Previously on Glee, Santana finally moved to New York with Kurt and Rachel, and the family they made there — of one gay lady and one straight lady and one gay man and two boyfriend pillows and one girlfriend pillow — was exactly the kind of urban home situation that makes our hearts grow like the Grinch in the presence of Cindy Lou Who, so we were like, “Oh, finally!” And Glee was all, “So what you’re saying is you want to see more Marley and Kitty and Ryder and Jake?” And were like, “No.” And Glee was like, “So yes?” And we were all, “No, is what we said!” And Glee was all, “But what you meant was yes?” And we were like, “No!” And Glee was like, “Fuck you, too bad, here’s Ryder getting Catfished for 600 hours.”
William “Fair Play” Schuester has been creeping around to every school school in the district, skulking back stage in auditoriums and peeking around corners wearing those glasses with the fake nose and mustache and lurking behind curtains because he wants to know what kind of competition New Directions is going to be up against at Regionals. What he discovers at that the Hoosier Daddies have the advantage of an American Idol runner-up, so he scraps every one of the one million plans he’s had so far and decides they need to GO BIG OR GO HOME. Stadium songs, basically, is what he wants. But don’t get too excited. Even though I’ve been waiting four seasons for Glee to cover the Space Jam theme song, that is not what they’ll be doing. Because the power goes out in the whole school.
For a group of kids who were traumatized by a gun going off in their hallowed halls only two weeks ago, they take the sudden blackout really well, maybe because Principal Figgins hops on the intercom right away to assure them that emergency supplies are available for the students with the best GPAs.
Mr. Schue says stadium songs are out, acoustic songs are in.
I guess Ryder’s doing better in school now because he is one of the chosen few who receives a flashlight, which he immediately uses to shine on his face so Jake can see how serious he is when he says (again) that Katie Catfish is the love of his young life. Why, just before the blackout, he was accosting her some more about how she keeps standing him up, and she was like, “I will not answer your questions about my dodgy behavior, but just keep confessing your deepest, darkest secrets to me like a regular old Ginny Weasley and I will definitely not cause you to murder any chickens or cats while I grow stronger and stronger in the lair I’ve hidden in the bowels of your school.” Ryder says, “OK, Katie!” Jake’s face is so bemused; he simply cannot believe this storyline is still going on.
Sam is the first to offer up a stripped-down solo. He goes with “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin'” because it’s the song to which he was conceived and also it reminds him of when he was a stripper. I love Sam, but Sam did not get a school-issued emergency flashlight. However, one of my favorite Glee things is Chord and his guitar, so I really dig his Righteous Brothers’ cover. He and Ryder should spend more time harmonizing. It’d keep Ryder from accidentally opening up the Chamber of Secrets and it’d give Sam something to do with his spare time now that Brittany keeps disappearing every other episode.
The whole time Sam and Ryder are singing, Artie is texting away on his phone while wearing a miner’s helmet. He’s texting, OK? Do you see that Artie is texting? On his phone during Sam’s song is Artie, who is texting, and not paying attention. It’s obviously very important because the camera won’t shut up about it. Afterward, Artie tells glee club he can’t perform without his “synths” and Sam’s like, “Screw your synths! Do you think Tiny Tim had synths? Do you think Cinderella had synths? No! They did not! And neither did I when I, too, was an orphan boy just trying to entertain my hungry brothers on those cold, powerless nights beneath the harvest moon!”
Sam’s edginess tells me Lord Tubbington has not stopped trolling him.
Artie takes Sam’s reprimanding to heart after he smashes a water bottle with his chair and realizes that music is everywhere. He tells Sam he wants to bring in ‘Da Noise and also ‘Da Funk with cans and bottles and buckets and zippers and aluminum foil and a sundry of other repurposed grabages. And so he does. And we get another Queen jam, a little “We Will Rock You.”
Ryder decides to take Jake’s advice and open up to human people he can see with his eyeballs. He does it with a full orchestra. “Which I gladly agreed to because what Ryder eloquently told me is what he wanted to unplug [beat] were his feelings,” is what Matthew Morrison manages to say with a straight face. In a candlelit room over collective memories of getting slushied, Ryder does R.E.M.’S “Everybody Hurts.” After the song is over, he says he has something else he wants to open up about: He was molested by his (female) teenage babysitter when he was 11, and that’s one of the reasons he has a hard time trusting girls. Oh, the hootin’ and a-hollerin’ Sam and Artie do when Ryder tells his story. LOL, they say. LOL, dude. That’s just called “getting lucky.” Er, no, you asshats, what it is called is “sexual abuse.” Marley jumps to Ryder’s defense, but Ryder tries to laugh it off, like, “Heh. Yeah. Lucky.”