The long-simmering rivalry between McKinley High divas Rachel and Mercedes comes to a head in Tuesday’s must-see Glee. And while both Lea Michele and Amber Riley more than rise to the occasion, make no mistake: This episode belongs to Riley. And the proof is in the embedded video player below.
In this exclusive clip from “Asian F,” Mercedes — fed up with playing a mere supporting role what she dubs “The Rachel Berry Show“ — belts out a fierce cover of Jennifer Hudson’s “Spotlight.” The fact that the performance doubles as an audition for McKinley’s production of West Side Story (for which she is competing against Rachel for the role of Maria) only adds to the drama.
For her part, Riley says the number marked one of the high points of her Glee experience so far. “It was really fun to sing a current pop song, because Mercedes usually does the old diva-ish sings,” notes the actress, adding that the episode as a whole required her to dig deep into her character’s psyche. “There were some things that were challenging for me. I really had to think about who Mercedes is. It was amazing to be challenged in that way.”