Glee: 3.06 "Mash Off" (open spoilers)

Sue starts a smear campaign against Burt, Puck’s falling in love with Shelby, and Will has arranged a competition between the clubs. Tonight’s episode also marks Glee’s 300th musical number and a flashback to Sue’s teen years.

[li]Rumour Has It & Someone Like You (both Adele)[/li][li]I Can’t Go for That & You Make My Dreams (both Hall & Oates)[/li][li]You and I (Lady Gaga) and You and I (Eddie Rabbitt & Crystal Gayle)[/li][li]Hit Me with Your Best Shot (Pat Benatar) and One Way or Another (Blondie)[/li][li]Hot for Teacher (Van Halen)[/li][/ul]

I was rather pleasantly surprised that this episode wasn’t totally awful. I had really, really low expectations coming in, because I was bored with the “Quinn wants custody of Beth” and “rival glee club forms at McKinley” storylines pretty much as soon as they were introduced. I’m still bored with them, but it could have been much worse. In fact, the teaser for next time suggests that things are about to get much worse with the Quinn/Puck/Shelby storyline, but at least this week things played out in a fairly reasonable manner. Shelby rejected Puck’s advances, Puck came clean about Quinn’s scheme, and Shelby cut off contact with Quinn.

A couple of weeks ago Sampiro said of Kurt “there’s a not so subtle difference between a look and a costume”. I didn’t notice his outfits in that episode being any more extreme than usual, but this week the wardrobe department really got silly. That Middle Eastern/North African getup was weird enough but at least seemed like it could be inspired by actual fashion trends. But a little later he was totally wearing a Sherlock Holmes costume. I’m just going to tell myself that maybe this episode was originally meant to air closer to Halloween – there was that long break, and Puck did give Shelby a little pumpkin instead of an apple.

Thinking of Kurt, his anti-dodgeball platform didn’t really work for me. It’s not weird enough to be funny, and it seemed we were meant to take it seriously. I don’t think we’ve seen any evidence that students at McKinley are required to play dodgeball though, and it seems like Kurt should have bigger fish to fry. When he started his speech I thought he was going to call for a zero tolerance bullying policy like they have at Dalton. Even a ban on slushies would have been more meaningful, since we’ve actually seen that students throwing slushies at each other is a problem at McKinley. Or heck, maybe he could finally get around to forming the PFLAG chapter he was going to make Karofsky help him with last year. Santana could certainly use the support now.

Ah well, I was glad Rachel made up with Kurt. Is the spin-off back on? I think the world may finally be ready for a sitcom about a neurotic Jewish woman who lives with a couple of gay guys in Manhattan. I was wondering what was up with Kurt and Blaine this week, though. Rachel and Finn seemed pretty cozy, but I don’t think Kurt and Blaine spoke, touched, or even sat/stood anywhere near each other. Maybe it creeped Blaine out that Kurt kept calling him “Watson” in bed. Or perhaps Kurt’s increasing self-confidence means that he’s no longer relying so heavily on the more attractive, assertive, and masculine alternate personality he created for himself last year.

As for the music, I liked the Adele medley, and the '80s dodgeball number was pretty fun. However, I think a teenager in the year 2011 suggesting a Hall & Oates medley and all his classmates enthusiastically agreeing with him may be one of the least plausible things ever to happen on Glee.

“Hot For Teacher” was possibly the best song they’ve ever done.

Plausible, no. Totally awesome, yes. That number reminded me that Hall and Oates really did put out some great music. And you had to love the John Oates mustaches and perms!

Troubletones beat ND in dodgeball, and with that mash-up.

H&O was fun, but the ladies in black singing Adele were much, much better.

I think Santana’s parents are clearly going to be violently abusive wingnuts.

The season finale may involve the New Directions breaking her out of a Mexican sexual re-orientation facility (cue an I Am What I Am/Born This Way/ Beautiful/Free medley) while the TT go on to win the competition.

Anyone else with me on this?

The only thing I liked was the Santana storyline. She was so mean and terrible. Then terrible things happened to her and I felt part vindictive and part sympathetic. That was impressive storytelling.

I dislike Quinn.

My favorite part was definitely “Hot for Teacher”. Puck can definitely pull off the bad boy rock star, sort of like the early Elvis. The Mohawk keeps getting longer and curlier though…that’s a little distracting.

Great music in this one. The storylines weren’t completely terrible and I actually laughed at the ads Sue put out. Looks like things are finally coming to a head for Santana.

Was anyone else irked by the Brady Bunch cut & paste from when Marcia withdrew in favor of Greg because he didn’t go negative?

