Dreams Come True. … If You’re One Of RIB’s Favorites
These words I think summarize my, and many other fans feelings about the Glee series finale.
It’s been several weeks since I first watched it, and I finally calmed down enough to watch it a second time so I can give you my detailed impressions.
If you haven’t seen it yet you may not want to read this because I’m not making any effort here to avoid spoilers. You have been warned.
Overall I really enjoyed the first half of the finale. It was nice feeling to re-live the nostalgia of the season one versions of our original cast, even if at times it felt like an over the top parody. But there were also some things about it that really bugged me.
Terry Schuster – Terry is still married to Will and driving him crazy. She still hates the glee club as much as she ever did. The very first scene in the episode shows Will coming home, happily announcing to a glue gun toting Terry that he has decided to take over the glee club. If the look she gave him could kill… Once again the woman is a freeloader who uses the fact that she’s trying to get pregnant to get Will to not only bring home the majority of the income, but also do the housework. Once again we are left to wonder what Will ever saw in her. In this version she has some extra scenes because Rachel goes and talks to her for help when Will quits to become an accountant and much to her shock Terry shuts her down.
Mr Schue – I can’t really say much about Mr. Schue. I think that for the most part he was dead on with his character.
Kurt – as before, Kurt was the target of the school bullies including Finn, Puck, and Karofski, however in 2009, it is revealed that Kurt was deeply depressed about this; so much so that Ms. Pillsbury actually caught him looking at pamphlets about suicide. This seems to be a deviation from how it was set up in the pilot where, while he was definitely not happy about being thrown in the dumpster, he never came off as suicidal. Yes it’s possible he was just really good at hiding it, and that’s pretty common, but in all of the time since, there has been absolutely no indication that he had sunk down that low. Even a year later when Karofski was threatening his life, there were no indications that he was suicidal. I could be wrong here, but to me this just feels like revisionist history because the writers wanted to show a sharp contrast between sophomore Kurt and adult Kurt. Of course, Ms. Pillsbury reports this to Burt Hummel, who is just as awesome a dad as before, who talks to him about it and gives him an ultimatum that he has to join one of the school’s teams to make some friends by the end of the week. He leaves this very broad, leaving it open to his son, who embraces the intentions, if not the actual expectation of his father, and instead auditions for and joins the glee club. Just as in the pilot he performs Mr. Cellophane as his audition song. Bonus points for showing us Kurt’s season one bedroom, complete with that wired chair. It gave me a brief flashback to Brittany and Tina doing the Single Ladies dance with him a couple episodes later. The scene later in the episode after he tells him that he joined glee and feels supported by his dad is so heartwarming that he ALMOST comes out to him, but he’s still afraid of rejection so he chickens out. I’ve never been a huge fan of Kurt, but the voice over where he begged his dad to not stop loving him broke my heart!
Ms. Pillsbury – Emma is still as germ obsessed as ever and still uses run on sentences when things get awkward. But she’s also still clearly in love with Will and you can tell that she will always have is back.
Rachel – Rachel Berry is the same egotistical diva that she was in the pilot. Lea is dead on with her character, not only physically but in the way she acted. When Kurt introduces himself to her in the cafeteria we see her making posters for all of the clubs she’s in. As an actress she feels the need to be immersed in as many cultures as possible. When Kurt mentions her MySpace videos she shakes his hand. It’s the beginning of a beautiful friendship. She mentions the fact that glee club is starting up again and that Mr. Schuster “the really cool Spanish teacher who looks like an old Justin Timberlake” who had been in glee club when his team won nationals when he was in high school. The following afternoon the two of them explore his vocal range and sing Popular from Wicked in the auditorium. But as self obsessed as ever, she refuses to audition with him, insisting that it’s every person for himself in auditions. Continuity Alert: Rachel is apparently back to having the two dads in the picture hanging in her locker in the early days (one of whom is black), not Hiram and LeRoy. In their first rehearsal Rachel doesn’t even give Artie a chance to sing before she objects to him being given the lead on Sit Down You’re Rockin The Boat. She thinks that she deserves the first solo because she’s the only one left from the old glee club. She doesn’t give up on this, and later gives him a list of potential male leads based upon yearbook photos and a list of reasons she thinks she deserves the first solo. You want to slap her, but instead she is treated to a bright red slushie to the face, right in front of Mr. Schue. “Everyone hates me!” She explains. Gee, I wonder why?
