Glee! 1.12 Mattress

"There. That is you in 9th grade. Stop putting me in your old clothes, aged writers."

It’s a bittersweet episode, but our cocktail is all delicious.  In honor of the fake pregnancy-focused episode, today’s cocktail is My Fair “Lady.”


I’m sorry I keep giving you such delicious drinks.  Hopefully you won’t need to join any multi-step programs.  Wait, I’m not sorry at all.  And get me another if you’re up, thanks.

Also, today’s Free Square will be to drink every time Will is clueless. In other words, you’re going to get your money’s worth with your liquor purchases.



All of the teachers are primping. They’ve started caring about their appearance? What’s next, caring about their students? No, it’s just yearbook picture time! Ken and Emma are immune to this as they’re preparing for their big wedding day, which is just around the corner. On the very same day as Zoneunals, in fact. Will is horribly affronted and a wee bit hurt by this, but Ken could only get the hall for a particular time and they are not moving the wedding for Glee Club.

Sue comes in sporting two huge shiners. Someone finally pop her a good one? Nah, she just got some work done: eye lift and tear duct-ectomy. She wasn’t getting any use out of them anyway. She has the Cheerios on a yam diet (“draws the water from the skin”) and made a good point to Principal Figgins regarding the Glee Club. Their pictures are always vandalized, so why not just skip them getting a picture taken? She’s just helping the nerds out. “Peace!” as she leaves. Will is doubly floored.

In the music room, Kurt calls a non-Rachel Glee meeting. He goes through the various torture methods employed on the Gleeks (there are seven distinct forms of wedgies but only three types of swirlies) and he has done other research. He has learned that the writers on this show are fixated on their fashion mistakes from the 80s, as evidenced by his brooch and graphic print, tight shirt. [DRINK!] True story, half of his wardrobe – the plaid pants, the Doc Martins, the brooches – all were in my closet in junior high. I was all over the brooches. Had a massive Gothic clock that I loved most especially. I’m drinking out of the shame of it all.

Oh, but back to Glee. Kurt has dug through past yearbooks and found that the Glee Club photo is always defaced. Not only that, but the manner in which they’re defaced determines the grisly end for the particular deface-ee. Example: The girl from ’95 with the knife in her head. Basically Kurt is pulling out the Omen Defense. Everyone agrees: no pictures in the yearbook.

Will bounces in determined that the kids are all sad about the yearbook picture being canceled, but fear not, gang, Will is going to make sure you’re all in it! [DRINK!]

Figgins tries to explain to Will that he’s “doing the Glee Club a solid.” Will tells him how sad the kids are going to be. [DRINK!] Figgins finally says that Will can have a full page. For $1000. Because that’s how much they cost. If he wanted to do a quarter page, that will be $325. And it will only be room enough for two kids, so pick the pretty ones. The cheerleader (not the pregnant one) and the Quarterback.

Rachel barges in. Her two gay dads (awkward if only one was gay) are super tight with the local ACLU branch, and they would be happy to hear about this social injustice! (Raise your hand if you think the local ACLU branch groans every time Rachel’s two gay dads walk into the office.) Will assures her that the picture will happen. She leaves, beaming.

As she leaves, she explains in a voice over that pictures are everything to her. They’re like, seriously good practice for when she’s famous and the paparazzi are on her tail. She joins every possible club: Muslim Brotherhood, Renaissance Fair, Black People United – the pissed off looks by the other club members are priceless.

Brittany and Santana are drawing faces on last year’s Speech Club picture of Rachel while Quinn looks on, sad. Oh, not because she’s grown a conscience about Rachel, it’s because she misses being a Cheerio, and this year she won’t be in their school pictures. She’s determined to get back on the team, baby bump or not.

Will asks Terri for help with what tie to pick (red boring or green boring?) but she just wants him to shut up and move away from the TV. She’s got her stories on! He makes puppy dog eyes at her, she sighs and tells him to wear the red one for his teacher picture and the green one for Glee. Green will look nice under all the defacing the popular kids will do to the picture.

