‘Glee’-Cap: ‘Tested’

Photo Credit: FOX

Photo Credit: FOX

The big bad sex question once again pervades the lives of McKinley’s favorite alums.

Sex becomes an issue for everyone once again, but in several different ways.

BLAINE/KURT:

Initially, Blaine just loves food in New York. But then he realizes he has gained the Freshman 15, and he’s realizing that Kurt is getting hotter while he isn’t. And he’s jealous because the power of their relationship appears to have shifted.

Kurt, however, is feeling more confident than ever with himself—though he takes note of how Blaine is feeling. But when they have a just them date night, things go horribly awry when Kurt finds porn on Blaine’s computer—after they haven’t been intimate in weeks.

The two, who are in a stage combat class together, get into a HUGE fight over the porn thing, and seriously attack each other while fencing in class after singing “Love Is a Battlefield.”

Finally, the two talk it out and Blaine admits his insecurities, especially since Kurt doesn’t appear to need him anymore. He also admits he is insecure because he doesn’t feel good about himself—and he looked at the porn because he felt like it wouldn’t judge him. But Kurt tells him he wouldn’t do that either, and they make up. The episode ends with them working together to help Blaine feel better about himself again.

ARTIE/VANESSA/JESSICA/JULIE:

Artie has loved how much New York has improved his love life. He’s hooking up with two girls named Vanessa and Jessica, and has his heart set on another girl named Julie. He’s “Addicted to Love.”

However, his life changes drastically when he gets tested for an STD and it comes back positive for Chlamydia. The guys are shocked—especially when Artie admits he’s never used a condom while having sex. Needless to say, things don’t go well when he tells Vanessa, who freaks out, though Jessica is cool with it. And then Julie finally asks him out.

However, the date is awkward because Artie brings up sex—and just simply says they shouldn’t have it for a week to 10 days. Julie thinks it’s weird that he would bring it up when it’s only their first date. When Artie apologizes to her later for it being so weird, he admits his diagnosis and loses his chances with her for good.

SAM/MERCEDES/RACHEL:

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‘Amazing Race’ Recap: ‘The Gladiators Are Here!’

Photo Credit: CBS

Photo Credit: CBS

Teams Head From Sri Lanka to Rome, Italy

As this leg of The Amazing Race began, teams headed to Rome from Sri Lanka. They all boarded a direct flight to the city, and once there, they headed to Hadrian’s bridge for their next clue.

At the bridge, teams encountered a Detour. In ‘Gladiator,’ they had to master a series of maneuvers to defeat a seasoned gladiator and keep crowds happy. John and Jessica chose this Detour, and Leo and Jamal switched to it after initially trying the first one.

In ‘Charioteer,’ teams had to race remote control chariots 5 laps within 1 ½ minutes while one member controlled the speed and the other controlled the turns. Brendon and Rachel, Flight Time and Big Easy, Dave and Connor, Jet and Cord, Leo and Jamal and Caroline and Jennifer all chose this one.

Before doing the Detour, Caroline and Jennifer encountered a Speed Bump. They had to go to the Pantheon, pick up a typewriter, carry it to the building it resembled and place it on a pedestal before they could continue racing.

After the Detour, teams headed to the Piazza di Spagna, where they encountered a Roadblock. Teams had to count the Spanish steps and add the total to the year a monument was erected. Once they get the correct number and write it in Roman Numerals, they would receive their next clue.

Jessica and John, despite leaving the detour first, arrived at the roadblock last due to taxi troubles.

Rachel and Brendon finished first and went by foot to Piazza del Popolo for the Pit Stop. Dave and Connor and Caroline and Jennifer finished next. Jet and Cord used their Express Pass and also ended the task quickly. The Globetrotters ran into trouble at the task because of misreading the clue. Leo and Jamal gave the answer to both the Globetrotters and John and Jessica to help them out on the condition that the teams wouldn’t U-Turn one another on the next leg, unaware that they were the last teams.

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‘Glee’-Cap: ‘Bash’

Photo Credit: FOX

Photo Credit: FOX

Things get extremely serious in New York

The new focus on New York and adulthood affecting the Glee kids took a turn towards the deeper issues with this episode.

