Glee Review: A Non-Asian F

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If an "Asian F" is the equivalent of an American A minus, what do I give this episode of Glee? An Asian Q? I really didn't care for it.

There were pieces here that made me smile on their own - Brittany leading a flash mob, Coach Beiste dropping one hilarious line after another, the mere fact that Emma has an autographed head shot of Vera Wang - but the show tried to jam way too much into a single hour.

Glee Flash Mob

Was it Mike's episode? The Asian dancing sensation was front and center for a welcome change, practicing on his own, teaching the group complicated moves, auditioning for the school play. He wasn't the kidding: the guy does have a lot on his well-toned plate!

Or was it Emma's episode? We met her racist Ginger Supremacist parents this week, a significant storyline that explained everything about Emma's OCD over the course of one meal. Heck, over the course of one course. Tremendous work here by Jayma Mays, as she made it clear why Emma earlier pretended her parents were ghosts. But I wanted even more, especially because I was distracted by the mention of Carl. Who the heck is that?!?

Was that the dude Emma randomly married and then the show ignored for about 12 consecutive weeks? I would have preferred more than a few scenes devoted to Emma's backstory. (*UPDATE: This was a joke, readers. I'm pointing out how poorly handled that marriage and the use of John Stamos was.)

Or perhaps this episode belonged to Mercedes? She was involved in The Ultimate Maria-Off, after all. Unfortunately, while the conclusion of Mercedes signing on for Shelby's rival choir holds intrigue, getting to that point felt a lot like season two. The bad parts of season two, that is, with a lack of character development and seemingly slapped-together storytelling.

Santana is simply back in the club?!? With no explanation?!? And Mercedes believes Mr. Schuester favors Rachel. Since when? Hasn't he clashed with her more than any other club member? By far? Moreover... why would the judges split the Maria role? Talk about a cop-out. When even Rachel and her ego can admit that Mercedes was better, there's no explanation for Beiste, Emma and Artie's decision except that it was a plot device to move Mercedes along. That's pretty weak.

There was simply too much going on this week, too many heavy-handed moments - from Mike's talk with his mom to Emma and Will's prayer to Kurt confronting Rachel to Mercedes making her prideful decision - that, by the end, I was more exasperated that emotional. A show can only ask its audience to well up so many times per hour before it turns more eye-rolling than tear-inducing.

Other thoughts:

  • This negative critique takes nothing away from the outstanding covers. We've collected them all in our Glee video section.
  • I did enjoy the nicknames bestowed on various characters. Mike is the Fleet-Footed Dance Ninja. Mercedes is Stealth Attack Jones. Rachel is the Garanimal-Wearing Ass Kisser.
  • Kurt believes if he wins school president, he can enact many changes that will "people like him." What could he possibly be talking about? This just played out like another chance to mention that Kurt is gay and there are issues involved with that. We know, Glee. We support the overall message. We wouldn't be watching the show otherwise... but chill with it.
  • Are they hinting that Mercedes is pregnant?!?
  • HA! Jacob Ben Israel held a straw poll. It was probably as meaningful as the actual ones in Iowa and Florida.
  • Due to the MLB playoffs, Glee will go on hiatus until November 1. Watch scenes from that new episode NOW.

What did everyone else think? Were you properly moved by Mike's story, Emma's background and the clash of the divas? Or is your head still spinning from all the storylines shoved into one episode?

And vote now: Who deserved the role of Maria?


Editor Rating: 2.9 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.0 / 5.0 (299 Votes)

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.


The reference to "people like me" when Kurt was speaking about the class presidency doesn't necessarily mean "gay people like me." Now, I'm sure that's part of it, but he's also been bullied and chased out of his school. Maybe, just maybe, he'd like to try to change the school policies to make punishment for bullying harsher. Or at least, existent. He would be a great candidate for the outcasts. Sure, Rachel's an outcast, too, but Kurt has even MORE things stacked against him. Him being able to rise above that and win the presidency could really do something good for the school. Rachel would be FAR too "it's all about me." As far as Mercedes being pregnant, Amber Riley had a really good laugh about that on Twitter last night and said she's NOT pregnant. And thank goodness for that because that would be a seriously bad choice on the writers' parts.


Really? Carl? No idea? Really? Wow. So this is your job...right?


To everyone out there who is hating on Mercedes' "attitude"... Did any of you even hear the COMPLETELY condescending way Rachel was treating her through the entire episode? If I were Mercedes and my voice could do the things that her's can and some skinny bitch was constantly inferring I wasn't good enough or I deserved to be second best I'd give a lot more than attitude! "...taste my fist," comes to mind. Also, this may have been a loaded episode in some people's opinions, but has anyone actually considered that they're trying to tie up some story arcs (auditions for WSS) before moving on to the rest? And given season 2's complete lack of plot I think we can safely assume that, in order to get the character development that so many of us want, there are going to be substantially more episodes like this one. Could they do a better job of not making it look so slapped together? Probably, but I doubt that anyone who watches the show is going to be turned off of future episodes by watching this. one more thing... Hey Matt Richenthal! As Editor in Chief I really think you should spend maybe 10 minutes EDITING your posts before you put them up. I mean, do you really not know who Carl is from last season? That's sad...


