105 – The Rhodes Not Taken

Best Song

New Directions – Somebody To Love

Rin says: Well…this is just. What can I really say?

This is one of my all-time favourite Glee performances, for sure. And not because of what I’m going to go crazy over in a few minutes. But this is one of those moments where early on you knew these bunch of kids were something special. This is the first time New Directions, as we know it today (mostly!), first performed together and showed themselves as a force to be reckoned with.

And they’re all wearing blue shirts with jeans and black ties and oh my god they are so adorable.


Somebody to Love.

It’s an epic song, truly one of the greats. I made sure to watch the original music vid to remind myself of how amazing Queen are, and I really do believe Glee did the song justice.

Sophy says: Do you know how much I love this performance? So much that when I think of blue, this is among the first things that pops into my head. (RED IS DON’T STOP BELIEVING, YELLOW IS WALKING ON SUNSHINE, GREEN IS I WISH I HAD A RIVER, BLACK AND WHITE IS CHRISTMAS, PINK IS FABERRY, ALWAYS.)

Look, there’s a reason why this is a favourite with fans and cast members alike and it’s not just because of what Rin’s going to go crazy over in a few minutes. This is the glory days of Glee: a great classic to sing, costumes that are as simple as when you get your mum to buy a coloured teeshirt at target for your sports carnival in primary school, and so much fucking heart it hurts.

And like Rin says, it’s really the first time the group came together – the first time they stood together as a team. Many friendships are still to be made, there’s still so much falling in love to do, so many ways to get lost, so many places to break through… but when it comes to this moment, on this stage, in front of the world, the kids are firmly on each other’s side for the very first time. That’s why Emma looks like she’s going to cry.

And let the record show how much we love this performance: we let it take out the gold over that incredible duet Lea and Kristin did. So.

Rin says: OMG :(( The colour thing :(( So true :((

And that’s the thing, with this being a favourite amongst the cast. You can really feel that, ya know? I remember reading that, I think, Jenna? saying how this was the first time they all really bonded as a whole. And when these kids are having fun together, that shines through more than anything. This cast is amazing, their spirit is amazing, and that’s why this performance is a stand-out.

Oh and.

I guess.


WHAT? Stopping at one gif? Have I grown as a human being?!?! 8-.




Biggest LOL

“Oh Bambi, I cried so hard when those hunters shot your mommy.”



Rin says: I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that he’s wearing a business suit and looks like an old drunkard.

AND AW. Aren’t we all just missing Chris’ old hair? BABEH.


Best Scene


Sophy says: Someday Rin will have to have this talk with me…

Really though, I found this very relateable, at my advanced age. Trying to pretend you’re still a teenager just isn’t healthy and turns you into a bitter, orange-skinned alcoholic in a pink cowgirl outfit? And yet, I am still busy earning my fringes.


The thing about April is that she was just plain fantastic, and she should have stayed right here. She made a great guest star, but her connection to Will was too tenuous to warrant a recurring role. Idina Menzel? Sure, she can come back as much as she likes, on account of how she’s Rachel’s biological mother. But whenever they brought April back after this episode it always felt forced to me, like they wanted Kristin back, and it didn’t matter how they did it. But let’s stick to her first outing, which I’ll admit was terrific. I also loved that Will actually handled this with some sensitivity, though it did serve to hammer home to me just how poorly he treats Rachel by comparison, but I’ll shut up about that. For a couple of paragraphs.

Rin says: When I was rewatching this scene, I almost got a little teary when April was talking about how Will would never let what happened to her, happen to one of his kids. I JUST. YES. So maybe they overlook that from time to time, but I am in love with the idea of it all. That he’s the protector. And I think that’s why I’ve never fully been able to hate Will and everything that he stands for. Because I’ve always thought his intentions and heart were in the right place, … he’s just a douche bag sometimes! :-??

Sophy says: Well, you’re better at compartmentalizing than I am. And also generally a less angry person. :-??


Most Retrospectively Ironic Moment

“Can we please talk about the giant elephant in the room?”
“Your sexuality?”


I want a gay elephant. To go with my rage elephant.



Also Rachel does this thing a lot in season one where she stands with her feet together and her shoulders slumped and it’s just all kinds of ridiculously adorable.

