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Glee S05E17: "Opening Night" 

"Opening Night" was an obnoxious PSA about the importance of overcoming crippling fear and standing up to meanies, and since that's pretty much the theme of Glee as a whole, for an episode that was so important to Rachel's growth and career, it didn't feel terribly special by itself. However, it occasionally felt like a low-key series finale: Will has finally came to terms with his Lima Loser status, and Rachel is living her dream. It kind of makes you wonder what Glee could possibly do for its upcoming sixth and final season—especially if it goes for the possible 24 episodes that were proposed. 

For now, though, Glee is in a comfortable place, and "Opening Night"—even with its weird lack of specialness and its annoying rah-rah Rachelness—was fun. The episode featured delightful musical numbers and ample Lea Michele awesomeness; while I may want to slushie Rachel for the majority of the time she's on my TV screen, that is by no means a reflection of my OMG SQUEE feelings for Lea Michele. My handsomer half thought the Times reviewer's panning of Funny Girl paired with unrelenting adoration for Rachel herself was a cop-out, but I say NAY. Don't hate the actor, hate what the actor has to do to make rent. I mean, look at half of Jared Padalecki's filmography


So anyway, despite excellent previews and favorable reviews in the "legitimate" publications (and I love how Glee made the distinction that of course all of the "legitimate" publications loveRachel and it was just the lone internet wackos who hated her), Rachel read some mean comments online and retreated to her corner of the loft, presumably to pee in bottles like that chick on Hoarders and torture herself by reaching into the actual dregs of the internet for more masochistic viewing. I mean, YouTube? Oh, sweetie. Rachel is truly her own worst enemy. 

But never fear! Kurt came to the rescue with a badly forged note from Barbra Streisand—I was just as shocked as Rachel was that he didn't know about her dropped A—and then Santana, my queen, arrived to layeth the smacketh down with a bunch of vintage Streisand-hate that inspired Rachel to take a shower and go to freaking work. Well played, your highness-ness.


Meanwhile, Schue and Sue arrived in New York City for Rachel's big night and to dabble in some oddball B-stories of their own. Sue's whirlwind romance with Archer's Chris Parnell was fun, and her reluctant acceptance that New York City really is the place where dreams come true even though it smells like a diaper and looks like a dong brought Sue full circle in a this-could-have-been-a-finale way. 

Shue's baby story was a bit stranger, happening mostly off-screen, and am I the only one who's kind of bummed that we missed out on a Neurotic Preggo Emma sighting? Imagine the pamphlets! So much lost pamphlet potential! 

I also question Schue's wisdom in going to New York when his wife was apparently on the verge of popping like a meat balloon. I get that Rachel is the most important person ever, but that's your freaking wife and spawn, dude, and the whole, "I knew we'd get here someday," was creepy even if he did catch himself. Maybe because he caught himself. IDK. Schue's story actually worked well as a finale for the character the same way Sue's did. He finally admitted to being happy, even if he never got to live his own Broadway dreams. He formed new dreams, and that's a really important part of growing up that I think Glee has so-far largely ignored, even with it's latest string of "grown-up Glee" stories. 


Thankfully, the OMG SO IMPORTANT reviewer for the New York Times was gracious and optimistic in his comments about Rachel. I thought Glee would make us wait a week to find out what he said, but his praise was like the thick, sweet icing on the big happy cake that "Opening Night" ultimately turned out to be. Glee deserves some happy at this point in the season. It's been a hard year: losing Finn, losing nationals, losing the glee club itself. For better or worse, Glee just isn't into doing dark and dreary on a regular basis. Overall, this season has been a huge improvement over last season's suckfest, and Glee has shown a surprising amount of restraint and maturity during its darker storylines. "Opening Night" opens a new chapter for Glee, a show that has grown older and wiser in the wake of some recent painful experiences, but that still retains its saccharine optimism and unwavering faith in the power of dreams.



MUSICAL NOTES

– Music time: Rachel's everything was awesome and I totally teared up during "Who Are You Now." 

