So the Tot War Has Begun

Glee welcomed guest star Gwyneth Paltrow to the show this week, who played a substitute teacher while Schuester had to stay home sick.

Glee welcomed guest star Gwyneth Paltrow to the show this week, who played a substitute teacher while Schuester had to stay home sick. Holly Holiday is her name–“Are you a porn star or a stripper?”–and flamboyant, slightly air-headed carefreeness is her game.

Theme. While Schuester is away, Holly takes over Glee club and lets the kids have some fun, like singing a family-friendly version of “F**k You” by Cee Lo Green. But things aren’t so great elsewhere: Sue gets a sick girl to sneeze on Figgins, contaminating him and opening up the principal position, which she dutifully takes over. Sue and her blazing power trip set a hilarious background to a particularly fantastic episode.

What I Loved.

  • Mini Gleeks steal the show early in the episode. So cute! Photo: Copyright 2010

    Mini Gleeks! When Schuester starts to feel the effects of a cold, he hallucinates and sees the Glee club members as a bunch of adorable six-year-olds. Glee casted the perfect little-kid look-a-likes for this scene: tiny Santana and Brittany in mini Cheerios uniforms, spurting their usual snobby/stupid lingo; little Puck with a little mohawk; and the baby version of Rachel sounded just as lovably arrogant as the real thing: “Mr. Schuester, I, for one, think that we should….”

  • Sue Sylvester in her prime as principal: “My years-long ambition has finally bore fruit.”¬†As the most hilarious character on the show, Sue begins her tirade with enacting a list of ridiculous rules. She writes in her journal that she wasn’t able to replace chairs in the schools with metal spikes, “a resounding defeat in my war against sitting.” With that plan thwarted, she moves on to ban tater tots from the cafeteria, much to Mercede’s dismay. By the end of the episode, Sue has won over the students’ parents with her health-conscious meal plan. Figgins is fired and Sue is officially the new principal…for now.
  • Mercedes’ strong will and ability to stand up for herself. She starts a tater tot rally in the cafeteria and follows up by stuffing the tots up Sue’s tailpipe. Of course, Sue rants about her super-rare “La Carr,” one of 7 in the world, and how Mercedes has caused $17,000 in damages. You go girl!
  • Gwyneth Paltrow impresses as Holly Holiday. I wasn’t expecting too much from the actress–I can only remember her from “Shallow Hal”–but she was a terrific guest star. Her voice wasn’t too shabby, her dance moves were on point and she was a convincing, funny, lasseiz-faire substitute teacher. Holly was so great, actually, that she takes Schue’s job officially until she realizes that she isn’t serious enough to lead the Gleeks to victory.

  • Kurt + Blaine = Love. ‘Nuff said.
  • Umbrella/Singing in the Rain mash-up. Looks like it was a blast to film: Check it out.

What I Didn’t Love.

  • Schuester, Schuester, Schuester. The character who started as savior of the misfits, creator of Glee club and object of schoolgirl crushes has now become anything but that. Besides sleazy and creepy, we can now add old-timey and narrow-minded to his traits. Where Holly let the Gleeks have fun and pick their own music, he’s obsessed with singing Journey songs and reincarnating “Singing In the Rain.” His sleaziness is exemplified when he hooks up with his psychotic ex-wife, Terri…and then kicks her out of his house the next day.
  • Speaking of crazy Terri, I think it’s time to close that door and move on. She has nothing left to provide to the Glee storyline.

Top Character Quotes.

  • Kurt: “You smell homeless, Brett. Homeless.”
  • Rachel, after slipping on the greased floor: “At least I didn’t fall and break my talent.”
  • Brittany, on tater tots: “They look like deep-fried deer poop.”
  • Brittany: “Mr. Schuester taught me the second half of the alphabet. I stopped after M and N. I felt they were too similar and got frustrated.”

Next Week: Carol Burnett guest stars as Sue’s Nazi-hunter mother and Rachel and Finn take a big step in their relationship.

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