Rin says: Oh closet-Santana. We’re going to have so much fun with you.


Rophy Says No!

We don’t care how many babies you have to provide for, this is not okay.

Sophy says: I cannot fucking deal with how wrong this was. Looking back, Rachel actually got treated a lot worse than I remembered, and not by the people whose names get frequently paired with the word ‘bully’. Nothing Quinn or Santana ever did to Rachel compares with this. It’s like, off the cruelty charts. And no, it’s not an excuse that Finn’s girlfriend is having a baby. Rachel is not some kind of appliance that exists to be used by Finn in order to get ahead. She’s a person.

But as painful as this was to watch, it does prove that the whole wedding debacle in season 3 didn’t come out of nowhere. You guys, Rachel may know she’s a star, but she has never had any self esteem when it comes to relationships. A girl with healthy self esteem would cease pining after a guy when he did something like this to her. And the sad thing is… Rachel knows that. That’s why she pretends to stop pining at the end of this episode. She says all the right things – like that he’s not going to get his way – that he should have been honest with her – that her dreams are bigger than him… but ultimately it’s all a smoke-screen. Ultimately she’ll go back to Glee, overlook the lies, and in a few years’ time she’ll be telling him how she doesn’t need Broadway, she just needs him.

Rachel put Finn on a pedestal in the pilot, and nothing has ever been able to knock him off it.

She put Quinn on a pedestal too. And their story has been all about getting her off it.

Look, I know I go to that Faberry place about as easily as most people go to sleep when they’ve been drugged, but I do have a point here. It’s interesting to me how far Rachel’s been able to progress in terms of her relationship with Quinn, compared with how stagnant she’s been in her relationship with Finn. Finn is still the jock, whether he plays football or not. He’s still the ideal, no matter how frequently and patently he’s been revealed not to be the ideal. The thing is that Rachel is so concerned with loving Finn that she doesn’t actually see Finn. The thing is that she does see Quinn – she sees right through to the quick of her – to the point where she is a means by which Quinn finally began to see herself, perhaps for the first time in her life.

For three seasons Finn has been the one that Rachel wants – ooh ooh ooh, honey. But over three seasons Quinn has become “so much more” to her than the “Cheerleader Quinn Fabray”.

I think that’s why Faberry is so important to me. It moves.

Meanwhile I love how Finn was all “That’s Rachel’s part Mr Schue D:” when Will gave April the lead on Don’t Stop Believin’ whereas he didn’t bat an eyelid at Quinn being given the part when Rachel was still in the club. I could say it’s poor writing, but I’d buy that continuity is just too big for Finn’s brain.

Rin says: Since when did the Rophy Says No section become one of my favourite parts of the recap? Oh yeh, since you started turning everything into Faberry. 8-.

But you have a point.

Finn always stood for something else for Rachel, right from the start he was the hot male lead, who maybe had the decency to act like a human being towards Rachel. But then there’s things like this, and in episode five, where Finn abuses Rachel’s trust and takes advantage of her feelings for him. That’s pretty asshole-ish you guys. And meanwhile when she confronts him about it, and she’s all ‘I thought you liked me!’ he replies by saying he does like her. Which. WRONG ON SO MANY LEVELS. Even if that’s true, which it kind of is, FINN, you can’t go around liking Rachel, whilst also trying to use the excuse of ‘doing the right thing by Quinn and your ~child’ at the same time.

And let’s just go ahead and throw in an extra No in regards to Kurt’s outfit right here.


Go fuck yourself, Mercedes.

Sophy says: Seriously. SERIOUSLY. Okay. There’s the obvious fuckery of Mercedes being the biggest diva on the planet in the pilot and then turning around and judging Rachel for her ambition. And then there’s the fact that I don’t know where any of these kids get off looking down on Rachel, actually. It’s like Rachel started from behind with the whole group, and it’s been all about proving herself, over and over, and no matter how many times she does prove the hell out of herself, all it takes is for her to fail to please for her to be everybody’s whipping boy again. There is no neutral for her.

Rachel gave the Glee club more than any of the other kids did. She has fought way harder for it than any of them did. She loved it more. And the Glee club turned around and treated her like shit. I’m not saying it’s the kids’ fault that Will decided to single Rachel out for punishment and take away parts that are rightfully hers to give them to people who can’t actually sing them, just because. But it’s their fault that they’re acting like she should put up with it.