He starts in on those poor kids, how hard they work, how sad they’ll be when they don’t get a picture in the yearbook. [DRINK.] He kinda sorta wants to buy a teeny tiny ad for them, it’s only a weebaby amount, like, maybe $300?

She flips her lid. That is money that could go towards food for her, which means it’s for the baby in her belly. Why doesn’t Will just empty out the fridge and give it to them, while he’s at it? But… there was some money left over after selling the Blue Bomber and- NO. But- NO, WILL. She boops his nose and tells him no again, because the baby is the most important thing and rub her feet, because she’s pregnant and make her a grilled cheese because she’s pregnant and buy her some new tops because she’s pregnant but do not touch her belly because she’s pregnant and he might hurt it. [DRINK.]

He writes a check to Figgins anyway, and tells him to not cash it until the end of the week. Ruh roh, someone is disobeying mommy! [DRINK.]

Rachel asks Kurt to help her start another club, because that will make her the most involved student at McKinley. Picture it: GayLesbAl! You know, Gay-Lesbian Alliance? No? Why are you walking away, Kurt?

Will bounces in, super pleased because he’s about to make everyone so happy! The yearbook picture is back on, isn’t that great?! The gang all toes the ground and mumbles out a “yay,” and Will tells them how sorry he is that only two Captains will get to have their picture in it. Oh, really? Everyone is OK with this. Rachel isn’t, because if they’re going to vote, well, she’s not going to get it.

Rachel prepares a speech to win them over, but before she can start, Mercedes cuts her off. “I nominate Rachel.” Kurt quickly seconds it, they all turn in slips of paper with their votes on them, and it’s unanimous. Rachel is… both captains? Will picks up on their “I don’t want to be in the picture!” vibe.

He moans about it to Emma, wishing the kids had more pride in Glee Club. Emma tells him that he needs to let them be okay with how they feel, and quit wanting Glee to be everything, oh my god. But she’s sweet about it. Will tells her that he believes Ken purposely scheduled their wedding for the same time as Sectionals just to be mean, and also because Will and Emma are always with the love eyes and giggleflirts. Emma says, “Ken has 74 flaws as of this morning, but he’s not vindictive.” She also claims to be done flirting with Will because she’s getting married.

Yep. Marrying Ken. Dealing with his hygiene. His problems. His flaws. Alllllll 74 of them. Gulp. Will says her marriage is going to be awesome and he wishes nothing but the best for her. Except for how he sighmournflirts that at her.

Will meets up with Rachel and tells her she needs to find a Co-Captain. It will be good for the club and morale, not to mention serve as a buffer between her crazy and his sanity, er rather, it’ll be a huge help to her. She’s on it! Mercedes is a no. Kurt and Artie are a no. She approaches Brittany.

Brittany: “I don’t want to be in that picture. It’ll get defaced.”

Rachel: “No it won’t!”

Brittany: “Yes it will, I’ll be the one doing it.” [DRINK!]

Last chance for Rachel, she asks Finn. She appeals to his grandiose sense of leadership (after all, he is the Captain and QB1 for the worst team in all of Western Ohio) and he gives in. He will totally become the leader he was meant to be!

They practice grinning for the photo by singing “Smile” by Lily Allen and doing some hokey dancing and prancing. Also, that song is all about delighting in your ex’s misery by hiring some “friends” to beat the ever-loving crap out of them. So… DRINK for awkward song choice. Also, it totally bugs me when people do an exaggerated chin bob when they lip synch. Lea, you are better than that. (She stopped doing that pretty quickly, thankfully.)

I will say that Tinkles the Pianist bobbing his head from side to side while he plays the song is a hilarious visual. More Tinkles, writers!

All of this serves to make Finn feel super great about being the face of Glee. Until he’s in the locker room where he’s cornered by Karofsky and Azimio, who start drawing all over his face with markers in preparation for the Glee picture. I’m not normally an advocate for violence, but I was really hoping he would have punched Azimio in the chops. They’re total dicks and now Finn is worried about the picture.

Rachel, dressed and ready for her close up, waits for Finn. And waits. And waits. He doesn’t come, so she forces herself to stop feeling sad and go on with the show. She gives herself a great little pep talk, how she should snap out of it and stop letting herself be defined by whatever people think of her. She then goes on to take a great photo, and the photographer wraps it up to get to a casting session.

