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'Glee' Recap: The End Of Twerk

Gennyvera Pacheco |
November 15, 2013 | 2:33 p.m. PST

Staff Reporter

The twerking craze hit McKinley High this week. (Fox)
The twerking craze hit McKinley High this week. (Fox)
Well…this was going to happen at some point. Here we go. Or in the words of Robin Thicke, "Everybody get up!"

Thursday's episode of "Glee" focused its attention on none other than the art of the twerk.

You may ask yourself (because I certainly did), "How in the world are they going to even begin to talk about this?" That's the thing: no matter how zany or facepalm-worthy it is, this show somehow gets to the point.

We have Blaine Anderson's butt to thank for this week, twerking his way through the choir room while organizing chairs. Tina films him and shows it to the rest of glee club. Unsurprisingly, they laugh at him, but Mr. Schue's intrigued. He sees the reaction the dance craze has on the kids, and he decides to incorporate it into their performance for Nationals. Marley voices her concern over her lack of super modern dance skills, so Twerking 101 is held in the auditorium. Everyone's having a great time laughing and bonding over risqué dance moves, but through all this, Sue watches from afar as their joy ignites her rage.

While they bust a move, Rachel sits at a hair salon in New York and tells the hairdresser that she's ready for a change. She shortly arrives at a "Funny Girl" rehearsal and takes off her hat to reveal a short and chic bob. The director is livid, stating that everything the audience sees, hears, and tastes has to be meticulously plotted out by him. He puts this rage aside to see Rachel and her leading man in the musical run "You Are Woman, I Am Man" and they do amazing. Unfortunately, the new hairstyle detracts a bit much from the scene, but the director is too pleased to have Rachel as the lead to get more worked up about it.

READ MORE: Recap for last week's episode, 'A Katy Or A Gaga'

Back in McKinley, Mr. Schue's teaching when Unique raises her hand and asks to be excused to use the restroom. She shows up and unexpectedly bumps into head cheerleader/mean girl extraordinaire, Bree. Unique acts as if her presence in the girls' restroom was an accident, but Bree sees through the excuse. She agrees not to tell anyone about their meeting.

And as Unique stated, the bathroom riots began. Girls saw that boys' restrooms never had lines, and boys loved how clean the girls' restrooms are. Next thing we know, there's raves happening in the bathroom!

Rachel's subtle rebellion begins with a new look. (Fox)
Rachel's subtle rebellion begins with a new look. (Fox)
In the same way that using the other gender's bathroom is causing commotion the school, rebelling is giving Rachel lots of ideas. Like the haircut from earlier; it was actually a wig! She just wanted to make a point to the director that she is not simply "a prop." Go Rachel! She encourages Kurt to follow her lead by calling him "boring" and predictable. After some denial over these statements, Kurt finally complies and goes to a tattoo parlor with her.

"The pandemic of twerking" must be stopped, according to Sue's news segment. She announces to ban it in at school, hopefully raising awareness towards having it gone from the law entirely.

The kids of glee club are outraged; they all resign to Sue and her evil plans, but Will doesn't allow them to do so. He encourages them to fight back…an impromptu performance of the monster hit "Blurred Lines"  seems to do the trick. There's a whole monologue beforehand about how twerking brings together the best of the past and present, but I can't get over the fact that this is a high school teacher promoting promiscuous dancing to an even more inappropriate song. It's just too disturbing, in my opinion.

For once, Sue seems to agree, calling Will out on his actions. As principal, she fires him, but Mr. Schue says he isn't going anywhere, standing his ground thanks to the first amendment. Twerk for freedom of speech!

A new day begins, and Rachel and Kurt are in their little New York loft. Kurt sits down and as his back hits the chair he winces and remembers that he got a tattoo! From far away (and by far away, I mean Tumblr and Twitter) you can hear the screams of a hoard of Chris Colfer fans as he takes off his robe. Everything's fine and dandy until Rachel points out the typo in his "personal" and "political" tattoo: instead of "It Gets Better" it reads "It's Get Better"…the look on Kurt's face is priceless. He's even more enraged after Rachel confesses to backing out of getting some ink. Kurt decides to go back to the tattoo parlor as soon as possible to get it fixed.

Unique struggles to find her place in school and brings new meaning to Beyonce's "If I Were A Boy". (Fox)
Unique struggles to find her place in school and brings new meaning to Beyonce's "If I Were A Boy". (Fox)
Back at McKinley, Unique is still struggling with simply going to the bathroom. Since she is transgender, it's much more than that; it's an issue of gender expression. Nobody at the school, especially the jocks in the men's restroom who rip off her wig and flush it down the toilet, understands what she's going through. She lets out some of her frustrations through song, with a stripped down interpretation of "If I Were A Boy." It's absolutely beautiful, and I applaud Alex Newell, who plays Unique, for such a vulnerable and honest performance.

