Previously on Glee, Kitty got a soul transplant, fell in love with Artie, and became the voice of the people. Bree rolled onto the scene tossing out bitchy one-liners like the echo of the reflection of the specter of Santana Lopez. Ryder and Jake and Marley were all still on the show, I think. Sam fell for the new school nurse, which made him act all weird and panicked because he forgot he looks like Chord Overstreet. Kurt and Blaine got engaged. Santana continued to refuse to cut her terrifying wolverine fingernails (and also started dating Demi Lovato). And Rachel landed the role of Fanny Brice in the Broadway revival of Funny Girl.
Time is standing still in Lima, OH, apparently, because Will bursts into the choir room announcing that Nationals are six weeks away which means it’s still springtime which it also was like 20 episodes ago. The only thing standing between New Directions and another Nationals trophy is the fact that they only have a month and a half to prepare for the biggest show choir competition in the country and they have no idea what they’re singing or how they’re dancing or what they’re wearing. Just kidding. A new group called Throat Explosion is what’s in their way. These guys, these Throat Explosions, they rehearse 27 hours a day and the mere mention of their name sends Tina careening into a yelping emotional doom spiral because how can a bunch of Katy Perrys like the New Directions take on a group of Lady Gagas like the Throat Explosions?
Mr. Schue, of course, had no lesson planned for this week, so he uses Tina’s meltdown as a springboard for some learnin’. Wholesome Amish folk singer Katy Perry and edgy pop diva Lady Gaga are two whole different kinds of performers and if New Directions really want a shot at winning Nationals this year, they are going to have to embrace the dissonance. Will assigns the Gagas (Unique, Kitty, Tina, Jake) the task of performing a Katy song, and the Katys (Blaine, Ryder, Artie, Marley) the task of performing a Gaga song. It’s all fine and good in the choir room, where those exact opposite creatures, those Katys and those Gagas, can learn to hold hands and bake brownies with rainbows inside, but what about the real world? What happens when Katys and Gagas fall in love with each other? What then? Well, I’ll tell you.
Katy-Artie and Gaga-Kitty smooch and canoodle and giggle about their differences, mostly because this forced dichotomy is about the silliest thing either of them have ever heard of, and bless their hearts, they’re a Slytherin power couple if I’ve ever seen one. Katy-Marly and Gaga-Jake do not giggle about their differences because he’s got boners that need taking care of and all she wants to do is eat pizza and sing her way through Julie Andrews‘ full cinematic canon. (Too bad that bisexual slut Brittany S. Pierce isn’t here to have sexual intercourse with Ryder like she was always doing with all the boys when she was dating Santana.) And then there’s Katy-Sam and Gaga-Nurse-Penny who seem to think they’re as different as Skrillex and show tunes, but in actual fact they both just want Sam to take off his shirt. Blaine realizes this and says to Sam: “Just show her how hardcore you are by inviting her to your Gaga performance. And also take off your shirt.”
Another person who is naked is Bree. Or, well, she’s wearing caution tape like Lady Gaga’s “Telephone” video, which is basically like being naked. She marches into Sue’s office, much to Becky’s (hi, Becky!) incandescent dismay, and starts mouthing off about whatever latest Gargamel plot to Smurf the Smurf out of New Directions. Do you think every single time Bree opens her mouth, Naya Rivera‘s agent calls up Ryan Murphy and demands a raise? Sue is wearing a Gaga-esque face cage, but only as a deterrent to eating solid foods for some medical procedure or something. It doesn’t matter. What matters is Sue starts glowing with that righteous rage and demands to know why dudes like Will Schuester are always forcing women to choose between female archetypes. Sue Sylvester wants to be them all! (And she is!) The other thing that matters, as always, is Becky’s amazing face. She’s even more bamboozled than we are by Bree’s continued appearance on this show.
In an attempt to woo Nurse Penny with his edginess, Sam takes over the Gagas and explains in a manic monologue that the future is now and the future is strobe lights and catwalks and bombastic costumes. The future also is Becky, on account of she is going to be president one day, you mark my words, and so Sam convinces her to help him spread the word about the New Directions Gaga Spooktacular taking place in the auditorium at lunch. She agrees, but only so Sam will stop talking to her.