“Glee” returned to FOX Thursday night for its fifth and most anticipated season yet. This season faces many challenges not only down the road with Cory Monteith’s death, but within the first few months.
Every episode of “Glee” is based around a specific theme, and this week’s and next week’s theme is “The Beatles,” which means the actors and the producers are making themselves very susceptible to harsh critique.
The Beatles are a very popular, extremely well-known musical group that has fans all around the world; therefore, there’s an enormous guarantee that most people who watch the episode are going to be comparing its songs to the originals and won’t be 100 percent satisfied.
Sometimes, though, a good plotline can save the show.
The show starts off with Rachel Berry, played by Lea Michele, at her call-back for “Funny Girl.” After her audition, she overhears the directors talking about how they think she’s too young for the part. She laments in singing “Yesterday” as she goes to look for a waitressing job.
Michele’s rendition of “Yesterday” sets the tone music-wise for the next two episodes. It shows the audience that while the cast members of “Glee” are never going to be The Beatles, they’re still pretty talented.
While Michele is very talented, it’s nice to get to hear from some of the show’s other cast members.
Will Schuster, played by Matthew Morrison, announces that the theme for the next two weeks will be “The Beatles.”
Artie Abrams, played by Kevin McHale, asks Kitty Wilde, played by Becca Tobin, if she will go on a date with him and she finally agrees to go to a carnival where they sing “Drive My Car.” It’s implied that Artie and Kitty have feelings for each other; however, Kitty wants to maintain her popularity so she asks Artie to keep the relationship a secret.
While some of the scenes of them together were cute, as Artie brings out a nicer side of Kitty, who played alpha-cheerleader for most of season four, the two characters are still very different – they have about two things in common.
Eventually, after being exposed by Tina Cohen-Chang, played by Jenna Ushkowitz, Kitty finally reveals that she and Artie are dating and will go public.
Singing aside, Sue Sylvester, played by Jane Lynch, returns to McKinley High and has taken the role of interim principal after framing Principal Figgins of possession of inappropriate material. Figgins is demoted to custodian and Sue plans to get the full-time position by the end of the year.
Lynch has always played Sue’s character as not only menacing and bold, but also quite hilarious. Sue Sylvester always seems to have the perfect unrealistic scheme and snide comment about Will Schuster’s hair.
After almost a season of being split up, Kurt Hummel and Blaine Anderson decide to get back together and do an elaborate rendition of “Got to Get You into My Life,” featuring members of the McKinley High School Marching Band.
The song is a happy change of pace after the solemnity of “Yesterday” and fits the situation quite well.
Back in New York City, Rachel gets a job as a waitress. She sees the directors of “Funny Girl” come in and decides to confront them. When they seem less than enthused with her statement of why she deserved that role, she and the other waitresses do a rendition of “A Hard Day’s Night,” with Rachel and Santana Lopez, played by Naya Rivera, leading.
The performance of the song is great; however, it shouldn’t have been performed as a way for Rachel to prove herself, as it shows no character growth since she graduated high school.
Back in Lima, Ohio, Blaine announces to the New Directions that he plans on proposing to Kurt and wants their help to make it special. In addition to this, he enlists the help of three other show choirs in the area with the song “Help!”
The closer, “All You Need is Love,” has a distinct powerfulness with all four show choirs and graduates of McKinley singing together followed by Blaine proposing to Kurt at the spot they met.
Overall, this episode was a good start to the fifth season where “Glee” will have several challenges down the road with the second Beatles tribute and the death of Finn Hudson, following Monteith’s death this summer.