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Glee Review: The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

by at . Comments

I'm going to go ahead and say this, even though I know half of the TV Fanatics who read it will probably disagree with me:

I haven't enjoyed an episode of Glee like I enjoyed tonight's episode in a long, long time.

Maybe my elation is turkey and stuffing induced. Maybe my happiness is from the sweet potatoes. Somehow, however, I doubt it. "Dynamic Duets" solidifies, for me at least, what I saw two weeks ago, and that is that the focus of this show needs to be on McKinley.

Blake vs. Jake

I won't lie. I spent the first three minutes tonight wearing my "WTF" face. The real-life Superhero Squad, complete with Coach Beiste as faculty adviser, was more than a little bizarre. It was downright delusional and unnecessary. And yet... as the episode progressed, I found myself overlooking the fact that the characters were actually, really wearing capes and tights and focusing on the boatloads of information in an episode that was essentially buried under a mound of tryptophan.

Information such as:

  • Jake and Puck have developed a friendship where Baby Puckerman calls OG Puckerman for advice about girls.
  • Marley is developing bulimia after taking Kitty's "advice."
  • Will Schue left Finn a nice collection of sweater vests when he went to Washington.
  • Ryder is dyslexic.
  • Blaine's side of the break-up.

Finn is having some issues as the leader of the New Directions. They don't see him as an adult, but really, he's a baby adult, so I understand their confusion. His "Foreigner" plan was bad. So bad High School Finn from seven months ago would've called it bad. But as a mentor, he maybe doesn't suck.

He was really great with Ryder and Jake tonight. His plan to make them sing together was straight out of Schuester's Handbook, and when it backfired, he dropped back and punted just like Will would have. He forced them to be vulnerable so they could work together. I was kind of proud of him in that moment. Our little Finn's all grown up, guys.

Blake Jenner as Ryder is blowing the winners of The Glee Project Season 1 out of the water three episodes into his seven-episode arc. Neither Sam Larsen as Joe nor Damian McGinty as Rory are half as good as he is at being a believable character. Maybe it's that Ryan Murphy and Co. sought out a "leading man" in season 2 of The Glee Project, but really, they couldn't have chosen a better winner.

And Jake? I kind of love him.

While he may have betrayed Ryder's confidence in going to Finn, he did it with good intentions. Great intentions, even. He didn't like Ryder and really had no reason to even after hearing his secret, but he helped anyway. It's reminiscent of the time Puck made Becky Jackson a crown for prom. Both of them have these hard exteriors, but on the inside, they're good guys.

Speaking of Puck, it was great to catch a glimpse of him and find that he's just as industrious as always, hustling people on Hollywood Boulevard for money.

I couldn't be sure of Kitty's motivation for being nice to Marley until the point of the episode when Marley asked Jake out on a date. And to be honest, I'm still not entirely sure why Kitty is hellbent on having Marley become bulimic aside from just being an evil person intent on destroying Marley's life. But I suppose that's reason enough. I hope Glee treats this storyline with delicate attention because the relevance of eating disorders among teens shouldn't be treated as a lesson-of-the-week and then forgotten.

Finally, we got an explanation about Blaine's cheating. Yes, it happened. Yes, he's sorry for it. So sorry he seriously contemplated a move back to Dalton Academy to get away from Kurt's memory. Sam, however, convinced him to stay at McKinley. I believe there will be a conversation between Blaine and Kurt at some point and right now, after hearing Blaine's explanation, I can't decide how I want things to end up. (You can read Blaine's explanation on the Glee quotes page!)

Sure, I love Blaine and Kurt together. But Blaine's cheating, and with a stranger no less, was reckless and lame. If Kurt never listened to him, he'd be justified in that decision. The part of me who wants to see these two work it out, who believes in forgiveness and second chances, is hopeful they'll reconcile at least to the point of being friends again, however tenuous.

And that, my friends, is what you missed on Glee. Plus other things that I didn't include here lest this become a rehashing of ever minute of tonight's episode.

Seriously. There was so much to learn tonight! And all of it was done without the intrusion of New York. And yes, New York feels like an intrusion after tonight.

This? The high school? This is Glee now. And this Glee? It's good.

What did you think of "Dynamic Duets?" Have you visited our updated Glee music section yet? Are you starting to like Ryder and Jake as much as I am?

Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.0 / 5.0 (158 Votes)

Miranda Wicker is a Staff Writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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I completely agree with the reviewer... THIS is what Glee is about. I loved the "old" characters and now I am getting a chance to love the new ones. Excellent Ryan Murphy. Keep it up!

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I believe is Anorexia nervosa an eating disorder characterized by immoderate food restriction and irrational fear of gaining weight....

Amie

I mean I just thought Marley could have been a little bit more supportive given Ryder told her why he is canceling their date....Hello, he was there for her last week when she was sticking fingers down her throat and now she just goes and asks someone with whom Ryder is friends now put on a date...not nice girl.