Mercedes – Mercedes Is a still devout Christian who sings in her church choir. The show itself didn’t actually establish this until well into its run, however we were led to believe that she was always this way so this seems to fit right in with her. Her instrument is so powerful that she has apparently cracked a stained glass window belting a high note. Kurt introduces himself to her, tells her that he wants to be just like her, and convinces her to join glee with him. He wants her advice on his audition. It’s nice to see the beginning of this friendship as well. Mercedes too is depicted as an outcast, but in a different way. She’s not picked on, but she doesn’t really have a lot of friends at school. Her first song is of course a spiritual song (“I Am His Child”) with the church choir and honestly it is amazing! Amber nailed it! Rachel, of course finds out about her and tries to psych her out before her audition, but Mercedes is smarter than that and shuts her down right away. When Rachel hears her sing, she knows she’s in trouble. She tries to do damage control, but is again shut down. The only thing I can really say negative about this is the fact that her egotistical diva status and rivalry with Rachel was taken to a level that honestly the show didn’t give us until season three when she broke away from the New Directions and joined the Troubletones or at least season 2’s Night of Neglect. It is one of those moments that definitely fit the character, but just not at this point in her life. She literally cries about losing a solo, and while she’s definitely shown to be sassy in the pilot, in particular about the fact that Finn and Rachel got to sing lead on “You’re The One That I Want”, the level to which they took it just doesn’t feel right here. I did like the part where her mentor (mother?) cheered her up by telling her that Rachel got the first solo because she needed it more, encouraged her to use for rivalry to motivate herself to do better, and predicted that the two of them would become friends some day.
Artie & Tina – Tina and Artie are depicted as being outcasts and best friends similar to in the pilot. Tina is goth, wildly unpopular, shy, and has her fake stutter back. She’s a non conformist and rejects both jocks and cheerleaders. In his first line in the episode, Artie says that he is in love with Tina. However this also doesn’t feel right because my impression at the time of the pilot was that they were not as close as they seemed to be here. He says that she is one of the few people who treats him as a real person. Almost everyone else “looks at me like I have terminal cancer and can somehow spread it through my wheelchair.” But she doesn’t look at the chair she treats him the same as everyone else. He lets it slip that he loved her, but when she asks him what he said, his chauvinism rears it’s ugly head. They actually dared two otherwise unknown students to dump spaghetti sauce covered lunch trays on Rachel and Kurt. In return they are dared to join the glee club so they do. Tina performs “I Kissed A Girl” just as she did in the pilot, however this is a new recording, and while I won’t say it’s bad, something about it definitely feels off. It’s more than them just trying to show us how unpolished she was before joining glee. I really don’t know how else to put it. Every other glee cast member auditioned on the show in the pilot with the same song that the actor auditioned with except for Kevin McHale who’s audition was never shown before, even in the extended version of the pilot. In real life Kevin auditioned with “Let It Be”, however in 2009 the writers chose to do something completely different and he auditioned with Pony by Guinevere; supposedly Kevin himself suggested it. I definitely like his performance of the song, but I wasn’t too thrilled about them breaking with continuity like that. Artie is also given the line in voice over, where he admits he’s in love with Tina. But, as I said before, this feels like revisionist history because we never got any indication that there was anything more than platonic friendship between them until Wheels, several episodes into the season. This probably had something to do with what happens years later in Dreams Come True, but more on that later. Both watch each other’s auditions in awe and give each other huge compliments at the end.
Puck & Karofsky – the two of them were back to their season one bully selves. There’s not much more to say there.
Finn – A lot has been said about the appearance of Finn Hudson in the episode. He was actually talked about more than he actually physically appeared. The glee club members actually had a secret meeting where they talked about kicking him out of the glee club because they felt that they were all being overshadowed by him. Rachel, who even at this point had a massive crush on him objected; and surprisingly Artie, who he replaced as male lead, also came to his defense. He told them in voiceover of a flashback showing that after Finn got him out of the porta potty that Puck and the other jocks trapped him in, he brought him home after practice to his parents and apologized to them for how he had been treated. There was a brief flashback shot of him being wheeled in his wheelchair, where you can see a dark red McKinley letterman jacket, and we are lead to assume that this is supposed to be have been Finn. When I first heard about this in the spoilers I had wondered if it was possible that this was a deleted scene from the pilot. But you can’t see his face so obviously another actor was used. The only time we actually physically see Finn is in recycled footage later in the episode of the performance of don’t stop believing from the pilot.
Matt Rutherford – I know that the character of Matt Rutherford has a cult following particularly among the fan fiction writers who have gone to great lengths to flesh out this character who only spoke a handful of times during season one before being written out in a one-liner at the beginning season two. I’ve said from the beginning and I’ll say it again I didn’t really see the point in bringing him back other than perhaps the finale during the find a musical number where physically everyone possible was there. He was a very minor character and Azimio and Karofsky actually were more important characters overall. In the episode 2009 his only appearance is to be seen walking down the hall and Mercedes makes a comment about the only other black kid in the school being boring (She must not have met Azimio yet). I’m sorry to say this and no offense intended towards the actor, but I really didn’t see the point in this at all. With all the hype surrounding it when the actor posted a copy of his script on Twitter I had hoped that perhaps he would finally actually have a storyline but I guess not.
