The Katys are struggling with their assignment. Unique was unable to steal giant cats from the zoo because Lima doesn’t have a zoo, so they dress up Jake like a gay Thundercat and it’s definitely the most interesting contribution he has ever made to the group. Tina has a mind to perform S&M hijinks on their audience. Kitty wants to, like, give birth on stage? I don’t know. Jake doesn’t stick around too long. See, Bree needed some help with some choreography for something and Marley volunteered Jake to go rub his boners all over her for a change. Unique thinks that’s a real bad idea, so she intervenes and tells Marley to Gaga-up w/r/t Jake’s boners if she wants to keep him.
The Gagas perform “Applause” to a mostly empty auditorium. The Katys are there and also Schue and Stoner Bret and Nurse Penny and Becky (in costume!). And probably that’s for the best because the whole thing is a little seizure-inducing. It’s kind of like if L. Frank Baum and Tim Burton‘s fever dreams had a gay baby that was born into the world tripping balls. Artie is dressed like a mime that would warm up the crowd at a Faustian puppet show. Sam is dressed like one of the angels in God’s own personal choir trying to blend in as a Muggle at Eurovision. Blaine is dressed like if Miss Piggy got drunk on her way to the Golden Globes. Marley is wearing a pink wig and, I think, a dress you could wear to work as a candy striper or as a soda shop girl. Ryder is in a cage. The strobe lights and the camera are aggressively like, “Fuck your eyeballs! You don’t need eyeballs! Gaga is post-eyeballs!” It’s a lot.
After the performance, the real drama starts. Will Schuester, grown-ass teacher-man, marches onto the stage and demands to know why a teenage girl who very nearly died of an eating disorder ten minutes ago refused to perform in a coconut bra. Marley says she wasn’t comfortable, says it made her feel objectified, and so Will Schuester, this motherfucker over here, he goes, “So you were putting your needs in front of the needs of the team?! That’s a one week suspension, asshole!”
The Katys perform a stripped-down acoustic version of “Wide Awake.” Unique sounds friggin’ amazing. Why can’t Unique get a real storyline and a love interest? Why is Will so terrible and gross? Why am I still talking about Lima when all the best stuff is happening in New York? Life’s great mysteries.
The end result of the Katy/Gaga personality swap is that it brings Sam and Nurse Penny together in a weirdly hilarious first kiss. And it tears Jake and Marley apart. See, because she’s feeling really bummed about getting suspended for not wanting to be naked in front of the whole school and so Jake decides to make her feel better by giving her shit for not wanting to get naked in front of him. All she ever thinks about is her own boundaries! Never about his boners! So he marches right out of there and goes to school and asks Bree to give him a blowie on the football field and she literally says, “I like private parts” and grabs her jacket so she won’t get grass stains on her uniform.
It turns out all the shenanigans were for naught, however, because Throat Explosion announces via Twitter that they’ll be doing “Applause” at Nationals. To make matters worse, Sue bounces into the choir room to announce a one-week suspension for everyone in New Directions because they all violated the dress code with their Gaga getups. All of them except for Marley, whom Will suspended for not wearing a Gaga getup. Hashtag irony.