Glee – Episode 1-13 Fall Finale Review

I’m still in awe after watching tonight’s fall finale of Glee. This was some of the most heartfelt, goosebumps-inducing television I’ve seen in a while. For us Gleeks, it’s going to be a LONG four months…but alas, let’s get onto the episode! There’s a lot to cover!

Gossip is abuzz in the halls of William McKinley as news of Puck being the father of Quinn’s baby gets out. Mercedes is talking with her fellow glee clubbers to make sure that Rachel does not find out.  But after tricking Quinn and overhearing her conversation with Puck, Rachel finds out and realizes that poor Finn is still in the dark. She tells him the truth and next thing we know, he’s pounding his fist into Puck’s head while Quinn cries and the rest of the group looks on in shock. Quinn comes forward and Finn yells that he is done with her and glee, as he kicks a chair and storms out in tears.

In the midst of all this drama, they are trying to prepare for sectionals without the disqualified Will.  He tries to recruit another faculty member to be the chaperone and Emma agrees to take the kids even though it is on her wedding day. She assures Will she can just get married later that day and that Ken understands she’s doing it for the kids. In reality, Ken is fed up and knows that she is really doing it for Will.

Mercedes performs “And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going” from Dreamgirls as she and Rachel battle it out to perform the ballad at sectionals. After Mercedes’ electrifying performance, Rachel agrees that she deserves to sing that song.

As Will sees the kids off, he enlists Jacob (the strange reporter kid with the infatuation with Rachel) to fill in for Finn. Will knows that they need Finn to win and tries talking to him as he clears out his football locker. He tells him he understands what he’s going through, but you can’t always get what you want. He leaves his keys as a hint that Finn should take his car and drive to sectionals.

Meanwhile, the glee kids watch in horror as the School for the Deaf and Jane Addams Academy perform the stolen songs from their setlist (given to them by Sue), including “And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going,” “Don’t Stop Believin,” and a wheelchair-bound performance of “Proud Mary.” Everyone panics, but Finn walks in the room with a song in hand. Everyone is surprised and relieved to see him. Puck tries giving him a handshake, but Finn denies it, implying that him being there doesn’t mean things are OK now.

Mercedes, despite wanting to perform the ballad, tells Rachel she is the better singer and if anyone is going to do a song without rehearsal, it should be her. Rachel wows the audience with a powerful performance of Barbara Streisand’s “Don’t Rain on My Parade,” to which she receives a standing ovation. The group then breaks into (in my opinion) their best song all season, “You Can’t Always Get What You Want,” by the Rolling Stones, the song that Finn brought with him. Not only is this a great song choice, but the message and power behind the performance made this one of the best Glee moments to date. Will listens over the phone in tears, proud to hear how well the kids are doing on their own.

The judges don’t seem to happy to be there as they deliberate. The glee director from Jane Addams (played by Eve) tells the kids that they were great and that she is ashamed she reduced herself to cheating. She is about to tell the judges the truth when they say they already made their decision.

Figgins tells Sue that he has had enough with her antics and leaking the setlist was the last straw. She is fired as the Cheerios’ coach and is suspended from teaching. She storms out and tells Will that she will come back stronger and with more vengeance than ever. “Bring it on, William. I’m reasonably confident you’ll be adding revenge to the long list of things you’re no good at. Next to being married, running a high school glee club, and finding a hairstyle that doesn’t make you look like a lesbian.” Haha. Classic Sue.

While getting ready for the wedding, Will tells Terri that he doesn’t feel love towards her anymore. He then arrives at the wedding to find Emma sitting alone. She tells him that Ken left her and she gave Principal Figgins her resignation because she can’t be in that school. “I can’t look at Ken without feeling ashamed and I can’t look at you without feeling heartbroken.” As she walks away, Will grabs her arm lightly, looks up at her and tells her he left his wife. But she still leaves.

The kids show Will the huge trophy they won for placing first at sectionals (even with the other teams cheating). Then they perform a playful rendition of Kelly Clarkson’s, “My Life Would Suck Without You” to Will as they throw in choreography from all their past songs. Will then runs down the hall to find Emma leaving. FINALLY we get the kiss we’ve been waiting for all season! And it was SO worth the wait!

I’m personally going to have a void in my television-loving heart til April, but I suppose I’ll watch these past 13 episodes over and over again to fill it. Glee has rightfully become a huge phenomenon and I honestly can’t wait to see what’s ahead. See you in the Spring!

Sharon Tharp is a freelance writer who has contributed to a variety of publications including Hamptons magazine and the Web sites of both Marie Claire and CosmoGIRL!.

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