Figgins – Figgins is still kissing Sue’s butt, but we see that he’s really in Will’s corner too. He can’t afford to pay Will more to stay, but it’s he who finds the DVD of Will’s 1993 Nationals win and gives it to Emma, who of course used it to convince him to stay.
Sue – Sue is fearful of the possibility that Glee could outshine the 5 time National Champion Cheerios (a stretch I know, but at least she’s finally given motivation), but Figgins assures her that will never happen. Apparently Sue and Will were good friends back in the day (at least in her mind) and play basketball together reguly… Who knew? She’s just as threatening and intimidating and determined to shut the glee club down as ever. He makes the mistake of saying that the arts are more practical than cheerleading and Sue lays it down for him. Drop glee or our friendship is over.
Quinn, Santana, and Brittany – Sadly we never saw any members of The Unholy Trinity and, while most of them have never been personal favorites of mine, this somehow feels wrong. During a basketball game between Will and Sue you can sort of see some cheerleaders sitting up on the bleachers that, upon a brief glance, could have been the unholy trinity but of course they were just 3 background actors there probably placed there for this reason to give us this impression. It was very reminiscent of Quinn, Santana, and the some others sitting there looking at the laptop making fun of Rachel’s MySpace video, except no one had a laptop (and upon closer examination they looked nothing like them).
The episode ends on a high note with the performance of Don’t Stop Believin’ lifted from the pilot, but is cut off just before Will agreeing to stay.
As I said before overall I really enjoyed this first half of the series finale, however I was left with the impression of them trying to re-write history with all of the changes that they had made since the pilot. They went to all the trouble of re-creating the look of the pilot right down to the Cheerios skirts and then basically ruined it by doing creative rewriting. To the casual viewer this may not matter but to the die hard fan this is very jarring.
The absence of certain characters who should have been there, and inclusion of others who shouldn’t have been was equally jarring. Obviously we could not have used Finn it in any other way because of Cory’s passing and I think that they did the best that they could in that particular case. However the absence of Quinn and Santana in particular is very jarring.
Quinn especially was a key player literally from one of the very first scenes of the pilot, and the fact that she isn’t here is really really irritating. I understand that this probably had to do with Diana Argon’s availability, but I have a hard time believing they couldn’t have made it work if they really wanted to. Because this episode is out of sequence from the others, it literally could have been filmed at any point during the filming of season six. It was filmed as the ninth episode immediately after the wedding, which Quinn also was conspicuously absent from. But there was absolutely no reason that this episode could not have been filmed between Loser Like Me and Jagged Little Tapestry, even if it meant that Quinn was not in that episode. Her role in it was minimal, and consisted almost exclusively of she and Tina trying to help Becky with her problems with a boy, and one small scene where she and Puck interact, apparently to give us the impression that the two of them are still together. Both of these seem forced, which is surprising because I know that Diana Argon is an amazing actress; so I have to blame it on the writing. I personally think that 2009 would have been a better swan song for Diana then Jagged Little Tapestry.
Why in the hell were Blaine and Sam in here at all? Sam didn’t move to Lima until the beginning of season two, one year later. Blaine is showing as being a Dalton and student. However, once again, the writers completely forgot the fact that Dalton was several hours drive away from McKinley and the idea that the two of them would run into each other at The Lima Bean is just stupid. But then again I really shouldn’t be surprised because they did the same thing throughout season two.
Dreams Come True (6×13):
Dreams Come True could not be any more different than 2009 in my overall impression of the episode. While 2009 was actually very good, and left me with good feelings at the end, almost all of the greatness was, for the most part, wiped away by Dreams Come True, which for the most part left a very sour taste in my mouth for a lot of reasons.
The first half of this review focused on characters because that’s what made the most sense to organize it. With this one I’m simply going to summarize the plot and give you my impressions followed by a series of overall impression at the end.
The episode opens with Lillian Adler addressing the 1993 glee club (all decked out in 1970’s garb) before their nationals performance. She calls them together for a “show circle” and gives them a pep talk that glee club is not about competition, it’s about something deeper. “Glee is about opening yourself up to joy.” (Sound familiar?) There have been rumors for years about a deleted scene from from the pilot featuring Lillian at nationals. It appears in the script, and Lillian is actually listed in the credits even though she does not actually appear in the pilot (even in the expanded director’s cut) other than her picture on the plaque. I wonder if this is that delete scene or something that they filmed specifically for this?
In the present, Will gets ready to go on stage with the current New Directions. Rachel, Kurt, and Blaine are there for moral support. Will joins the team on stage, where everyone is waiting with anticipation to find out which of the twenty show choirs competing would bring home the national title.
Of course, the New Directions win. This was actually pretty much a foregone conclusion based upon the overall story arc so far this season. If they didn’t win nationals the the glee club would have been over and Rachel would have failed in her mission. It is Will and the New Directions (including the former Warblers) that are on stage. The other advisors are somewhere off stage and out of the limelight.
