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Hypable

This week on Glee, everyone’s a diva. Finn and Emma lead New Directions through “diva week,” with the goal of instilling a fierce, competitive spirit in the club.

Tina uses the challenge to go after the impossible, and she’s not taking no for an answer, and Santana returns to McKinley to teach the newbies what true star power looks like. Meanwhile, in New York, Rachel’s rising star has been feeding her ego in a bad way, and Kurt takes her down a peg. You can read our full recap below.

We drop straight in, this week, to Kurt’s inner monologue as he explains to us Rachel’s growing primadonna behaviour as she begins to make a name for herself at NYADA. We see her selfish behaviour in their home, her limelight-hogging in classes, and perhaps most distressingly, the way she is ignoring Kurt on campus and surrounding herself with sycophantic fair-weather friends who follow her around, feeding her ego. Kurt, looking on critically, decides that Miss Rachel Berry needs to be brought back down to earth, quick-sharpish – and that he’s the man for the job.

In the teacher’s lounge at McKinley, it appears that Emma has come to regard Finn as a friend and equal as she vocalises anxiety about making all the choices by herself in regards to her upcoming wedding with Will. We learn that Will is returning from Washington at the end of the week, and as Finn makes a coffee and sits with Emma, he enquires whether the couple will be going on honeymoon – he’s wondering how much longer he will have the glee club for. Emma says that she’s sure Will won’t just turn Finn out, especially as he successfully coached an inexperienced team through to Regionals. This leads Finn to express his concerns about Regionals and his club’s lack of serious competitive drive – the lack of powerhouse voices like Rachel, Mercedes, Kurt and Santana, and more importantly the lack of attitude. Emma suggests spurring the New Directions on by pitting them against each other, reminding Finn that Will had previously made members of the club compete. Finn is delighted by the idea, and invites Emma to be the guest judge of the week’s activities.

Finn brings Emma to glee rehearsal where the pair introduce “diva” as the week’s lesson theme. “The Online Urban Dictionary defines a diva as a fierce, often temperamental singer who comes correct. She is not a trick-ass ho and she does not sweat the haters,” Emma reads from cue cards, going on to explain how she herself has channelled her inner diva as a demanding restaurant customer. Members of the glee club start to bicker behind the teachers’ backs, sassing each other about who is going to win the top spot. Unique, of course, starts marking her territory as New Directions’ prime diva, and Tina challenges this, saying something fantastically transphobic along the way. Marley puts Tina in her place, Blaine tries to interrupt the girls to state that guys can be divas as well, and Brittany claims that they’re all delusional, as she’s going to be winning. Do you know how she knows that? It’s because she’s a-a diva, she’s a, she’s a-a diva.

The girls of New Directions – Brittany, Tina, Marley, Kitty and Unique, as well as Blaine, face off with one another in a fantasy version of Beyonce’s “Diva,” all glammed-up catwalks and extreme rock star formal-wear. The outfits are awesome – especially Blaine’s giant red boa, vinyl corseted jacket and curls, and Marley’s one-sleeved pants-less purple unitard – and the group of wannabe divas return to their seats from their surreal performance just in time for Emma to finish her story: “and that is how I made the manager cry at the Cheesecake Factory – by being a diva.”

It seems that Rachel’s vocal warm-ups have woken Kurt an hour before his alarm, but as soon as she sees him awake she asks him to make her some special tea. He snarks at her, and Rachel demands an explanation for his “very rude no.” Kurt lays some truth on her – that since winning the Winter Showcase, she’s becoming hard to deal with. Rachel immediately accuses Kurt of jealousy at her success, despite the fact that they were becoming inseparable. Kurt rolls his eyes and tells her that they became close because Rachel had become tolerable, but now, with her “weird, naked boyfriend” and all her weird hangers-on, that she has become like “an annoying, self-righteous Lima Rachel on steroids.” He’s not wrong.

