January 31, 2013

Episode Review: GLEE, "Naked"

As the title suggest, Glee talked a lot about being both physically and emotionally "naked" because this was a Ryan Murphy penned script and everything needs to be more complicated than necessary, which is another way of saying that this felt more like a late-Season 1 episode than one of the more coherent ones that we've been getting.

The Warlbers were officially disqualified from Regionals and New Directions was given their spot, but their lack of preparation has put them behind and they're short on cash to get them to the competition. Since Finn's nothing more than a mini-Schuester, he wanted to bring back the bake sale, but Tina tossed out the idea of a Men of McKinley calendar as a thinly veiled excuse to see Blaine half-naked. For some reason, Finn went along with it, but not everyone was happy about the idea except for Artie who was ashamed of his body.

Someone who wasn't afraid to bare it all was Sam, who used his body as a source of self-worth since he didn't have the test scores to get into college, and he figured all he had to offer was his physique. A concerned Blaine stepped in and tried to remind Sam that he's more than a rocking bod and a set of lips, and he even asked Emma to help him get the message across. When Sam wasn't able to articulate what he accomplished in high school, his best bro saved the day again by showing him a video of his friends recalling his greatest hits like saving the glee club multiple times and being a stand-up guy.

Elsewhere, Marley and Jake were contemplating taking the next step in their relationship by admitting their true feelings for one another. After singing a romantic duet together, Marley was close to saying the magic words but couldn't. Jake got some advice from Ryder about what to do, but ended up declaring his love in song instead of words. But when push came to shove, Jake declared his love by writing "I Love You" in Marley's calendar, and she finally came around to returning the gesture.

Oh, and Rachel struggled over taking her top off in a student film until Quinn and Santana popped in to set her straight.

I know that this is going to be repetitive and boring, but once again I only cared about what was going on in Lima. Blam has been one of the best things Glee's given us over the last two seasons, so I was a sucker for anything and everything that had to do with Sam and Blaine. Their friendship has been the guiding light that the show's been lacking, and I just hope the writers don't mess it up with the inevitable admission of feelings and the awkwardness that could follow. Plus, it was nice having a serious Sam episode again.

As for everything else, Marley and Jake are cute enough but I was shocked by how quickly they jumped to love. Yes, this is Glee where logic gets tossed out of the window on a weekly basis, but this move came out of nowhere and probably won't last knowing this show. That said, I'm at least glad that the episode acknowledged Jake's rivalry with Ryder and how they've been able to put it behind them. And I'm just going to bypass the Rachel plot altogether.

Other Odds and Ends:
  • The joke about Hunter looking too old to be in high school was an example of Glee at its best. I love that self-deprecating humor which is why I'm still watching The New Normal.
  • Rod Remington!
  • Am I the only one rooting for a Kitty and Joe hook-up?
  • Fondue for Two!
  • I'm sorry, but "Torn" was trying way too hard to be deep and moving. It was nice seeing the old Rachel though.
  • Jake's reaction to being spray tanned was pretty priceless.
  • Finn's aversion to coffee will always be funny.
  • I know it's a cheap sight gag, but a box of Rooter O's covering Brody's junk was kind of clever.
  • Like I said, Jake and Marley are cute enough, but they cannot compete with Blake and Nellie when it comes to singing love songs on an empty stage.
  • Kudos to Glee for highlighting male body image issues... again.
  • I'm all for more Santana, but putting her in NYC would be lazy.
  • I'm not ashamed to admit that the video Blaine made for Sam made me tear up.
  • Musical Highlight: "This is the New Year"
I suppose "Naked" wasn't a bad episode per se, but Murphy couldn't help but hammer us over the head with the theme, so I had flashbacks to "Funk" and that's not a good thing. Having the characters say "naked" a hundred times didn't help either, but all in all it had some entertaining moments and could have been worse. Sometimes that's a win unto itself when it comes to Glee.


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