GAY-BASHING:

The episode starts with an introductory song of “No One is Alone” from Into the Woods. Rachel, Blaine, Kurt and Sam sing the song as they walk to a vigil for an unknown character.

At the weekly dinner in the loft, the unknown guy’s identity is revealed. He’s the friend of a neighbor who was violently gay-bashed and is in the hospital.

The issue of gay-bashing will seep in and affect their personal lives however, more than they ever expected when Kurt walks home alone and sees another gay guy being beaten in an alley. He interferes, and the victim runs away. The attackers then turn their attention on Kurt. By the time the scene ends, Kurt is unconscious in the alley and the attackers have left him alone.

At the hospital, everyone gathers around and learns that Kurt has cuts and scrapes and a hairline fracture above his right eye, but he will be okay, and they can all visit him. They’re all heartbroken about what has happened to him, and have all learned something from it. While there, Blaine also sings “Not While I’m Around,” (which also doubles as his Mid-Winter Critique performance).

Kurt has woken up from the medically induced coma, and Burt has arrived. He’s angry with Kurt for doing what he did, as much as he’s proud of him. And he also asks if he was an idiot for thinking Kurt would be safer in New York than he was in Ohio.

Out of the hospital, he pays another visit to the vigil and Blaine tells him the guy who was beaten worse has also broken up. At the loft, he and Rachel have made up after fighting (to be revealed later), and she encourages everyone to go his Mid-Winter Critique—where he sings “I’m Still Here.”

SAMCEDES AND INTER-RACIAL RELATIONSHIPS:

Sam and Mercedes have started hooking up again and are considering a relationship. While walking along the East River in Brooklyn Bridge park, Sam tries convincing her they should be together, despite their differences. She suggests a few boundaries which he agrees to, but then asks him to go so she can clear her head a bit. She begins singing “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” on Jane’s Carousel.

However, the relationship takes a turn for the worse when Mercedes introduces Sam to her backup singers. They like him, but they point out that he’s white and she’s black—a no-no in the recording industry, which would alienate any of the people who would be interested in buying her CD.

Mercedes considers this and tells Sam they can’t be together because of that. Sam tries to convince her otherwise, but she won’t be swayed and says they can’t date—and he should move out of the apartment.

However, after Kurt’s bashing, Mercedes reconsiders and admits it was messed up to consider their skin colors as a reason to not date one another. She sings “Color Blind” to him and they soon announce to everyone that they’re dating again.

RACHEL TOO GOOD FOR NYADA:

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Film Friday 4/4/14: Niagara Falls

Photo Credit: en.wikipedia.org

Photo Credit: en.wikipedia.org

Niagara Falls (1941; Romantic Comedy; Starring Marjorie Woodworth, Tom Brown, Zasu Pitts, Slim Summerville; DVD)

These days, Romantic comedies are a dime a dozen, and rarely make significant impacts in the minds of viewers anymore. But there used to be a time where these movies always stood out, and where on occasion, the comedic aspect was given more focus than the romantic one. In the 1941 comedy Niagara Falls, this is one of those instances.

Margie Blake (Marjorie Woodworth), a committment-minded woman, gets a flat tire and the help of a non-commitment type in traveling salesman Tom Wilson (Tom Brown). The two immediately dislike one another. When Sam (Slim Sumerville) and Emmy (Zasu Pitts), who are on their way to Niagara Falls for their honeymoon arrive, Sam mistakes Margie and Tom for another married couple who is just going through a lovers spat. Without telling anyone, he manages to get Margie and Tom the honeymoon suite he and Emmy were supposed to share, and once inside, locks them in and refuses to let them come out until they’ve made up. However, he doesn’t realize how much this could negatively affect his own marriage.

Overall, this short 86-minute film is one which produces a few chuckles-more than can be said about most romantic comedy movies that grace movie screens today. The ability to make the audience laugh makes it a must-see.