Once again Kitty is the one to collect the trophy. I love the fact that they basically made her the team captain this season after the way she was treated being written out in the middle of season five, and that she pretty much sat on the sidelines during a lot of seasons four and five. I think that she deserves this, and as the captain of the Cheerios it makes sense that she would be a strong leader. Unfortunately this was the high point of the episode for her.
A few days later, Will and Superintendent Harris have a meeting in the choir room office. Harris congratulates them on the nationals win and does some major backpedaling when he admits that it was wrong to remove arts programs from the schools because the research is now showing that contrary to conventional wisdom, it wasn’t a distraction to academics. In fact the studies were beginning to show that removing it was actually detrimental. Will, of course, knows this already and it must have felt good to be vindicated at last.
It turns out that Harris has done a complete and total 180 on the subject. He announces that he made a proposal to the school board and not only are arts programs coming back, but McKinley is now going to be a performing arts high school. Will pledges his support and says he will do anything that is needed to help the new school. Harris does him one better and actually tells him that he wants him to run the school as the new principal. I was personally thrilled by this development and had intended to make Will principal when Sue eventually resigned in disgrace in my story Glee: A New Beginning.
Flash forward to three months later Will is getting ready for his first day as principal and gets a pep talk from Emma while she makes their lunches. He has a short bonding scene with Danny, telling him that dreams really do come true.
Later that day Will walks into the choir room containing a mix of old and new faces both students and alumni. Seated on the risers we see a large assembly of familiar and unfamiliar students. Standing and sitting on the other side of the room with Will we see Kurt, Blaine, Mercedes, Rachel, Artie, Tina and Kitty indicating that this takes place after she has Graduated.
This is the famous final scene in the choir room filmed on the very last day of shooting. Will addresses the crowd and explains what’s going to happen with glee club. Or rather glee clubs, because there will now be four. New Directions are back as the varsity show choir. Also returning is the all-female Trouble Tones. “We will be adding an all male group called the Duly Noted, as well as a junior varsity glee club that is still a named for students who needed a little bit more seasoning before joining one of the other groups.”
The shocker here of course is that Will will not be directing them anymore, not even the New Directions. As principal he will apparently have other things to keep him busy; however he promises that they have interviewed a candidate for that position that he really likes. But first, he wanted to sing a farewell song to the alumni.
The scene ends with Will taking a seat and doing a solo rendition of the Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young song Teach Your Children. Is very reminiscent of his season three finale solo Over The Rainbow. Of course this brings tears to everyone’s eyes. Kurt and Mercedes hold hands throughout most of the performance. Artie is sitting next to Tina, who is sitting next to and holding hands with Rachel. They all share several tear filled glances. Kitty is standing behind them, and at one point during the song she and Artie do share an affectionate look. This gives us hope that there’s a future for them now that she has graduated.
Oddly enough Spencer is still on the student side of the room next to Allister, although Roderick appeared to be missing (both of whom were supposedly seniors – am i wrong on that? – so you’d expect them on the other side) but then so is Sam, so that may not mean anything. Roderick’s absence remains a mystery though.
At the end the room erupts in applause and Will blows the alumni a kiss. Rachel mouths “thank you” to him. Beautiful
Later, Blaine walks into the locker room and watches Sam blow up footballs before they sell all of them. Does this mean the football team is being completely eliminated? A performing arts high school can’t have an athletic department? Does this mean the Cheerios are out too? What is to become of poor Coach Beiste? Or Roz?
Blaine tries to convince him to come back to New York because he’s soon to be unemployed. Sam isn’t interested because New York is too fast paced for him. Kurt and Blaine are very happy and are having a good life together. They regularly see Rachel, Artie, Brittany, Santana, and Kitty. But he misses his best friend. Sam misses him too but this is home. He is happy there. He’s not wasting his talent. He’s using it all in his new job. What new job? We wonder.
I love the fact the fact that Kitty is mentioned here. This means she has moved to New York and we assume this is to be with Artie because all season we have been getting indications that things are heating up between for two of them again.
Once again we are told that The Big City is too fast a speed for Sam, but this is just as unbelievable now as it was last season. This is the guy who competed with Finn for both Quinn’s heart and the spot on the Titans football team as Quarterback. This is for same guy who worked as a stripper in the beginning of season 3 to support his family. Now fast paced New York isn’t his speed? I just don’t buy it!
Some time later, Will walks into for choir room, congratulating the new New Directions members and introduces Sam as the new glee coach. The room is full of all new modern furnishings. Roderick is definitely gone but Spencer and the other newbies are back. Sam walks in, followed by Blaine, who is surprised at the news. Sam wants to know if he’s jealous. Mr. Schue proudly passes off the baton and Sam takes charge, announcing the first lesson: Country. At first Will and Blaine are skeptical, but Sam actually makes a good explanation for it.
