Glee Recap: Took a Big Chance at the High School Dance [Updated]

naya rivera glee“It’s a prom miracle!” That line from this week’s Glee had a very specific intent, but it could’ve applied to any number of plot developments including, but not limited to, the following:

* Rory emerging from his hiding place at the end of the rainbow. (Yep, he still goes to McKinley!)

* Becky and Puck being named King and Queen of the Anti-Prom (total attendance: 5).

* Blaine coming out of the hair-gel closet and revealing his natural/wayward curls. (Dude actually looked a little better with a little less product, no?)

* Quinn rising from her wheelchair (with just a tiny bit of steadying from Santana) at the end of a dinosaur-themed prom.

* And, after a vote count that found Finn had won Senior Prom King, Quinn and Santana deciding to ignore their one-two finish in the Prom Queen race and giving the title to Rachel. Yep, that #Finchel hashtag in the lower right corner of your screen actually happened.

Before we get to letter grades for the musical performances and a rundown of the week’s best lines, a few thoughts on this week’s somewhat dubious plot developments.

* Does anyone really believe a kid as obsessively driven as Rachel Berry would’ve only applied to a single college? That opening monologue — laced with lines about giving up her Tony Award dreams and romantic sentiments like “I may not have NYADA, but I still have Finn” — went against everything I’ve learned about this character over three seasons. I did, however, buy Rachel’s meltdown over Finn embarking on a joint campaign with ex-girlfriend Quinn for Prom King and Queen, and her subsequent decision to launch an Anti-Prom with Kurt and Blaine. Rachel’s always harbored deep insecurities about her looks and her social status, and you knew that at the end of the day all she wanted to do was rock that lovely pink dress in front of her classmates. Still, I can’t lie: When the episode ended, I was disappointed that the life lesson Rachel walked away with was that winning a popularity contest at a school dance means anything is possible. A dime-store tiara and applause from the football jocks are fleeting; a good education and attainable life goals are forever, girl.

* That dancefloor kiss between Finn and Rachel was perhaps the couple’s most intense, believable lip-lock of the season, no?

* I’m not sure I fully bought into the Quinn-Finn stuff. I get that he was trying to bolster his ex’s spirits after she’d wound up in a wheelchair, but would the Yale-bound Quinn — who’s given up a child for adoption, counseled Rachel not to wed too young, and showed steely determination after a devastating car accident — really still believe in the importance of a Prom Queen title? I guess it’s possible. Not everyone in life matures and grows, which made Finn’s explosion — “You’re still the same old Quinn! All that matters is you!” — seem a lot more plausible than Quinn pleading that it’s “mandatory” for nominees to dance together.

* In general, liked the whole Becky and Puck subplot. Okay, so the writers intermittently steered Becky toward cartoon territory — then again, that’s sometimes how teenagers behave — but her desire for popularity, and her anger at the realization she’d never really achieve it (“What are you smiling about, Poster People?”) rang true. And I loved Puck fashioning conspiratorial crowns, bringing Becky from anti-prom to real prom, and then employing her help in spiking the punch bowl. Somehow, that character seems to be making a comeback right at the moment he was looking expendable.

* Speaking of expendable, I wonder how long before the writers turn Mr. Schue into a Peanuts-style adult: Always speaking from just off screen, delivering “maw-mawp-maw-mawp” nonsense.

* It was fun to have a little focus back on Brittany and her absurd brand of ditziness. I howled when she confused that prom-committee brunetter for Rachel, telling her she’d see her at show choir practice, and her running confusion over “new girl” Joe (“who looks like a cavewoman”). Plus, as far as prom themes go, I’d back “dinosaurs” over “castle on a cloud,” too.

Anyhow, now that we’ve covered all the pertinent plot details, let’s review the best quotes from the episode:

“Yeah, I no longer believe we should be drilling for babies.” –Class President Brittany, lamenting her “drill, baby, drill!” memo

“It’s clear the three of you are incompetent fools, and possibly some sort of terrorist cell.” –Brittany, offended by every idea to come from the three-member prom committee

“Had I known, I would’ve worn a full kilt.” –Kurt, recalling his humiliating moment being named Junior Prom Queen

“What are you lookin’ at, Jar Jar Binks?” –Sue, addressing dreadlocked new kid Joe

And now, onto letter grades for the episode’s musical numbers!

‘Big Girls Don’t Cry,’ Rachel, Kurt, and Blaine Grade: B-

Brittany, ‘Dinosaur’ Grade: D+

Santana, ‘Love You Like a Love Song’ Grade: B

Joe, Rory, Sam, Mike, and Artie, ‘What Makes You Beautiful’ Grade: A

Quinn and Santana, “Take My Breath Away” Grade: B

Your turn. What did you think of “Prom-asaurus”? Vote for your favorite musical number in our poll — for me, it was the One Direction cover, hands down — then hit the comments with your thoughts!