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Glee Review: The Pluck of the Irish

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Rory Flanagan may not have the ability to make any cereal magically delicious, but he sure did magically appear on "Pot O' Gold" and play a significant episode on the first new Glee episode in weeks, didn't he?

It was a bit jarring to have this character just plopped down in both the hallways of William McKinley and in the bedroom of Brittany S. Pearce (no, not like that! He wishes!), getting his first solo within minutes of his arrival.

Was I invested in his rendition of a Kermit the Frog classic? Not exactly. It was far from earned, having just been introduced to the heavily-accented foreign exchange student. By the end of the hour, though, I was as excited as the rest of New Directions to welcome Rory on board. I even understood almost every other word he said!

Rory and Brittany

Meanwhile, this non-Leprechaun wasn't the only one granting wishes: someone on the writing staff must have heard my pleas for an abundance of Burt Hummel and delivered exactly that. I'm already loving his campaign against Sue, partly because it's based on actual issues.

How to best spend public funds for school? That's very much a real debate. Arts versus special ed? I don't even have a joke here. What side would you take? It's a tough one and it serves to humanize Sue. Yes, she's a hoot when she's rattling on about Will's hair - and, now, Burt's lack of locks - and it's hilarious that she wants to take down Tom Bergeron... but Glee is best served when its characters are grounded in reality. A fine job of that here.

Similarly, whoa, serious Brittany might need to be a contender for Scariest Character on Television. Bravo to her for standing up to Finn's "idiot" insult. Considering the major deal it is for her to defect to The Trouble Tones (I sort of like Hot Messes... anyone else?), the show needed to give her something more legitimate as a basis than granting a Leprechaun's wish. Well done again. This season hasn't been perfect, but the writers did appear serious about focusing on consistent storytelling.

The same can be said for Puck and Shelby. Am I alone in jumping right on the Pelby bandwagon? We've seen Puck's affection for cougars before - they make his nipple rings twitch, after all - and I absolutely bought Shelby's sadness over raising a child alone. I can see these two together - not together together, just growing close as they have been and then realizing how they can't actually go there - especially if it helps wake Puck up to Quinn's seriously evil plan of stealing back Beth.

No, Quinn. Just... no! That's some dastardly scheming, far beyond any high school pranking.

Other thoughts on an enjoyable episode that has me craving both Lucky Charms and some Christina Aguilera:

  • Sue thinks math teachers make $2,000 per year.
  • And that West Wide Story glorifies gang violence, yet remains gay.
  • I need to point out the bullying hypocrisy again: Glee spent weeks on Kurt getting shoved into lockers last year, yet it's just accepted here as something Rory is unfortunately going through?
  • Yes, Hummel is more difficult to spell than Lisa Murkowski. Look at Glee getting all political! It could almost pass for The Good Wife.
  • Along those lines, call me a raging liberal, but Brittany didn't want to be known as a quitter due to her rising political career? Hmmm... could that be a reference to another former Alaskan government official.
  • Leprechaun is Santana's favorite movie. It learned her two things.
  • Blaine wanted to remind everyone what Glee is all about, which, as he put it, is just... fun. Amen, right, readers?
  • It's been awhile, so just a reminder: We've already updated our Glee quotes and our Glee music sections, as we do every Tuesday night. Click and enjoy!

What did everyone else think? You can get an early look at next week's sex-based episode NOW!

Review

Editor Rating: 4.4 / 5.0
  • 4.4 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.1 / 5.0 (226 Votes)

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

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@emma. i dont know about in the show but damians from derry, and he has a pretty common accent for someone from that part of ireland.

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What is bugging me is that no one is bitch slapping Quinn. She is not the mother of that child. End of. And someone needs to tell her that. Also even if Shelby is proven to be a bad mother Quinn gave up her rights to the child, and Beth would probably go into care, not back to the orignal mother, that would be a beyond stupid system. She is a knocked up teenager, not a mother. The most responsible thing she ever did was give up Beth to have a better life.
Sorry its so infuriating that this strand is not really being dealt with, I am used to Glee at least in part acting responsible when it comes to its story lines Also I didn't watch The Glee Project, where is "Rory" supposed to be from? As in what part of Ireland? cos I have never heard that accent before except from AmDram doing "Playboy of the Western World"

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Was this the first episode without a Rachel Berry solo?

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Quinn is the most selfish, self-absorbed, insecure and annoying character I have ever seen on TV. She had potencial on season one but now she just needs to graduate ASAP and be gone... without Beth. How can she not realize she is the one not fitted as a mother, if your reason for having your baby is because is the only thing you ever did that was perfect, I say you are 17. Time to grow up and be your own person, don't ruin the life of child because you are feeling bad about yourself. Enough self-pity!

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Santana is the biggest bully in the latest episode, which is pretty ridiculous given she started the Bully Whips last year to create a safe school environment for all of McKinley's students. I hated that she told a foreign exchange student basically to go off and commit suicide because that would be doing the entire high school a favor. All the while, she herself is scared to be treated the way she's treating Rory. It's hard to empathize with a character like that. I wanted to enjoy Santana and her relationship with her Barbie Doll Brittany, but Santana's nastiness was just a tad too much. Ditto on Sue whose platform keeps on changing: last year, she was going to run because of the entitlement cuts that affected Jean. Then she runs on the Jesse Helms kill the arts angle. Now, she's running for special education benefits. Sue and Santana just irritated me to no end last night and I usually like those characters. On the plus side, I'm completely on board with Pelby/Shuck. Idina Menzel and Mark Salling are great together. Even though "Glee's" continuity is mostly messed up, it was great for the show to recall that Puck is a big MILFer and cougar lover. And with Shelby raising his kid, this could be a great pairing.

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Not trying to be rude but you should check the accuracy of the quotes before you post them in the quotes section.

Blu

I have to see the next episode to decide whether or not Rory made an impact. I liked that he was added butdidn't like how he was used in this episode. I love the troubletones, finally a couple of the most neglected voices in Glee finally get to sing their hearts out. MrSchue has nobody to blame but himself for that one. I like Rachel but no way in hell she deserves all the attention that she gets. Shelby with Puck don't know what to make of it. As longas he's legal I don't mind. Quinn needs to go to therapy or something, she's delusional if she thinks she can ever get her kid back. If she gets Shelby in trouble they'll just send Beth to a fosterfamily. I love Blaine and yet he annoys me too so his exuberance was a tad unbearable at times but amusing as well.LOL! And Finn calling Brittany an idiot? That's like Britney Spears calling Lindsay Lohan a train wreck. Pot meet kettle FInn. Loved how Britt got all scary on him though!LOL! BURT IS AWESOME!!!! Glad to see more of him because he's like one of my favorite characters on Glee! I like this race they have going, it's realistic and both sides have valid claims now! I'm intrigued! Team Burt!!

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Am I the only one that felt a little bad for Sugar? She's nuts, but it seem like she has something else there, too.

Farsia2010

loved the ep, lots to say but i kinda said it all before.
one question though, why did Sugar stay in the background so easily, i thought her dad is paying for this second glee club so that his daughter could be a star?

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@Maggie
If you look again, you'll notice that the reviewer supports the idea of them going there but realizing that they can't do it. The reviewer isn't actually condoning teachers and studded having sex! O.o