I’ll be honest here. This makes even less sense now than it did at the end of season 5 when there were rumors that Sam would be returning to Lima to restart the glee club. I like Sam, I really do. But since Day One, Sam has been an attempted copy of Finn, but he’s not a good one. When Corey died they actually toyed with having Sam REPLACE Finn, right down to his attraction to Rachel.
Let me be clear here. Unlike Finn, Sam is not a natural leader. When he tried to be a leader during season 4 Guilty Pleasures it felt forced. When Mr. Schue asked him to step up and be the student leader on season 5 nationals it felt forced. When Sam tried to be a leader as football coach it felt forced. The pep speech he gave Spencer about joining glee felt forced, and was borderline offensive to Finn’s memory. Sam taking over Glee from Mr. Schue, a plotline originally intended for Finn, feels forced and wrong. Most of a year coaching football does not change that.
Artie, Tina, Rachel, Blaine, Sam, and Kurt enter the auditorium and are greeted by Mercedes who tells them to come in and listen because she has to get through what she has to say without crying. They come in and wait patiently while she announces that she has been officially picked up to be the opening act of Beyoncé’s new world tour. They are of course all excited for her. She’s excited too, but reminds them that this means that she would not be seeing them for a while, because of the rehearsals, tour, and a new album. She wants to walk out of there in class and and sings “Someday We’ll Be Together” to them before exiting after giving each of them an brief embrace and blowing them all a kiss. Artie said it best, “Mercedes Jones has left that building.”
Upon watching this scene I keep asking myself, “Where’s Kitty? Why isn’t she here?” Kitty is the bridge between the old glee club and new glee club members. But all season she has been included with the glee advisors in things. In particular she was included in Sam’s meeting about helping Rachel let go of her childhood home in Transitioning, she took a selfie with several of them in A Wedding, and earlier in this episode she was with the other alumni in the Teach Your Children scene. We’ve seen that she is friend with Mercedes. Why wasn’t she invited to this? Also, why is Tina pushing Artie again? Pushing the wheelchair of someone like Artie who is capable of wheeling himself is generally considered offensive unless requested or needed. This feels wrong.
I love Mercedes, I really do. But she’s already got her happy ending. She already has a record deal, and has has at least one successful tour. She’s met a guy who shares her values on sexual purity. As awesome as this scene is, I can’t help but feel as though the time uses here, in an episode with severely limited time, thanks to RIBs decision to make the final episode only an hour long, and that the time could have been better used to give someone else closure who ended up not getting any.
Sue is in Will’s newly redecorated office dusting pictures when Klaine walk in and ask what she is doing. She cracks a joke, but they get serious and ask her to sit down. Then they think her for getting them back together. Sue then thanked Kurt for helping to expand her mind by watching all of the things he went through over the years. She then turns to Blaine and admitted that she still doesn’t really understand him but he’s doing him and that’s all that really matters.
All through this scene I am shaking my head. Setting aside my own views of Klaine as couple, Sue used deceptive tactics and drugs on them. Now they are thanking her? This makes no sense whatsoever. And once again precious screen time is used for this self congratulatory drivel.
Sue then excuses herself telling them that she has to go and see someone, and we all assume that she means Will, since she was in his office after all. However when she walks out into the hallway we see none other than Becky Jackson. The two of them are excited to see each other. They run up and hug each other and apparently all is forgiven between the them. This is about as believable as Becky turning on Sue just because she didn’t want that Warblers in glee, in the first place. But whatever.
Sue meets Will in the auditorium where she sings ABBA’s “Winner Takes It All” as Brad plays the piano, freaking Will out. He joins in on for second verse. As he’s about to say something she puts her finger over his lips and walks offstage, kicking the piano bench out from under Brad – whom she had just affectionately put her hands on the shoulders of only a few moments before – on her way out.
FIVE YEARS LATER:
Jeb Bush is elected to his second term as U.S. President, and Sue Sylvester is his Vice President. Becky Jackson is on her Secret Service detail. Geraldo Riva interviews Sue on the night of their victory. Very little has changed for Sue. She’s wearing a blue track suit with the presidential seal on it now, along with her glasses that we have only seen occasionally. She’s still as cocky as ever and confirms that she will indeed be running for President in 2024.
Back in the present, at McKinley Kurt shows Blaine the inside of his old locker which he has turned into a time capsule of their time in high school. We see a picture of Finn as Brad in Rocky Horror, what looks to be the script. The prom queen crown, several glee club pics, a show choir competition ticket, and numerous other momentous. Blaine thinks it’s adorable and they kiss.
FIVE YEARS LATER:
The two of them hold hands as they go through the subway turnstile. They arrive at a Kindergarten class freshly after performing the first LGBTQ version of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf at Lincoln Centre. They give a speech about how great it is to be somewhere that it’s okay to be yourself, and encouraging them to find friends who support them and help them make their dreams come true. Blaine sits down at the piano and the two of them sing The Monkees’ “Daydream Believer.” They end it with a show circle with the entire class.
