Posts Tagged ‘disability’
This week’s episode of Glee is all about the glee club members trying to fit in…still. Sue gets the principal to take away the glee club’s yearbook picture, which the glee club is surprisingly ok with because a yearbook picture might bring more unwanted, negative attention to them. Except for Rachel, who desperately wants the yearbook picture. She ends up getting the glee club a commercial for a local mattress store. But what they don’t know is that accepting payment for a singing job would get them disqualified from sectionals. Mr. Shue ends up taking the blame for them so that the team can go to sectionals without him.
The day has come. We all knew it was around the corner. In the most dramatic scene that Glee has ever seen, Will finds out that Terry is not actually pregnant. There was yelling, Will got mad, and Terry looked like an emotional, irrational woman. I’m really glad that Will has finally found out because the whole Terry-hiding-her-pregnancy-from-Will storyline was probably my least favorite.
This episode did mark a return of the Will/Emma storyline, which I am also not a fan of. Just thought I’d throw that out there. Emma also proclaims that she identifies with Terry’s decision to fake a pregnancy because losing Will would just be too hard. Yet another example of how the show paints women as irrational and out to get the men. And speaking of that…has anyone else noticed how fickle Rachel’s emotions are? First she’s into Finn. Then she’s into Puck. Then she’s in love with Mr. Shue. And now she’s back to being in love with Finn. Because high school girls will fall in love with anyone who gives them any attention, obviously.
Honestly, I didn’t think this episode had a whole lot of storyline outside of Will and Terry’s fight. But one thing that really stuck out to me was the performance for the mattress commercial of “Jump.” Throughout the entire performance, everyone is jumping around on mattresses…except for Artie. But how could he, he’s in a wheelchair, right? Artie was just propped up in a mattress in his wheelchair off in the corner not really doing anything. And then there was a shot of him laying on a mattress while people jumped around him so that he bounced. Just another example of Glee portraying people in wheelchairs of not being capable of doing much of anything. I’m sure they could have worked some better, more active choreography into the number for Artie instead of him sitting there doing nothing and then having people bounce him.
I do have to say, though, that I did really like the Lily Allen song, “Smile.” I love Lily Allen, so it was great to see one of her songs in the show, even if it did catch me off gaurd.
Sadly, these are really the only comments that I have for this episode. I just wasn’t that impressed, positively or negatively, by much of anything.
Update: meloukhia brought up a really good point in her review. I can’t believe I didn’t talk about this originally, I remember being shocked about it when I was watching the episode…I guess I was so shocked that I forgot to write it in my notes. But I need to bring it up now. When Will finds out that Terry isn’t actually pregnant, we see him as an abusive husband. He yells and throws things. He even grabs her arm quite forcefully and backs her up against the counter with no way of escape.
Ok, yelling I get. He’s upset. I yell when I’m upset. But there’s no reason to be physically or verbally abusive. What she did was a pretty horrible thing (and I am glad the storyline is over because I hated it), but there’s never an excuse for abuse. I think this situation could possibly be grounds for divorce, but it would have been nice to see them talk about it rationally and without physical or verbal abuse. I can even understand Will leaving for a while. It was probably a good thing to cool down so as to not escalate the level of abuse. But can we ever see a mature, honest relationship based on communication in Glee? Apparently not because they can’t even show Will and Terry talking about the situation.
Again, I’m sorry I didn’t include this originally. MAJOR mistake on my part.
Oh Glee. This week Will is scared the Sue is leaking his set list and choreography to the competition but then feels bad about accusing one of the teams of cheating, so invites them to a scrimage — which of course leads to inviting the other team to a scrimage. Who are the competition you may ask. Well, they are a correctional school for girls and a school for the deaf. Let’s just throw some stereotypes and ableism in there for a good old time.
I have to be honest, I didn’t really think there was a whole lot of plot this week. Finn likes Rachel, but then Rachel changes her appearance because she thinks Finn will like her better. Quinn is confused about her feelings for Puck, so invites him to babysit with her. But he ends up “sexting” with Santana the whole time they are together. So Finn and Quinn decide that they are in love again.
But despite the lack of plot, there certainly was a whole lot of problematic things about the episode.
Ok, let’s start with some of the very apparent ableism. When one of the girls (the blond Cheerio, I don’t remember her name) is showing the glee club how to fling their hair around, she actually says “it’s like cool epilepsy.” But she’s the dumb blond who says stupid things, so it’s ok. Yeah, I’m sure people with epilepsy love being othered and objectified in this way. And then there was the glee club for the school for the deaf. I actually enjoyed the beginning of their performance of “Imagine.” There was one main guy vocally singing the song and the rest of the club was sign singing the song. It was actually pretty nice. But then “our” lovely glee club was so “moved” (I guess) by the performance that they felt the need to join in. They sang next to them and tried to join in on the signing. Why? Why do you need to take over their performance like that. I’m sure it was meant to be this touching moment of teams joining together to sing “Imagine,” but it just felt to me like some great appropriation.
But don’t worry, they also sang “True Colors” at the end of the show while sitting in a semi-circle with different colored shirts on. I’m sorry, sure “True Colors” has a great message, but I really don’t like that song. It’s just super-cheesy.
And then there’s Kurt’s makeover of Rachel. Kurt (by the encouragement of Quinn) makes Rachel think that Finn will like her more if she dresses more provocatively — or not like a combination between a grandmother and a toddler as they say in the show. Rachel is very beautiful and she already has a fondness for pretty short skirts. But let’s slap some more makeup on her and skin-tight clothes to make the boys like her more. This sends a great message. But, again, don’t worry…Finn tells her that he liked her they way she was, he liked the way she dressed, and he doesn’t like what she’s done to herself. So, yet again, Finn is the good guy and Rachel is just messed up in the head.
Which brings us to, yet again, the overwhelming theme of the show…boys are amazingly great and the girls are just crazy. But this wasn’t necessarily the case with all of the guys this episode. Puck shows us that he is still going to be who he is — which apparently a jerk. He’ll be a father to Quinn’s baby but he’s still going to cheat on her if she doesn’t “give it up” to him. I was really starting to like Puck, but then the writers had to go and do this. Because he is the “stereotypical” high school guy. All he really cares about is sex and doesn’t really care about anyone else. It would be great with we saw some more nuanced characters of Glee.
I was really disappointed with this week’s episode. Not only was there not a whole lot of plot and a whole lot of problematic content, the songs weren’t even that good. That’s usually what keeps me going, as those of you who regularly read these reviews know. But this episode, there just wasn’t really that much. Period.