‘Glee’-Cap: ‘New New York’

Photo Credit:FOX

Photo Credit:FOX

Tuesday night was the first all-new episode of the new Glee which takes the focus fully away from the McKinley high school section, and focuses solely on the kids in New York. The show appears to be taking a more adult and different turn with this new focus.

RACHEL/ARTIE:

Rachel has just returned from an out-of-town run for Funny Girl, and has since been given a 24/7 on-call car service. She loves the experience at first – and starts singing “Downtown” (the boys all join in eventually as well). The experience has made her more isolated and diva-like than ever. However, after some angry words with Artie, she realizes how isolated and less authentic she is becoming. She decides to ditch the car — and shows up on the subway with Artie. She promises she’ll take the subway with him, if he lashes out at her every time she becomes too much of a diva. They sing “Don’t Sleep in the Subway” together.

Artie, meanwhile, has his confidence shaken after a man on crutches steals his backpack, laptop and script. When trying to report the crime, he becomes further discouraged by Rachel telling him he can learn from the experience, prompting his lash out which makes her realize how she’s acting. She makes it up to him by getting him back on the subway — where they run into the thief again and this time, Artie pepper sprays him. The episode closes with a more authentic Rachel singing “People” at the theater over clips of her friends and her, settling into their new lives.

BLAINE/KURT/ELLIOTT:

At first, living together in New York seems great for Kurt and Blaine — they’re having breakfast together and singing “You Make Me Feel So Young” together. But then, things get stifling. Blaine is in all of Kurt’s classes and is always at the apartment.

After talking to Elliott about it, he reveals to him that he thinks the stifling and suffocating feeling is a bad omen for the relationship. Elliott tells him that what he and Blaine have is real and worth fighting for, and if he just sets a few boundaries things will be okay. The two then sing “Rockstar” together.

However, after he gets home and sees that Blaine is trying to redecorate the loft a bit, the two begin fighting about the decorating. After Kurt brings up Elliott, Blaine gets further annoyed and the two have a nasty fight.

Blaine then shows up at Elliott’s to confront him because he feels he’s trying to steal Kurt away. Elliott tells him that’s not what he’s doing. Elliott advises him on the situation as well by telling him he needs to understand that in New York, people need more space to breathe — that’s all Kurt needs.

So when Blaine gets back to the loft, he decides it’s best if her moves out — and Kurt agrees. It’s what’s best for their relationship because they never truly discussed if living together was what worked for them. But nothing to worry about Klaine fans, they’re still together.

SAM/MERCEDES:

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‘Amazing Race’ Recap: ‘Down and Dirty’

Photo Credit: CBS

Photo Credit: CBS

eams get dirty with gasoline and elephant dung In Sri Lanka

In this sixth leg of the Amazing Race All-Stars, teams started by heading to the Hall of Headstones in Sri Lanka to find their next clue. The leg was close from the beginning, with all teams neck-and-neck, setting up a fierce competition which would last through the whole leg.

After receiving their clue, teams headed to Alawwa, Sri Lanka and the Ceypetco Fuel Station. Once there, they encountered a roadblock, which required them to search among a chaotic mess of cars, find four with matching color cards, lead them back to the station and fill them all up with gas before receiving their next clue. Teams were fiercely competitive, and in the mess, Rachel became confused and only filled up cars that were her color, instead of her card color. The move set her and Brendon back into last once more, though they did catch up to everyone else and board the train to Rambukkana.

In Rambukkana, teams headed to the Millennium Elephant Preserve and searched the river for their next clue. There, teams encountered different detours. In “Trunk,” which was only available to four teams, they had to attach marked timber logs to a chain so elephants could carry the logs. Teams and the elephants then carried three logs each and properly transported six logs. Jet and Cord, Leo and Jamal, Dave and Connor and John and Jessica did this detour.

In “Sheets,” teams loaded wheelbarrows with elephant waste, combined it with water and scraps of paper, and had to make 5 sheets of pressed paper. Flight Time and Big Easy, Brendon and Rachel and Caroline and Jennifer did this one.