That’s the crux of the problem with the way Rachel is treated in season one. Everyone acts like she should put up with things. And it really rubs me the wrong way.

I’m not saying the kids can’t feel a little hurt that Rachel left them. But it’s like their feelings all get to be real and important and worthy of being aired… and Rachel’s don’t. She’s the one who has to bend to their perspective in order to be accepted, to the point where we end up in this ludicrous situation where Rachel is coming crawling back to two men who get to look on with condescending approval despite the fact that they’re the ones who were actually in the wrong.


And seriously, regardless of how she feels about Rachel’s choices, does Mercedes really need to be such a bitch? Rachel couldn’t have entered the room with a more gentle, constructive spirit. There was no need to be so aggressive with her.

Rin says: WELL. To be fair, Quinn was just as much of a bitch. All of them were kind of assholes for trying to stick it to Rachel, except for Finn. Then again, he was probably feeling guilty for BLATANTLY USING HER FEELINGS FOR HIM AS A MEANS TO GET HIS WAY.


“I realized being a star didn’t make me feel as special as being your friend.”

Oh Rachel. RACHEL RACHEL RACHEL. I adore that they managed to keep this as a running theme with her.

“I’m looking forward to being friends with all of you for the rest of my life.”

“But when I look back on my high school career the one thing, the one accomplishment that I’m gonna be so proud of is that I found a way to be your friend.”

I’m kind of excited to see what Rachel’s going to be like in season 4. I’m really hoping she doesn’t make friends right off the bat, cause that would feel very off for me.

Sophy says: Yeah. Me too.

Quinn was a little hostile with her “You don’t know the choreography” remark, but she was still within the realms of passive aggressive. Mercedes was just outright aggressive. She wasn’t talking about any possible practical difficulty in Rachel joining them, she was just openly passing judgment on Rachel as a person. And even if you feel that’s pedantic and they were both jerks in that moment… the issue is that Quinn is meant to be a jerk to Rachel at this point. The whole point of her is being a jerk to Rachel – and being pregnant. Whereas Mercedes is supposed to be one of the good guys. That’s why it pisses me off more that she’s a jerk to Rachel here – because I’m pretty sure that means we’re meant to agree on some level.


Honestly, you make a really good point – the being your friend line is beautiful in and of itself and connects beautifully to those later lines. But… the basis for it is all screwy. If any of these kids had shown any interest in being Rachel’s friend, maybe I’d be okay with it. But they haven’t. None of them has given a crap about Rachel so far, but she has to pretend like they have so she can learn a lesson and prove herself and prove Will and Finn right even though they’re wrong.



Head In Hands


Sophy says: She is so cute. I just. How.

Rin says: I really really really miss her forehead.

And her animal sweaters.

Kurt/April for the win.

Sophy says: 8-.

Rin says: I’m sure there’s fanfiction available.


Now I’m just picturing Chris Colfer as a gay Edward Cullen. It sort of works, actually.


Most Rophy

Always, always, always… kiss your bowling ball.



Sophy says: I’m willing to bet Quinn was lurking somewhere when Finn mentioned that pink was Rachel’s favourite colour. She filed it away. For future reference.


Quinn Glory Shot

Cowgirl Quinn Fabray.

Rin says: Definitely one of my favourite Quinns. (THEY’RE ALL MY FAVOURITE QUINNS)

And I don’t think any of us will ever rest easy until Dianna stars in a Western.








26 Responses

  1. LauryeMal
    LauryeMal at · Reply

    Just how many choreography included Quinn dancing with her hands behind her back? Cutest or cutest ever??
    This Glee retro-recapping is giving me so many feelings and hopes for season 4

    Oh My… the colours patterns, I guess there’s a rainbow subtext lurking somewhere 

    Btw…First season’s Santana would have won the Gayest Race by a landslide (pun intended)


    1. Rin
      Rin at · Reply

      I still think Quinn takes the cake for me.

      1. Tammy
        Tammy at · Reply

        That gif is AMAZING.

