Glee, 4x17, "Guilty Pleasures"
And yet again, here I am being like a month behind on an episode because I couldn't form coherent words about it, I just kept giggling and replaying my favorite scenes. If you need a refresher course, here is my Feelings Explosion about the spoilers we had right up to the point it aired.
First of all, any time Blaine takes the club by the reins and/or he and Sam tag team up, I feel faint with joy, so there's that. Even though "guilty pleasures" is like the most awful assignment you could give to a club, and that's saying something since Finn told them they should ask dates out in song in front of everyone.
Aside from a few horrific secondhand embarrassment moments - I do not like the Blaine who gets awkward and giggly in a way others can notice; COMPOSE YOURSELF (although that overeager "Wham. The band, Wham" was pretty cute) - that was pretty much everything I have ever wanted out of Blaine's crush on Sam. Starting with a nice friendship moment of trying to help take care of his family
They are such giant dorks when they rip off their hoodies for "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go." I love everyone in this bar! Not least the OMG FLUFFY HAIR in the 80s getup portion. And Marley, look at you! It's like you hopped out of a Babysitters Club cover.
The locker room scene took me about 8 tries to get through before I could do it without wincing and/or covering my ears, but now it's all, awww, look at you being touchy feely and helping create misleading promos and making Deeply Concerned faces that will look magnificent in alternate context.
My rage over "Against All Odds" has cooled and faded, partly because LA LA LA IN MY CONTEXTLESS MUSIC LIBRARY I AM HEARING A SONG FOR KURT, and partly because it helps if it's not meant precisely as a "I think we should get together" song so much as a "I need to get this off my chest and have it be okay, but I don't want to bring it up all Predatory Gay style so maybe this will prompt you" number. I wish he didn't obnoxiously look at Sam about 6 times - once would suffice, y'all - and I didn't think this was as good live as his last number, but just knowing that's what happening is gorgeous.
p.s. Flight of the Conchords AU gifset that is The Best
AND THEN THE END. That, just, yes, good, every choice in both script and acting. I love how anxious Blaine is not to freak him out/screw up their friendship and how relieved he is when Sam says it doesn't matter/they're like brothers/"I trust you"/purposefully mentions being flattered to make him feel better.
You're...not freaked out?
I don't know what to call this face but I love it.
I love that Sam declares they must also Hug It Out to prove how not weird it is, and proceeds to glomp on with a giant bear hug so that there is no possible doubt as to how okay with this he is, and how Blaine's tension melts as he relaxes into it. (I have spent so many minutes watching his chin settle in just so. He looks like a satisfied cat. Or puppy, as it were.)
Staring option (eta: now in icon form!):
Also cackling forever at the breath mints crack, because I want that to be exactly how Sam reacts. "Um. Something may be happening that I am not entirely prepared for. Please advise."
At this point I am 100% sure I care more about their friendship than Platonic Klaine, because right now they have so much more emotional depth. This episode made me a hell of a lot happier than the wedding, for one.
Did other things happen during the McKinley half? Oh! I can't decide if I love or hate Sam making that crack about Tina going over to foist her nursemaid tendencies on Mr. Schue. On the one hand, four reactions at once: (1) BWAHAHAHA, (2) actually now there's an idea..., (3) except Terri's already been there/done that
No reaction to Fondue for Two or the creation of the Spice Girls group. Macaroni Kurt was kind of stupid-- and by that I mostly mean Blaine's cartoonish response to it. That's a line I would expect out of 30 Rock.
Oh! And I had less than zero patience for Jake's crap, which just felt like an excuse to bash Chris Brown. Not that he doesn't deserve it, and not that I don't enjoy seeing a flock of girls descend on Jake like angry crows -- but I actually do agree that you can separate music from artist, you can still listen to it if you feel appropriately guilty about it, and this show has just covered waaaay too many awful artists for me to let them randomly decide now is the time for judgment.
New York Side
OH KURT. I am going to purge that Richard Simmons bit from my eyes and brain, because that grandpa-appropriate workout clothing should be burned, but I love this further confirmation of his TV obsession. I was worried it was only tasteless reality shows, but now we've added a whole new genre and who knows how many more we haven't heard of. I assume this means that Future Kurt & Blaine's idea of a perfect week is spending at least 4 of those nights curled up on the couch with a full DVR.
