09 February, 2012

Glee - The Spanish Teacher

Glee recently shocked its audience (well, me) by announcing a SEVEN-WEEK hiatus. This is hardly surprising, as they are still shooting the Regionals episode set to air in two week, but a huge letdown when we've had break after break after break this season. As such, the latest episode 'The Spanish Teacher' is one of the three episodes we have left before the break, and we'll have to make the most of it.

Ricky Martin was the star of the episode - he played the character well, but is not particularly charismatic and is not someone I would want to stay in the programme long-term. The plot swang wildly between the Spanish theme, Will/Emma, Mercedes/Sam (still not a couple I understand) and Sue's baby troubles (another wild character u-turn for her there). Unfortunately, the episode took basically every character out of how they would actually behave.

The Spanish theme to the episode was a good idea, but the music failed to be particularly exciting - 'Sexy and I Know it' and 'La Isla Bonita' were highlights, but Sam's mashup and Schuester's performance were dull, and the episode failed to show the excitement and 'passion' of Spanish music - merely translations of some English-language songs. Whilst the episode seemed to be setting Santana up to be the biggest bitch in Ohio, her points were valid and her words to Schuh about being an inspirational teacher were 'deep'. However, along with Kurt's words to Finn this week, Glee seems to be setting the kids up to be sanctimonious and preachy, in a way that is unnatural to their characters and the club. Kurt's speech to Finn made sense, but noone seems to be able to work out what it is about Finn that is 'special' - is he destined to be a performer, or something else?

Other character failings in this episode were the travesty of pretending that Will, a smart and practical guy, doesn't know any of the language he has taught to high-schoolers for three years, Sue's plot to get a baby brought up some laughs - her chat to the Glee boys - and some bittersweet sadness - Becky telling her she'll be a good mum - but the direction of Sue's character this season seems chaotic at best.

The Sam/Mercedes love plot is tiresome - the resolution to their week apart was massively anti-climactic. They both wanted to be together, but again, Mercedes walks off with her boyfriend, ignoring Sam. In an episode of hilarious pamphlet-ing, and of showing Emma's success with her students, is everyone ignoring the fact that she didn't resolve their difficulty? And as much as I like Emma, she has never been shown, in three years, as 'good at her job', and now suddenly she's up for tenure?

The episode was not terrible - it had some hilarious laughs, and some touching moments. But these moments came in spite of the fact that the plot was not logical and the characters not consistent. Oh and one big issue I had with the script: Will offers to take Martin for coffee, and in the next scene he says 'I never drink coffee'. Difficult. Now let's have one absolutely killer episode next week, with plot AND funny lines, before the home stretch. 

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