Also, thoughts on singers:
-Lea Michele: always so pretty! And in further proof that I can't hear Glee's supposed use of "AutoTune," I imagine she was singing live, right? It didn't sound any different than the stuff on the show.
-Christina Aguilera: so awful on the ears. I didn't hear her flub the lyrics, I only heard the unpleasant guttural noises and obnoxious drawn-out ending.
-Usher: WTF, why?
-Black Eyed Peas: would have benefited greatly from having some actual music at the beginning to go along with their lyrics -- it badly exposes the quality of their work and voices for the crap they are -- but boy, was I dazzled by the costumes and the light show. This group knows how to give a fantastic performance in spite of their many shortcomings. Best halftime show I can remember! Unlike, say, the commercials. I wasn't paying as much attention this year, but where was my customary adorable Budweiser animal to go along with the draft horse hitch? Did I miss it, or was it missing? Because the hitch just being there without being the main attraction of the commercial doesn't cut it.
In the absence of that, I am giving top nods to the Pug who knocked a door down on the guy taunting him with Doritos, and the Bud Light one with the smart dogs serving as party hosts. Would have been cuter if they'd found a way to do that with trained dogs instead of CGI distorting their limbs, but even so, the sheer quantity of cute dogs made it my favorite.
And I did really like the promo with all the Fox show characters catching a football. Especially when Sue shut that nonsense down. She has her uses.
Glee, 2x11, "The Sue Sylvester Shuffle" ...least informative title ever
I was dreading this episode. Between the post-Super Bowl hype, the worrisome phrase "epic kiss" (probably some horrible couple), talk about the Cheerios imitating Katy Perry's music video, and the zombie number, I almost didn't watch. I wanted to stay in my happy, surreal Christmas bubble forever and quit the show for good. But surprisingly, it was not half bad! Somewhere around the "Never Been Kissed" level, comfortable 3rd or 4th of the season and positive overall.
Stuff I Liked
+ Fine, whatever, we have established that "California Girls" is the lone exception to my ULTRA ANTI-KATY PERRY rule, as long as it's spelled correctly and I am nowhere near that disgusting music video. Despite the two sets of firework boobs, the Cheerios performance did not match that level of squick, so I rather liked this routine..
+ My brain is going all kinds of AU places in which Brittany does get fired out of a cannon (and subsequently dies). Sue going to jail, panicked Cheerios, stricken glee club reactions, this idea has it all. Also, high five for Brittany declaring her refusal to die while One Tree Hill is still on the air. TV-based priorities!
+ Speaking of AU death, Tina going down on the field and not getting up was the first time in my life I felt a truly positive twinge of Mike/Tina. Need to watch his reaction 8 million more times.
+ This episode got to be 5 minutes longer due to the lack of timeslot boundaries. Woo!
+ Azimio, always.
+ The return of "O Fortuna" for Sue's epic temper tantrums! I love how Will just sits back and watches. "That's a lawsuit."
+ Still not big on Shannon, but better Will chats & teams up with her than Emma.
+ A fleeting moment of indescribable joy: the silent staring between Disappointed Schue and Resolute Yet Equally Disappointed Quinn as she resigned from the club. Sure, her henchgirls were with her too, but clearly this moment was only about the two of them. It piggybacked on my joy when she announced that she would have him intervene on the whole let's-not-kill-Brittany-with-a-cannon issue. Wish we could have seen that too.
+ We actually saw the group rehearsing something!
+ Aw, Katie Couric's cameo made sense and was cute to boot.
+ I don't get why everyone is talking about Karofsky all of a sudden, but boy -- the scene in which Mr. Schue pulls him aside and gives him genuine encouragement ("You're actually really good. If you took that energy you used bullying people and put it into this, you'd be one of the most talented guys in the school.") was an Amazing Teacher Mode moment. The guy drives Kurt out of school between the physical and verbal torment, and still, Schue is willing to give second chances. Teachers are supposed to be that way, but given the circumstances it's not like anyone would fault him if he turned a cold shoulder, or at best ignored him. I mean, the internet probably would...but at least on this journal, we are impressed.
+ Quinn and company standing up to Sue and walking away, complete with flippant comments? Awesome. I have been waiting for this since episode 2. Of season 1.
+ Coming out of nowhere to be amazing: FINN HUDSON, EVERYBODY. Has his hair grown out? Is it the refreshing lack of a Rachel-shaped appendage? Whatever it is, he was a star this hour. Uniting glee and football, hotly issuing orders as the competent leader Will has always (usually mistakenly) assumed him to be, yelling sense into Quinn...hey, let's focus on that one, since this episode exploded into a fireworks show of Finn/Quinn vibes.
+ Him chasing her down and calling her out on her crap? A++
Quinn: Oh, don't get all up in my face, Finn; what were we supposed to do?