Amie

What I did not like in this episode is Marley - why is she sooo stuck on Jake? Ryder freaking kissed her last week and she still talks about Jake to her mom - ugh, Lord, I don't like where this is going. They have incredible chemistry and could have great duets. At least Glee did not decide to drop the bulimia sl, like it did with all the previous issues tackled, so I am interested to see where that goes. But in terms of the love triangle, I don't see why they are so trying to get me to like Jake and her being together.......

Amie

I agree with the reviewer that Glee has been working in the past 3 episodes because of how well it focused on McKinley and the new characters - I don't miss NY story lines at all, as much as love Rachel and Kurt - their sls don't interest me at all and how Rachel is already crying over the shower dude is making her incredibly lame. Kudos to Finn, who is becoming likeable again. I loved how they showed his first Glee club lesson - it did suck, but the Dynamic Duos was a great idea - because we got to see the new characters interact and I am liking the bond Ryder and Jake are forming. What I did not like in this episode is Marley - why is she sooo stuck on Jake? Ryder freaking kissed her last week and she still talks about Jake to her mom - ugh, Lord, I don't like where this is going. They have incredible chemistry and could have great duets. At least Glee did not decide to drop the bulimia sl, like it did with all the previous issues tackled, so I am interested to see where that goes.

Amie

For the third straight in a row episode, Glee did not disappoint me, and I am glad cos after the second Britanny tribute episode and the election one, I was really about to give up on that. I actually thought that the idea of the kids having a super-hero club was awesome, its very Glee like - it reminded me of the time the had a Lady Gaga themed episode where all the kids dressed up like her. Also I am really loving Blake Jenner as Ryder - I have a question, does his seven-episode arc mean that he is not sticking around for longer than that? Cos that would really be a shame, he is really nailing his role and partly because of him I am starting to tolerate Marley and Jake and the rest of the newbies. I agree with the reviewer that Glee has been working in the past 3 episodes because of how well it focused on McKinley and the new characters - I don't miss NY story lines at all, as much as love Rachel and Kurt - their sls don't interest me at all and how Rachel is already crying over the shower dude is making her incredibly lame. Kudos to Finn, who is becoming likeable again. I loved how they showed his first Glee club lesson - it did suck, but the Dynamic Duos was a great idea - because we got to see the new characters interact and I am liking the bond Ryder and Jake are forming. What I did not like in this episode is Marley - why is she sooo stuck on Jake? Ryder freaking kissed her last week and she still talks about Jake to her mom - ugh, Lord, I don't like where this is going. They have incredible chemistry and could have great duets. At least Glee did not decide to drop the bulimia sl, like it did with all the previous issues tackled, so I am interested to see where that goes.

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I love how they had the comic book thing where they said BLAM then SLAINE!.i loved sam's face! I always loved his face

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After watching this episode, i think it really proved that glee could eventually move on from their original cast. I didn't in the slightest miss the NYC scenes between rachel and kurt and i've thought lately that they've become quite boring and repetitive, consisting of rachel getting insults from her teacher to kurt just listening to whatever rachel has to say. @Miranda Wicker, I completely agree! the jake/marley/ryder love triangle is nothing like the rachel/finn/quinn love triangle, there is a lot more potential with this love triangle this time round (even though i am totally routing for jake and marley!) I just hope they keep the McKinley story line as interesting as it has been these past two episodes because i've really really enjoyed watching them

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As for the new characters, I think its time to say how much I love the character of Marley. While not as vocally stunning as Rachel she is really good. I also like how much fun she has in her performances. Pink's Blow me comes to mind and you can see the glee (pardon the pun) on her face when singing. I also like Kitty and I foresee that although she is pretending to be friends with Marley, she will eventually realize she actually cares for Marley because she is such a loner with few true friends. The Ryder/Jake story will be interesting as although they started as rivals they might be friends ( totally opposite to the Finn/Puck story way back in Season 1)

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I have to agree with the reviewer that the last two episodes have somewhat restored my interest in the show. While I miss the power vocals from former characters of Rachel, Santana and Mercedes, I feel that these characters need to move on from high school as its causing nothing but problems for their characters and are convenient plot solvers for the writers. My hope is that Glee does not overextend itself with so many diverging storylines (NYC, McKineley though I do love Kate Hudson, Santana/Kentucky, Mercedes/Puck in LA etc). For me glee is all about the music anyways.

Glee Season 4 Episode 7 Quotes

Finn: The theme is 'Foreigner.' We're going to sing songs by Foreigner, in foreign languages, wearing all the costumes of the world's nations.
Artie: Wait, seriously? That's your idea?

What kind of name is Ryder Lynn anyway? Because it sounds like your parents named you after a cowgirl doll who comes with her own pony.

Jake

Glee Season 4 Episode 7 Music

  Song Artist
Glee cast dark side Dark Side Glee Cast iTunes
Glee cast superman Superman Glee Cast iTunes
Glee cast holding out for a hero Holding Out For A Hero Glee Cast iTunes