Glee: 112, “Mattress”; December 2, 2009

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Picture day’s coming up, and Will apparently didn’t know that. Also Emma and Tanaka are getting married a week from Saturday, which is when Sectionals is! AND PROM’S TOMORROW!!!

Tanaka clearly arranged for the events to conflict on purpose. I still don’t get why they’re bothering with a wedding at all since Emma made it clear she’s basically not considering them married anyway.

Um also Sue says the glee club doesn’t get a picture in the yearbook because budget cuts or something. Man my elementary school yearbooks featured photos of the people who ran the school store, of course there’s room for the glee club!

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Kurt thinks it’s a blessing in disguise that they don’t have to take a glee club photo, citing the vandalism in previous yearbooks.

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Kurt said this was the "glee club class of 2002" but they're all wearing 80s Cosby sweaters.
Kurt said this was the “glee club class of 2002” but they’re all wearing 80s Cosby sweaters.

And the fact that a lot of the former glee clubbers either went crazy or killed themselves. Well, I mean, the one person got vandalized to look like she was being stabbed in the head, and Kurt said that was “eerily prescient” so maybe she got murdered?

Holy friggin crap someone really ought to investigate that. I mean it can’t be having their yearbook photos vandalized alone that drove these people overboard, especially since those were the school’s copies of the yearbooks. And if that really WAS all it took to drive these people off the edge then someone was wrong with them mentally. Obviously it makes more sense if it was the yearbook vandalization in combination with regular bullying, in which case, the school REALLY ought to be doing something if so many former students who were all in the same extracurricular activity went insane or died in some crazy manner.

Maybe it just hits too close to home for me, but I’m more offended at this school’s hypothetical lack of resources of observant teachers than I am amused at the darkly humorous thought of someone being so affected by bullying that they turn into a crazy homeless person who barks at Britney’s mom sometimes.

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Figgins says excluding the glee club from the yearbook is to prevent further bullying from the students. Yes, because that’s the answer, take all these misfits and outcasts and exclude them from the yearbook rather than doing something about the bullies.

Figgins also says the yearbook is prime advertising space (is it? I was coincidentally just looking at my yearbooks 12 hours ago and I couldn’t tell you any company that advertised in them), and because yearbooks are expensive and the school is poor, Schue will have to pay if he wants the kids to have a photo. Aw man, if only like half the glee club were really rich, or maybe they could hold some kind of bake sale where all the baked goods are laced with marijuana or something. Naaah, that’d never work.

Schue agrees to purchase a quarter-page space when Rachel busts in, demanding a spot in the yearbook for the club and mentioning her Two Gay Dads. She is pleased to find the issue taken care of, and then busts into an internal monologue about being famous or something. Long story short, she’s in every club in the school so she can have her picture show up as many times as possible in the yearbook.

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Two be fair, one of her Two Gay Dads is black, and they don't know for sure he's not her biological father.
Two be fair, one of her Two Gay Dads is black, and they don’t know for sure he’s not her biological father.

 

But she really wants a glee club photo because she’s proud of what she and the club has accomplished, and she really wants to be remembered for it.

Britney and Santana are vandalizing school property / Rachel’s photos in last year’s yearbook, and Quinn soliloquizes about how she misses being a cheerleader. She resolves to be in the Cheerios photo one way or another.

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Terri helps Schue pick out a tie, and Schue tells Terri about hiw plan to buy a yearbook ad to use as the Glee photospread. It costs $300, which does not please Terri, since she needs all the money to feed her nonexistent child.

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Rachel wants to start a GayLesbAl.l with Kurt so she can officially be the most active student in the school. Kurt doesn’t know what the heck she’s talking about, so she clarifies: Gay-Lesbian-Alliance. Kurt just sighs and walks away. I gotta go with Kurt here, I mean everyone in this school will beat you up just for singing Journey or Springsteen or something, I’m sure they wouldn’t take kindly to a GayLesbAll.

Schue walks in an announces that since their yearbook spread will be so small, only two of them can be in it, so they’re to hold an election on the next day to decide on their “glee team captains”.