Rachel ignores his insult and bitches back at him, telling him that the only reason Carmen had let Kurt audition at the Winter Showcase was because he was Rachel’s friend (probably not true, hey) and Kurt scoffs derisively, saying that even though she won the Showcase, that his performance was the one everyone was talking about – that he’d blown her performance out of the water. Rachel goes stone-faced at this, and Kurt continues, saying that he could out-perform her again, and challenges her to something called “Midnight Madness.” Rachel, full of condescension, tells Kurt that he shouldn’t bother, and Kurt, matching her fake sweetness note-for-note, asks why. Rachel reminds him that she already beat him once, in a diva-off. Season 1, “Defying Gravity,” remember? Kurt smiles all through her spiel, and then drops some knowledge that apparently he’s never revealed to Rachel before – that he’d purposely thrown that competition. Rachel is nearly speechless, not believing him, but when he elaborates on why he’d done it, she realises that he is telling the truth and is completely horrified, wailing that it was her first big win, something she’d based her confidence on. Kurt’s unsympathetic, sighing with pretend pity and telling her to get ready for “Diva-Off: Part Two.”

Back at McKinley, Blaine’s coming down with a bit of a cold, and Tina has noticed, because Tina is a stalker. Tina quickly provides him with a care package, obviously doing anything she can at the moment to get noticed and needed by the object of her affections. Blaine accepts the offering, but says he probably won’t use the night-time cold medication, as it affects him quite badly in the drowsiness department and he can’t afford that right now, due to needing to focus on diva week. Interestingly, his drive does not seem to be based in his own competitiveness, but more in standing up for open-mindedness and the idea that men can be divas too.

He decides to show the rest of the guys how to bring some diva attitude by channelling the late, great Freddie Mercury, and we cut to the choir room, where he begins his performance of “Don’t Stop Me Now” in full Freddie get-up, including the hat (but thankfully sans the mustache). It is about time the show made more use of Darren Criss’ skills as a musician – remember how Cory Monteith used to drum all the time, and Mark Salling played guitar? – and he opens the song playing piano himself, kicking the piano stool out to stand and rock out when the song hits its full speed. It is an absolutely awesome performance – Blaine Anderson was made to sing this song, and the way that the club joins in on the backing vocals feels like a natural singalong, and it is just damn cool. Everyone – teachers, students, Blaine, and most importantly, me – is delighted with this rendition of a legendary song.

The next day, Finn and Emma discuss the concept of the intangible, immortal quality of a diva – the way they walk, talk and breathe brilliance – and they introduce a special guest diva to demonstrate this: Santana Lopez. She flounces into the choir room with a few of her Louisville Cardinals cheer squad team mates and blows the room away with a fantastic performance of “Nutbush City Limits.” Rather confusingly, the impressive choreography does not include even one repetition of the Nutbush’s traditional, well-known dance routine, so it’s kind of like singing the Macarena without doing the Macarena… but it still sounds and looks amazing, though Glee has clearly been missing its old, frequent opportunities to include many specaiily framed shots of shaking cheerleader butts. The show makes up for it here, don’t you worry.

Brittany looks confused and a bit distressed from the moment Santana walks in, but she gets up to high-five her ex-girlfriend at the end of the song. She compliments the performance but asks why Santana hadn’t told Brittany she was coming to town, and Santana poses what she deems to be the more important question – why hasn’t Brittany told her that she is dating Sam? Brittany continues to look uncomfortable as Santana explains the way she’d found out – we see a flashback of Tina rather bitchily calling her to tell her – and Santana then defiantly introduces one of her fellow college cheerleaders, Elaine, as her “out-and-proud, lipstick-loving, AfterEllen-reading” girlfriend. Glee, I’m not 100% sure that name-dropping AfterEllen is going to make it up to the “lesbian blogger community” you managed to insult in this whole Bram debacle, but gold star, you tried.

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  • Kavitha

    Great recap as always, Natalie!

    Femma…it’s too weird for me right now. Reading it described here however, I can see it work. I just think that because Finn still hasn’t seen himself as an adult, I still see himself as a “man-boy” as he said. So, him kissing Emma seemed like a student kissing a teacher, even though, yeah, I know it’s a step up from that. It just seemed weird to me.