– Literally every Finn reference was perfect and I didn't even roll my eyes at Schue naming his male heir "Daniel Finn." Aww. 

– I loved the line about Sue being "lovable." Glee's current trend of having Rachel tell everyone who looks at her sideways to eat shit and die is just... I don't know. You're living your dream. You won. Who cares if your mean old gym teacher from high school still isn't impressed? Get the hell over it. 

– Then again, I say that as someone who has been out of high school for a lot longer than Rachel has, and whose various high school vendettas have mellowed with time. 

– And to be fair, Sue's had that coming for years. 

– Okay, fine, carry on. 


What'd you think of "Opening Night"?


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I would so give real money to Slushie Rachel! Once again, Santana saves the day! Really she's the only one left with common sense! Every one of the "Broadway Babies" are so annoying!
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Rachel Berry's nightmares are awesome and funny... that's two very funny opening sequences in a row.
The episode was generally OK; I am not really a Funny Girl fan, so the two numbers Rachel did were OK; I did not like that Sue sang alongside Rachel in Who Are You Now; that should have been a full Rachel solo; the parts with Rachel were very emotional.
I loved the epicness that is Santana, and like you said, she layteth the smacketh down.
The club scene and musical number were awesome and for me, it was the best musical number of the episode.
You are right, this felt like a mini-finale; and it probably was as far as Mr. Schue is concerned; not sure about Sue, but here's hoping.
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I really enjoyed the show. I find it amusing how people so desperately want to control the outcome. Just enjoy it for what it is.
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Does anybody think that both Corey Montieth and his Finn Hudson character got badly overlooked and turned down too quickly and then end up in rehab and finally died?
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The pumpin blood...club scene was AMAZING
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No reference to my favouritest Glee review comment this week..? :(

Fine, I'll do it myself

"And this week was a love fest for Rachel, who up until this point hasn't gotten enough attention so we spent an entire episode showing and telling just how great she is...because, you know, Glee"

I feel better now
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This is what i like in glee. such a long time this bunch of people never do a 'glee hug' right after Home/Homeward Bound performance?
Anyway this episode literally made me tears for a while.
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This is the first time Glee has made me tear up in a while.

That being said, where the hell were Rachel's Dads? Or even Burt and Carol? Like, I understand there is logistics to hiring guest stars and whatnot, but maybe they could have budgeted this one in? And while they were dancing in the club, I couldn't help but think, "hey what ever happened to Starchild?"

I'm so over Sue redemption arcs though, blegh. The whole time they wasted on her "romance" I assumed they were setting up Sue to stay in New York, otherwise why bother? I have to remind myself that priorities and continuity were never Glee's strong suit, but it still baffles me why they do some of the things they do...
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Well you said it all. Loved this episode...even it was all about Rachel, still it was a perfectly done and filmed episode.
Was nice too see Tina, Schue, Sue etc...
Like you said Rachel was her own enemy as always...but of course the only person who could bring her back was Santana...i just knew it...before she came in, i was like, where is Santana and there she was.
The songs were fantastic...great job Lea Michelle
But the best part was in the gay club! That song and the whole feeling was simply AWESOME!!!
Then the second best part of the episode...Rachel telling Sue the truth and it was about time!!
Simply great episode...
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I really liked that musical number at the club. It's about time they did a musical number at a club. Favourite lines of the night were Rachel's "Who wrote this? Tina!" and Tina/Blaine's excahnge, "Oh, Tina, he's totally gay."
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Usually I totally agree with miss MaryAnn, but I gotta say, this time I didn't find Rachel particularly obnoxious, instead I found her lack of confidence extremely weird and out of character, considering she just told NYADA to go to hell because she's so READY.

Loved to see Karosky. In Italy they're transmitting reruns from season 2, I still think that not having him is a total waste.