The next day:

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Rachel jumps up as soon as possible, saying she’s prepared a few words, to convince the club. Mercedes cuts her off and unenthusiastically nominates Rachel. Kurt seconds, everyone votes. Motion carried, Rachel is elected. Schue reminds them that they need two captains, but no one else wants the job, and they all would rather Rachel just do it alone. This disappoints Schue.

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Schue tells Emma his thoughts, and she tells him everything will change once the kids win Sectionals. Spoiler alert: no it won’t.

Schue then changes gears and accuses Tanaka of scheduling the wedding at the same time as Sectionals on purpose. Emma basically tells him he’s out of line, although she isn’t totally convinced herself.

Later, Schue flatters Rachel into deciding to find a co-captain on her own.

Mercedes says she can’t do it because Kwanzaa (although, as Rachel points out, Kwanzaa is late December and the photo is next Thursday).

Artie says the fact that he’d be sitting and she’d be standing would throw everything off. Rachel says she’ll just lean over, because apparently she’s not allowed to also be sitting, but Artie says if she leans over it’ll look like she has stomach rolls.

Britney is honest and straightforward, saying she won’t do it because the picture will get defaced, because she’ll be the one doing it.

Eventually Rachel convinces Finn. I forget how, I tune out Rachel and Finn a lot of the time, sometimes not even intentionally.

Rachel teaches Finn how to take a good picture by singing Lily Allen’s “Smile” because that makes sense. The song is quite obviously autotuned, because Rachel sounds like she was singing through a tin can, and also the lip sync was WAY off at points. Finn almost always sounds autotuned. This song also doesn’t make any sense in the context of the show – it’s about being glad that your ex is having a horrible time – but that’s par for the course on Glee.

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Brad was bobbing his head back and forth. Brad is my favorite character.

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Azimio and Karofsky, who’s now on the football team all of a sudden, draw on Finn’s face because they’re dumb. Karofsky doesn’t know how to spell “loser” but Azimio somehow knows what a haiku is. Weird.

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Finn doesn’t show up for the picture. Rachel’s sad but cheers her up with some song. She only sings one line so I’m not including it in the song count.  Also there’s stools.

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See my above point about Artie’s objections.

Rachel objects to the photographer leaving after only a few shots, because she’s prepared a variety of poses. But the photographer has a commercial shoot to do for his brother-in-law. Rachel bursts into tears, then revealing that she can cry on cue and has a variety of other talents. The photographer says that’s great, but he needs a number of other actors for the commercial. Hmm, where could Rachel possibly recruit a group of teenagers with attitude?

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They’re all totally cool with being in a commercial, and bizarrely, they get SUPER excited when Rachel says the commercial is for mattresses.

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Th club does a quick readthrough of the script. It’s terrible and hilarious.

Finn: Ah, me.
Mercedes: *staring into the distance* What’s wrong?
Puck: We just lost our jobs… *dramatic pause* at the factory. And we can’t get a good night’s sleep.
Rachel: Chipper up! Come on down to MattressLand. We’ve got our wholesale prices to fit your style and pocketbook!

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Rachel declares that the script is brilliant, but feels, since they’re a glee club, they should… perform. The photographer says “Perform the lines, as I wrote them.” The MattressLand owner guy asks what Rachel had in mind.

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They sing Van Halen’s “Jump” while jumping on mattresses. I can’t even be mad about how that’s gotta be ruining the merchandise because it’s a REALLY fun performance. Makes me want to buy mattresses. Brittany and Mike, the two played by professional dancers, are actually doing air flips off the mattresses. It’s awesome.

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Of course they’d need to get clearance to air this commercial with copyrighted material in it, but I’m willing to overlook that fact right now. It does contradict the plot of the season 3 Christmas episode, kind of, but we’ll get to that, maybe.

I can’t find a good quality video of the performance, but here’s a making-of that features clips of it.

Switching gears to one of the most frightening scenes on the show, Schue is looking for his pocket square in all the drawers. He asks Terri if he knows where it is, but she can’t hear him, so he starts looking in her underwear drawers, where he finds this.