Rory looks like such a baby compared to the rest, but then I realize he’s the right age for high school (18 when this filmed, so actually on the high end) and basically looks his age (a little baby faced, but looks 18). Kurt and Artie could still pass for high school but the rest look like 20 somethings, which of course they are) It’s kind of like when I see pictures from my own high school and think “I had such a crush on him but he looks like a kid… what kind of perv was I?” and then remember “Well, I was 16 too”. (Of course the worst part is when I look them up on Facebook and it’s “Oh… damn!” realization that years can be mean bitches for youthful good looks.)

I’m so used to the conventions of this kind of television program that I was startled that someone who is not a named character could hear what named characters shout at each other in a crowded hallway - so often, there seems to be a cone of silence around the main characters in a television drama so that they can discuss anything in the open (vampire slaying, superpowers developing, alien heritage) without even considering the possibility that someone might overhear.

I really disliked this episode, mostly for the music. Had no idea what was with the country music duet; had never heard the music and didn’t like it. Hall and Oates were irksome enough when they were fresh. Was never much for Van Halen and Hot for Teacher was one of their worst hits, just ranking slightly above Ice Cream Man. At least it could fit with the plot, I guess.

No idea where the new Scottish kid popped up from - did I miss something somewhere or was it just a totally awkward insert? Hm, just checking seems I did miss an entire episode. Must have been a DVR malfunction.

Anyway, the Santana plot line is interesting and the final musical number was fantastic. So it had that going for it.

Irish, actually. In his introductory episode Brittany believed he was a leprechaun. No, really. A very missable “Brittany is not so much charmingly childlike as she is the poster girl for ‘Eugenics- More Than Just a Pretty Word’” episode. (Anybody who shags her knowing her IQ is almost committing borderline molestation.)

Didn’t she say once that she had slept with the entire school?

The show started and closed strong; got weird (and not in a good way) in the middle, as it seems to do this year. And yes, Kurt’s costumes are waaaaay over the top.

Jane Lynch is such a strong comedic actor - I almost feel like the writers just don’t know what to do with her this year. She takes whatever she’s given and makes the most of it, but I think her role has changed too much - she should just be the competing cheerleading team leader who stalks the hallways of McKinley High, not some kind of politician.

I’m wondering what if any repercussions Finn will face for having outed Santana. I mean, other than guilt and the fury of Santana herself. Although the show sometimes seems to forget this, Finn now lives with Burt and Kurt and I would not expect either of them to be too pleased that Finn was involved in this incident. Kurt is on record as being opposed to outing, he told Karofsky so last year and did not out him even though he potentially had a lot to gain from doing so. But when Burt offered to talk to Santana’s parents he only mentioned his experience being the parent of a gay teenager, I don’t think there was anything said about his stepson being partially to blame for the situation.

I keep hoping that Puck will cut his hair in an attempt to impress Shelby with his maturity. I’m not even sure his mohawk is actually growing out of actor Mark Saling’s head anymore, it’s looked kind of pasted on all season.

IIRC she told Artie she’d slept with everyone on the football team, but didn’t claim to have slept with the whole school. Back in season one Brittany did say she had made out with most of the school though, including boys, girls, and the janitor. She also told Kurt she’d made out with almost every guy at McKinley except him, before going on to cross him off her list.

I think they stopped knowing what to do with her after the end of the first season, and agree it would be better to have her in a minor role rather than keep trying to come up with crazier and crazier things for her to do. I can understand not wanting to cut back on the character when Jane Lynch is so good, but she’s been stuck doing her best with some pretty bad writing for a long time.

That’s probably what I was thinking of.

Several times now they’ve made jokes about Finn being fat; when he walked in boxers through the hallway there was even a joke about students needing counseling. Where do these come from? He’s not skinny, and he does have a large frame (which he couldn’t do anything about if he ingested nothing but spinach juice for a year, but he’s not fat by any stretch.

Did like the byline on Sue’s ad:

And is that Damian McGinty’s real voice? Because he sounds like he has a mouth full of marbles.

I watched most of The Glee Project, and that’s pretty much what he sounded like on there. Here’s a Hulu clip of him talking with another contestant (he doesn’t say much until about 1:45):

Santana could really bust a move and hit a note for somebody whose life had been shattered a few minutes before. If I had just learned my family was going to learn I was gay on TV when I was in high school there’s nothing that could have made me sing and dance (except maybe the lead in Fiddler on the Roof or 1776).

I had never really listened to Adele (the real Adele, not just her music from the show) before and I’ve been listening to her now for an hour. Damn. I’m developing one of my rare hetero crushes.

Are you talking about the “You and I” mash up? It is actually a mash up of 2 songs, both titled “You and I”. The older one was by Crystal Gayle and Eddie Rabbit and was a country/rock crossover hit in 1982, while the other was not country at all…it is an a balladdy song, with samples from Queen, written and recorded by Lady Gaga