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Gleeview: On My Way
mjacton
Spoiler Alert!


I don't know where to start with this review, so I'm just going to plunge right in.

Is anybody reading this review, after watching "On My Way," actually thinking about the fact that New Directions won Regionals and are going to Nationals?  I doubt it.

Frankly, I don't think I'm going to be able to review this episode appropriately right now, but I'm going to try.

I do think this is hands down the best of the "competition" episodes, basically because it did not feel like one at all.  The competition did contribute to it, but only because it helped the flow of the episode's story arc.  By that, I mean that during the Warblers' performance, I was definitely thinking about Karofsky, but during the New Directions performance, I was thinking about Rachel, Quinn, Finn, and the rest.  The music contributed to that, so I'll expand on that later.

David Karofsky has been a major character on Glee without being a regular character, and so his attempted suicide was surprising but not shocking like his panic kiss of Kurt.  However, that made the storyline a success I think.  If he had not survived, that would have been shocking, and the whole mood of the episode would have shattered.  Instead of the eventually optimistic tone that part of the story took, the Finn/Rachel/Quinn storyline would have been completely overshadowed until maybe the last moment.  I haven't really cared all that much about this part of the Glee story, but I can definitely appreciate its value and I think they've done it well, most of the time.  This episode was no exception.

The real shocker was the end.  It was shocking because even though I knew she was distracted and endangering herself, I just couldn't fathom that this would happen right up until it did.  I don't know what it means.  I can't even begin to have a sense of what's going to happen to Quinn, but the build up to it was amazing!  It wasn't necessarily clear-cut was happening, but I have some ideas.

Quinn has supposedly straightened out her life, but it feels like just the beginning for her.  She's put her mistakes behind her, but it seems like she's still trying to begin living.  Solidifying her friendship with Rachel and going to Yale began that process.  Re-joining the Cheerios is probably a positive step for her.  Even though it's a "high school" activity and she's looking toward the future, cheering is something she was undeniably good at.  I can't argue with that.

Her supposed support of Finn and Rachel's wedding also proved something.  She cares a lot about Rachel, and she wants her to be happy.  But, it's obvious to me by her facial expressions and still unenthusiastic support that she still doesn't think marrying Finn, at least right now, will make her happy.  And, it's clear from Rachel's delay of the wedding, that she cares a lot about Quinn too.  I found it quite interesting that Finn would say "now or never" and Rachel would respond by further delaying.  Now, Finn wasn't completely serious.  He clearly didn't mean the expression as an ultimatum (at least not yet), and it didn't feel like one.  [Note:  Okay, strike that.  On second watch, it totally felt like Rachel took it as an ultimatum even if Finn didn't mean it that way.]  But, it's quite apparent to me that Rachel is placing a lot of importance on her friendships, with Quinn especially.  Earlier in the episode, she looked right at Quinn when she said she was looking forward to being friends with the original members of New Directions forever, and then she delayed the wedding for her.  If Quinn lives, which I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that she does, this is just the beginning for Faberry (Quinn/Rachel).  There's something special there...who knows what it can be?

Finally, before I started watching I was expecting this to end on a cliffhanger with Rachel wondering how to answer the "Do you take Finn...?" question.  They didn't even get that far.  I'm most interested in knowing what happens immediately following this moment.  Does Rachel go ahead with the wedding, ignorant of Quinn's accident?  If she does, a lot can still happen (we still haven't seen the parents' plan in action, and there's always regret and annullment).  Does she stop the wedding because she wants Quinn there to see her get married?  Does she stop it because she thinks Quinn isn't there because she still doesn't support it?  Rachel seemed to believe Quinn was on her way, but Santana's doubt may have gotten to Rachel.  Rachel has to make a decision immediately, oblivious to Quinn's fate.  This is quite the cliffhanger with many implications.  Amazing stuff!  Yes, some people are going to be upset that Quinn's speech about Rachel wasting her life on Finn Hudson was in the previews but was not in the episode, but for me that doesn't really change anything.

See you April 10!

Favorite Line
This was not a funny episode, but there was at least one funny line, although the Berry Men always get honorable mention for their antics at least.

Puck:  Those Golden Goblet madrigal singers were way better than I thought they'd be.
Brittany:  Are you high?  I couldn't hear their instruments at all.

Musical Rundown
"Cough Syrup" by Young the Giant--This was, in my opinion, Darren Criss's (Blaine) best performance on Glee so far.  He showed controlled power with his voice.  The context obviously didn't hurt, but the performance was very good on its own.

"Stand" by Lenny Kravitz--As I alluded to above, I thought the competition performances were perfectly done to fit the mood of the story overall.  The Warblers are never all that exciting to listen to, for me, and so the fact that I was pondering what happened up to this point in the episode while listening actually worked as a creative device.

"Glad You Came" by The Wanted--After Sebastian's plea for donations, this worked as an inspirational "give 'til it hurts" anthem of sorts.

"She Walks in Beauty" by Eric Barnum--Who's Eric Barnum?  He's a composer and doctoral student at the University of Washington, Seattle according to Wikipedia.  In any case, we didn't hear much of this.  It was a pleasant transition.

"Fly"/"I Believe I Can Fly" by Nicki Manaj (feat. Rihanna)/R. Kelly--"I Believe I Can Fly" is, for me, a really, really cheesy song.  But, pairing it with "Fly" in this arrangement I thought was amazing.  New Directions did a wonderful job with it.  And, it represented a definite and noticeable shift in mood for the episode.

"What Doesn't Kill You (Stronger)" by Kelly Clarkson--This completed the shift in mood that set up the rest of the episode.  It was a powerful performance that was typical of New Directions.

"Here's to Us" by Halestorm--This was, believe it or not, my favorite "moment" of the episode and not only because it was Lea Michele (Rachel) at or near her best.  It was the reactions of her fathers, especially Hiram, played by Jeff Goldblum.  They clearly hadn't seen her perform on stage, not really a surprise, since she started with New Directions.  No matter what kept them away before, it was clear she was a revelation to them.  It's one thing to see a video or hear someone sing in the living room.  This seemed like they were hearing for the first time at her full strength, and I loved it.