Gleebasing: 'Spears Is Fierce, Yo'
There is no way to cram six Britney Spears songs into an episode of Glee organically. Or so viewers learned last night when Ryan Murphy materialized in millions of U.S. homes viewers (at once, like Santa Claus), slipped them a gnarled episode that he engineered himself and fled into the night so that his audience could experience a mediocre high with hallucinations of Uncle Jesse from Full House. "Britney/Brittany" was traumatic and disappointing and no doubt left you itching for a hit of Glee, the way Murphy used to make it. Rather than hitting the streets in desperation, review the highs and lows with Movieline below. As always, there will be a pop quiz at the end -- so pay attention!
Glee is supposed to be a show that celebrates each person's differences. It allegedly teaches high school kids that they don't have to be thin or straight or smart to be appreciated. Yet in last night's episode, several of the New Directions only realized this lesson after subjecting themselves to a scary nitrous-Britney speed ball.
Somehow, fantasizing about Britney Spears' "Hit Me Baby One More Time" video taught Rachel that she should not be afraid to dress up. In her own words, "I never dressed like a pretty girl because I never really felt like one before. Now I realize that it's OK to feel like one every now and then."
And to show that she felt pretty, she put on a pleated skirt, hiked up her button-down and divided her hair into pigtails to fulfill every popular male's fantasy. After learning this valuable gem at the hands of one of the most troubled pop stars of her generation, Rachel told Finn to choose between her and football, because she was too insecure to deal with a boyfriend who had multiple passions.
Meanwhile, Kurt was punished for speaking his mind. Mr. Schuester, the white-rapping preacher of schmaltzy empowerment lessons, traded in his car to buy a yellow Corvette to impress Emma. Further proving that he -- and Glee writers, just this week, I hope -- lost it, he danced suggestively during a performance of "Toxic" at a homecoming pep rally with a bowling hat. Female students drooled and shouted "I want to be your Britney" at him. It was embarrassing for all, especially Schue.
Anyway, it happened. Glee went off the rails, a disaster that Sue Sylvester poignantly touched on at the end, declaring Schue's pep rally spectacle a "Britney Spears sex riot." And it was, of the worst possible kind. But Heather Morris looked great in it, so there was that. Now for the other highs and lows...
· Santana telling Rachel, "Congratulations. Normally you dress like the fantasy of a Japanese businessman with a very dark, specific fetish."
· Sue, in a neck brace, telling Schue this cautionary sex riot story: "That's what one Hubert Humphrey said back in 1968 at the start of the Democratic National Convention. But then hippies put acid in everyone's bourbon and when an updraft revealed Lady Bird Johnson's tramp stamp and tattoos above her ovaries, Mayor Richard B. Daly became so incensed with sexual rage that he punched his own wife in the face and spent the next hour screaming 'sex party' into the microphone of all three major networks."
· John Stamos, who was easily the most charming player in last night's episode
· The Britney formula: Nitrous + Britney < Valuable Self Lessons
· Schue agreeing to let Dr. Stamos lecture his class because "Kid's can't sing without teeth right?"
· Sue Sylvester describing in vivid detail Jacob Ben Israel's "butt sweat stain:" "It's like an ink blot test."
· Kurt straight-up selling Britney to viewers: "This group regularly pays tribute to pop culture and Britney Spears is pop culture."
· Later, Sue Sylvester straight-up plugging the title artist: "Britney Spears is a genius pop culture provocateur and a gateway drug to every out-of-control impulse ever created."
· Schue dancing suggestively with a bowler hat in front of hundreds of screaming teenagers.
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