'Glee': I'm Dumb But I'm Not Stupid

by Halle Kiefer


This week’s episode began with a painful, devastating loss. We open on Puck’s mohawk being ceremoniously hacked off, removed by a dermatologist attempting to get a better look at a scalp mole. His beautiful locks fall in the kind of slow-motion Ang Lee doves-past-a-doorway shot befitting a super-hot individual getting incrementally less hot.

About that pesky (and thankfully benign) beauty mark, Puck complains, “My mom noticed it when she was washing my hair!” But hey, we’ve all been there, bra. One minute your mom is working on those suds, really getting in there, the next she is sobbing about stage 4 basal cell carcinoma. It’s like, CHILLAX, MOMALA!!! The dweebs of the school can instinctively sense Puck’s loss of swagger; like komodos dragon scenting an injured water buffalo they strike, hoisting Puck into a Dumpster in an act of civil nerd-bedience Puck submits to their attack, despite the fact that he probably could have ripped that nerd’s head clean off his sweater vest-wearing shoulders, and I doubt I would be the only who would have heartily applauded.

Having been abandoned in his scalp nakedness by the always-peeved Santana and a forever-pregnant Quinn, Puck attempts to claw his way back up the popularity ladder by setting his sights on Cheerio/new popular meat Mercedes. Smirking from inside his Dumpster, Puck narrates, “Get ready, black girl from Glee club whose name I can’t remember right now-the Puckster’s about to make you his!” And we are off to an auspicious start!

Puck immediately tries to get in Mercedes’ man-leader outfit by being a huge, gross weirdo. He reminds her of the strong historical bond between the African-American and Jewish communities, who for decades have stood together in a proud sham relationships, relying on each other to gain coolness points after receiving terrible haircuts. “Besides,” Puck tells her, stroking her arm with equal parts seduction and creep-itude, “I love a woman with curves.” Ah yes, you mean like the ultra-curveous Quinn, who is currently in her 8th trimester and has ballooned to a size 2thpick (see what I did there?)? Or Santana, who is gorgeous but suffers from a mild case of alien head from trying to put all that face on a marionette body? You mean them?

But you know what, forget my bitching; if we are going to do this, we need to DO THIS RIGHT. You don’t put The Hottest Guy on the Show and The Best Ever in close proximity if you aren’t going to let them go buck wild on each other. Mercedes is immediately horny (I’m extrapolating here) but suspicious of Puck’s God-awful plan. He in turn does his best to woo her as only a handsome douche knows how, declaring that he “joined a black church” and singing Sammy Davis Jr.’s “The Lady is a Tramp”, cranking up his safely dangerous smile and vest-wearing to an 11 as he soft-shoes across the choir room on his surprisingly tiny legs. (In the interest of full disclosure, my father has always claimed that it was one of his great aunts and uncles who were in the car that Sammy Davis Jr. hit in the accident that cost him his eye, SO I MIGHT BE A LITTLE BIASED). Mercedes can plainly see that this scheme will ultimately self-destruct, what with it being terrible and all, but is driven by distraction by Puck’s great arms and their vocal chemistry, “ two things that really matter to her,” and tentatively agrees to the plan.

Meanwhile, Rachel loses her voice! And then she gets trapped in a utility closet where no one can hear her pounding on the door! Then they close the school to fumigate it for bed bugs and no one realizes she’s still in there! And they find out that there is asbestos in the walls so they have to close the whole school down so they build a new school and no one ever hears from Rachel again!

If only!

No, instead Rachel has the choir room tapped by Lauren the A.V. orc (on TV, plus-size people will accept payment in candy bar instead of actual money = FACT ) in order to prove who is or isn’t singing during practice (rather than, just listening with your ears? Seems like less of a hassle, but then again I’m not a literal harpy). Rachel is really at the acme of her horribleness as she saunters up to sing Miley Cyrus’ “The Climb,” only to find out she’s lost (most of) her voice! But not enough that she can’t talk! Wah! We don’t get to see much of Hot Asian Dude (HAD) this episode, but we at least get to witness his silent wince as Rachel’s vocal farting hits him in the ear. He probably he wasn’t on set long enough for them to give him a line this week, what with him starring in a new British detective drama with Rachel’s gay dads “See No Evil, Speak No Evil.” Coming to Fox in my brain this fall!

