Spoiler Alert! If you did not see “Glee” last night, wait to read this until you get a chance to watch it.
Last night, “Glee” reminded us that it can be more than a sometimes coy or campy fantasy with flashy musical numbers and flashier guest stars. The episode was titled “Funeral.” It included some powerhouse solos as members auditioned for a lead singing part in the upcoming Nationals. I especially loved Mercedes’ rendition of “Try a Little Tenderness.” That was a fitting lead-in to the rest of the show. Termagant Sue Sylvester (Jane Lynch) had one soft spot, her sister Jean, who had Down Syndrome. Jean’s death was devastating for Sue and Lynch was superb in showing us how the pain of her loss was real and genuine — but that she mourned in character, showing very little vulnerability. I was not expecting to be so moved, but the generosity of the Glee club in helping Sue pack up Jean’s things and the tenderness of the funeral, with decorations from Jean’s favorite movie, “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,” was beautifully done and their performance of “Pure Imagination” was exquisite.
Well played, “Glee.”