[SPOILER ALERT: The following story contains major spoilers from Tuesday's episode of Glee. If you don't want to be spoiled, pump up the volume and avert your eyes ... now!]
The New Directions traveled to Nationals for the second time in three years on Glee, and — thankfully — it went a lot smoother than last time.
Although Mercedes almost missed the competition, there was no silly song-writing homework, no sabotaging from crazy Quinn and no spontaneous on-stage PDA by Rachel (Lea Michele) and Finn (Cory Monteith). Instead, the glee-clubbers showed judges Lindsay Lohan, Perez Hilton and Martin (aka Rex Lee) who was boss by turning in three solid performances. The first was a rousing group rendition of Lady Gaga's "Edge of Glory" that saw senior Santana (Naya Rivera) take the lead before Rachel really stole the show with her powerhouse performance of Celine Dion's "It's All Coming Back to Me Now." In the words of J. Lo on Idol, it gave us "goosies." For the mandatory vintage tune, Finn (Cory Monteith) lent his old school, rock-friendly pipes (as well as dance moves well beyond his usual skill set) to Meat Loaf's "Paradise by the Dashboard Light."
Vocal Adrenaline's Unique may have been the bigger draw, but the maybe-too-modern take on Nicki Minaj's "Starships" and distracting stage direction on The Who's "Pinball Wizard" were no match for New Directions who — one last spoiler alert! — won Nationals. It was a sweet, though predictable, end of the road for the McKinley High seniors, who got to walk the halls of McKinley, trophy-in-hand, while being fake-Slushied with confetti. Heck, Finn even pocketed $500 from the victory for his and Rachel's honeymoon.
Surprisingly, New Directions' win was the best news for Mr. Schue (Matthew Morrison), who finally got some respect (aka his face on the front page of the local paper), the teacher of the year award and some lovin' from his fiancée, Emma (Jayma Mays). Apparently a severe case of OCD is no match for a ginormous show choir trophy. Who knew?
The joyous celebration distracted from what will be next week's tearful send-off of seniors Rachel, Finn, Kurt, Mercedes, Puck, Quinn, Santana and Mike Chang. All we can say is that between winning Nationals this year and losing Rachel and Mercedes (Amber Riley), Mr. Schue has his work cut out for him with next year's glee kids.
So do you think it was the right time for New Directions to win Nationals? Or did you find their triumph a little too predictable? Sound off with all your thoughts from Tuesday's two episodes below.
Glee airs Tuesdays at 8/7c on Fox.