Panicking that the thing that makes her tolerable to other humans will be gone forever, Rachel goes with Finn to the Sardonic Indian Doctor, who has her strip down and put on a robe to check her throat like any legitimate, non-predatory physician would do. Finn starts to rip Jesse for not being there for his girlfriend like he should be, but Rachel explains that “he’s on spring break.” On spring break. He is on spring break, which apparently NO ONE ELSE AT THE ENTIRE SCHOOL HAS HEARD ABOUT.

Don’t those other kids know that you don’t have to go to classes or glee practice or to school at all when it’s spring break? What are they teaching today’s youth? Looks like there were cut backs in Fox’s Gaping Plot Hole department. Damn this economy! Finn soon busts out with an adorbs rendition of “Jesse’s Girl,” because duh, which of course begs the question: which writer was visited by Yahweh in a dream to name Rachel’s boyfriend Jesse? To you, sir, I tip my hat. Unfortunately for us viewers Finn used up all of his allotted 3 facial expressions per episode at the very beginning of the song, so for the last 30 seconds or so he is starring blankly at the rest of the glee club like someone yanked the power cord out of the back of his skull.

Outside in the world not focused on Rachel’s man candy, Kurt is still bummed about his dad’s discomfort with his femme life style, so he confides in the best person imaginable, Sue Sylvester. Sue scoffs at his assertion that he’s gay: “So you like show tunes! Doesn’t make you gay. That makes you awful!” she spits. BOOM! You just go Sylvesterized! If anyone could argue you out of your sexuality, it would be her, so Kurt then proceeds to go totally insane, dressing up as Baby Lumber-Kurt and performing “Pink Houses” by John Cougs Mellencamp, in a profoundly awkward “man-formance” in front of disbelieving glee club. It’s like the Gift of the Magi, except Kurt gets nothing. Turned on by Kurt’s super butchness, and gunning for a perfect record of All Boys Kissed In the World, Brittany tells Kurt to let her know when he wants to “tap this.” TWIST!

This is the Glee I signed up for: if the plot twists aren’t going to make sense and we’re going to run this puppy into the ground plot-wise, then by god we are going to have an amazing time doing it.

Cut to… So…did anyone else think that Kurt and Brittany hooking up was sort of…hot? Like, super hot? I was like, whoa, what, and had to have my Glee watching buddies Chris and Will spray me down with a fire extinguisher. Brittany explained what boy’s kisses taste like (dip, burders, Brittany’s armpit) and Bob [BURT! Burt. Whatever!] walks in as planned, confused and holding Kurt’s don’t-come-in-I’m-with-a-girl personalized door hanger: “I thought it was the start of one of your murder mystery dinners.” Lol, oh Dad, you are the worst dad. Burt tells Kurt that he will love him no matter who is attracted to, but he is still going to exclude him by taking Finn to a Reds game, because that’s what good fathers do: alienate their children in order to increase the possibility that they can have sex with another child’s mother.

After all this smooching going on, I was expecting some sweet business from Puck and Mercedes, but noooooooo, all we get is a little peck on the cheek! I want more, more, more! (“Hi honey, it’s Friday again, and that hair isn’t going to wash itse-OH MY GOD, I’m sorry I should have knocked. I’ll just put this conditioner on the night stand for later I’m leaving I’m leaving right now!) I do respect that they didn’t have them get hot and heavy, though. If Puck had hooked up with Mercedes then dumped her, I would have turned on him so fast. He would have been dead to me. Lucky for our fake couple, Quinn gives Mercedes her blessing to bone Puck, given that he is little more than her sperm donor at this point (“Also, this baby seems to have calcified in my womb!” Quinn must have been thinking, “Because it’s been the size of a clementine for months!”), but warns that Santana will not abide by this transgression.


The dulcet strains of Brandy and Monica’s “The Boy is Mine” fill the screen as Mercedes and Santana square off, and I just swooned onto my fainting couch. It was so exquisite. It feels so good when it touches my brain! Mercedes and Santana circle and snarl and lip-sync for their lives in an embarrassingly personal duet about their love lives. You guys! Everyone in the choir room can see and hear you! After seeing how her popularity has enabled Puck to return to his former nerd-terrorizing glory, Mercedes tells Sue she’s dropping out of Cheerios. “What about the Mariah Carey number where you do 10 full minutes of pop runs?” Sue cries. YES, GLEE, WHAT ABOUT THAT!?!? Don’t be making promises your butt can’t cash.

