It's been really, really hard to be a Gleen fan over the show's six seasons, but Glee Season 6 Episode 10 showed why some of us have stuck around.
This is a show about underdogs who became champions, and even when they don't stay on top forever, they keep moving forward. Some diabolically and some, well, less so.
It had to have been a trip in the writers room this season. I can see them all sitting around the table going "Hey, you know all the criticisms about how dumb this concept was that we've heard for six years now? Let's just make fun of it all and call ourselves out."
So they did. And in a roundabout way, they've actually poked some fun at their harshest critics.
Sue Sylvester has been the Mother of Meta this season and it. has. been. amazing.
This is a musical show. People do not typically just go around life bursting into song and dance at random moments being joined by other people who all know the lyrics and the harmonies and melodies to every song ever written. In case you didn't know. I mean, maybe YOU randomly burst into song and you're joined by others, but I'd say you're the exception and not the rule.
Yep. Sue just called that one right on out tonight while she sat beside her mother, played by the fabulous Carol Burnett.
How do people just burst into song? How does everybody just magically know the lyrics?
This has been one of the longest-running criticisms of people who can't seem to separate fiction from reality and accept this show for what it is: a musical.
Finally, FINALLY, Glee poked fun at its own self and said "you know? This is totally not a thing people do and WE DON'T EVEN CARE!"
Included in this ultra-meta moment was that air guitar battle between Will and Sue, which peeled back another layer of criticism about the show and revealed some hilarious levity to what would happen if people did randomly start singing at the drop of a hat.
The looks on the faces of Blaine, Kurt, Rachel, Kitty, and the Supergroup were fantastic. That scene juxtaposed with Will and Sue's "The Final Countdown" happening in costume in their minds and definitely not in costume in their "real" world was this hilarious sort of existential moment where the cast, save Will and Sue, became members of the audience, literally and figuratively.
None of them thought "we probably look ridiculous too," but hey, we don't want to totally ruin it.
The way the Glee writers are just throwing up their middle fingers to this season in a way that says they do what they want is absolutely refreshing. When they're not trying too hard to make us care about the new kids like they did last week, that is.
Even in the midst of that, the show still took a moment to call itself out on the all too easy ways in which it solves problems.
Dalton Academy has burned to the ground, just a couple of weeks before Sectionals. The Warblers are now school-less and must integrate with the New Directions if they want to compete. We don't have to lose the Warblers AND the New Directions now magically have the requisite number of students to sing at Sectionals.
Sue, again, manages to call the show out on how convenient a solution that was. And it was convenient, no doubt.
But it works because we already know The Warblers. We might not know these Warblers, but we know that group and what they bring to the table. We can get behind the New Directions now because we can get behind the Warblers. Two birds, one stone. Now let's do some singing on Glee Season 6 Episode 11 and then we can properly put this show to bed.
The Supergroup is going to win. Otherwise, this has all been for naught. The writers won't leave this show with McKinley devoid of the arts now that Sue Sylvester has fallen so far she's actually coaching Vocal Adrenaline.
While Becky Jackson's irrational outburst over Sue's refusal to allow the Warblers to attend McKinley was, well, irrational, and rightly called so by Becky Jackson herself, it brought about the fall of Sue Sylvester.
Her entire life has been a lie. Literally all of it.
Her mother and father were never Nazi hunters. They never loved her. She never did any of the one million crazy things she said she did.
It's not that we didn't know that her crazy stories were false before tonight, but the reveal about her parents was the moment it all made sense.
Sue created a world for herself where she was the center of the universe because her parents never gave her that. She became a champion because she wanted people to pay attention to her. Aside from the whole parents thing, rising to the top so people would notice her and respect her makes her more or less the same as the rest of our original New Directions members.
Sue may not have realized that yet, but she will. Maybe. Or maybe not. I just know my fingers are crossed that Sue's "I will ruin you, Will Shuester" threats take a back seat to the final three episodes. (Again! Another meta moment!)
There isn't even really enough time tonight to get into Rachel's dilemma: go to NYADA or go straight to Broadway, but since Jesse St. James is returning next week, we'll hear more about that as the series ends.
I know there will be naysayers, but I really enjoyed "The Rise and Fall of Sue Sylvester." Was it campy? Absolutely! Meta? Amazingly so! And it made me smile. A lot. And that's why I just can't quit you, Glee.
What did you think of tonight's episode of Glee? Are you hopeful that Sue will play a smaller part in the show's final three episodes? How much meta is too much meta?
Miranda Wicker is a Staff Writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.