  2. Dan
    Dan at · Reply

    First of all you guys write the best recaps and I can’t wait to read whatever you do in the future.
    First of all (this may sound odd) I love that a reviewer is finally taking Rachel’s side and showing her some empathy; more than any other character she’s the one that gets villified especially when vile characters get extra special ‘redemption’ episodes. What I loved about the first season was just how dark it was, the writers clearly know just how horrible the Finchel thing was; putting the popular stud on a pedastool and how damaging that can be for the self esteem of those who get caught in the fantasy. What disapointed me was that her character didn’t grow beyond that-how wonderful would it have been if that had been Rachel’s arc, growing as herself and saying no to the ideal (the straightm white boy aka America). Quinn certainly did, even if it took Finn dumping her which I’m still pissed about because it was like a whole season before Quinn came into her own, as usual Quinn is stealing Rachel’s glory (from social standing to character growth). Even though rather clever on behalf of the writers.
    Thirdly there’s Kurt, the third corner of the unholy trinity in love with Season one Finn who I think is the only one to See Finn at his lowest, seeing just how ugly the ideal can get and the moment he said ‘Faggot’ he was knocked right off the pedastool and the wonderful irony was all the rest of the club saw was him playing the hero as per usual so he’s allowed to keep his pedastool. This was when the show was a little bit darker and used the gleam to show just how twisted these dynamics are-if they hadn’t gone as mainstream as they did they could have kept it going-sigh.

    1. Rin
      Rin at · Reply

      I don’t think s1 was necessarily any darker than any of the previous seasons, but definitely less ‘preachy’ in how they handled the situations.

  3. Snicky
    Snicky at · Reply

    “Can we please talk about the giant elephant in the room?”
    “Your sexuality?”

    Forever the best thing ever !
    Lookin’ back – Kurt should rub this in Santana’s face :D

    Moving on from the Brittana / Santana ultimate gay screenshot section in this recap :

    I remember watching season 1 & 2 again quite some time ago – when S3 was almost over and I must say: Rachel’s such a different girl right now. She used to be so pure and nerdy and ambitious. I’m not sure I like what they did with her.
    Everybody was always mean to her (yes, even Mercedes who – YES – even has a bigger attitude problem than Pilot-Rachel).
    Not even Kurt had it in him to be nice to her. At this point, I might even remember liking Finn for being nice to Rachel. Then again: that went away FAST !

    Oh, you guys … I am SO excited to see your fangirling today :D

    1. Rin
      Rin at · Reply

      I am SO excited to see your fangirling today

      I’m going to need a lot of people on standby in case my heart stops.

  4. Ruben
    Ruben at · Reply

    First of all I would like to say that the recap is great and hysterical as always, that said… I mostly like to read them for the Faberry subtext and what’s not subtext, the other part just wants to see gifs of Dianna Agron, so I would like to thank you, in an episode where Faberry are on the downlow, to include a few Achelle gifs, really thank you!!^^

    And now, I will do as I always do… beg for you guys to Quinn me!!! PLEASE!!PLEASE!!!It’s been so long since the last time!!
    I think I have abstinence syndrome!!

    1. Rin
      Rin at · Reply

      Is this enabling? Oh well.

  5. Ned
    Ned at · Reply

    “Do I have to put my fingers in the holes?” SOL, forgot that line. Oh Rachel.

    Emma looks amazing in that scene with Kurt. I love S1 Emma and her outfits a lot.

    That’s a great spot on feet-together shoulders-slumped Rachel. And it helps her look nearer 15 than Lea’s age. Maybe the forehead did too? (God I miss the forehead.)

    You’re right about Rachel being treated unfairly. My idea is that she’s not treated on the same level as, say, Mercedes, because in Mercedes we’re seeing a diva-ish talented high school girl, whereas in Rachel we’re seeing the high school years of Rachel Freaking Berry. Everyone knows Rachel is the best, her name destined for billboards and Tonys. It’s somehow okay to take her down a peg because it helps round out her personality; treating any of the others the same way is just being mean to a kid in high school. They don’t have arcs yet, they’re a different kind of character. Does that make sense? I feel this is part of why those of us who loved Rachel from the start felt so protective of her.

    And is cowgirl!Quinn the first time we see her hair out of its Cheerio ponytail? If I had been paying proper attention to Quinn in S1, this might have been when I’d’ve fallen in love with her…

    1. Rin
      Rin at · Reply

      :O I think so!

