In tonight’s Glee, we are treated to a very rare, and very compelling hour of television that I had great reservations about initially. Usually on Glee, stories revolve around some odd quirk that one of the cast members is currently having, but this episode deals with the very serious near death of Burt Hummel, Kurt’s father, and Kurt’s spiritual crisis and how his lack of spirituality comes at a great worry to the rest of the gang.
I rather enjoyed the fact that the writers decided to cut out all of the typical Glee neuroses when dealing with such sensitive subjects as death and religion. We can attribute a lot of that fact to the plethora of musical numbers in the episode tonight, almost all of which had some serious emotional power behind them. Kurt’s rendition of the Beatles “I Want to Hold Your Hand” was by far the biggest surprise of the night, and it was definitely the biggest stylistic change from the original that the show has done. The original Beatles’s standard was by far a happier and lively song, but tonight’s version by Kurt cuts deep into the soul by a radically melancholy styling. It should be taken as a prime example of how chord progressions and tone can completely change the feeling of music, even if it’s using the same words.
Originally, I was worried that the writers would play very heavily on the religion aspect of the episode, or more specifically, adhering to a Christian religion. In today’s ever increasing secular world, the writers take a great risk to impose any type of religion upon an unwilling audience. Fortunately, the Glee writers recognized this and treated the subject with great respect by not imposing any one religion upon it’s viewers, but rather the concept of spirituality as a whole, and the need to “believe in something…because life is too hard to go though alone without something to hold on to.” This entire idea manifests itself in the interactions of Kurt, and his desire to push away from those with faith and to push all concepts of faith out of his life. It’s a view that, sadly, is shared by too much of the modern world, but in tonight’s episode, we see how the serenity offered by faith, whether in God or family, can turn even the most hardened hearts.
- Kurt makes a joke about the Flying Spaghetti Monster
- The Grilled Chessus is similar to an actual event that happened.
- “I need to know that my children will be free to worship the way I decide they should” – Rachel
- The cast version of “One of Us” is my second favorite song of the night (as it’s always been one of my favorite songs in general), with Kurt’s “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” being the favorite.
- “Heart attacks are just from loving too much.” – Brittany
- Emma might be the only other person period who knows about Sue’s sister. It was also interesting to see her march in and take Sue down a notch. Even though Sue wasn’t even phased, you have to wonder if she gains a small bit of respect for her afterwards.
- “Papa, Can You Hear Me?” – Barbra Streisand (Rachel Berry)
- “Losing My Religion” R.E.M. (Finn Hudson)
- “I Want to Hold Your Hand” The Beatles (Kurt Hummel)
- “One of Us” Joan Osborne (New Directions)
- “I Look to You” Whitney Houston (Mercedes Jones)
- “Only the Good Die Young” Billy Joel (Noah Puckerman)
- “Bridge over Troubled Water” Simon & Garfunkel (Mercedes Jones)