"and I love how Glee made the distinction that of course all of the "legitimate" publications loved Rachel and it was just the lone internet wackos who hated her" Gosh, this was terrible, I wish Glee would just take a look at what Smash used to do...
So we shouldn't listen to the critics and just go to a gay club where everyone just adores you? Because of course gays love Broadway, love Rachel and love being shirtless and partying -.-

I'm not from America, but I must gather that if you're not in NYC you're destined to a life of failure and dissatisfaction. What was up with Sue's storyline? I didn't understand that, it was just too weird.

Who Are You Now made me tear up too.
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What about the rest of the story of Santana and Brittany, Santana comes back and no Nobody asks about her trip and why Britney is not back with her as if no previous chapters complete ...
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Well who is to say Britney didn't go visit her parents when they got back? Anyways, they had a story to tell about Rachel this episode and maybe they didn't have time to hash out every detail about other characters and explanations as to what they were up to and why they weren't there.
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Enjoyed most of this episode, especially Rachel standing up for herself, and the last line about Sue being lovable, but I was NOT ready for that perfect scene of Cory. I'll leave you all to do the actual criticising, I'm off to curl up in a ball & cry for a bit.
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I'm glad that someone is telling horrible people like Sue (and Santana a couple of episodes back) to shove it.

Why is it OK for these characters to be assholes?

I don't know why Santana (the character) is so popular, maybe because she is pretty? She has been telling Rachel horrible things for years and when Rachel finally is saying something back she apperntly "tells everyone to eat shit". Really?

And please stop the "OMG, PSA, OMG SQUEE, IDK". Again, really?
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I just adore Naya Rivera's (Santana) voice she is a amazing talent.
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Sure, but the character is a mean bitch but we still love her because we are thought that it is ok for girls to be mean to each other.
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Agreed. Naya Rivera's SO compelling and funny, and her voice is wonderful.
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Little addition to my former comment:

I guess Glee is kinda giving me the wrong impression of gay people in NY. Because of Ryan Murphy I'm starting to think that every gay man is into Broadway... :P

And I think it was important for Rachel to yell at Sue. She never defended herself in High School but by doing it now, she shows how much confidence she has evolved. In my opinion that was the point where we could see that she's ready to move on.
I personally still have a grudge on some old classmates, even if it was years ago. If I would be able to talk to them like Rachel did, I'd do it. But unfortunately I'm not as a passionate speaker as Rachel is. Maybe I should learn Daenerys Targaryen's speech to yell at them in Dothraki. You know, going all like "Dovaogēdys! Āeksia ossēnātās, menti ossēnātās, qilōni pilos lue vale tolvie ossēnātās, yn riñe dōre ōdrikātās." #NotGeekyAtAll

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I hate Ryan Murphy for what he's doing to the gay people's image! It's just NOT TRUE!
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While it may not be overly accurate much of the time, it's still highly visible characters on a mainstream primetime tv show. And that matters. If it happened more than it does, I would be more willing to criticize it but for now I'll take what I can get. Also his show "The New Normal" was freaking hilarious and surprisingly, as accurate as you'd expect any sitcom to be. I'm still sad it was cancelled.
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I understand you point of view, but still, I don't feel represented at all by Kurt or Blaine. I think the show that really helped with gay image was brothers and sisters, where you actually could feel empathy towards gay characters, with ordinary problems.
I don't think Glee will ever help someone understand gays are normal people, that's my biggest issue.
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The thing Glee achieves is that it gets people talking. That's where representation starts to get important. It doesn't matter in any way that you don't feel represented by Kurt or Blaine or any other character on this show because they aren't just like you. That's not what this show is about. It doesn't matter that I don't, as a Butch lesbian, feel represented by all the skinny cheerleaders they show off as lesbians either. What matters, is that people are talking. I already addressed the fact that it could and has, been done better a hundred times. What's important is that it's something big, and flash, on a network show that has huge appeal with a wide audience.
Glee doesn't NEED to make anyone understand Gays are people just like everyone else. It just needs to start the conversation. Other people, in other media (shows, movies, books, blogs, the news, even these comment threads) are where the real social change will happen.
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I don't know if it matters, since his vision just conferms what the homophobes think, that gays are just feminine dudes who dress up weird and have a diva-like attitude. It would have mattered more if Karosky would have stayed and portrayed a normal kind of guy who is by chance attracted by other guys. That's just my opinion though.
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I agree with you that keeping Karofsky around would have been a great thing. I also take issue with the belief that "feminine dudes who dress up weird and have diva-like attitudes" don't actually exist. They do. They just aren't the majority. It's the same thing with Brittany and Santana. They're not a realistic lesbian couple but it's still better than nothing. Or why don't we talk about the wild mishandling of Unique?
Could it be done better? Yes, and it has on: The Fosters, Grey's Anatomy, The Carrie Diaries, Warehouse 13, and a whole host of other shows. Glee bears the distinction in having a large number of supporting characters being gay (almost more than any other show I can think of aside from The L Word or Queer as Folk), and it could handle the situation better than it does, but it's still getting us representation and it's a great place to start.
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If I may quote Santana: "I can't stand [Rachel] 90% of the time", but I have to admit this episode the 10% of tolerance were the case.
I thought it was hilarious how she cut the guitar strings or her "I CAN HEAR YOU IN HERE!"-shouts when Sue slagged Rachel off. She delivered very good performances and did probably the smartest thing she could ever do: she listened to aunti Snixx's advice.