  6. whymz
    whymz at · Reply

    You both are aeesome as usual. Love these retro recaps. I am in a state of panic at the moment. Waiting for the scene…

    Oy, Quinn me!

    1. Rin
      Rin at · Reply

      lol. I’m almost scared of how psycho I may become.

      1. Whymz
        Whymz at · Reply

        smelling salts? check

  7. anonymouse
    anonymouse at · Reply

    Kurt probably cried when the hunter shot Bambi’s mom because he lost his own mom and knew what Bambi was going through :(

    1. Rin
      Rin at · Reply


  8. Tammy
    Tammy at · Reply

    Rachel Berry is one of the most glorious creatures ever.

    I ADORE the Rachel/April Maybe This Time duet. I agree that Somebody to Love was the best song of this ep, but thanks for mentioning that amazingness.

    I love coming to this site. It’s like sinking into a cloud of Faberry goodness and the rest of the world and their Finchelness just fades away. Thank you for making a cloud of Faberry goodness.

    1. Tammy
      Tammy at · Reply

      Oh my goodness. The music in the released scene. What are they trying to do to us??? D:

    2. Rin
      Rin at · Reply


  9. Angelica
    Angelica at · Reply

    You guys didn’t mention Rachel’s foot tapping Quinn’s during “Somebody to love”. Was that a little Achele on the Faberry? I remember watching a video of Lea and Dianna nudging each others’ foot during the 2011 tour and it reminded me of this episode.

    1. Rin
      Rin at · Reply

      I…..have no excuse. Nothing is ever too Achele in the Faberry.. but I just. I DON’T KNOW.

      Maybe cause I made a post about it on tumblr ages ago I thought I had covered it already. Silly silly me.

      1. Angelica
        Angelica at · Reply

        Thank you for the gif… you’re awesome.

  10. Ylva
    Ylva at · Reply

    haha, you must have nearly fitted the entire performance in to those final gifs, cudos! :)
    i’m soo looking forwad to the fun you’ll have with Closet Santana, but for some reason this is what made me choke on my pasta: “It’s like, off the cruelty charts.” just lol :)

  11. Caroline
    Caroline at · Reply

    Ok, so continuing down my road of watching Season 1 Glee to feel better about subsequent seasons, I watched this one next. I completely agree with everything you guys said about Finn doing something that was beyond not ok. It was really really mean. He deserved to get slapped a lot harder than he did. And the Rachel/Quinn toetap during Somebody To Love? I mean, damn Rophy. You guys are GOOD. Y’all really find and point out the little things. But yeah, Faberry has always been there now hasn’t it? ;)

    Also, there was a moment, right before the STL performance and when Rachel is coming back in to ask to be friends again where Kurt is putting eyeliner on Santana and Brittany is standing behind them and she just MAKES THIS FACE that absolutely slays me. She scrunches up her nose and makes her eyes all big (it’s totally a Heather face and I have no clue who she was directing it to). I think you guys actually pointed out this face that she made in another episode behind Quinn’s back and it was all kinds of adorable. Anyways…Brittana fans have every reason to be mourning what our OTP has become after its lobotomy. But whatever. I’ll just come here and ship Faberry with you. The amount of gay in Dianna Agron is staggering, once you know to look for it. :D

  12. ohwowlovely
    ohwowlovely at · Reply

    Ok, I guess my “comment less” idea just isn’t going to work. Feel free not to read them though.

    First: Kristin Chenoweth!! 💖 💖 And that reminds me that Idina Menzel appears later, oh my!

    “And yet, I am still busy earning my fringes.” Oh, me too.

    “Oh closet-Santana. We’re going to have so much fun with you.” Ooh, don’t encourage my pervy mind with comments like that! Or you know, do. ( I need to root out my paedo jumper)

    “She’s a person.” Yes, she’s not a non-person like Katie Fitch apparently was (lol your comment on that still makes me laugh)

    Lastly, just want to say that your recaps teach me so much about life and myself. Stuff I should probably already know at my age, but I guess sometimes I need to see things spelled out. You give me a lot to think about and I thank you muchly for that.

Leave a Reply