Glee Recap: Eire Walk With Me

This week’s installment of Glee introduced us to an Irish exchange student (and possible “sprightly green mythological creature”) played by Glee Project winner Damian McGinty, cemented Quinn’s position among the Top 10 least likable characters on television, and featured a “whoa, did that just happen?!” kiss between [SPOILER AHEAD] Puck and Shelby. (Tell me I’m not the only one who felt that smooch was as realistic as Lord Tubbington pooping candy bars.)

Ah well, at least Santana was there to keep things light with her patented brand of bitchery. And at least we saw a spotlight turned on an underrated Christina Aguilera gem.

If you were busy watching Jennifer Aniston’s 1993 horror flick Leprechaun and missed the proceedings, please allow me to catch you up — in the classic “here’s what you missed on Glee” format:

Brittany mistakenly thought Rory, the Irish exchange student living with her family, was a leprechaun who could grant her three wishes, but all he wanted to do was get into her “pot of gold.” (Gross.) Finn and Santana got wind of Rory’s treachery, with the former enlisting the friendless kid as a spy to see if Santana and Brittany might defect to McKinley’s rival show choir, and the latter enlisting Rory’s help in making that defection happen. (Santana would only commit mutiny if Brittany went with her, and made the little Irishman work his magic to get Britt on board with the plan.) By episode’s end, Mercedes was thrilled to have Brittana on her team, and after informing Sugar that she’d be nothing more than a near-silent backup singer, the ladies and their mentor (Shelby) dubbed the troupe The Troubletones and performed a sassy, saucy take on “Candyman.”

Meanwhile, Finn found all of his worst insecurities activated by Blaine’s presence in the choir room; Burt decided to run for Congress against the arts-hating cuckoo clock named Sue; and Brittana held hands under a napkin at Breadstix. Plus, Finn called Brittany an “idiot” for believing in Rory’s wish-granting powers, but later apologized and tried to forge a friendlier vibe between New Directions and Shelby’s rival troupe. Plus, Finn recruited lonely Rory to join New Directions.

And finally, we had Quinn plotting to get Child Protective Services to return the baby she gave up for adoption by planting items in Shelby’s home (including a book titled Basics of Baby Sacrifice — as if!) that in only the most far-fetched scenarios might lead to a change in custody. Then again, maybe Quinn should’ve rigged Shelby’s house with a hidden camera, seeing how Shelby and underage Puck ended up in a lip-lock right before the credits rolled. (Again, gross.) Here’s hoping by next week, Glee’s writers will have maneuvered themselves out of that deeply disconcerting corner. And that’s what you missed on Glee.

Before we get on to the night’s best dialogue and grades for the musical performances, a few random thoughts: Would Burt and Carole really be so openly ambivalent about Finn’s future? Is there any way a character like Shelby would cross such a moral line with a teenager — even if Puck kind of does look like he’s 35? And would onetime anti-bullying advocate Santana casually act as if Rory’s suicide would be a welcome event? “Do this whole school a favor and just disappear,” Santana hissed at Rory. None of these character arcs really make sense to me. But I guess there’s no law saying they have to.

Now, with that out of the way, let’s run through a couple of the episode’s memorable bits of dialogue.

* Sue describing West Side Story as a a musical about race that promotes gang violence
and yet “still seems extraordinarily gay.”

* Brittany revealing her regimen to try to turn her cat’s digestive tract into a confections shop: “Every night I feed Lord Tubbington nougat and sprinkles, then rub his belly with glitter sticks.”

* “Lord Tubbington’s poops are crispy and delicious.” –Brittany, after discovering the candy bars planted in the family cat’s littler box

* Santana calling Finn a “bacon-wrapped bug-eyed hypocrite,” and a “double-stuffed, fatty, gassy, McGravypants.”

And with that, let’s assign some grades for the week’s musical numbers…

“It’s Not Easy Being Green,” Rory
Rory sounded heartfelt enough on this classic Muppets ballad, but I wish the whole sequence had been shot with a fresher eye than the one that had the new kid on the block strolling sad-sack-like through the cafeteria and sitting alone on the bleachers.
Musical grade: B Relevance to the plot: B

“Last Friday Night,” Blaine
As much as I love-love-loved Blaine’s “Teenage Dream,” I equally disliked the former Warblers frontman getting Auto-Tuned into submission on a lesser Katy Perry hit. Darren Criss is better than this song. Musical grade: D Relevance to the plot: C-

“Waiting for a Girl Like You,” Puck
Sweet: Puck singing this to Beth. Not so sweet: Puck singing this to Shelby.
Musical grade: B+ Relevance to the plot: B

“Candyman,” Mercedes and the Troubletones
Let me state for the record that I do not — and never will — endorse this “rival show choirs” plot device, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t love seeing Mercedes, Santana, and Brittany in their blue retro suits absolutely soaring on “Candyman.” (Nice choice for the day after Halloween, Ryan Murphy!)
Musical grade: A Relevance to the plot: A-

“Take Care of Yourself,” Rory
I can’t lie, this number made me feel a little drowsy, although Damian’s falsetto was pretty. I guess. Um, zzzzzz.
Musical grade: B- Relevance to the plot: B-

What did you think of this week’s Glee? Which plot points made you happy, and which had you looking for a rewrite? What was your favorite musical number? Take our poll below, then hit the comments and argue your points. And for all my Glee recaps and commentary, follow me on Twitter @MichaelSlezakTV!

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