Whaaaaaaat? Rachel starts sobbing, to the photog’s dismay, and she whips her face up in her most serious Rachel Berry, STAR expression and tells him she can cry on demand. He needs to hire her for this gig. Well, he does need several other people. Rachel just happens to know several other people!

Rachel tells all of the Glee kids that she’s actually awesome because she just got them an actual trufax commercial. What?! For who? Get ready, guys. A local mattress company. They are beyond stoked. She wonders if they like apples. Because how you like them apples? This is how it begins, you guys. You start off hawking pillow tops, next stop: TONYS.

They’re all on set in matching baby blue jim-jams, and are super excited. The store owner tells them how glad he is that they’re there. The photographer is also the writer and director for this commercial. He’s written some crappy copy and they go through the motions until Rachel cuts him off. “This is brilliant, but we’re performers! Let us sing!” He’s not OK with it, but the owner is. “What can you kids do?”


They quickly whip up a musical and dance performance to Van Halen’s “Jump!” It’s really awesome, they’re doing back flips on mattresses, bouncing around, and singing it out. (Fun fact: Chris Colfer injured his neck trying to do a back flip on the trampoline disguised as a mattress. Be careful!! Heather Morris knocks out some awesome back flips, by the way.) Mercedes busts out the ending [DRINK!] and the commercial looks great.

Back at the Schuester’s they’ve apparently time traveled to 1963 as Will is looking for his pocket square. He searches through all the drawers, calls to Terri, who never replies. He looks in her lingerie drawer and oh. my. God. He finds the fake belly. He holds it, blinking and thinking.

Terri stands at the stove, cooking dinner. “A pocket square is going to make you look like Ted Knight,” she says, as if that is a bad thing. (He’s one of my all time favorites. If you don’t know his body of work, I am not speaking to you until you get educated.) Terri realizes Will is just standing there.

“What is this?” he asks quietly, showing her the fake belly.

She’s a quick thinker. “Oh, they give you those to wear so you can try on maternity clothes.”

“Pick up your shirt.” He isn’t buying the lie, and he’s figured out that all of the hysterical “don’t touch the belly!” stuff is for reasons he never thought. He is quiet when he says this, but holy crap, Matthew Morrison sounds menacing!

Terri says with forced indignation, “No.”

Will flings the belly at the stove, knocking things askew. “Pick. Up. Your. Shirt.”

Terri tells him he’s scaring her, to think about what he’s accusing her of, and yet he traps her against the counter and carefully lifts the hem of her shirt to reveal her fake belly. His breathing stutters before he rips it off her. He’s beyond upset and the tears come, oh, but he is so angry.

For the first time we see some humanity in Terri. She tells him how afraid (and assured) she was of him leaving her, and she really did think she was pregnant in the beginning, but the doctor said it was an hysterical pregnancy, and then she shows how petty and small she really is when she blames their problems on him taking over Glee. His happiness was only matched by her inference of his superiority. “Like you’re better than me!”

Will is shocked, “I should be allowed to feel good about myself!” Then it hits him. “What were you going to do when your due date came?” Quietly she replies, “Quinn Fabray.”

He leaves. What else can he do? And this is a scene of absolutely fantastic acting and writing, and shows that this “silly program about high school show choir” can handle some pretty awesome moments. Most of the credit here goes to Matthew Morrison (who can dig deep and play it real when given the chance) and Jessalyn Gilsig (who is a great character actress, and who elevated this one-dimensional character to something far more interesting.)

I’m taking a sympathetic drink, guys. And making finger quotes when I say “Lady.”

Will goes to the school and sees a stack of mattresses, still wrapped. (Payment for the commercial he doesn’t know about.) Emotionally drained, he grabs one, rips off the plastic and dumps it in his office. Looks like that’s where he’s staying for the next little bit.

Sue wraps up a “Sue’s Corner” segment that same night.

I just want a holiday, one day a year, where I’m not assaulted by uglies and fatties. Seriously, Ohio, these retinas need a day off! So here’s the dream: Friday after Christmas, which I have off, if you’re hideous, stay at home! Spend the entire day watching home movies of the time when you weren’t too repulsive for me to never want to look at you. And that’s how Sue C’s it.”