    Tina…oh Tina. She needs to stop. That rubbing thing was soooo out of bounds and made me so uncomfortable. I don’t get her whole “a diva gets what she wants” thing because no, you can’t get what you want if it’s love from a gay dude. I feel bad for her, but only to an extent. Also, when Blaine was talking to Tina and claimed that she was his bestie, what about Sam?! That bromance was amazing and so much deeper than Blina, why would he say that?

    I don’t get why Santana hates Sam either. She needs to move on, because first of all she broke up with Brittany and Brittany clearly does not want her back. And she can do better, as can Sam.
    I really hope we find out what Santana wants to do in New York soon because I love her, but it really seems like she has no idea what she’s doing.
    Anyway, the music was great this episode and I’m excited for next week!

    • Vanj203

      Yes, I want Santana to find her purpose in NYC soon too. She’s fabulous but she’ll need to define her ambition (like singing in nightclubs maybe) soon or Kurt and Rachel aren’t likely to put up with her for long in their apartment.

    • Linda

      I cannot wait for her to take on the odious Brody. She will rip him to shreds.

      • Kavitha

        Oh my god yes. I liked Brody before but now he’s ughhhh. He needs some Lima Heights action to put him in his place.

  • http://www.facebook.com/peggy.ruiz1 Peggy Ruiz

    I love your recap. I was so startled by Finn kissing her. It would be nice, though. Hmm. Weird but nice.

  • Teranel

    I think we’ve reached the point where the show’s a complete and utter trainwreck that you can’t look away from.
    While I like adult!Finn and can see your defense of Femma, I feel like Finn is just becoming Shue 2.0 even more and they need to remedy that somehow.

  • Sage

    “Gold star, you tried.” Ok I’m dying laughing! Seriously, I almost look forward to this more so than I do the actual show. ^_^

  • http://twitter.com/Jakkpf Jack F

    “Can I move in? Actually, screw asking. I am moving in!” – YES! So good!

  • Vanj203

    Natalie, I couldn’t wait to see what you’d say after this episode.

    I’m not sure about Femma yet but I loved how supportive and comforting Finn was with Emma.

    I was so scared of what Tina would do to Blaine when she began unbuttoning his shirt and it was totally inappropriate (like molestation) but I have to say that I really hurt for her when she cried and lay down beside him – because she does know that he’ll never be romantically interested in her and it totally frustrates her. Having said that, the fact that Blaine found a half empty jar of Vapo-rub tells me that, unseen by the viewers, she rubbed it on his chest more than once. Creepy Tina, creepy. And, BTW Tina is not the most important person to him at McKinley. He has Sam too who is totally his bro now and appreciates him. Let’s not forget that Sam is the one who bolstered Blaine’s ego and convinced him not to go back to Dalton. Those two guys kind of need each other to lean on when for boosts to their self worth.

    The Santana story line is confusing. She was the one who broke off her romantic relationship months ago, not Brittany, so why is she so possessive now? I’m glad she’s gone to NYC where she belongs with Rachel and Kurt and Adam. Kurt totally won the sing-off, and I loved how he didn’t let his friendship with Rachel slide because of it. Those two together are so much better than Klaine!

  • Vanj203

    I got a big chuckle from the “diva prep” scene – Blaine swatting Marley and her hairspray can away, Sam brushing out Tina’s long curls, and Brittany smacking Blake down on to the floor to make him stop his fussing. They were all so out of character, and I enjoyed the fantasy!

  • http://twitter.com/AntaraC Antara Chowdhury

    “Tina suggests he lies down, in a way that sounds like a prostitute inviting a client to get comfortable.” – I literally burst out laughing.
    I really hope Glee addresses the fact that straddling someone and touching them in their sleep is NOT okay. I can’t believe this ridiculous storyline is continuing, when they could focus on something more important, like Marley’s bulimia, which was never properly mentioned again after she passed out at regionals.

