by Melissa Albert
"Glee" went high road/low road last night, making Tina a proud crusader for female empowerment while turning Kitty into a pint-sized sexual predator. "Glee," why do you save all your nuanced writing for Kurt?
When Tina and the other bitter single girls of McKinley vote to throw a Sadie Hawkins dance, Finn’s inspired to make it ladies’ choice week in glee club: every girl dedicates a song to the lucky lad of her choice.
Poor, misguided Tina sings "I Don’t Know How to Love Him" to...Blaine?!?! Didn’t we cover the straight girl/gay guy plotline in season one, when Mercedes crushed impossibly on Kurt? Unlike then-closeted Kurt, Blaine has the guts to turn Tina down flat when she asks him to the dance.
But it's not just disinterest in dating the ladies that’s made Blaine hang up his dancing shoes: he’s got an impossible crush of his own. On Sam Evans, and who can blame him? There’s just something about those James Bond impressions. But Sam’s got more on his mind than perfecting his already perfect Connery: "Glee" has gone topical, with a doping scandal plotline involving a certain gang of blazer-wearing sectionals victors. Yep, sleuthy Sam is accusing the Warblers of taking steroids to stay on top—a crime that would disqualify their sectionals win.
Kurt’s not the only one moving on after the end of Klaine. It’s his first week at NYADA, and he’s realizing that college is just as clique-y as high school. Rachel’s too busy falling for Brody to hang out, so Kurt considers joining the Adam’s Apples, a badly named NYADA show choir. Rachel assures him that joining that gang of geeks will kill his chances of having a social life, a career on Broadway, a reason to LIVE...but guess what? The director of Adam’s Apples (Adam, of course) is a super dishy British guy. He’s so cute, in fact, that Kurt manages to sit through the club’s deeply embarrassing ballad-style rendition of "Baby Got Back" without standing up to show them how a real performer gets it done. Soon, Adam’s showing up all over the place, trying to recruit Kurt for the club. But is he into Kurt, or into his talent? Finally, Kurt nuts up and scores Adam’s number—though it remains to be seen whether it’s love, or just a means of making him the newest Apple.
Marley’s been a mess since her stumble at sectionals, but with Brittany’s help she’s ready to reclaim Jake’s affections. The two ladies perform an adorable, high-energy duet of "Tell Him," by the Exciters, then successfully ask Jake and Sam to the dance. Is it our imagination, or does Ryder look sad about not getting an invite? Throughout the episode, he’s comically stalked by a blond chick in a neck brace, but she never quite succeeds in talking to him. Where'd the female empowerment go?
Oh, right. Kitty stole it, then shook it up with a double dose of reality-show tramp. She corners Jake in a classroom and practically throws her underwear at him, promising to put out if he goes to the dance with her. He’s so freaked out by his urge to be a “bad guy” with Kitty that he runs to Puck for help. Puck promptly puts out the Kitty flame, heroically smothering it with his own body. Yep, if you have a problem that can be solved by someone having sex with a hot girl so you don’t have to, Puck’s your man. Turned on by his Lima lurker style, Kitty asks him to Sadie Hawkins, and they even make it through a few songs before retiring to the backseat of her car.
We have more than one problem with this plotline, but let’s just focus on the gross powerless guy/insatiable sex succubus dynamic. This boring chestnut has played out on TV a million times, but it seems extra lazy coming from "Glee." But we can’t deny that it’s fun to see the original Puckerman back in Cheerio-chasing action.
Tina and Blaine do end up hitting the dance floor together, as “best friends" (hah!), but she nearly kisses him. She’s saved from humiliation by the appearance of Detective Sam, who has made a major break in the Case of the Overly Muscular Warblers. He’s tracked down the one Warbler willing to confirm that the club has, indeed, gone the way of Lance Armstrong. But will he really testify against his own crew?
Back at the dance, the boys of glee dedicate a performance of TLC’s "No Scrubs" to the girls of McKinley, producing enough post-"Magic Mike" sexual electricity to power a whole school dance’s worth of light-up snowflakes. The girls respond with Bruno Mars’s "Locked Out of Heaven," but we’re calling it for the dudes. Marley’s feeling so good that she lays out her demands to Jake: She needs them to be exclusive, and she needs to take it slow. And he’s very up for both.
Rachel and Brody are also reaching new levels of committed in Bushwick. After she blows up at him for showing up late to a date, he talks her down by promising to get a place nearby, so he’ll never be late again. She ups the ante, asking him to move in. (Without clearing it with Kurt!)
We don’t find out his answer just yet. So for now, let’s close with the wise words of Becky, in response to Tina’s confession that she’s found the love of her life. “You’re not talking about gay Blaine!” she cries. Sadly, Tina ignores the warning.
Song of the episode: “Tell Him” was coasting to first when the glee guys dropped “No Scrubs,” taking the lead with a bullet.
What did you think of last night's episode? Is Tina headed for a heartbreak? (And for that matter, Blaine?) Will New Directions be able to bring down the Warblers? Should Brody really move in with Rachel? Tell us all your thoughts in the comments and on Twitter!