Glee Preview: 10 Scoopy Tidbits From This Week's Harrowing 'Shooting Star' Episode

Glee Season 4 Spoilers Shooting StarGlee has never been a show that shied away from hot-button topics, but this Thursday’s “Shooting Star” (9/8c, on Fox) runs headlong into one of the most polarizing debates facing the nation today. (WARNING: Stop reading now if you want to stay completely in the dark about the episode’s central story arc. Everyone else, read on.)

Executive producer Ryan Murphy Tweeted last week that “Shooting Star” is “the most powerful, emotional Glee ever,” and I can’t say that I disagree. Yes, the hour is bound to upset some folks, and likely to infuriate others, but you can’t say it’s not filled with powerful images and performances that stick with you after the credits stop rolling.

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Below, I’ve put together a list of 10 scoopy tidbits from “Shooting Star.” Again, if you want to go into the episode totally sheltered from the central plot (which might potentially make its impact more powerful), then stop reading now.

1. This is a 100 percent, Lima-centric episode. That’s right: No New York City, no Rachel, no Kurt, no Santana. (And no Emma, Finn or Sugar, for that matter.) (I miss Sugar. There, I said it.)

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2. Things kick off on a kooky note, with Brittany stressed out about a comet or asteroid (or maybe a meteor) that’s coming to wipe them off the planet. The eventual origin of this fear is classic Brittany, as is her theory on what killed off the dinosaurs. (Let’s just say this here product would’ve helped ol’ T. Rex, if the Lady Pierce is to be believed.)

3. Also, before the episode’s “big incident,” Ryder spots in the hallway the girl he thinks he’s been falling for over Facebook and text-message these last few weeks. (Spoiler alert: If you’ve heard of a dude named Manti Te’o, then you know that there’s gonna be a few bumps on this road to love — or wherever it’s heading.)

4. Right at the start of a New Directions rehearsal focused on “last chances” to share one’s feelings, two shots ring out in the halls of McKinley. It’s a gasp-inducing moment that rips the frothy high-school musical off its foundation and transports it to a dark and harrowing world.

5. Much of the ensuing action is claustrophobically confined to the choir room, where Schue and Beiste hit the lights, find hiding places for the students and try to keep down any noise that might attract the attention of a shooter/shooters.

6. The hour reaches its emotional crescendo as Artie breaks out his camera phone and records his fellow glee-clubbers’ messages to their loved ones — just in case.

7. Heather Morris may be one of the show’s resident funny ladies, but no one will be doubting her dramatic chops after a near wordless scene in the McKinley High ladies room.

8. Some might spot the episode’s big twist from five miles out, but it really doesn’t matter. The direction the show’s writers take prevents “Shooting Star” from turning into Law & Order: Lima, while still retaining its teeth.

9. A major character’s future on the series is likely to be the subject of speculation after episode ends. No, I’m not exaggerating when I say “major.”

10. And finally, there’s a Hot in Cleveland joke from Kitty that’s almost too rude for prime time. (It did make me laugh, though, in spite of myself.)

Will you be watching Glee this week? Surprised Ryan Murphy & Co. are tackling guns in our schools this season? Or is it exactly the right time and place for this subject? Sound off below!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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224 Comments
  1. Ann says:

    I hope the “major” character they’re talking about is Wade. This would be the easiest way to get rid of him!

  2. Josh Eady says:

    Move the show to New York with these new graduates and call it “Smash”

  3. Harmony says:

    I’m just surprised they didn’t do this story sooner. School shootings are a very high school thing that all teenagers have to deal with. I hope the episode treats the subject matter seriously. Good for them for finally doing it.

  4. Emily says:

    I’m scared to watch this episode. Glee’s writing has been horrible this season and (almost) every time that they’ve tried to cover a sensitive issue, they’ve choked: Eating disorders, transgender recognition, and religion have all been introduced, but never fully explored. They all fall to the background within an episode to make way for couple’s therapy (Finchel, Klaine, Jarley, etc).

    I don’t think that the writers can do justice to a story line as serious as a school shooting (especially because they haven’t done it for any of the other issues that I listed). When Grey’s Anatomy did an episode involving a shooting, they were willing to dedicate an entire season to the PTSD most of the characters experienced. It wasn’t great, but at least they spent time discussing recovery and gun violence in a conductive manner. I just can’t see the Glee writers willing to put in that amount of effort. The entire story line will probably wind up forgotten and brushed under the rug by the season finale.

  5. Jess says:

    Wow, I’d just like to say that this seems like a last ditch effort to get fans to connect with the new characters and contrived pairings. It screams glee to exploit serious issues, but my feelings almost feel like they’re being held hostage, as to say that if I don’t “connect”, then I clearly am the greater evil, for lack of a better word. And I can’t help but think this is Ryan’s intention for the fans since he’s clinging to the hs side. Tbh, I find it all reprehensible.

  6. Ben says:

    I’m not saying that a comedy kareoke show about a school choir can’t cover extremely serious and sensitive subject matter, but they probably shouldn’t.

  7. Gussie says:

    Come on people! It’s just a show! Let the nice producers and actors get paid for their hard work.

  8. iman says:

    I sware everyone on this page are huge complainers n there is know need. If u dont like it stop watching it, if u do great. But everyone who is saying they hate the newbies n calculating how much screen time the NY people hav, plz i beg of u get over it! Its a tv show, for our entertainment. N if this show offends u, im sorry u but u really havent been watching this shoe for the past 4 years.

  9. Natalea says:

    I do not understand why there are so many people actively searching out a blog about a show that they seem to hate… it’s confusing. I don’t like certain shows, but i can certainly find a better way to spend my time than googling spoilers for that show followed by commenting on how terrible the show is.
    I have been a “gleek” for four seasons now. Have i liked every episode? No. Do I like every character [new & old]? No. But that is nothing new, I dont like everyone I meet in real life, nor do I look back at my day everyday and think “WOW that was a good day” … enjoy the things in life you do, and ignore what you don’t. Life is far too short to slander hate.

  10. Kaylee says:

    Honestly as I read throught the comments, I think a majority of people have missed what this episode is actually about…it’s not about Ryan Murphy trying to get his viewers to care about the new cast members…it is about a large issue that is surrounding the US and most of Canada as well. Gun Violence is a serious matter and Gun Violence in schools is an even more serious matter or have you all forgetten about the 20 elementary school children that lost their lives in Dec or how about the Virginia Tech Massacre in 2007. This is a serious issue and I applaud Glee on how well they did it, having been subjected to Gun Violence in school at an early age myself. I felt that same anxiety watching the episode as I did that day in my grade four classroom…it has been almost 10 years since that day and I will never forget it.

    While I would like to see how Glee will deal with the anxiety in the following weeks, I also know that Glee will move on and it’ll be like it never happened. If these characters were normal students, they would be living with that anxiety for awhile.

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