Choisissez une chanson qui exprime votre identité.
Glee Watch: Free to Be You and Me
Posted by James Poniewozik Wednesday, May 12, 2010 at 11:44 am
WARNING: Spoilers for last night's Glee lie ahead.
Maybe it's just that I badly needed a palate-cleanser after a long night of Lost-induced brain-twisting and sleep-denying, but "Laryngitis" was the first episode of Glee since the season break that I found myself enjoying (mostly) without reservation. Because I'm still a bit Lost-addled, I'll give my reasons entirely hail of bullets style:
* A big part of it was simple execution. As in, I laughed out loud at this episode far more often than in the past few. "Sampson?" "Agassi," for instance. And: "I have exactly the same vocal range as 16th century castrato Orlando Di Lasso. But you know what he didn't have? A song by Miss Whitney Houston in his back pocket." [Update: Oh, and! "I am like Tinkerbell, Finn. I need applause to live!"]
* The episode also executed much better on a character level, and the songs generally connected with character better than in, say, "The Power of Madonna." That may partly be because of the assignment of the week: "Choose a song that expresses your identity" will give you performances that, well, express the characters' identities--or their identity crises.
* Even when the conflicts seemed exaggerated, as they will on Glee, they worked for me. I didn't necessarily buy Kurt going so far to "turn straight" suddenly, having been so sure of his identity in the past, but I did buy it as an extreme manifestation of his believable (and already established) insecurity over his relationship with his only parent. And his talk with his dad--though it reprised some issues we had in the past--was great work both by Mike O'Malley and Chris Colfer, as his dad expressed his support and his honest challenges in having a gay son without resorting to easy platitudes.
* Also, and not to be a hater: the episode kept Sue Sylvester in check. Which meant that what we got was concentrated, funny and effective. Her scene with Kurt—"Sorry, I checked out of this conversation a minute ago"—was vintage Sue, but I didn't feel that the episode was striving to meet some Sue quota because of the breakout character's popularity.
* Yet I still cannot get enough of Brittany: "Your hands are really soft... Kind of what it'd be like to date a baby." And Kurt's asking her what a boy's lips taste like was funny ("Usually dip. Sometimes burgers") but also poignant. Let's hope he gets the chance to find out.