacy. Or something. I don't know, it was just a complicated way of getting Sue back in the theater leading another round of Booty Camp. Which is always fun. I could watch Sue insulting these kids all day. Later, when Will complained to Sue that she'd frightened the kids, citing Kurt's assertion that she was "meaner than Tabatha," Sue's nonchalant response was the best: "I have no idea who Porcelain is referring to, I'm assuming it's gay and niche." This was a great Sue episode.

Speaking of Sue, Jane Lynch got to bring a bit more nuance to her role again this week as Sue's pregnancy continued to bring out her more human, vulnerable side. First she reluctantly (but secretly gratefully) allowed Will and Emma to come with her to her doctor's appointment to "confirm the sex of my daughter." Later, the doctor did indeed confirm as much, but added that there were some irregularities in her amniocentesis. Nothing was stated explicitly, but afterward Sue had a heartfelt encounter with Becky in which she hugged her and said her daughter would be "just like you." It's not clear how literal Sue's statement was, but this was in my opinion one of the episode's (and series'?) best moments.

Okay you got me: Every word I've typed so far has been a waste of time because let's get to the REAL reason we're here: MATT BOMER! Oh man, Matt Bomer. Am I right, ladies? He played Cooper Anderson, Blaine's older brother who'd become somewhat of a celebrity for moving to Hollywood and starring in free credit report commercials. Like any cool older brother, he showed up in the hallways of his old high school and immediately began making things weird for Blaine. First off, and I don't mean to sound mean because Darren Criss is definitely handsome, but didn't you feel so bad for Darren Criss whenever he had to stand next to Matt Bomer? I mean...

Sorry, Darren Criss. It happens! Anyway, the two of them sang a Duran Duran mash-up that was sort of weird but fun and get this—Bomer can sing! I mean, with this show even the non-singers are autotuned into oblivion, but it sounded like Bomer can actually hold a note for real. And a pleasant note at that! Great, one more reason why Matt Bomer isn't one of us. Anyway, the club loved it and Cooper agreed to do an Acting Workshop Master Class or whatever, but we could tell Blaine was already feeling butt-hurt over the mega-upstaging he was receiving. Better make up for it with some kind of shower scene later!

Meanwhile, the world's least interesting plotline—Rachel and Finn's relationship—took another turn when Finn slowly came to his senses and realized that his potential future marriage to Rachel and their ensuing life together in New York hadn't really considered what the heck he was going to do with HIS career. Puck only worsened the situation when he attempted to lure Finn to Southern California to assist with Puck's pool cleaning business. So where the episode started with the two slightly annoying lovebirds still intending to get married, it ended with Finn standing up to Rachel and calling into question the entire idea. Yes! Good idea! I do not approve of high school marriages (in concept at least), and frankly neither should they.

Throughout the episode we were meant to believe that Artie sorta has some romantic sparks with Quinn now that they're seeing things eye-to-eye. First he helped her defeat the steepest wheelchair ramp in Lima, and then while the rest of the kids went to Six Flags for Senior Ditch Day, he took her to some kind of skate park for handicapped people. The musical montage suggested that Quinn was having a GREAT time racing down concrete ramps, but I'm not gonna lie, Six Flags looked WAY more fun. But the idea that Artie and Quinn were hitting it off came to a grinding halt when she suddenly became offended by Artie's suggestion that she might be permanently paralyzed. He'd apparently gone through the same thought process himself—hoping to recover before realizing he wouldn't—and he attempted to advise her to adjust her expectations just in case. The gesture was met with 'tude and a wheel-away (the biggest insult a wheelchair user can make). Poor Artie!

Okay BACK TO THE BOMER. After a truly great Master Class scene (Matt Bomer's hilarious too? Ugh.) in which Cooper advised the kids that Broadway is dead and they should always point their fingers during dramatic scenes, Blaine ended up having a tiff with Cooper that sent him into the kind of funk only an over-the-top and inappropriate cover of Christina Aguilera's "Fighter" can solve. Seriously, what a totally inappropriate song choice! Blaine's so dramatic. But it did include a shower scene and also Blaine scream-singing in front of a bank of monitors showing Cooper's face, so it's not like viewers had any reason to complain.

Later, after almost no scenes suggesting either of them had really talked about what was going on, Blaine and Cooper reunited for a duet of Gotye's "Somebody That I Used to Know" and then hugged it out. Both guys sounded great, but again, that is not an appropriate song for two brothers! Isn't it about a romantic break-up? It's all right, I'm not mad, just confused. Anyway, in a pleasant turn of the table, Blaine offered to help Cooper with his career, by helping him tape an audition for a Michael Bay film or something. Aw, brothers gonna work it out.

So yeah: Rachel and Finn are on the rocks; Quinn's got wheelchair 'tude; Sue's got an ever-warming heart; Sam will henceforth be known as the "Kentucky fried stripper"; Blaine likes his brother again; and Matt Bomer returned to Mt. Olympus from whence he came. Can't wait to see what happens next week. Bring your neck braces!

Okay one more:

QUESTIONS:

... Which do you prefer: Mean Sue or Nice Sue?

... Will Quinn walk again?

... Do you think Rachel and Finzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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