To have Rachel shut up her whining about her damn voice already (“I’m like Tinkerbell,” she sobs, “without applause, I die!”), Finn took her to visit his quadriplegic football friend Sean. Whoa ho ho. CHECK AND MATE, Finn. Can’t argue with the paralyzed guy. “I miss my body. I miss my life. I miss girls,” Sean explains. Okay, true, but you do have this wicked sweet fish tank. Look at it, it’s huge! Since Sean’s a man who is white and retains the ability to sing, Rachel will probably end up adding him to her harem of honey-voiced hunks.

Back at school (Spring Break! It’s just like all the other weeks! WOOOO!), Brittany is enamored of how infant-soft Kurt’s hands are as they charade down the hall way together, cooing, “Now I know what it’s like to date a baby!” Carve another notch in that bedpost, Brittany! Today every person who goes to William McKinley High; tomorrow, the hemisphere! “Do you want to know my secret?,” Kurt says, bringing his mouth close to her ear, his voice a husky whisper, “Duck fat.” Get off of my couch, you guys! That is for my faints exclusively!

Burt shows up like a dick at school basically just to ruin Kurt’s day by telling him that Finn and Burt are going for free hoagies after the game, and again tells Kurt not to come. Now I can understand not wanting to drag Kurt to a sports game, but hoagies? Can’t everyone get hoagies, Dad? Kurt’s pain is so raw and hoagie-based that you can see his little bunny heart melting in his overall-covered chest, so searing hot that it burns off the flannel and lets the infant fawn that is Kurt coming leaping out in a sequin and flame explosion. He then precedes to burns it down with “Rose’s Turn” from Gypsy, tearing down the stage in front of a 15-foot illuminated KURT sign, wearing an absurdly voluminous ascot in, AS HE RIGHTFULLY SHOULD. I really have to give the actor that plays Kurt a real hand, because it can NOT be easy to play that boy. “Yes, last week you were Jeffrey Dahmer Jr., but this week you are going to be Hank Hill with an 11th hour sissonne into an Ethyl Merman. Oh, also, you are a normal teenage boy.” All flavors of gay man are officially covered!

As Kurt pants to a halt, he sees that his dad has been watching him all the time after just blowing off his plans with Finn. Promiscuous dad, wherever you are! Dropping sons and fake-songs like hot coals! They have a confrontation, re: Kurt’s obviously fake hetero costume. “I’m dumb, but I’m not stupid,” Burt says. UGH, but Dad, you are being both! Duh, wait a minute, my flamingly homosexual son is suddenly dressing like he’s in the stage version of “Deliverance” and making out with a girl who looks Kim Cattrall circa “Mannequin” when she is the mannequin and oh wait a minute I AM A MORON. They embrace and everything is totally resolved, except of course that somewhere Finn is eating hoagies alone with tears streaming down his face and the urn filled with his father’s ashes wrapped in an Indians sweatshirt in the booth next to him. Now these are some characters I can relate to!

As for the final song, I really thought they were going to explain why Paralyzed Sean didn’t have a shirt on when Rachel came to visit. Moms really are the silent plot movers in Glee is the take away I got from this episode (“O honey, I forgot that I undressed you and then left you without clothes on when I went to let in that lovely young girl who came to see you. I guess I just forgot that you are a teenage boy with feelings and thoughts and just a person in general. So, sorry again that I didn’t warn you that she was here before she walked into your room, where again you were naked under that blanket as I left you. Well anyway, time to feed those goddamn fish again!”). Rachel offers him voice lessons, which seemed to just consist of singing a U2 song together. While the introduction of a completely paralyzed character was a roll of the die, I thought it was tastefully done (except, you know, for the inexplicable shirtlessness) and gave Rachel a chance to act, thus proving that she actually can; it’s just the writing that makes her unbearable.

Which, duh, I totally already knew you guys. Guys? Guys, do all high school students know U2’s latest albums? The song segued into a full-group stage performance of “One,” or as I like to call it, “The Sweetest Chambray,” and Quinn’s mouse-sized fetus sang the Mary J. Blige part so quietly maybe only I heard it.

I’d like to place my order for a future episode, please. Let’s see… can I please get to see Brittany and Mercedes making out with Hot Asian Dude and Paralyzed Sean and Sardonic Indian Doctor while Sue Sylvester films herself and her sister Jean reenacting Heart’s “These Dreams” video and Rachel gets accidentally bricked up in an old chimney? Until then, next week’s preview with Neil Patrick Harris, ‘80s flashbacks and Aerosmith’s “Dream On” is just enough to tide me over. Just enough.

Halle Kiefer keeps getting mad at her TV but then she forgives it.