Glee undergoes a “Makeover” in the third installment of this fourth season. Blaine (Darren Criss), lonely without Kurt (Chris Colfer), the entire reason he transferred to McKinley, seeks to find his place at the school. He decides, after a soulful rendition of “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” and a ridiculous montage of Blaine in various clubs, that maybe he should be class president. This puts him at odds with Brittany (Heather Morris), who is seeking a second term.
Blaine and Brittany square off in a debate with their running mates, Sam (Chord Overstreet) and Artie (Kevin McHale). It’s fantastic that Sue (Jane Lynch) says what many viewers are thinking: when did Vice Presidents and forums become a part of the school’s student government? It’s a clearly staged set up for a humorous story.
Which is fine. Glee is often a little over the top, and unlike Isabelle’s arrival, this appropriately furthers Blaine’s growth at a time when it is needed. The silly stuff, Sam and Brittany’s ditziness, and the song that duo share, “Celebrity Skin,” make things entertaining, and keep it from skewing too dark. Overall, this works, especially when sense wins out over stupidity, and because of the tongue in cheek method in which it is carried out.
I just do not like the setup of a Sam / Brittany pairing. Glee makes us care way too much about Brittany and Santana to ditch it now. It will take a heck of a lot to win me over, and the show is nowhere close to this point. Blaine and Kurt cannot split, either!
For his part, Kurt is already settling into a new role in the Big Apple, serving as an assistant to Isabelle Wright (Sarah Jessica Parker, Sex and the City), which leaves him little time for his boy back home. While it may be understandable that he is excited about his new position, ignoring Blaine’s calls isn’t completely in character, and Kurt deserves a good smack.
I do not like Sarah Jessica Parker. I can’t pinpoint exactly why; She seems like a perfectly lovely person. I just can’t stand the parts she plays, even after watching (and liking) all six seasons and both movies of Sex and the City.
That being said, Isabelle is a great part for Parker. She slides right into the Glee cast with ease, becoming a fairy godmother for Kurt. Her trio song. “The Way You Look Tonight” / “You’re Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile.” with Kurt and Rachel (Lea Michelle) is also annoying, but again, fits wonderfully into the voices and events of “Makeover.” It’s odd, but I think this might be the role that actually makes me begin to appreciate this actress.
Unfortunately, Isabelle’s introduction comes too soon. Kurt just arrived in the city, and instead of struggling, he lands in a cushy job with a boss who loves him and doesn’t mind that he breaks into the office late at night so his roommate can try on clothes. It’s coincidence that Kurt just happens to find the kindred spirit of Isabelle, but it’s too much to be believable. Had Isabelle arrived late in the season, there would have been a sense of a deserved reward. Instead, what’s easy to miss in the truly charming plot is that the whole thing should have been held off on until mid-season.
Will Kurt decide to give up singing to work in the fashion world? It’s disappointing, but it doesn’t come out of nowhere. Kurt’s clothing has always been an essential element to the character, and his voice, while very good, isn’t usually played with the Rachel Berry star quality. As long as the decision doesn’t come easily, this could be a pretty respectable shift. I just wish Kurt’s desk was next to Ugly Betty’s.
Rachel, on the other hand, is right on schedule with her story. She no sooner succumbs to Brody’s (Dean Geyer) wooing, enhanced by the song “A Change Will Do You Good,” than Finn (Cory Monteith) shows up at her door, catching the two of them together. Right from the beginning of the season, this is the exact turn of events that Glee tees up, completely obvious in its arc. It’s done well enough, but I’m glad to get past what we all know is going to happen so that we can find out which way the writers are going to take things now.
The final plot in “Makeover” involves Will (Matthew Morrison) stepping away from McKinley to work for show choirs on a national level. It’s strange, even when it is explained, that the committee meets at Will’s school, and it includes previous guest star Dalton Rumba (Michael Hitchcock, who has written several episodes), though I appreciate seeing Sean Gunn (Gilmore Girls) as another member. It also feels like a repeated story, because Will already struggles with leaving the school in a previous arc when he is offered a role on Broadway.
The way Will’s story will probably go is that he leaves, realizes he made a mistake, and then comes back, too late to save the group’s chance at another Nationals win. This is a rebuilding year, anyway, so letting Will step back will only add to the chaos of the leaderless New Directions. Let’s just hope Sue is made the temporary director in his absence, as that could be quite funny.
Will and Sue filmed a song for “Makeover” entitled “Mister Monotony” that is cut from this episode. This is horrible because advance photos of this number are all over the internet, and then the installment didn’t deliver. Ironically, the song was sung by Judy Garland in the film Easter Parade, from which it was also cut. Come on, Ryan Murphy! It’s time for another web exclusive deleted scene!
All in all, “Makeover” is not a bad episode of Glee, nor an overly impressive one. It goes a bit too light on drama and bit too heavy on goofy fluff. But it furthers a couple of plots, and is pretty entertaining. This places it somewhere near the middle when ranking episodes of the series.
Watch new episodes of Glee Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET on FOX.