All of the episodes since the return from the brief hiatus have been awful - each in their own special way. The school shooting was offensive, Rachel's audition was boring, and this episode was... I don't even know what the hell to say about this shit.
For a season that was on such a hot streak, I'm really surprised at this drastic nosedive in quality the last few weeks. Everything was just a jumbled mess tonight.
The worst of the worst? Ryder's molestation. It was at this point where I wondered why I didn't just shut the episode off. Seriously this shit came out of nowhere, and it was just fucking ridiculous. The reactions by Sam and Artie were totally out of character, and the fact that they never got their comeuppance at any point of the episode really left a bad taste in my mouth. What made it even worse was five minutes later when Kitty shared her personal molestation story. This show is supposed to be a comedy, they shouldn't be touching the subjects of school shooting or child molestation with a ten ft. pole - especially if they're just going to use it as an excuse to bring two characters together romantically. It seems like the writers pull a social issue out of a hat on a given week and assign it to a random character. Let's just take a look at the character of Ryder: he's a fifteen year old dyslexic who was molested at the age of eleven, and survived a school shooting - all while being Catfished! The actor is trying his best to sell the material, but this is becoming ridiculous at this point.
Still, I'll take the social crusade shit at McKinley over the dull New York storylines any day of the week. That ballet musical number went on about five minutes too long, and Santana hugging the younger vision of herself was too schmaltzy to drum up any sympathy. Did anyone really want Sarah Jessica Parker to come back? Every time that the action switched to New York, I pretty much tuned out. This show is supposed to be about a High School glee club, and any time spent away from it sucks the energy out of the room.
Can anyone explain why there are various characters missing on a week to week basis? When was the last time that the dude with the dreadlocks and the rich girl were even on the show? Where was Brittany in this episode? Kurt's dad is starting cancer treatments, but we haven't seen him since he first announced his cancer way back in December. Remember when Rachel had a rivalry with Kate Hudson? Me neither. Finn agreed to help coach the glee club to a championship last episode, but he was nowhere to be found this week. The continuity is fucking awful on this show.
All the promos featured Blaine and Sam grilling Becky for info on Sue's departure, but that was nowhere to be seen in this episode. Sue came on, pimped out Jane Lynch's new role in the Broadway revival of Annie, and then, having served no purpose whatsoever in the episode, left without being mentioned again. I'm all for having Jane Lynch sing, but couldn't they at least make it mildly related to what is going on in the story?
The one positive thing that I can say about this episode was that the music wasn't totally awful. Sure, the ballet number sucked, and Jane Lynch's song served no purpose, but the rest of them were actually fairly decent. We Will Rock You seemed to come out of nowhere, but I was really digging the energy. Sam's acoustic cover of You've Lost that Lovin' Feelin' was a nice note to start the episode on - if only they had been able to maintain this quality throughout the hour.
This will go down in the books as one of the most disjointed episodes of Glee of all time. There were a few moments that clicked, but most of it was a mess. I'm still mildly interested in seeing the resolution of Ryder's Catfish plot, but that's about it.
This show needs a serious rebound in the next two episodes. With a guest appearance next week by Katey Sagal, and a Stevie Wonder tribute episode to boot, I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this season can regain the magic it had two months ago.
It's always comforting to enjoy a fresh half hour with the Belchers, even if this season opened outside my comfort zone with an episode taking place entirely outside the restaurant (or the kids' school).