The Moth Chase

Elevating the Art of Procrastanalysis – Academics wasting time on pop culture

A Meditation on Mr. Shu

with 3 comments

I rarely focus on just one character for a post, usually feeling some sort of responsibility to cover larger storylines and themes from the whole episode.  But last night’s Glee is forcing me to this.  Will Shuster is a terrible guy!  First, in a fit of immaturity, he convinces the Glee kids to retaliate against Vocal Adreneline’s tp’ing of the choir room, resulting in Puck and Finn slashing their tires (their matching Range Rovers were pretty funny, though).  Then, despite the plan being largely his fault, he doesn’t bail the kids out, but instead lets them take on crappy jobs to get themselves out of trouble.  In fact, this progression of events was so strange I was left wondering if something had gone wrong in the editing process of putting the final show together.

Then he tries to buy drugs from the old choir director.  Wtf?!

Then he tries to seduce Sue (a seduction that involved an uncomfortable amount of butt wiggling) in order to break her heart and mess her up for sectionals.

In the end he kind of does the right thing – but seriously, he didn’t figure it out in advance that he was screwing the kids over by screwing Sue over?

And does he ever do much to coach the Glee club besides tell them to create their own ad hoc numbers around whatever random idea pops into his head on his walk to the practice room?  Shouldn’t they be working on a set for regionals?  Shouldn’t he be critiquing their numbers, helping them improve, and having them actually practice something?  Shouldn’t he be picking music and doing choreography?  He is, pretty much, the worst extra-curricular activity coach ever!!

Granted, the whole knot of plot lines around Will’s behavior was muddled and weird – but this episode really was a showcase of Will’s weird dickishness.  The whole, ‘giving you a taste of your medicine’ speech to Sue just didn’t jibe.  It’s true she’s meddled and connived.  And I do wonder why it’s not such a big deal when she does it.  The reason, I think, is because she never pretends to be good.  She’s open with her hostility and cruelty, both to Shu and to the kids.  Shu, on the other hand, pretends to himself and those around him that he’s actually a good guy.  He lacks borders – he’s some sort of weird buddy to the kids (pointed out perfectly by Santana calling out his creepy over-share re: his divorce), but then he quickly switches back to being their authority figure when it suits him (i.e. when he doesn’t want to get in trouble for pranks).  He’s a mess who only encounters others for his own use, and not for their own inherent worth.  Whereas Sue’s flaws are entertaining, Shu’s are just ugly.

This episode left me with more moments of confusion than anything else.  Where did all those pregnant girls come from?  Why did everyone jump up and hug Quinn, and why didn’t Mercedes?  Apparently there was some intensely emotional history to their story last night around isolation, minority status and exclusion…but the show sort of forgot to fill us in on it?!  Whatever came of Terri’s advances toward Finn?  And, on that note, what happened to Finn’s deep love for Rachel?  Why on earth would Sue be bed-bound after being stood up by Will?  And why would she be attracted to him in the first place?  I couldn’t buy the whole desperation explanation – it felt too contrived.

It was a weird episode – it feels like there’s no half way with Glee.  The show either hits it or completely misses it.  Last night was a miss.

The one thing that did ring true, though – those Vocal Adreneline kids really are soulless automatons.  I have never seen a group that is simultaneously racially diverse yet totally homogenous like them!  They are so weird.  Jesse’s got to break free from that cult and make his way back to our ramshackle bunch before he finds himself in a final number involving kool aid and lights out.

Finale next week – despite two weeks in a row of sub-par episodes, I’m pretty excited for the finale and have good hopes for it…at least for the musical numbers.

But how, please tell me how, did Mercedes not get her own musical number in the Funk episode?  Seriously, Quinn?!  It was a good number, but I was expecting M to break it out.  What is up with the show’s marginalization of her skills, especially when they are most wanted?!

What do you guys think?



Written by themothchase

June 2, 2010 at 1:35 pm

Posted in Glee

Tagged with ,

3 Responses

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  1. This week’s episode of Glee like last week’s was such a miss one hardly knows where to begin! Are they writing by committee? A bit of this (last week: find your birth mother, oh, well, no, nevermind), a bit of that (this week: finalize a divorce, no biggie, just awkward). And what about Emma? And the bullying scene in the parking lot with eggs–we’re supposed to believe Jesse-who-cared-for-Rachel is now capable of this? Seriously? I’m not buying it. That scene was ugly! It’s like the show’s story lines have become such a mash up that is mushed up! As Natalie notes above, Will is pretty reprehensible, and not only that, totally lacking in charm, which in this show’s ethos is just unacceptable. Oh, yeah, and the music wasn’t that great either! I can’t imagine what to expect from the season finale, can’t imagine how the writers can pull together the frayed threads of this penultimate episode. This week’s episode has left me feeling downright cranky.

    Valerie Stevenson

    June 3, 2010 at 12:35 am

  2. The Jesse problem probably came around because:
    a) They made him a senior (which they regretted later)
    b) Fans really started to like him
    c) It doesn’t help to have fans like a character who is graduating

    My theory is that the writers couldn’t find a plausible reaosn to have him stick around next season and needed to write him off. However fans started to like him, so they settled on making him hated enough so that people woulnd’t mind.

    Like i said above, the writers have said that they regret making him a senior since they would have liked to have him come back.


    June 4, 2010 at 10:35 am

  3. Well,to answer your last question about Mercedes, the problem is that it seems like in almost every other episode, she does break out. I just hope they give a greater part in the story line than just the magical and token black girl who sings a good tune.


    June 5, 2010 at 5:15 pm

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