Recap: “Glee” season 4 continues with episode 2, second Britney Spears story

“Glee” season 4 continues with episode 2, “Britney 2.0.” The series picks up on the second half of the Britney Spears story.  The excitement begins with Brittany giving herself a voiceover about the good in her life (though she misses Santana). She leads the Cheerios in “Hold It Against Me,” before Sue brings her to her office. Brittany got an F- on an exam (she drew Happyville on the back), and since she’s a bad role model for the Cheerios, Sue is kicking her out. Kitty is going to be the head cheerleader.

Afterwards, we finally see Santana, who’s super busy with cheering practice every night until homecoming, so she doesn’t have time to “scissor Skype” (I swear I’m not making that up). They really are making Brittany into a caricature. Who would really draw rainbows on the back of their test. Clearly Brittany isn’t on top of the world anymore.

There’s also a lot of old faces. Here’s WEMMA — Will and Emma double-team Brittany (who did in fact, lose the high pony, and is wearing an outfit from the Lost and Found–she kind of looks homeless…) for a meeting and give her a pamphlet called “So You Look Like Crap.” But Brittany turns down their help because she has no time.

But great news! They’re going to perform at the Pep Rally and Schue’s great idea is to help Brittany get back on track by doing another Britney Spears week. Since Brittany is inspired by Britney, this should fix everything. I wish they had that idea when I was in high school. Do a 42-minute seminar on something that inspires you, even if it is Britney Spears. This segues nicely into Artie and Blaine doing a mashup of “Boys” and Bieber’s “Boyfriend” which is Ok but not stellar. I’m waiting for BIG.

Unique tries to form a bond with Marley, who is interested in Jake. He’s not for you, is Unique’s rather clear message — delivered through “Womanizer.” This would have been a good sex-appeal song (But I guess they’re saving all the sex appeal in this episode for Rachel). The song features Unique with Marley and Tina–and a bunch of random girls as backup. Again, not much oomph. There’s a lot of shots of Jake though. He definitely is channeling Puck. But you can tell Marley has a great voice…she really can be Rachel 2.0.

Tina, Sam and Joe decide to sing an acoustic version of “3″ which is probably the best song of the episode so far. It’s original and different, and showcases Tina’s voice, but the song is interrupted when Brittany tries to shave her head because she can’t have her high pony. The Glee kids manage to stop her but she gets bombarded by Jacob Ben Israel and his microphone. This causes her to go into … sort of a rage and she beats him with a green umbrella. And Schue stands there, not stopping her, instead reprimanding Jake about not going to class and riding a scooter in the hall. Beating a kid with an umbrella vs scooter. Yes, I see which one needs immediate attention.

New Kid scene: Jake and Marley meet out by the bleachers for their “date” and have a heart to heart which leads to her singing “U Drive Me Crazy” and Jake joining in, adding Aerosmith’s “Crazy.” I also like this mashup. Again, Marley’s voice is awesome. There’s definitely chemistry between these two (after last week I thought it was going to be Marley and Sam, so this should be interesting. An upcoming love triangle, perhaps?) and the scene ends with Jake giving Marley his leather jacket. So far, the stripped down songs are shining.

Brittany has 70 ounces of espresso and talks to Kiki instead of Siri. The rest of the Glee Club wants Brittany to be the lead at the Pep Rally, which doesn’t seem to excite her that much, since she’ll have to lip sync because her voice is too weak to sing live. “We don’t lip sync” Blaine says… (ha. That’s a nice answer to a question that’s been raised a lot…now just answer the Auto Tune question, please).

Lunch time: in the cafeteria the football players start picking on Marley’s mom. When Marley stands up to them, they start picking on her. Jake stands up for her, gets into a fight and Schue finally steps in, taking him to meet Puck. Puck is the original bad ass: he had his first threesome at 7 and once beat up a police horse. (Line of the night). Puck says what made him a man was being in Glee Club, not banging every chic at school twice. Puck has to head back to LA for his date with the third runner up on “The Bachelor” but tells Jake that no matter what, they’re brothers.

It’s finally time for the Pep Rally. The Glee Club is all ready…well except for Brittany. She’s all about eating Cheetos and wearing about 90% less clothes than the rest of the club combined. Uh. Ok, this doesn’t go really well at all, despite the Cheetos. Kitty shouts out that they’re lip syncing and the whole gym boos. “Lip syncing is the equivalent of doping in professional sports!” Schue yells. And Brittany resigns from Glee Club effective immediately.