The body pillow - omg. I very much appreciate that "ordered it one night while I was on Ambien*" line that I choose to mean was right around the time he was also living on The Notebook, and that it was maybe ordered with the intent of being a Replacement Blaine who hadn't done anything horrible to him, until he realized how painful that was, and so it turned into Non-Judgmental Semi-Humanoid Bruce who would just listen and let him cry about it instead. Also, all I'm hearing is "Kurt likes to be held." So many headcanons! Now my only worry is whether he's gotten so accustomed to sleeping with the pillow that it is more comfortable than curling up on a human, because it seems like it might be.
*At what point do we voice concern over this Ambien habit?Kurt's response to Santana's evil presence in their bathroom is maybe the greatest thing I have ever seen in my life. I can't decide whether the matter-of-fact "You're a bitch" or "Rachel is beautiful" is the best part, they are both so glorious. Makes it hurt twice as much that where he defends and tries to protect her at every step, her first response is that humiliating him with Santana's help would be just the ticket to feeling better. Punt yourself right out of my inner circle, girlfriend.
Buuuut we got to see Kurt woken up in the middle of the night, and it's adorable. So cranky when interrupted, like an angry baby cat. I especially like how sour he is in snatching it away and informing Rachel she cannot share when all she does is touch it.
The amount I don't care about Santana and/or break out in hives whenever she and Kurt get along is off the charts, so I particularly despised the ending of this one (take your slasher goggles out of The Facts Of Life*), but I guess it was cute when he explained his reasoning behind naming Rachel's pillow Colin + knee rub + puppy-eyed "don't be sad."
(*she says, not knowing anything about it except that Lisa Whelchel was super cute on Survivor)
Santana's one redeeming line in this whole episode is about Brody (on how he and Rachel met in the shower, bonding over moisturizing routines): "Wow. That sounds really not romantic, and also very, very gay." Without him to rag on, she really has no purpose in New York. Please run her over with a subway train.
Oh! When Santana drops her truth bomb about Brody - I am so mad that they cut out Kurt's line in the promo. His tone is past warning and straight into pleading, and it gives me all kinds of tingly protective!Kurt feelings. She has a right to be mad at him, but at least his heart was in the right place, trying to go with the lesser of two things that would mess her up. Poor sad little thing. Also, the withering disappointed look he gives Santana is perfect, and then gives way to a face I like to call "exhausted after a long hospital vigil, waiting for news."
In Rachel/Brody news, for as much as I enjoyed Finn beating the crap out of Brody when I saw it, it made me sort of ill that Rachel's first instinct was to be pleased at his underhanded behind-her-back violence. I think my problem is how tacky it is to say it right to your ex's face with no regard for his highly visible injury.
That said, I am very proud of Rachel for calling him out on being a dirty rotten ho, and really tired of fandom rushing to tell everyone who will listen that they would never ever judge Brody for his actual "job," his only wrongdoing was lying about it. Woman up and be the morality police. It's a volunteer position that's fun and helps enforce a message of standards to keep society stable.
Rachel: I feel ready. I'm ready for my Funny Girl audition...
Fandom: *CHEERS* ("FINALLY!")
Rachel: Maybe start dating older men...
Fandom: *FACEPALM* ("Did you literally not learn anything from this experience/your last experience/Quinn omg.")
++Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go: It is physically impossible to be unhappy while listening to this. As proven by "Heroes," I'll listen to anything Sam & Blaine duet on, but this is definitely my favorite so far.
-Wannabe: Ugh. I have been wanting them to do this song since forever, so of course they let Alex Newell ruin it. Kick him out, let Sugar be Posh and Marley be Baby, like it should be. Song fixed. It's not like you can hear all 5 voices anyway.
++Against All Odds: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ (100% for the studio version)
Copacabana: it's a familiar classic but one I kind of need to hear in its original version to make it feel that way? Sam did the best he could with it and was probably the best voice they could have picked to cover it, but the song does not speak to me in any version. I did enjoy them acting out the lines in the song, though.
[SIDEBAR: I thought I remembered hearing this on The Simpsons - what I actually remember is "Island of Sirens" from the Odyssey parody, where the singers are portrayed by Patty and Selma. Cackle with nostalgia with me!)
--My Prerogative: ugh dnw
-Creep: Accurate description of Brody, but I am so bored.
-Mamma Mia: honestly, the Ohio kids look so gross I can't make myself sit through this number. Even with the parts I've heard, it's just not working for me.
Conclusion: Blaine and Kurt's scenes were perfect, Rachel was OK (Brody scenes were a waste of time tho; why couldn't he vanish like a ghost from our lives?), the newbie scenes sucked life from the episode, but it was definitely at least 80% awesome. The music mostly was not.