As she leaves set, she tells Andrea Corningstone, the co-anchor, that her segment was specifically for her. Ha ha. She’s about to walk out when she hears Rachel on the television. She sees their commercial and an evil grin spreads on her face. “Gotcha.”

The next morning, Quinn barges into Sue’s office. She demands to be put back on the squad and be in the yearbook picture. It will send the message that everyone has value and that looks don’t matter and Sue’s laughter rings off the walls of the entire building. Not just no, Miss Fabray, but hell no. Also, the Glee Club, where that ridiculous philosophy must have been born, is disqualified from Singunals. And don’t let her door hit you on the pregnant butt on your way out.

Will is in Figgins office, trying to get to the bottom of this SNAFU. He didn’t know anything about this commercial, but Sue “Honey Badger” Sylvester don’t give a shit. It’s done, it’s happened, they’re disqualified because they were paid professionally. Even if they send the mattresses back, one can’t because it’s been used. Will tells them he used it, not the kids (and now everyone knows his personal business.)

Sue sits in her office doodling “VICTORY!” and fireworks that make a stick-figure Will explode into little pom-poms that rain down on the losers at McKinley. Quinn barges in, wearing her uniform. It’s tight, but she can still fit in it. She rips into Sue.

“You’re a hypocrite. The Glee club thing? Whatever, you’ve showered us in swag for years.” She’s going to tell Figgins which will mean Sue’s banishment from performing. Ha! Sue tries to bargain, but Quinn isn’t finished yet. After all, she learned at the knee of the best General in the army. Not only is Sue going to let Quinn back on the squad, but one of the Cherrio’s six pages will be donated to the Glee Club. For free.

Sue doesn’t know whether to be angry or proud. She loves how ruthless Quinn truly is. It’s like looking at a young Sue Sylvester. Quinn smiles and tells her that now that she’s thinking about it, nothing would be cooler than just being a part of Glee. She doesn’t even want to be a Cheerio now.

Will tells the kids that they’ll have to go to Sectionals without him. He’s let himself be disqualified so they can carry on. They all feel horrible that their commercial led to this, none more than Rachel Berry. [Who tears up: DRINK.] Puck admires him taking the grenade, but Will wants them to really understand that they can win without him, they’re that good. After all, they did the whole commercial thing without him. He sends them off to go get their picture taken, and they’re all happy to do it.

Rachel starts singing “Smile” by Charlie Chaplain with Finn coming in with the harmony, and then everyone joins in, so DRINK for Santana and Mercedes getting their moment. And this is a really lovely version. Rachel and Finn’s voices work wonderfully on this type of quiet song, in particular. The song is all about hiding your sorrow and just smile, which means: montage. The kids get ready for their pictures, and the guys lifting weights beforehand is hilarious. They all get their pictures taken, the teachers do as well (Will can barely force a grin) and then the episode ends with Karofsky doodling on the finished result with a group standing around, laughing.

(Note: Karofsky totally draws a huge dong and balls on Kurt. Oh, does he now? If you’ve not seen season 2, then just make a mental note of this.)


Drunken Thoughts: I’ve been pretty vocal about not liking the fake pregnancy story line, but Terri finally had a scene where you can feel a little sorry for her, even if you do go back to thinking she’s horrible in the end. She’s just afraid, afraid of losing her husband, who up until recently has worshiped the ground she walked on. That’s the only glory in her sad little life, so losing that would be losing everything.

I am still impressed with the way Matthew Morrison played that big reveal, the hurt, the anger, the outrage, the menace. Awesome. Oh, and they’re finally dressing Kurt better, with the exception of that initial outfit of his. (You can also see that he’s gone through a growth spurt.)

I wish there had been more music, though. That’s what makes this show unique, and the writers need to remember that. Then again, I don’t know how they could have worked more in.

Oooh, and next episode even more of the tangled stories will be exposed, so that’s very exciting. CLICK HERE FOR SECTIONALS. Last time I’ll have to type that word, hooray!