Sam has Brittany meet him in the auditorium, because he knows what she’s doing: she’s hitting rock bottom so she can plan a glorious comeback like Britney, who is getting $14 million to be on X Factor. (Thank you, shameless plug). Sam is staging an intervention. One of the main issues is Brittany missing Santana and Sam offers to be her friend.

Brittany begins her comeback. She studied the school’s charter and tells Coach Sue that she’s technically still president, and she drafted an executive order (in crayon) to be reinstated on the Cheerios. Although an idiotic plan, Sue does credit Brittany with putting some thought and a tiny bit of logic into it. Sue wants Brittany to turn her grades around, but she already is. She’s getting tutored by Schue and Emma and knows who President Obama is (but thinks Washington is Glenn Close…) and gets a C- on her U.S. history exam. Sue lets her back on the team.

Over in NYC, Cassandra July informs Rachel that she doesn’t have any sex appeal to do a credible tango. (Truth). And in one of her more constructive-criticism moments, she tells Rachel that she is “awkward and tentative” and moves like she’s “ashamed” of her body. There’s a lot of tough love in this episode. But no worries, Kurt and Rachel found this huge loft that’s only $1800 a month and there’s New York Domino’s. They are “living in the future.” Nobody has heard from Finn. Kurt has a plan – he’s going to reapply to NYADA 2nd semester, but until then he hopes to get a job at Vogue. (Because that’s realistic). Rachel complains about Cassy July “the biggest train wreck in Broadway history.” Kurt explains – she flips out on an old man whose cell phone rings during her performance. “You can’t cave into her, you have to keep fighting” Kurt advises. Oh. I see where this is going.

Brody is doing 98 sit ups on a park bench, because that’s also normal. Rachel confides that Cassy told her that she’s not sexy, to which Brody immediately replies “you’re crazy sexy.” And they decide to defy Cassy’s rule of mixing upper class men and freshmen and dance together. GASP!
Back in the dance studio, Rachel is dressed “Bob Fosse chic” but Cassy thinks it’s “Walgreen’s Underwear Model.” Somehow Cassy lets Rachel do her number without too much hassle. And here’s the much-talked-about “Oops!…I Did It Again.” It made me think of “Chicago” and the “Cell Block Tango” number. While i wouldn’t say Rachel is super sexy, she’s not a prude. There’s a ton of chemistry between Rachel and Brody; Finn should probably be worried. According to Cassy, Brody was incredible, Rachel was just Ok (and the song was garbage). She doesn’t see Rachel in sexy roles, she sees her as Maria von Trapp, Willy Loman, Shrek. Then Rachel drops the bomb: “You’re just jealous of me, of all of us. Because we have our entire careers ahead of us and your’s ended before it even began. We’re the future and you’re just some YouTube joke.” Well. That wasn’t smart. She gets kicked out of class.
Later on Rachel goes to apologize to Cassy. Cassy points out a rather important fact — both her and Rachel snapped and lashed out, yes, but all it took for Rachel to lose it was “honest feedback and dance class.” How’s she going to make it on Broadway where all there is scrutiny and judgment? What if her outburst was taped and posted on the Internet? You only have one chance, you can’t screw it up. Cassy tells Rachel that she was great, but not ready for the pressure. “it’s a whole lot more vicious out there than it is in here.” And that’s why she picks on her students, so they are ready. Cassy doesn’t believe in second chances because she knows they don’t exist, but school policy dictates that Rachel only gets a warning and is on probation. And has to do chores.

At their awesome apartment, Rachel paints Finn’s name in a huge double heart. Ok that’s a little crazy. Kurt and Rachel are going to get cake, but Brody arrives with an orchid after a 45 minute ride on the J train. He brings her an orchid because it’s good luck for a new place. Brody really liked dancing with Rachel, thinks she’s sexy and tries to kiss her…but Rachel stops him. Brody is going to respect her boundaries, but will always be thinking of kissing her. Wow. A 45-minute train ride and he takes rejection rather well.

Jake asks Marley if he can sit with her in glee club. He hears it can help. She tells him to stick with her, but then Kitty interrupts asking for his jacket since they’re dating. Jake joins New Directions, and Marley sings “Everytime.” Cassandra has Rachel participate in class instead of sitting and watching, and Brody watches from the doorway. Brittany waits for Santana to come online. Marley watches Jake and Kitty together. Rachel paints over “Finn” and the heart.

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