  • Marie

    Natalie, I think we agreed on everything in this episode. I’ve been hating Tina since she was awful about Marley fainting on stage, and she keeps getting worse. Based on Ryan’s Q&A on Twitter, he doesn’t seem to understand Tina’s been really creepy which is. . .odd. And kind of scary. I honestly don’t understand what they’re doing with her, and if we’re supposed to be sympathetic to her. Because I am DEFINITELY not. Jenna, if you read this, I hope you can find a job in which this stuff doesn’t happen, and you are actually respected on the screen.

    Also, I think I mostly agree on the Finn/Emma stuff. I wasn’t creeped out by it, and I thought it was sweet. However, it would definitely be wrong for him to seriously try to pursue her while she’s about to get married, regardless of how awful Schuester is (although Tina has officially beaten him in my least favorite Glee character). Also, I think a big part of why I’ve been enjoying Finn recently is because he hasn’t been dating anyone. I don’t know exactly what made him mature, but I certainly think him not dating anyone is helping. I personally want him to grow up a tad more before he seriously tries to date anyone again. I mean, it’s Glee, so that’s not too likely, but, you know. And my final complaint is that making him go for Emma is a little TOO Schue 2.0, you know? I still like that moment overall, but yeah, it’s messy.

    Finally: No, Santana’s line did not make it up to this lesbian. However, Blaine saying he was a “gold star gay” kind of did (It’s a L Word reference, for who anyone who doesn’t know, is a show focused on lesbians and the odd bisexual and FTM trans person). But only kind of.

  • Abosuba

    Loved your recap but I’m confused by the end. In the version that I saw of the episode Kurt opens the door and says “Santana! What are you doing here?” Santana enters the apartment and then sayas “Moving in!” and the episode ends. But in your recap yo mention a line I didn’t heard, and also you mention a different version about the last line. Did I missed something?

    • NatalieFisher

      No, I was just being sarcastic about her behaviour.

  • Carilyn

    I didn’t watch the full episode, but it seems to me that Finn did what he did more because he couldn’t think of anything else – that he’d done the “shut up and kiss me” thing with Rachel a number of times, and fell back on that. Problematic. I hope this doesn’t end up too messy, because I don’t think Finn wants Emma in that way – he still sees her as his teacher. It does seem like Finn’s matured though, so yay for that!

    And Tina… the problem for me is I never thought Tina was being pushed in the background. I thought she chose not to get involved in the drama, which in a club full of overdramatic extroverts with problematic relationships, lead to her getting a little less screen time. But she always seemed perfectly happy singing with Mike and all her friends, so last year’s “Props” just proved to me that the only way the writers thought Tina could have a big part on Glee is if she was caught up in some petty drama. I was so proud of her for not going to Troubletones earlier in the year, and then she snapped at everyone at the worst possible time (which is understandable, but disheartening to watch)

    I think Tina’s trying to be something she’s not. There’s nothing wrong with being introverted (not shy, like she used to be, just more introspective) and choosing not to blow things out of proportion, keeping the group in balance. Some more solos would be nice, but she had a number of solos within the group numbers which were good. That said, I feel for her loneliness and hope she realizes what she’s doing soon. Even Kurt had his awkward “loving a nice guy with the wrong orientation” phase, and arranged it so he *lived* with the guy, and now they’re well-adjusted, platonically caring stepbrothers. There’s hope!

  • http://twitter.com/Merina2 Merina

    “I have no life goals, but I came to New York to find a girlfriend!” she announces to Kurt and Rachel, who look very shocked. “Can I move in? Actually, screw asking. I am moving in!”

    Cannot stop laughing at that – perfection as always, Natalie! These recaps make my day!

  • ravelqueen

    I am so behind you with Femma. I would have never thought about it, but man do I want that like burning now, they really fit together well!