This is another of those scenes which while nice, really should not have been included, or at least not as long as it was in an episode with so much to wrap up and limited running time. But we all know Klaine are RIBs favorite, so of course it had to be included, and at full length.
Back in the present, Rachel plays the piano and sings “This Time” an original song by Darren Criss in the empty auditorium. Someone else takes over as she stands and the band begins to play. In her mind she tours the now empty choir room and halls of that school, saying goodbye.
FIVE YEARS LATER:
Mercedes is driven up to a curb in New York and dropped off. She sees Tina who is once again pushing Artie’s wheelchair and calls out to her amounting amazing news. Apparently Artie wrote a movie for Mercedes, but she was too busy so he cast Tina in the role instead. The movie got into the Sundance film festival. Slamdance Artie corrected her. Either way it’s a big deal and she congratulates them. He asks her for the favor of using her songs for the soundtrack. She jokes that usually her agent handles that, but then quickly corrects herself telling them they can use whatever they want. Blaine and Kurt walk up and Blaine reminds them that they’re going to be late, so they all had up into Rachel’s apartment. On the way in, Blaine tells everybody that Sam has a new girlfriend, and people seem surprised. Tina bends over and adjusts Artie’s tie and kisses him.
I can not put into words how offensive that last bit was. As we all know, and for anyone may have forgotten, 2009 has just reminded us, Artie and Tina dated through most of season one. For the previous three years Tina had a fake stutter, and when it was revealed to be a fake, Artie felt profoundly betrayed by the fact that something so prominent about someone he loved and considered his best friend was a lie. Everyone, including Tina on numerous occasions, seems to remember the bit about he being upset about she lying about her stutter, claiming that this is why the two of them broke up. But that’s not why they broke up. It was just a fight. But for years afterwards she told everyone that it was. Their actual breakup happened prior to season 2 when she cheated on him with Mike when they were at Asian Camp. Yes created. She was with Artie when she left, and didn’t break up with him until she returned, but made out with Mike while there. She blamed it on Artie ignoring her in favor of video games. Yes that was bad of him. But in the same episode, and for many more afterward, she went on and on about Mike’s abs. To someone like Artie, who has body image issues that there is no way that someone as close to him as she was wouldn’t know about, that’s the ultimate slap in the face. Yes he’s obviously forgiven her, but it’s really sad that all these years later, she doesn’t understand or remember this. The fact that he would consider dating her again is sad, unbelievable, and frankly offensive.
Blaine’s line about Sam having a new girlfriend would seem to put the final nail in the coffin of Samcedes. She moved on long ago, and now so has he. Like most fans I liked them as a pairing in season 3, but the more the writers developed them as characters the more obvious it came that they were not to be. While I think it’s probably for the best, it still makes me a little sad that it’s finally over.
I would also be remiss if I didn’t mention Samchel here. Yes, there is near universal disdain for Samchel in the fandom, but it was still sad that we never found out the ultimate cause and timing of their breakup.
Kurt enters Rachel’s bedroom just as a very pregnant Rachel is putting on her earrings, telling her that it’s time and everyone is there. Rachel makes the rounds giving everybody a hug and a kiss on the cheek and explains why she has agreed to be Kurt and Blaine’s surrogate; that it all boils down to is the full circle thing about how she was born, as well as the fact that the two of them have given up so much in life to help make her happy she figured it was the least she could do; although she can hardly wait for it to be born so she can have her body back.
This is yet another apparent continuity error. Back in season 5, Quinn has agreed to do this for them. Why the change? I guess specifically she said she would donate the egg. I wonder if she still did? Quinn donating an egg, mixing it with Kurt and Blaine’s sperm, and impregnating it in Rachel. Sounds like a wet dream come true for Faberry shippers.
This is cute and all, and I can sort of see Rachel doing this for them, but not until she has has at least one kid of her own.
Jessie St. James enters and is announced as being Rachel’s husband. Jessie informs them that he is anxious to have a little production (child) of their own. He and Rachel leave and head off to the audience of the Tony Awards. Turns out that Jessie has already won a Tony himself and gives her advice on her acceptance speech. He is also the director of Jane Austen Sings, the musical in which she has been nominated for this particular award. He’s convinced she is going to win. She isn’t so sure.
The fact that Rachel is with and actually married to Jessie St. James, Finns nemesis and rival, is the ultimate slap in in the face to Finn and Corey’s memories. Say what you want about Samchel, but at least he respected both Rachel and Finn. Speaking of Samchel, when did did they break up? They seemed to be doing just fine at glee club sectionals.
At Mr. Schue’s house Sam is watching the awards with Will and Emma and the kids. Sam of course is horsing around with Danny. Daniel apparently has a little sister now. At Rachel’s house the alumni from the previous scene along with the new newbies including Kitty are sitting around watching the awards on her Television. A tall black man stands behind Mercedes the whole time and I am assuming this to be her boyfriend mentioned in What The World Needs Now. Everyone in both locations is on pins and needles as the nominees are read.