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Film Friday 3/28/14: The Princess Bride

Photo Credit: drafthouse.com

Photo Credit: drafthouse.com

The Princess Bride (1987; Adventure/Comedy/Family; Starring Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin, Robin Wright; DVD)

It’s rare that a movie outside of the Disney realm seems to tackle the ideas of princesses, princes, knights in shining armor, and pirates with an attack that keeps true to the roots of fantasy movies, yet still manages to give them a much more postmodern breath of fresh air.

However, in 1987, Rob Reiner did what seemed impossible. He took a classic fairy tale, injected a more modern twist to the heroine, successfully added some comedy and adventure and brought in a perfect cast. The end result was a movie that still successfully resonates with a young audience, and has made it one of the most successful films of all time: The Princess Bride.

The movie not only manages to thrill and delight the audiences in the same way a classic fairytale would, with the allure of romance and adventure, but also makes them crack up incessantly, as the character often speak to another in riddles that ought to be confusing, but somehow make perfect sense. Some of the performances are completely over-the-top, but in a way that’s not grating. Overall, it truly is a perfect fantasy tale. Something that adds another wonderful element to it is the side story that shows a grandfather reading the tale to his bed-ridden sick grandson, who is initially wary of the story, but eventually grows to love it as much as the audience watching the whole movie does.

It is a must-see for anyone who has somehow managed to miss this true masterpiece of a movie.

 

‘Glee-Cap’: ‘New Directions’

Photo Credit: FOX

Photo Credit: FOX

The curtain closes on New Directions for good

In part two of the special “100 episodes” celebration on Glee, a last ditch effort to save the glee club was mixed with some bittersweet goodbyes and fixed relationships.

HOLLY HOLIDAY TO THE RESCUE?:

At the end of part one, Holly and April vowed to save the club, and they are continuing their efforts now. Holly convinces Sue to give her a week to pitch working music into other clubs, since the glee club can no longer be. Sue agrees.

Holly starts her plan at the animal husbandry club, which segues into the number “Party All the Time,” a fun, flashy number that transports the kids to a dance club and foam party. However, the plan fails miserably – Sue got thousands of complaint letters. Will is once again heartbroken and tells Holly to leave it be – he’s accepted the glee club’s unfortunate fate. But Holly isn’t finished yet.

Will walks into his office and sees an invitation to the auditorium on his desk. A projector film appears, with the kids from the club, alongside Holly and Sue, telling Will’s future child all the wonderful things about him. At the movie’s end, the original members of New Directions — Rachel, Kurt, Mercedes, Artie and Tina, unite on stage and begin singing “Don’t Stop Believin’.” They are joined next by Santana, Brittany, Quinn, Mike and Puck, and finally, by Sam, Blaine, Marley, Unique, Ryder, Jake and Kitty. Finally, Schu also joins them on stage for one last number. As it ends, Holly and April are revealed to have been watching from the back of the room, and after admitting they tried their hardest to help, they turn around and leave.

RACHEL AND SANTANA FINALLY BURY THE HATCHET:

Though the last few episodes have been focused on McKinley, the New York drama between Santana and Rachel is still present. In an effort to get them to make up, Kurt and Mercedes sing “I Am Changing.” Afterwards, Rachel attempts to make peace with Santana in the bathroom. She’s willing to offer her 10 shows – but Santana rejects the offer and says she wants all of them, and she’s gunning for Rachel’s part.

However, after a few kind words from Britt, Santana admits to Rachel that she doesn’t want to be on Broadway, and she has officially resigned from the show. To celebrate their friendship returning, they team up to sing “Be Okay.”

TINA’S UNCERTAIN FUTURE

Tina is the only one who doesn’t know what’s in store for her. She was rejected from her safety school, and still hasn’t heard from Brown, so she’s applying to a Jewish school in New York as a last resort.

When talking to her fellow seniors, she learns Blaine got into NYADA, and in the excitement, Sam accidentally knocked her unconscious with a trophy. While unconscious, Tina dreams about life in New York in a Friends spoof called CHUMS, starring Tina, Rachel, Santana, Artie, Blaine and Kurt, with special guest appearances by Mike, Mercedes, Britt and Puck. And Mike wants Tina back. However, she wakes up quickly and decides New York will be amazing.

