Glee 206: A kiss is just a kiss

I know we don’t watch Glee for its gritty realism. I accept that in real life, high schools aren’t crammed with elderly-looking kids who all have Broadway-standard singing voices. A certain suspension of disbelief is vital in Glee-land, we understand that. But the writers mess with this too much, provoking even uncritical fans into yelling at the telly, ‘AAARGH! That’s just SO unrealistic.’

This week I give you:

  • An all-boys school in which gay students are not only warmly welcomed, but are leaders of the pack.
  • An epidemic of students – female as well as male – imagining the football coach to stave off premature arrival, and calling out her name, yet!
  • Coach Beiste claiming to be forty.
  • Puck returning from juvenile detention centre with an orange tan and a certain plumpness around the cheeks. Did he have some work done while in there?
  • The least plausible make-out scene ever in the history of television (between Tina and Mike).

So wrong it's right.

I checked the credits to see if two writers shared this week’s episode, as the main storylines were of such differing quality. But no – step up, lone writer Mr Brad Falchuk, clearly a fellow wrestling with the effects of strong medication. He holds responsibility for the Grilled Cheesus debacle, but also wrote the wonderful Preggers episode in Season 1, in which the football team did All The Single Ladies. In this current episode how could the same person who gave us the superb storyline between Kurt and Dave-the-Bully also give us the face-palmingly awful Coach Beiste plot? I’m afraid I have no answers, only questions.

I come first to praise. Call me naïve but I totally. Did. Not. See. This. Coming. The jock – Dave – was just a generic bully whom I’d barely noticed till Kurt started yelling back at him. In stark contrast to the rest of the show it was staggeringly realistic, and when Dave suddenly grabbed Kurt and kissed him, I gasped. So did Kurt, stumbling away in shock, hand over his mouth, then stumbling back further when Dave made as if to kiss him again. It was beautifully written, wonderfully played and really exciting, and reminded me why I liked Glee in the first place, even though it’s gone off the boil since its early heady days. That they didn’t try and resolve this story by the end of the episode made me applaud Brad Falchuk… then hastily start booing as the ghastly Beiste story reached its conclusion.

So wrong it's wrong.

I’m going to gloss over it as the whole thing was so AAARGH -particularly the scene in which Will told her she was ‘pretty inside and out’ and then KISSED HER because she told him she’d never been kissed and clearly wanted her first one to be incredibly patronising and dished out from some twat who pitied her. Every woman’s dream. The arc of her character made me despair. She could have been a terrific role model as an older woman who is confident in herself despite not being a beauty, but no, we have to find out she’s a virgin and completely insecure. How boring. Bad bad Brad.

As well as Kurt there were some other good bits to enjoy. Puck being back, even with his reverse liposuction procedure, was most welcome, and I liked his summary of juvenile detention centre: ‘No chicks and no kosher meal options.’ Sue doing her evil villain laugh while letting off confetti cannons was rather fine. The music though, was fairly awful, other than Puck and Artie’s attempt at Bob Marley, which wasn’t at all bad. I’ve had enough of mash-ups; and the girls trying to look hard in leather, with their white-bread looks (yes, I include you Mercedes) was laughable. I liked the acapella troupe at the Brideshead Revisited school for boys but thought the song was rather dull.

Finally, to return to the theme of things being unrealistic, this was a bumper week for people being kissed by the out-of-character angel:

  • Mike (Other Asian) would never diss a teacher like that.
  • Will would never tell Coach Beiste what the kids had been saying. It was stupid, hurtful and worst of all, plot-driven.
  • Quinn is the most implausible born-again virgin ever.
  • Puck would never have told Artie that he was scared in the juvenile detention centre.
  • Why did Artie want to get back with Brittany after he’d so decisively dumped her? To serve the tired old plot, I know, I know.
  • Rachel not being in charge of decision-making for their song was clearly absurd.

Posted by Qwerty

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