August 15, 2011

Episode Review: THE GLEE PROJECT, "Generosity"

Boy, does Ryan Murphy know how to shake things up or what? I guess since the title of this week's The Glee Project was "Generosity", he decided to give us the worst ending since the Warblers/New Directions tie at Sectionals.

Homework Assignment
Since this episode was supposed to focus on being nice to others, Kevin McHale (Artie) was the guest judge and had to listen as the Wanna-Glees sang the class "Lean on Me". With such an obscure theme as generosity, the contestants figured that smiling at one another was enough to be considered nice, and it worked for Kevin. After weeks of being looked over, Lindsay finally won her first homework assignment, which usually doesn't mean much of anything.

Honestly, I couldn't get a good grasp on any of the performances because the theme was so vague, but being one of the few viewers who wants to see Lindsay succeed, I was glad that she got the win. Unfortunately, the editors still wanted to depict her as a sociopath, so she still came off pretty negatively. At least she has the talent to back up the attitude.

Video Shoot
The big group number was My Chemical Romance's "Sing", which obviously wasn't going to work with only four singers, so the show upped the cheese factor by bringing in four kids who did not have the benefit of having an arts program at their schools, and they were paired up with the contenders. Part of the assignment was to work with their new partners during the video shoot.

Seeing the four interact with kids initially came off as desperate, but it did give the viewers the chance to see other sides of these people, which was a nice change of pace since we really don't know much about any of them. The move was probably unnecessary, but all I know is Damian was even more charming by episodes end because of it. The video itself was OK.

Last Chance Performance
As always, leave it to the Last Chance Performance section to be the most dramatic. Robert and Zach were ready to trim the Final Four into the the Top Three when Ryan called them up and threw a curve ball at them. Instead of a Bottom Three, all four contestants were going to perform for Ryan and co-creator Ian Brennan. Changing things up at the last minute is kinda of a dick thing to do, but for some reason I'll trust Ian over Ryan any day of the week, so I was excited about the shake up.

Alex sang "His Eye Is on the Sparrow", a song I had never heard before, which was sung at his father's funeral. Now, I'm not going to say that the song choice was rigged, but it's convenient that the only thing we know about Alex (his father's passing) has been amped up over the last two weeks. Maybe I'm heartless, but the sob story isn't working on me, but he did sing the heck out of the song.

Lindsay's song was "Defying Gravity" which felt like a softball for her, but she's been given two songs that Lea Michele killed on the show, and that's a hard act for anyone to follow. She did a fine job, but the most interesting part of her performance was the conversation between Ryan and Ian where they pretty much admitted that they need Lindsay. Of course, it all could've been a big tease based on the way they cut the show, but it was nice to hear them actually acknowledge her talent and how she could fit into the show's world.

Damian had the challenge of singing "I've Gotta Be Me" which was a tall order, but if Cory Monteith could give us a good version, I was confident that he could too. It was clear that swinging jazz was in Damian's wheelhouse because his performance was decent enough. I'll admit that he's not the strongest singer, dancer, or actor, but Damian has the underdog quality and charm that could take him far.

The only act I wasn't looking forward to was Samuel, mostly because he's been one of my least favorite contenders due to his limitations as an actor. When he was told that he was going to have to sing "My Funny Valentine", I was sure he was done for, but he gave one of the best performances of the night. I still think he's only around because of Cameron and Ryan's obsession to write a Christian character, but I was impressed with what Samuel put out there.

After some deliberation, it was decided that no one would be going home, and the finale would be a showdown between the Final Four. Much like the tie in "Special Education", I felt that having all four go to the finals felt kind of cheap. Then again, it would've been hard to send someone home after such good performances, and more than likely Damian was saved yet again, so I can't really complain.

Final Thoughts
Honestly, I don't know how I feel about next week's finale. On the one hand, I've stuck by this show since day one, but I haven't really connected with those vying for the guest spot. Yes, I'm on Team Lindsay because she's the most talented and the most hated, but I have a feeling that she's not going to win based on her personality alone. I think that Damian's the cutest thing ever, but having him win the competition wouldn't feel right when there are better performers in the Final Four.

All of these mixed emotions have me wondering if it was all worth it or just a giant waste of time. It also doesn't help that I have this inkling that Samuel is going to win it all, and that would be a bummer. I don't have anything against him, but I still have a hard time seeing him fitting into Glee, which I could overlook if he was a proven actor.

Regardless, I'm going to check in next week to see who wins The Glee Project and brace myself for how he or she will impact Season 3.


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