However, she learns she wasn’t “Jewish enough” for the school, so she won’t be going to New York with her friends after all. Still, Sam, Artie and Blaine gather around her to convince her to come to New York anyway and figure her life out there. Together they sing an acoustic version of “Loser Like Me,” which convinces Tina to head to New York.

However, come graduation, her mind is changed again. She won’t be going to New York after all — because she got into Brown. Like Quinn, she’s headed for the New England Ivy League halls.

BRITTANA REUNITES & GRADUATION DAY COMES FOR THE REMAINING SENIORS OF MCKINLEY:

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‘Amazing Race’ Recap: ‘Can’t Make Fish Bite’

Photo Credit: CBS

Photo Credit: CBS

Teams Head To Sri Lanka

Teams started the next leg of The Amazing Race All-Stars by flying from Malaysia to Colombo, Sri Lanka, where they would need to get blessed at a temple to receive their next clue.

Most teams made it onto a direct flight to Colombo that departed at 11 p.m. — except Brendon and Rachel, and Margie and Luke. Margie and Luke decided to go on stand by for the flight, while Brendon and Rachel decided to get on an earlier flight to Singapore that had a mere 30-minute connection time between landing and their second flight to Colombo. Luckily for them, they made their connection and were the first team to arrive in Sri Lanka. Margie and Luke, however, were not able to get on the same flight as the other teams, and were approximately 10 hours behind as a result.

Brenchel arrived at the temple first, but because it didn’t open until 5:45 a.m., the other teams managed to catch up to them. After getting blessed, teams took a train to Galle, where they encountered a Detour.

In “Fishing Pole,” teams had to climb on a pair of fishing stilts and each catch a fish. Dave and Connor, Jet and Cord and John and Jessica chose this one (though John and Jessica later switched). In ‘Spin Control,’ they had to learn and perform a traditional folk dance while spinning drum-like mats. Caroline and Jennifer, Leo and Jamal, Flight Time and Big Easy and Brendon and Rachel chose this one.

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Film Friday 3/21/14: ‘Just Friends’

Photo Credit: juanpaolosanity.com

Photo Credit: juanpaolosanity.com

Just Friends (2005; Romantic Comedy; Starring Ryan Reynolds, Amy Smart, Anna Farris, Chris Klein; DVD)

Everyone has been in one of those situations in their life where they want something more with a friend, but they’re simply stuck in that ‘friendzone’ and can’t get out of it. Just Friends tries to tackle that situation and see if things can eventually work out for the person who hates being kept in that status and while the movie does have its humorous elements, it’s mostly a long, drawn-out stumble to its inevitable conclusion.

Back in high school, Chris Brander (Ryan Reynolds) was an overweight nerd who spent all of his time with his co-ed best pal (who happens to be one of the hottest girls in school), Jamie (Amy Smart). In their high school yearbook, Chris confesses he wants more, only to be mortified when his confession is read aloud at a party, and Jamie rebuffs his advances. With a promise never to come back to his small New Jersey town, Chris becomes motivated to prove everyone long. Flash forward to present-day, and he’s a much thinner, way buffer, thirty-something hot shot music executive and ladies man. However, after his boss assigns him to sign his pop-star ex-girlfriend, the incredibly untalented and very stupid Samantha James (Anna Faris), Chris finds himself stranded in New Jersey once again over the holidays. Now back in town, he seeks out Jamie once more. However, winning her back will be difficult because not only does he need to get back in touch with his former fat kid (Jamie isn’t impressed by his new attitude), he also has competition when another former nerd turns up in town and shows off an improved look-Dusty (Chris Klein).

The movie does have some great moments of humor, usually ones involving the antics Samantha gets into while she’s not being supervised by Chris, but overall, the movie isn’t very convincing. The inevitable conclusion doesn’t work, as a “just friends” policy seems to be more plausible between the two leads–there’s zero chemistry between Smart and Reynolds. In general, as far as the romance plot goes, it feels as if everyone involved is just grasping at anything they could find to help move the story along.

IF watching for the comedic purposes, the movie has some recommendation. However, for a better time watching people fall in love, better movie options exist.