Glee Season 4 Review “Dynamic Duets”

With almost everything else taking a break for Thanksgiving, Glee has decided to persevere and air a brand new episode during the holiday. Maybe the turkey-induced food coma most American viewers are going through dulled the pain of ‘Dynamic Duets’ but, in the cold light of an ordinary UK weekday, it’s pretty awful.

I almost changed my review simply because the last song, Fun’s ‘Some Nights’, was so entertaining, but it doesn’t change the fact that the bulk of the episode threw away logic and sense with such gay abandon, it left behind a filler episode of the worst kind. This kind of thing is not unprecedented for Glee, since there have been many episodes similar to this that I disliked with equal ferocity, and I’m aware than viewers with a different temperament may have thoroughly enjoyed the hour.

We spend the entire time at McKinley, the first to do this since ‘The Song You Were Born to Sing’, and the experience feels infinitely more stifling than it did in that entertaining slice of musical auditions and Grease parallels. Jake and Ryder are coming to a head over Marley, with the latter seemingly winning out for the time being, and the pair form a king of Finn/Puck-style bromance by the end. The whole thing is almost exactly the same of season one’s love square with Quinn and Rachel, and demonstrates the kind of lazy writing I was afraid would creep into the development of this new cast.

The saving grace is the individual stories for the foursome, with Ryder being diagnosed with dyslexia after Jake and Finn intervene. Ryan Murphy promised a great story for Blake when he won The Glee Project, and this doesn’t disappoint. It’s something I haven’t seen done on a prime-time drama, and they have the chance to really delve into his experiences and issues. Sadly, his new busy schedule has driven Marley, given a new burst of confidence by Kitty’s apparent friendship, into Jake’s welcoming arms, and it’s clear that this new love square will be chopping and changing for a while.

Elsewhere, Finn is finding it difficult to control the glee club now that’s he in charge, as most of the members were at school with him only a few months ago. It brings home how ridiculous it is for the recent graduate to be teaching a class, and he’s even started dressing like Will. It doesn’t help my belief of the situation when the whole club are dressed as superheroes for now discernible reason – they’re 18-year-old’s and really should have grown out of dressing up by now. It makes absolutely no sense in the context of the glee assignment, and just served to irritate the heck out of me. With the flack Kurt received for dressing a little effeminately, are we supposed to believe the jocks of the school would just let this go?

But the Warblers are back at least, as Blaine considers rejoining his old school when his pain over Kurt reaches a peak. The poor guy has been suffering in the background for a few episodes and no one has really talked to him, but Sam gets the full story about his dalliance with the other guy this week. Seeing him back in the blazer and singing an impromptu song with his old group was so nice, since there are a lot of Blaine fans who wish there was away we could have Dalton Blaine and McKinley Blaine at the same time. Obviously, he decides to stay with New Directions, and I predict there’ll now be a Klaine reconciliation sooner rather than later.

For some reason, Glee has saved it’s Thanksgiving episode for next week, and I sincerely wish they’d just cut ‘Dynamic Duets’ out in favor of their planned themed episode. What did you think? Let us know in the comments.

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