Finn: Uh, quit Cheerios? Coach Sylvester is awful to you guys. Don't forget who was there for you the last time she dumped you on your ass -- us. Glee club.
+ As mentioned in December, I have completely come around on Sam, who was also on fire this hour. Probably because he is constantly itching to beat down football jerks who pick on other people. First in the choir room, and then while choosing to blow Finn's perfectly acceptable conversation with Quinn out of proportion as "Why are you yelling at my girlfriend?" Ooh, possessive pronouns and fists at the ready...
+ As for the Sam vs. Finn faceoff, Quinn put it just right: "This is kind of hot, actually."
+ And then Schue breaks up the start of YET ANOTHER fight. I will never tire of this, particularly as he chooses to physically turn Sam around and push him along while shepherding him back to class.
+ Quinn is so pretty in normal clothes. And the way she looks at Finn sets my shipper heart all aflutter, aided by the fact that for once, he is not embroiled in love triangle antics and is treating her like an actual friend.
+ Finn/Quinn zenith: Epic Kiss. At no point did I imagine something beautiful like that might happen. Not only for its own sake, but because when these two get together it is like getting a second chance at Will/Terri.
Alas, was marred by
a) Quinn, don't prove the old "once a cheater..." adage, and while you're at it, don't make Finn culpable in becoming That Guy. (That Guy being Puck.)
b) This is ridiculous. I've been requesting a return to Finn/Quinn for like a year, and you give it to me right when I become a supporter of Quinn/Sam? Really? You are interpreting the wishlist wrong again.
I am going to go watch "Duets" & "Furt" in a completely different frame of mind -- probably this calls for a review redo at some point -- and love them and their stupid promise ring as hard as I can before they slip away. The worst part is that unlike when all my other ships break, I've got nowhere for Sam to go. Ugh. This club needs a new girl who is awesome.
[EDIT: Oh look, I found a wonderful post-ep Quinn fic. JUST READ IT. Among other things, she puts Karofsky in his place.]
+ The car commercial -- and...commercials for the commercial, I guess are what you would call those in-character scenes between acts -- that aired if you were watching this on TV were a delight, even though the commercial had an egregious lack of Dianna Agron**. YouTube if necessary.
**True story, I am interested in seeing "I Am Number Four" because she is in it. Well, specifically because she is in it and playing a high school student and paired up with a blond kid, but still, this is me voluntarily planning to watch a sci-fi film and thinking it might actually be good.
-When was this episode supposed to take place? Because there is no amount of timeline stretching on earth that can convince me they were a) still playing football after Christmas, and b) playing football outside in Ohio after Christmas with no snow on the ground.
-Zombie makeup is disgusting. I couldn't look at any of the scenes where they were wearing it.
-Mullets, really? Your determination to mock hockey players grows tiresome, Murphy.
-Puck and Rachel's duet was the best of the bunch, but I've never been a huge fan of the original (also: does country seem like the best way to win over dumb football jocks? Seems like this would be the place to bust out one of their hip-hop atrocities).
-The Dalton Academy one was just weird. Would it kill you to sing gender-appropriate things, Blaine? It made no sense for a boy's school to sing that. Granted, we've established that I will never like anything this school sings, but they could at least try.
-Didn't bother listening to the Thriller mashup. Or watching it, either. All your hard work is for nothing!
House, 7x11, "A Family Affair"
Me: So, did you remember to watch it? Was it good?
Parents: Yeah! It was dark, though.
And that pretty much sums it up. I particularly like that it had a happy ending, free of death or breakups (though someone did break Taub's nose...which was awesome) or firings, despite the visually bleak and muted tones this episode was shot in, and the super-duper heaviness of, let's see, ALL OF the scenes. The seriousness felt decidedly oppressive. House & Cuddy had some marvelous emotional stuff to work with though, and considering they had next to no physical contact, I was surprised how much I came away from it thinking about the solidity of their relationship. Maybe it was the images House put in my head about how if she let her mother leave and get subpar care elsewhere, that in week or a year, "You're going to decide that the man sleeping next to you killed your mother."*
*Or in better words (with pictures and full scene quote), Tumblr has a use. "If you read into it, he’s saying that he doesn’t want to lose her. He doesn’t want her mother to die, because that would mean losing her."
I didn't even notice the lack of Wilson, and A+ for not letting Taub's lame subplot drag the episode down at all. Possibly by making up for it with Martha's teary-eyed subplot, running around the fringes of the case and determined to stick to her ethics no matter what the personal consequences. Martha is the greatest. I am absolutely not taking her for granted -- every time I see a movie preview with Olivia Wilde in it, I think about how terrible she is and how blissful my Thirteen-free viewing experience has been.
Oh, and while I'm at it -- I loved the spot during the Super Bowl, which ended with him throwing his cane at an annoying child. Heh.
Things I do not love about my dog: her persistent belief that muffin wrappers are edible, and that when placed in garbage cans, it is her job to dig them out and eat them.