Am I the only one around here who thinks it's quite laborious to start singing a song in Lima, holding it and to go on singing when you step out of the subway??

Is this going to be a running gag now that Tina is always into gays?

Sue was great as always! "Actually we did it all over your apartment. And if I were you, I'd put something down on that couch before I sat on it-" "Oh no no no no no no no no GOD NO!" XD

Sooo good to have Santana back! I mean, DAT HAIRFLIP!! One question: Pre-pigeon-hairflip or post-pigeon-hairflip?
And did anyone noticed her boob-squeeze during "Pumpin Blood" (around 33:20)? I died... *o*
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Displaying 2014-04-23 13.03.57.pngit took me forever to find it! but it the best ..0005 seconds of glee tonight was the guys face in the background and satana paying them no attention!!
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I can't open it, but I'm pretty aware of what you wanted to show me... ;) *WankySanti*
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Why does Glee need to make Tina unlikable/loser all the time? Seriously... and I really missed Santana!
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Not for long, Tina is catching up.
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Well, Tina's stuck liking gay guys, the fact that she was together with Mike for ages doesn't prove a thing apparently
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She better be careful.
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...In which Sue falls in love with Dr Spaceman while suffering through cringe-worthy writing to integrate her into the New York story. Weird.

This episode had promise, singing The Cardigans wasn't too bad at all, but it ended up being a real mess. There was one moment that captured my attention: Rachel was sulking in bed while a parade of increasingly insensitive characters entered the apartment. This could have been comedy gold. The best outcome would have been for escalating abuse to finally snap Rachel out of her funk but no instead Santana had to boringly stroke her ego instead.

Despite managing a few good moments Sue was a disaster, her singing especially and somehow Rachel managed to completely dominate the songs, even though in this Fanny Girl episode most of the songs were outside of the performance.

And what's with that. Surely after years of build up they could have devoted most if not all of the episode to the performance itself. It could have made the episode something really special. Instead it was a mess.
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It was alright. FOX Tuesday Night had loud anger:

Rachel of Glee, Nick, Schmidt, Winston and Coach of New Girl, and Mindy, Danny and Peter of The Mindy Project!

Rachel got the broadway offer, Sue sang some more and I'm glad Rachel booted Sue and her date out of the apartment, but I still hope Sue gets turned down as overrated person right away!

I'm glad to see Tina visiting right now, but Artie is absent in this episode after the infection last week!

By the way, Marley, Kitty, Sugar, Unique, Joe, Jake, Ryder and that nemesis Bree are also not yet officially axed, but more likely Marley and Unique are moving into New York next season.

Daniel Finn Schuester is the name of the new child, but I wish they do not axe that Emma character yet at all because we want to see her hold her new child in front of publicity IMMEDIATELY!