Of course Rachel wins, and everyone is excited for her. Will kisses Emma. Everyone applauds. Kitty grabs Roderick’s arm jumping up and down, giving him a hug. Everyone hugs whomever is next to them. Kitty walks across the room to where Artie is sitting next to Tina and gives him a hug. There is a still of the hug floating around, but the hug itself appears to have been cut from the episode. She’s headed toward him and then it’s over. At his place, Will hugs Sam.
Rachel makes her way to the stage, gets a hug and a kiss on the cheek from the presenter and says, “Thank you! Oh, my gosh, I, um… I-I want to thank my amazing husband and director, Jesse. And I want to thank my two dads for all those singing and dancing lessons. Okay I want to thank … Carmen Tibideaux at NYADA for giving me a second chance at my degree, and all of my friends at McKinley High. Um, but I want to dedicate this award to the person who’s responsible for getting me on this stage tonight, and that is Mr. Will Schuester. Um, Mr. Schue always taught to my strengths and not my weaknesses.” Mr Schue is touched and on the verge of tears. “And he cheered the loudest when I soared. And he picked me up when I was in a million pieces. He taught me the one great thing that all teachers do, and there are so many of them out there.” Sue suddenly appeared next to Will, and handed him a tissue. “And that is being a part of something special does not make you special. Something is special because you are a part of it. Mr. Schue I love you so much, and to all of the boys and girls out there, I just want to say quickly before I walk off that stage, that dreams really do come true, so, thank you.”
Notice something missing? I know my Twitter feed exploded about it when for episode aided. Rachel thanked everyone. Everyone except one of the most important people in her life: Finn. Finn was generally her strongest supporter and loved her enough to send her to New York to pursue her dream without him. Without his support, it’s unlikely that Rachel would have won her Tony at such a young age.
Will, Burt, Carole, Figgins, Emma and Sheldon Beiste are sitting in chairs in the McKinley auditorium. A voice introduces the Vice President. Sue walks on stage and tells Becky, who is frisking Sam that he is okay and he joins the others. Sue begins a speech reminiscing about Lillian Adler and her famous speech about glee and joy. Terri Schuester enters and joins the group. Sue never believed this before herself. She told them them what she thought about glee and decided that she was right about all of it except the cowardly part. “It takes a lot of bravery to look around you, and see the world, not as it is, but as it should be. A world where the quarterback becomes best friends with the gay kid, and the girl with the big nose ends up on Broadway. Glee is about imagining a world like that, and finding the courage to open up your heart, and sing about it. That’s what Glee Club is. And for the longest time, I thought that was silly. And now, I think it’s just about the bravest thing that anyone could do. I am honored to be here to re dedicate this theater the Finn Hudson Auditorium. William, it is with your hard work and his memory, that you managed to accomplish something unimaginable. The McKinley High School for the Performing Arts has become an overwhelming success, a model for public schools that showcase the arts, now being replicated all across the country. Congratulations, Will Schuester. You and your little glee club have accomplished something quite remarkable. And now, without further ado, it is my pleasure to introduce the New Directions.”
Will walks up on stage and joins several alumni members of the new directions who begin to sing “I Lived” by One Republic. It begins with Artie, Tina, Quinn, and Sam. Rachel, Mercedes, Kurt, Blaine, the new newbies, Sugar, Kitty, Matt, Mike, Joe, Puck, Ryder, Unique, Marley, Jake, Brittany, Santana, Lauren, Karofsky, basically every significant student guest star from 6 seasons (except Rory from season 3 who was invited but unable to make it work in his schedule) is present and comes on stage in turn. At the end of the song the adults in the audience join them on stage.
It dissolves to the backstage wall where a new plaque is hung that reads
FINN HUDSON AUDITORIUM
“See the world nor as it is, but as it should be. “
The picture on the plaque is a group photo taken the day of the re-dedication
To far left is the plaque of Finn that Rachel had made in The Quarterback:
“The show must go …. all over the place.”
To the right is the plaque with the famous Lillian Adler quote.
“Glee is about opening yourself up to joy.”
END OF SERIES.
Wow, what a ride!
For the lasts three weeks I’ve watched my Twitter feed explode and read many, many blogs, episode reviews, and summaries commenting on how perfect the ending of Glee was, and each time I wonder if they are watching the same episode. I’ve addressed a lot of specific things already, so I’m going to address a few general things here along with some specific things not already addressed
- The episode should have been longer:
With all of the things that needed to be wrapped up here, it just wasn’t realistic to have the finale be a single hour episode like this. 2009 should have been aired the previous week and the full 2 hours should have been Dreams Come True, even if it meant that we lost one of the production episodes. If the bookend thing was that important to them, they could have run it 3 full hours finale night.
- Time wasted on people who already got a happy ending:
Far too many major character got little or no closure, but RIB’S favorites got extra screen time here. I’m specifically talking about Mercedes, Kurt, and Blaine.
