The Chandler/Sebastian connection: About cheating, hypocrisy, and honest communication

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12:30 pm EST, April 30, 2012

I feel like the writing for Glee has deteriorated recently, but they did write one subplot very well this week – the story of Kurt, Blaine, and a very damaging fight caused by Kurt’s poor decision to start flirtatious texts with a new kid he met in the music store.

This is a very carefully written, thoughtful story with a lot of layers to it, and when viewed thoughtfully and without bias, it reveals a tale of two boys who find that they make terrible mistakes when they do not communicate with each other honestly.

I have to disagree quite firmly with Natalie Fisher’s take on the episode, which condemned Kurt so completely that she did not understand why Blaine reconciled with him. Understand this: Kurt was wrong to text Chandler. That is not in question. However, the writers quite deliberately set Kurt up in a situation that directly mirrors Blaine’s relationship with Sebastian Smythe, and at the end of the episode Blaine even admits that this is true. More to the point, the story is not really about cheating at all.

This storyline was about lack of communication. It begins with Blaine: he is so sad about the prospect of Kurt leaving for New York, he begins to pull away from him emotionally. His behavior becomes cold and distant. This makes Kurt feel very lonely and unloved. Blaine is not communicating well with Kurt.

Kurt, saddened by Blaine’s growing coldness, gives himself validation by enjoying the flirtations of another boy, a poor decision that he excuses because it is not a physical relationship. When confronted in the bedroom, one of the things Blaine says to him is that Kurt should talk to him if he’s unhappy, not cheat on him. Kurt is not communicating well. He’s making excuses for himself and deflecting blame.

Blaine gives Kurt a smackdown in song, and Kurt has a conversation with his father that gives him a clue as to what is really happening. Burt has been avoiding Friday Night Dinners because he’s very sad that this tradition of theirs is about to end.

Kurt turns the situation around, not really by singing to Blaine, but by talking to him. The very raw, honest emotions of his rather shrill version of “I Have Nothing” do thaw Blaine’s heart a little, and that may be the impetus that gets Blaine in Emma’s office. However, once there, Blaine admits to both Kurt and Emma that his own relationship with Sebastian Smythe was very much like Kurt’s connection to Chandler. The cheating was not the real problem; the problem was that he was so sad about Kurt’s impending graduation that he felt he needed to distance himself from Kurt to avoid that pain. One text from Chandler – suggesting that Kurt meet him in the Plaza in New York – underlined not so much that Kurt had a guy on the side, but that he would no longer be in Ohio.

Once Kurt assured Blaine that his love for him would remain strong and that he was not being abandoned, Blaine poured out his love for Kurt and they were reconciled. They talked through it, like healthy couples do. This story was penned by a writer who wanted to present a balanced view that held both boys accountable for their mistakes while validating their worth to each other.

To read my recap of this episode, please click here.

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