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It’s one of Terri’s fake stomachs.

Schue finds Terri in the kitchen, where she tells him the pocket square is gonna make him look like Ted Knight.

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Ted’s the one who isn’t a chimpanzee.

Schue ignores this and asks Terri what the thing he has… is. Terri plays it cool, explaining that it’s a pregnancy pad, for pregnant women to project what they’ll look like in later months. It’s for trying on maternity clothes, you see. So you don’t have to come into the maternity store every month of your pregnancy. And yes, that actually IS what that is, and what it’s for. Terri goes on to say that her sister stole it for her so she could see if any of Schue’s clothes would fit her.

This explanation does not please Schue, even though, as I said, that IS what that thing is, and I believe her even though I know she’s using it to pretend to be pregnant.

But Schue just grits his teeth and throw the pad across the kitchen, knocking over utensils and whatnot. He steps forward, telling Terri to lift up her shirt. Terri steps back, telling Will he’s scaring her, and he needs to think what he’s accusing her of, and basically take a time out.

He corners her and lifts up her shirt. Schue is not so dumb as to not notice that his wife’s stomach is entirely made of padded fabric, and he is full of sadness and rage. His face contorts in anger and he rips the thing right off his wife, then, holding back tears, asks her “Why did you do this to us?”

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Terri, fear in her voice, explains – not calmly – that she was afraid he would leave her. She’s been feeling him pulling away for a while. Schue asks since when – since he started standing up to her, making their relationship one of equals? No, responds Terri, ever since he started the Glee Club and started walking around like he’s better than her. Schue ragefully asserts that he should be allowed to feel good about himself.

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Terri asks him who he’s kidding. Their marriage works, she says, because he doesn’t feel good about himself. Schue replies that it works because he loves her. Terri says no, he loves the girl he met when he was 15, and she’s not that girl anymore. Given that many of Schue’s previous ventures on this show have been about him reliving his high school days – recruiting April Rhodes because he had a crush on her as a teen, restoring an old car that’s the same make and model as the one he had in high school, heck even the glee club got started because he remembered how much fun his own club was – I would wager that Terri’s probably 100% on that point.

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After Schue asks why she would lie about the pregnancy, she explains that it didn’t start as a lie, and how she just panicked when she found out it was a hysterical pregnancy. Schue asks what she was planning to do when the due date came, and Terri explains about her deal with Quinn Fabray. Schue says “I loved you, Terri. I really loved you.” Terri tries to remind him of when they watched the first ultrasound together, and promised to always be there for each other or whatever, and begs him to help her try to make this work. Schue just gathers some of his things and storms out, all while Terri repeatedly keeps saying “Please don’t go! Please!”

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So, it’s hard to get the full effect of this scene through text, but this is what I referred to in at least one other post as “domestic violence-y.” Schue never hits Terri, but it sure seemed like he was about to several times. He was really terrifying. REALLY terrifying. To the point where I don’t know why I would be expected to feel sorry for him.

I mean, I get it. I’d be mad if I were him, too. I’m not condoning Terri’s actions. But considering part of Terri’s fears were that Schue would leave her, and especially leave her for Emma, and he DOES in like the next episode…

I don’t know, it’s just really hard to feel sorry for a frightening, yelling man over a smaller woman who’s clearly got some very strong issues who looked so frightened she probably just barely kept from peeing herself, who was afraid of her husband doing exactly what he ends up doing anyway.

Also if Terri had just taken my advice and faked a miscarriage… I guess miscarriages are sad and that’s why no one ever fakes them on tv when they’re pretending to be pregnant. Except in one episode of Degrassi. See Degrassi makes lots of sense sometimes.

So anyway, Schue heads to the school to sleep because…

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Dang. That guy gave the glee club like $2400 worth of merchandise.

But Schue has a place to sleep now so yaay I guess.

Unfortunately he pulls down one mattress to sleep on rather than laying down on all 12 of them at once.

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Matthew Morrison was too unknown at the time to get top billing.

On Sue’s Corner, Sue declares that the Friday after Christmas should be a national holiday where ugly people are forbidden to go outside. While at the news station, she sees the commercial for MattressLand. This can only lead to good things.

