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Glee Review: Hopelessly Devoted to Glee

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There's nothing I love more than to watch a good hour of Glee on Thursday nights. Tonight's episode, however, was more than just good.

"The Role You Were Born to Play" was excellent! Fantastic! Stellar! Outstanding! And a million other exclamations I'm probably forgetting! Seriously, Glee, that's how you do it.

Praise for Mercedes

I hope I'm not alone when I say that I really, really loved it all. If I seem to swing like a pendulum in my Glee reviews, it's because the show kind of does the same thing. I'm happy to report that the pendulum swung its way back to the positive side tonight. Now how do we get it to just stay put?

The episode centered around casting for the upcoming McKinley High production of Grease with Finn at the helm as director. Artie, who sensed Finn's hesitation, called in Mike and Mercedes to help with vocals and choreography.

Watching those two walk down the hallway was thrilling. I don't think I knew quite how much I'd missed them until they appeared!

But even as much of the old cast came back together, tonight still allowed the newbies to shine. In fact, the newest members of the glee club were thrust into the spotlight in a way that helped us get to know them better and root for their success.

And Ryder Lynn? Totally nice to meet you!

Sue's attempts to block Wade/Unique from playing the role of Rizzo were classic Sue. She's mean and hyper-critical, but she's expressing the concern she expects everyone to have. That is, will the town riot when they find that a boy, one who happens to identify as female, might play the role of Rizzo, a female character?

Finn, however, after going toe-to-toe with Sue Sylvester and having a moving conversation with Wade/Unique, cast him in the role anyway. Sue will likely be right regarding the backlash of this decision, and I'm interested to see how Glee will handle this.

This is a real concern for some teens these days, gender roles and fitting in, and Wade/Unique, summarized the issue for his character well.

I don't feel right in the men's locker room, but I can't go into the girls'. And I don't feel right in men's clothing, but I can't wear dresses every day. It sucks to never know your place. It's just nice, for once, to feel like I've found one. | permalink

While we often castigate Glee for its "lesson of the week," this is one that's timely and relevant. My hope is that going forward it's treated with the same level of poignancy as it was tonight.

The Jake/Ryder/Marley/Kitty square was even interesting to me. Marley is the quiet, unassuming girl next door. Will she choose the bad boy or the seemingly nice one? Will Kitty constantly get in Marley's way? These are but a smattering of the questions I found myself asking...um, myself....while watching. For the first time, I feel genuinely invested in these new characters we've been getting to know over the past five episodes.

It's always a good night when Coach Beiste is on my TV, even if her role tonight was to serve as Will and Emma's relationship therapist when last season proved that she has issues of her own to work through. One couple from "The Break Up" is safe:

Will and Emma are still together.

After agreeing to go to Washington, Emma finally explained to Will why she doesn't want to. (To read what Emma had to say to Will, and more, check out the Glee quotes page!)

If the writers didn't feel compelled to make Will such a thick-headed nincompoop sometimes, then they could've just had this conversation in the previous episode. Seriously, is it too much to ask that Will just be written as evenly reasonable all the time instead of just when there's a resolution at stake?

And speaking of break-ups, we learned that Kurt and Blaine have definitely broken up, though Kurt is refusing all of Blaine's attempts at communication. Seeing Blaine so emotional was both sad and humorous, as it was intended to be, I'm sure.

Do you know what I think facilitated the relative ease with which I was able to engage with tonight's story lines?

There was no New York in tonight's episode.

If I'm being completely honest, it was really refreshing. Dare I say it, but this might have been the best episode thus far this season because it felt like each character was given adequate screen time without rushing from one plot to the next and then back again like some kind of storytelling tennis match.

I love Kurt and Rachel as much as everyone else, but tonight proved that while they may have been the heart and soul of Glee in the beginning, it's possible for the show to evolve without them. Or rather, beyond them.

And that's the thing about high school that makes high school shows work. There will always be the mean girls, the jocks, the socially awkward ones and the weird kids who just want to fit in. That's what makes a show like Glee the kind of show people want to watch. There's something, or someone, in it for everybody.