Does anybody think that Glee turned Emma down too quickly?





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Aren't Marley and Unique still sophomores? At this moment in time junior tops!
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But they are both still strongly talented, they might move into New York by later next season.
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That will nto happen.
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It will happen, by later next season!
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With Rachel and Mercedes there, I don't see that happening anytime soon, but I appreciate the enthusiasm!
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No rush nor procrastination, that's all.
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I hope it was the last appearance by Schue and Sue, but I somehow doubt it. I liked Rachel's storyline, it was sweet and fun.
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I hope Sue gets framed for being an overrated person and we hope Throat Explosion gets caught in the act for drug substance and cheating at the same time!
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Beating that dead horse again?
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Pardon me?! JerichoSteele, I don't know where you got that unnecessary phrase at all? We are trying to solve this situation against Sue before it gets too late!
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o_O? Uh, have you never heard the phrase "beating a dead horse"? Because if not, I suggest you look it up. It's exactly what you're doing with your ridiculous Sue plot line (which will never happen).
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It would actually be a really great exit for Schue...but yeah, I doubt it too. :/
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Hold it right there, what I'm doing with my Sue plot line is SERIOUS! Sue is annihilating the everyone from the Glee Club and she bettered get sued right away and become an overrated person when the police arrest her and thrown her into jail for the rest of her life! What you all are saying against me is FOBIDDEN, no offense!
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I thought it was quite a fun and funny episode. Of course, I've always loved Rachel, so that doesn't hurt. :p I didn't even like the music (not a fan of broadway and didn't like the others), but I still liked it for everything else. Except for that song they had Sue cut in on. Didn't like that decision. Anyway...

"You of all people should know that Barbara dropped the 'a' when she was eighteen as an act of rebellion. Who wrote this, Tina?!"

Rachel holding a knife up to Sam, lol.

"You live in the worst neighborhood in Brooklyn and there isn't even a lock on your door. Might want to look into that. Unless of course you think the rapist is just gonna move on to the next apartment full of nubile nineteen year olds simply because your door is so damn annoying to open."

Santana looking all "sexy" getting out of the cab just to be freaked out by a pigeon, lol.

"She's been in there for hours. We don't know how she's peeing."

Nice job by Santana to get Rachel up, and great rant by Rachel toward Sue later on.



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I've given up on actually watching the show..I'm just sticking around for the entertaining reviews and comments - it feels like enough for me :)
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but,,13 hours after the fact and still no full review?
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I thought the ep was ok, but I really wonder where this show is headed now.
Hopefully Chris Parnell will make a few more appearances.
Great to have Santana back, but no Brittany? Booo!
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I LOVE RACHEL
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i can relate to sue wanting to kill herself. only decent song was the first one until the end of course. then sue went on to be a waste of screen time after that, and oh look, its back to all about rachel. how do they keep dragging this season on? i still think the last episode at mckinley was the real series finale.
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If it makes you feel any better, Fox axed the last few episodes of the season. They feel your pain.
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Actually, it does a little, yes.
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hated when Sue interrupted the last song!!! whyyyyyyyyy!!!!?????
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Sue will get caught and become an overrated person ASAP!
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Can you give up the Rachel hate for one day. It is so boring and really unnesscary.
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Nope.
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figures . boring is what you got to give, so be it.
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Well as long as you're not hating on Lea alls good. But srsly, why such a loser. Stop watching of its a waste of your time.
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Or here's a thought, you could stop reading/commenting on her reviews, as that seems to be an equal waste of YOUR time.
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Tonight's show was cute. Sue falling in love should have softened some edges...and give an excuse to keep her in New York for future shows. Lea Michelle was fabulous as usual. I would have loved to see more of Funny Girl performances. especially after waiting years for this girl's dream to come true.
Where were Diana Agron and Heather Morris? Please bring Becca back. She could show up on Artie's doorstep next season as a future film editor, or film actress. They would make a great NYC power couple.
My favorite, Naya Rivera, is looking too thin now. Would love to hear more songs from "Santana".
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