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Quinn demands to be in the Cheerios picture. Sue basically says and also that the glee club really messed up with that commercial.

It turns out that they accidentally disqualified themselves because Schue STILL HASN’T READ THE SHOW CHOIR HANDBOOK OH MY GOD. Basically since the glee club received payment for the commercial, they are disqualified from amateur status and are barred from competing at Sectionals, and mattresses given as a gift apparently count as payment. They could probably argue that since the kids weren’t contracted and did not willingly or knowingly accept the mattresses or approve any method of payment for the commercial, the mattresses shouldn’t count. I’m a middling expert in television law, you see.

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Quinn heard about mattress-gate, and threatens to tell Figgins about all the swag Sue showers on the Cheerios that should disqualify them from amateur status. Sue concedes and agrees to let Quinn back on the squad for the yearbook photos. Quinn isn’t done, though – she demands that Sue gives up one of the Cheerios full-page spreads and give it to Glee club. And also Quinn doesn’t want to be back on the Cheerios after all, because glee club is nicer.

Meanwhile, Schue pours his troubles on Emma again. Emma tells him to focus on his own life right now and forget the kids, because divorce is hard. Schue didn’t say anything about divorce, and Emma apologizes for assuming. Emma also understands Terri’s actions, saying she probably would’ve done something similar if she felt Schue slipping away.

Schue figures out that since HE slept on the one mattress, he officially accepted them and thus he’s barred from competing… somehow.

The kids don’t want to go without Schue, but he tells them they’re great and that if they can’t win without him, he hasn’t done his job. Yeah, Schue really HASN’T done his job. I mean most of the best numbers on this show – or, rather, ALL of them – were done completely without his input or guidance. He quit Glee  Club to pursue other interests at least twice, and foisted April Rhodes on the club for his own personal pleasure. He doesn’t ask the kids what they want, or listen when they tell him. He’s easily swayed by trends or whatever he thinks is cool without a thought to what’s actually best for the club. He reprimands Rachel for being so selfish but does nothing else about it. He makes changes to the setlist week after week without putting together any real time to rehearse the existing setlist. And the kids even organized an entire performance to be broadcast on television all on their own, and Schue didn’t even know about it.

What I’m saying is OF COURSE they can win without him, they’ve barely needed him so far.

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So everyone gets ready for their pictures. Also their yearbook doesn’t make any sense, the way the faculty is arranged. Will and Emma have pages together (Schuester and Pillsbury), and then Tanaka and Sue (Tanaka and Sylvester) have pages together. I mean I guess in their case they’re at least both coaches even though they aren’t arranged alphabetically.

The cast performs Charlie Chaplin’s “Smile” over a montage of getting prepared and getting pictures taken.

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And ends with the picture getting defaced.

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In my kindergarten class, there was this boy I really hated, and in my yearbook I drew an X through him. This yearbook vandalism above is only slightly more advanced. They didn’t even use more than one color Sharpie, for pete’s sake. And “Geek Club,” that’s so clever! That must’ve taken them hours to come up with.

It’s probably odd that Terri is the only person I felt sorry for in this whole episode. Maybe because I’ve grown to hate the rest of the characters, or maybe because DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ISN’T COOL. I mean, I don’t know if it really counts as domestic violence since all Schue did was throw something at a bunch of spoons and tear a pad off Terri, he didn’t hit her, but, again, it was REALLY frightening. And her cries of “Please don’t go! Please!” at the end of the scene are just heart-wrenching, on one hand because she really didn’t want him to go because even though she’s kind of crazy she DOES love him, and on the other hand, well, isn’t it kind of scary and a lot sad to hear someone calling for someone who almost scared them to death to come back?

Yes.

Next time is finally Sectionals. Yay…?

Song count: 61 total performances / 47 full-length performances

Smile, Jump, and Smile.

Best: Jump

Worst: Smile (the Lily Allen one)

I covered both of them already in the post.

Fun fact: This post may hold the record for most number of photos, at 40. PLUS a video.

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