What did you think of "The Role You Were Born to Play"? Did you miss Kurt and Rachel in New York or did you find that the entire hour passed before you realized you hadn't seen them? What do you think of the new characters after this episode?

And remember to visit our updated section of Glee music to download your new favorites!

Review

Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
  • 4.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.0 / 5.0 (186 Votes)

Miranda Wicker is a Staff Writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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I think the episode on april 11, 2013 was absolutely ridiculous. People around the world have enough to worry about and are trying to move on and you show this, disgusting.

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I know your not supposed to like Kitty, but her voice is not up to much and she just feels like a pale imitation of Quinn. Move the whole series to New York and keep the old characters!

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Since I'm late to the party, I'll close this on a positive note. FANTASTIC EPISODE IMO! Musical numbers blended well into the plot, and they fit the characters who sang them. Sue had the funniest insult-laden monologue while using Marley's makeup that I've heard in a while. And, the new characters have good chemistry with each other. Marley reminds me of the Katharine McPhee character over on SMASH. And, Patty Simcox! ROTFLOL!

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I HATED this ep. The new characters are only retreads of the old ones without as much personality or talent. And where are new story lines? Those are retreads too! If the show was that good - ratings would be better. Featuring Blaine did not bring them up, and now the new kids aren't helping either. How can you bring back the old grads (mike and mercedes) and NOT tell us what they are doing after graduation? Poorly written ep.

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I missed Kurt. I NEVER miss Rachel.

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As much as I like the original characters, I actually like to new cast too. Well, all except for Kitty -I absolutely cannot stand that character. I cringe every time she's on the screen. Tina & Brittany were missed, but I enjoyed this episode.

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I think this was a great episode. With the exception of Finn's utterance of the "r" word regardless of it being not intended as an insult, I think it was a fantastic Finn episode. We are getting some of the old Finn back; the Finn prior to finding out about his dad. Of course, they needed a reason for Sue to want to "DESTROY THE GLEE CLUB!!!!!" so Finn saying that about the baby served its purpose. I love the new kids...especially Ryder. I think that those criticizing the new characters when their screen time has been practically nil, is a bit premature. Let it all play out and see what happens. The only part of this episode that was a bit off for me was Blaine, Hopelessly Devoted and his little teary eyed speech after the audition. I found myself laughing instead of feeling sorry for him. Overall, I love the episode and thank you reviewer for loving it, too!

Amie

Great episode, finally! I think this is what Glee should stick to -keep the original glee members while making good use of the newbies. I think at this time the old glee members should all step up and start some sort of passing of knowledge onto the next "generation" pf Gleeks - just like it was done in the brilliant scene of the final audition for a Sandy and Danny - Marley with Ryder vs Kitty and Jake. See, its not that hard. I enjoyed seeing Mercedes and Mike giving advice while Finn and Artie gave direction and inspired the others! I did not miss the NY sl at all! I was glad to see the old Glee - kids singing and making me feel good about their songs! Everything fitted, everything made sense. The songs were good and the performances were great! THIS is the Glee I know and love! P.S. I wish we got to see Britanny audition for Cha-Cha!

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Not too bad of an episode. Good to see Mike and Mercedes but stupid that they can just drop everything and no story about what they're up to. With Ryder now in the mix they have completed the 2.0s. Ryder/Finn, Marley/Rachel, Kitty/Quinn, Jake/Puck. I'm just waiting for a pregnancy storyline or something equally stupid. The pity parties need to stop! It's irritating. Blaine's song was both long and stupid. He was NOT devoted to Kurt. He cheated. Not to mention he butchered it. Enough with everyone kissing Finn's ass. My god every character he came across pretty much stroked his ego. Hope Will comes back with a better attitude. Unique still sucks and can go away. Why Tina is getting ignored AGAIN is beyond me. Apart from Hopelessly DTY, all other songs were good.

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i did miss NYC and Kurt but i was ok without it because the episode was beyond satisfying! well worth the long wait! but i did however miss Rachel more than i thought i could. she has been my favorite character since day one and i feel incomplete in some odd way without my weekly dose of Rachel Barbra Berry craziness! but i survived (barely)...BUT she will be back next week and it will be full of Glease happiness and my heart will explode with joy!