For the most part I honestly enjoyed the episode. Were there flaws? Naturally but I still loved it. IT may be in part because for a chance we got to see other characters truly shine. I mean I love Glee to pieces but it can't be the Kurt and Rachel show all of the time. Mike- I have to say the Asian-F had me in hysterics...that isn't even an Asian thing for some parents. Damn, that A-. I was thrilled that he got to sing and he sounded lovely. His dancing was amazing as usual. I loved him getting a chance to shine, because he was literally a background prop all of season one and not utilized most of season two. I do agree that his storyling was rushed though. By the end of it he was hugging his mother and it was all good. It could have been dragged out, and dare I say it, he could have been given a storyarc rather than a one episodse storyline that he had to share with two other under utlized charcters. Mercedes- I don't know what to think of her bf. I can't figure out if he has a postivie or negative effect on her. She was right for most of the episode though. Schue's favorite kid might be Finn but he does favor Rachel. Sure he combats with her, but in the end Rachel does get what she wants. I was happy that Mercedes told him that, funny thing is she's said it before but he never really listens to her.She earned the part and still ended up being offered to share with Rachel. Funny because double casting wouldn't have been an option, but they just had to have Rachel have the part. It was stupid. I loved that the girl who arguably has the best voice in Glee club got to belt out a couple of songs and shine. I hate that even though her charcter wasn't wrong she'll still be villanized...and I hate that she still had to share the limelight with two other charcters. It'll go back to being about Kurt and Rachel and Finn mostly when it comes back, and Mercedes and Mike will get shoved in the background again, as if it's unthinkable for those characters to have a long story arc like the main three. Emma- Definitely amusing and I enjoyed it. It seemed squeezed in though. Again, like they wanted to squeeze her stuff in with the other two storylines so they can give their undivided attention to other stuff in the next episode. Frustrating. No Mercedes isn't pregnangt. Amber Riley vehemently stressed that. I think her throwing up was as a result of being nervous and stressed out perhaps and her song choice was more so in relation to feeling as though everyone was ganging up on her. Loved Morrison's cover of Fix You. I liked Brittany's moment but it was just randomly shoved in there. Despite a few frustrations when I think about it, I am obliged to love this episode because unfortunately it's the only time characters like Mike and Brittany and Mercedes get to shine. I can literally count on one hand the amount of time all of them combined get.


Mercedes was the only thing that really annoyed me about this episode. So her boyfriend says some words to her and all the sudden she's a class A bitch? I hate that. And fuck the reviewer about what they said with Kurt's line. Gay people are always struggling. And one line does not equal the huge issue it was in season 2. And why the fuck else would he be doing it? Fucking A.


Also Bubba or what ever his name is compare her hugging rachel to him tackling some other player from another team and another school. How is that the same thing... he most likely doesn't know the person tackling personally.


neither one actually looks the part of maria (if i was going by looks then I would have picked Quinn with a wig or Santana then) but personality wise Rachel fits Maria more. Besides someone pointed out I do not believe Mercedes has the innocence needed for Tonight.
I don't even understand this as everyone knows the best roles in the entire show is the supporting characters particularly Anita (as Moreno won for supporting actress at the oscars and Karen Olivo won for best featured at the tony's for the revival). The fact that Mercedes seem to only want it after her boyfriend said something.
I also find it strange she listening to someone who barely knows Rachel and used an musical analogy the wrong way. I mean am I the only one who noticed Beyonce was to referred to as Beyonce in DreamGirls but no mention of Jennifer Hudson who was the star of the movie actually. The only problem with Mercedes being compare is Effie was not lazy, she did practice and got shafted in favor of Deena Jones, Mercedes is told what her problem is and does nothing to fix it. She may have the diva attitude but she doesn't have diva work effort as her size has nothing with do with her being a big girl as MoNique, Nikki Blonksy and that girl from HSM prove big girls can dance their ass off too.


Woe betide anyone who dares to give Glee a bad review! Its insane. Even your favourite shows have weak weeks, and despite how much the cast tweeted about it being an amazing episode, I didnt love it. I liked it, but it crammed too much in. I agree with the reviewer that Rachel admitting Mercedes was better made the split casting decision seem pointless; it should have Mercedes' part, or Rachel shouldnt have admitted she wasnt as good. I get Mercedes needed a reason to leave, but it was so contrived. Kurt had me yawning all episode; we get it, he's gay, is that his only issue? I just dont care anymore. LOVED Brittany's flash mob :) Girl can sing and boy can she DANCE!


Okay for everyone that wants Rachel to win: You only want that because you think she looks the part, but Mercedes was better...she deserves it.


I like glee and I will keep watching it. But I felt that this episode did'nt give the storylines the credit they deserved. Mike Chang's scenes were great. They did a good job with him. But is anyone else tired of Rachel not really growing up, she's supposed to be a senior now, plus her always being the bad guy. Everytime she starts to get close to someone they make her do something to hurt that friendship. I agree with the reviewer they don't give enough time to Shue and Emma. She has a problem and they gave their relationship all of three seconds last nite. I just wish they would have put some of the storylines in another episode.

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Glee Season 3 Episode 3 Quotes

It's not about doing your best anymore. It's about doing better.


My alarm clock went off 30 minutes late. Sort of reshifted by whole schedule.