    Why, oh why does Glee always screw up storylines when it comes to the females. You did a great job contrasting how well they handled the crush scenario with Sam and Blaine and how utterly, utterly screwed up the Tina-Blaine dynamic is. I mean, I understand not being able to do the same storyline twice at the same time, but still having such a clear line between, sweet and human and heartbreaking and sad and just really bad execution makes me so mad.

    Kurt was a delight, though I really, really hope we’ll get a story line soon, where we focus a bit on his faults as well. Don’t get me wrong, I love the character, but I love him because he’s real and relatable and not because he’s a cardboard cut out of a perfect boy – just like I love Blaine even more for his insecurities.

  • Katie

    How is the club inexperienced? The majority of the members are national winners!!!

    • Marie

      Well, Kitty, Marley, Jake, and Ryder are very new to this. So 1/3 of the club is inexperienced.

  • Jamie

    Possibly genderqueer? What are you even talking about? Blaine identifies as a man, maybe you should respect that. Dressing up like Adam Lambert in a fantasy sequence doesn’t make him genderqueer. Do you think the writers of Glee know what genderqueer is? They don’t.

    • Ev42

      The genderqueer comment is not in reference to this episode, it’s something that’s been discussed a LOT in the meta-ing community (or whatever you’d call it) for years. There’s a lot of analysis on Blaine/gender around, all of it based on canon. A bunch on Letters from Titan and a bit on Deconstructing Glee if you want to look it up, but I don’t think it’s a very uncommon idea at all regarding Blaine…

    • NatalieFisher

      I’m not going to get into an argument or start spamming you with meta, but I will firstly remind you that genderqueer does NOT equal transgender. You can identify as male and still be genderqueer. Secondly I will assure you that that statement was NOT based on his costume in this episode, or even the plot of this episode, whatsoever. There has been, as the other commenter mentions, a LOT of meta and discussion about Blaine’s gender identity in Glee fandom, and it is a very valid theory. Forgive me if you thought I was basing it on this costume/the Diva number – I wasn’t. I was basing it on two and a half years of Blaine meta in the fandom.

  • Alex

    Blaine isn’t genderqueer. Respect that he identifies as a man.

    • NatalieFisher

      I’m not going to get into an argument or start spamming you with meta,
      but I will firstly remind you that genderqueer does NOT equal
      transgender. You can identify as male and still be genderqueer. There has
      been, as the other commenter above mentions, a LOT of meta and discussion
      about Blaine’s gender identity in Glee fandom, and it is a very valid
      theory. Forgive me if you thought I was basing it on this costume/the
      Diva number, but I wasn’t. I was basing it on two and a half years of
      Blaine meta in the fandom.

  • He has no personality

    Wow the salivating over Adam here is just ridiculous. I guess all anyone wants is someone who will blindly worship Kurt.

  • lily

    i would have liked the hummelberry story line better if it was an actual fight between two friends who both made mistakes, but as usual kurt can do no wrong and the boy teaches the girl a lesson

  • http://www.facebook.com/alysia.dugan Alysia Dugan

    Thank god for Kurt. That is all.

  • http://twitter.com/PlumaNeurotica Abril

    I just want to thank glee for bringing back assertive sassy!kurt. Please keep him. No going back to just-looking-offended Kurt. Never again.

    On the other hand, Jayma killed it and even if Tina’s SL is cringe-worthy, Jenna made an amazing job and right behind Bring Him Home, Hung Up was my second favorite performance.

    • NatalieFisher

      Totally. While I hate the Tina plotline, it is actually well-done and well written

  • Ada

    Tina’s performance of Hung up was amazing, too bad she had to have that awful creepy stalker storyline to get there.
    I for one totally digged the Finn/Emma thing. I shipped it from the moment he said this thing about the flower. It reminded me why I loved Finn in the first place, in S1. I would love to see them together, but not in that way Glee sometimes does of putting people together for 2 episodes and then be like JK, temporary madness, let’s go back to status quo! I hate it when they do that.
    Rachel/Kurt, nice, I liked it. Return to the basics. It felt good.
    And YAY for Santana, it was about time they got her in NY.

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