I felt so bad for Becca Tobin here. They brought her back this season, made her the captain of the New Directions and let her shine. Then when it comes to the actual series finale she got basically nothing. She appeared in 4 scenes total, and didn’t actually get to say anything. (1) She was on stage with the New Directions and collected the trophy when they won again. (2) She was with the alumni when Will sang Teach Your Children, and gave Artie a tearful look. (3) She was at Rachel’s Tony party and got to grab the arm of and hug Roderick (I assume that this is because he happens to be closest to her since the two of them haven’t shown any special connection before) and hug Artie, but had that cut out for some reason. (4) She appeared in the I Lived performance along with everyone else. That’s it. She didn’t get any dialog, and the only thing we know about her future is that she apparently went to New York after graduation thanks to a line given to Blaine. But worst of all, she didn’t get her man!
- Kitty and Artie:
WHAT THE HELL RIB!?!
When Kitty was introduced in season 4, she was a mean girl somewhat reminiscent of Quinn with some of Santana’s cruelty mixed in. But by the middle of the season it became apparent that the nice guy in the wheelchair had the ability to melt her heart. They gradually got closer, she made it clear how much she cared when she conspired with his mom to get him to face his fears and go to film school, and by the beginning of season 5 they were not only dating, but appeared to be one of the healthiest couples on the show, as well as a fan and cast favorite. Then when Artie graduated mid season, RIB broke them up off screen, despite the fact that Kitty had previously said she was okay with a long distance relationship, and the fact that Ian had said in an interview that Kitty and Artie were still together long distance. We never did find out exactly why they broke up without warning. When we saw her in the second episode of season 6, Kitty was still upset not only at Artie but at the other alumni who left she and her friends (All of whom were later forced by Sue to transfer out) behind. This doesn’t last long, and once Rachel swallowed her pride and recruited Kitty a few episodes later, Kitty is once again friends with everyone. She even apparently managed to make up with Artie (off screen) and for the next several episodes it’s clear that the two of them are still very much into each other. Unfortunately we never really get an actual plot line for them, and we kept hoping it was coming toward the end of the season. They talk at the Britannia engagement party over a pie peace offering, sing a duet (off screen) and are all over at Rachel’s party; they dance as a couple at the Brittana /Klaine wedding. All indications are that they are either back together or headed there until Artie mentions to Tina (who had just been turned down when she proposed to Mike) that he didn’t like being alone either before they agreed to one of those ‘if neither of us are married in ten years’ agreements. It’s meant to be sweet, I’m sure, but really it’s just sad for poor Tina. Then Artie is back to film school and he and Kitty have no more interaction until the series finale. They are back to sharing looks and she moves to New York assumably to be near him. But 5 years later Are is with Tina, and we are left to wonder what happened?
Setting aside for a moment that they are my OTP and the emotional implications or them not ending up together, as a fan of the show I’m confused. RIB went to such great effort building the relationship in the first place, only to simply abandon them for no reason. It wouldn’t be so bad if the writers had written them a storyline where they grew apart or broke up like Samcedes, but they didn’t. They broke them up for no reason. Becca and Kevin are 2 of the best actors on the show and deserved better writing than that.
- They left far too many unanswered questions about the numerous other characters:
One other reviewer put it perfectly:
“M.I.A.: As for Santana, Brittany, Puck, Quinn, Mike, Kitty, and pretty much every other character in the Glee universe, we have no idea what their futures hold. All we know is that they all reunited in 2020 — dressed in perfectly coordinated red and white outfits — when the WMHS auditorium was dedicated to Finn Hudson.”
How is the Britney and Santana marriage going? What are they doing for jobs? Is Santana still touring with Mercedes? What did Britney decide to do for a career? Are Puck and Quinn broken up or was he cheating on her at the wedding? Did Quinn finally graduated from Yale and if so what she doing with her degree? Is Puck still in the Air Force? Did he ever actually mature? From the way he was acting at the wedding it’s certainly didn’t seem so. What is Kitty doing with herself now? What about Mike? He was at the wedding but they never actually told us what he had been up to since we’d seen him last. What about season four and five newbies? Is Marley still writing songs? Did she finally get her break? Did she ever allow herself to get close to Ryder? Speaking of Ryder, what’s up with him? What did he end up deciding to do with his life? How about Lauren or Joe or Sugar or Matt or Jake? Did he ever learn from his brothers mistakes?
All these questions remain unanswered, and while it’s not realistic to give all these characters screen time, most of this could have been taken care of with a simple voice over at the end of the episode. That’s all I really wanted to see. That’s all they really wanted, and you didn’t give it to me! They went to all of that effort to bring them all back for the dedication and Finn tribute, but they didn’t care enough to give them even a little closure.
It’s for these and many more reasons, that I found the Glee Finale, thoroughly unsatisfying.