When she's done singing, some of the guys in the club ask for names to know who to fight. Unique thanks them, saying their support means a lot, but anything they do won't fix things. If anything, it'll make it more difficult on her.

Will calls a meeting in front of the school board, proving his case on twerking and how it's important not to ban it. He compares its potential legacy to that of waltzing, which was considered scandalous in its time, or the twist and the mashed potato, now seen as "quaint."

Sue finally agrees and gives Unique her unisex own restroom, and it seems like the issue has been resolved, right?

We're only 25 minutes into the episode! Of course not! The port-a-potty, decorated with bright yellow question marks, is nailed to the ground inside the choir room. Exasperated sigh on three. 1, 2, 3. [Crowd sighs]

Kurt storms into the tattoo parlor and starts insulting the guy who screwed up his tattoo. The man behind the body art screwup ends Kurt's fury when he shows him the paper he was handed. "It's Get Better," it reads. Thankfully, the tattoo artist agrees to help Kurt by editing the typo, free of charge. He even offers a free tongue piercing, and Kurt is startled and says that he's done with rebelling. The guy makes a good case in saying, "You step back now, you will never take another risk again."

Conflict arises between Marley and Jake, the most recent it-couple of the show. (Fox)
Conflict arises between Marley and Jake, the most recent it-couple of the show. (Fox)
The episode wouldn't be complete without continuing the Marley-Jake-Bree storyline from last week. There have been some glances between Jake and Bree throughout, but no dialogue had been exchanged until Bree pokes fun at Marley's terrible twerking. Marley tries to walk away and ignore her, but Bree keeps picking on her and soon spills the truth about her and Jake hooking up after mentioning a mole on his right hip. As much as she wants to deny it, Marley becomes paranoid and asks Jake to show her the mole, to see that if it isn't there that maybe it's all just Bree's way of playing games with her. He doesn't agree to it, just replies with an apologetic, "Marley…" She walks away before he can go any further, and the beginning notes of "Wrecking Ball" play in the background. 

In rehearsal, time passes by slowly for Unique, until she raises her hands and asks to use the restroom in the middle of the room. Everyone's pretty hesitant about sticking around after she uses it, but before she does, Mr. Schue asks her to follow him. He takes her to use the faculty restroom, and on the way there, he tells Unique to find places she belongs and surround herself with people who love her, so that one day she'll be able to fight the world's lack of acceptance with an army of loyal friends by her side. Mr. Schue agrees to any time she needs to go that he'll let her borrow the key, thus avoiding the complications of using the student restrooms. 

Surprise, surprise, Kurt got a tongue piercing! And his tattoo is fixed thanks to creative phrasing. For the rest of his days (unless he decides to get it removed) Kurt will have, "It's got Bette Midler," written on him. As Rachel says, "It's genius and makes absolutely no sense." She inquires about the "tongue stud" and Kurt narrows it down to losing Finn, how difficult it's been on everyone. In response to Kurt's suggestion about getting a tattoo of her own, Rachel states, "I don't think that there's anything that I would love enough that I would want to get on my body for the next fifty years." Once Kurt leaves the room, Rachel walks to the bathroom and stands in front of the mirror. She slowly lifts her blouse and there, in small, beautiful cursive is a simple "Finn." Rachel got this tattoo for herself, to have Finn with her every step of the way.

As a fan, I appreciate a mention of Finn here and there. It's a good middle ground: too much mentioning him would be too much to bear for the viewer, and completely disregarding him would make no sense considering how important he was to the show. 

The last scene of the episode finally puts the bathroom issue to an end, bringing victory to Unique in the form of a key to the faculty restroom. Sue agrees to giving her a copy after seeing Will let her use it. The one condition? Stop the twerking for good. Will tells the kids and they're upset, but Unique says it was all done for her. They stop complaining, and decide that twerking's dumb after all, that they'll find a number that brings out their strengths, something like the old days of the club. Everyone runs to the auditorium and sings "On Our Way" by up-and-coming artist The Royal Concept. It's happy and fun for all, except Marley and Jake, foreshadowing the future of their relationship. Will they move past Jake's infidelities, or is this dynamic duo over? 

More importantly, when the heck is Nationals going to happen? Certainly not next week, because some of the McKinley kids are going to New York! Sam, in particular, seems to be scoring some gigs as a model, and guest star Tyra Banks could possibly play a part on his road to stardom. 

WATCH: Promo for next week's Billy Joel tribute, "Movin' Out," premiering next Thursday at 9PM on Fox. 

Reach Staff Reporter Gennyvera Pacheco here.



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