By Chris Saccaro
Mr. Schuester said it best when he said the only thing left to do was say goodbye. With Nationals behind them, the Glee Club spends this episode completing one of Mr. Schue’s more appropriate weekly assignments–“goodbyes.”
One of the things that “Glee” did really well in this episode, aptly titled “Goodbye,” was bringing back clips from Season 1. Not only did this remind the audience of some understandably forgotten plot points (remember when Schuester planted pot in Finn’s locker?), it also showed us how much these characters changed and grew over the course of three years. When watching “Glee,” it’s easy to get caught up in the drama of the episode and forget that these characters are growing (for the most part). While “Glee” is still guilty of inconsistent character arcs (Quinn’s complete change of character for “Prom-asaurus”), when the writers pull back and give us a full view of the past three seasons, we are forced to see that there has been some character growth.
By Chris Saccaro
An aspect of “Glee” that is very rarely spoken about, but usually as entertaining as the actual episode is the “previously on Glee” segment. These moments before the episodes are witty and full of meta-commentary on the show, and this is especially true for the segment preceding “Props.” In this week’s catch-up, the writers shed light on something that everyone has realized for the past three years–Tina is underused and underappreciated in Glee.
This gives Tina’s outburst during practice and ensuing “Glee-ky Friday” dream a lot more weight. The character swapping was a great addition to the episode. It was humorous and allowed the show to make fun of itself via the characters’ quirks. It becomes clear by the end of the episode that the writers were priming us for a Rachel Berry-less Glee Club for next season, with Tina as the lead female vocalist. And if her duet performance of “What a Feeling” is any indication of her singing ability, New Directions will have no problem without Rachel.
And things are looking slightly more hopeful for Rachel, as Tina helps her meet with Whoopi Goldberg. Rachel begs her to come to Nationals for a third chance at “auditioning” for NYADA. Of course she is going to show up, and of course Rachel is going to get in. As tiring as the storyline is, the emotional backlash of her failed audition in “Choke” makes it worth it.
By. Chris Saccaro
The school year is winding down for the students on “Glee,” which brings us to one of the many rites of passage for high school students–senior prom. Just like a real prom, this week’s episode was pointless and full of unnecessary drama. Surprisingly, there wasn’t a lot of pre-graduation sentimentality, as this season has given us in each episode, with the characters choosing to focus on prom instead.
After Rachel’s failed NYADA audition, it’s unsurprising that she would be slightly off in this week. However, she isn’t taking it nearly as bad as one would expect. At least until she finds out that Quinn and Finn are running together for Prom Queen and King–and so begins the vilification of Quinn. Again.
By Chris Saccaro
Now, I may be biased about the quality of this episode based solely on the fact that it’s not a theme episode. But this week’s episode was a breath of fresh air. Finally, “Glee” goes back to being about the characters and the narrative, and not reliant on gimmicks and tributes to the long list of celebrities that Ryan Murphy admires. The only theme of this episode is the heartbreaking reality of failure. However, comparing the varying degrees of failure does an injustice to the more serious topics covered.
The main storyline deals with Kurt and Rachel’s NYADA auditions. This was handled extremely well by Glee standards. Kurt ends up nailing his audition after correctly assuming that the Judge (played by Whoopi Goldberg) would be bored of the “safe song choice” that Rachel suggested. Instead, Kurt takes a chance on a flamboyant song and nails it. It’s great to see Kurt thinking for himself, and taking his life in his hands. Rachel on the other hand…provided for the saddest and most heartbreaking moment of her character arc. This moment was three seasons in the making, and it was devastating to see everything Rachel worked for crumble in front of her.