Tonight’s Glee Project had it all: tears, flirting, and Samuel’s first-ever appearance in the bottom three! And it was just nice to watch a competition that mattered, unlike a certain other show that it was airing opposite. (Yes, Teen Choice Awards, we’re talking about you. But we’re still proud that Glee won three awards! We're guessing there were more surboards in the Glee green room than there were on the set of the movie Blue Crush.)
The episode was all about “believability,” with Jenna Ushkowitz (a.k.a. Tina) stopping by as guest judge, even wearing her goth gloves. Jenna proved to be one of the more supportive guests, doling out more encouragement than Mr. Rogers, and she finally chose Hannah as the winner, giving Hannah her first win.
The gang learns that the group number will be a performance of Paramore’s “The Only Exception.” This will mean displaying their vulnerable side, and Lindsay basically points out that Samuel can do “vulnerable” about as well as Michael Cera can do “assertive.” In other words, not that well.
While recording vocals with Nikki, Alex breaks down and cries when recounting memories of his dad, who passed away when Alex was only 6. And Lindsay cries during her recording session, too, but Nikki thinks Lindsay’s being phony. Then again, calling Lindsay phony is like calling Cheez-Its delicious. (Translation: Tell us something we don’t know.)
This week's video doesn’t involve any choreography — just a lot of sad faces. It’s as if the music video director had just told the contestants, “Okay, I want you all to give me the expression you had right after you first saw The Notebook. And… action!”
As if that weren’t enough sadness, it’s now time to announce the bottom three, which included a slew of suprises. Lindsay lands in the ignominious group for not showing enough genuine emotion. Hannah is chosen for seeming distracted, and she had indeed admitted that she couldn’t focus on the shoot because she just wanted to stare at her crush Damian the whole time. (Join the club, Hannah!) And Samuel wasn’t vulnerable enough, meaning he’ll be meeting Ryan Murphy for the first time.
Up first is Hannah, performing Taylor Swift’s “Back to December,” and Ryan Murphy wishes she were more confident. Lindsay impresses Ryan with “Maybe This Time” from Cabaret. However, he finds her hard to root for, and Lindsay tells him that being adopted makes her feel a need to always be perfect. Meanwhile, Samuel has the opposite problem of Hannah, as Ryan Murphy finds his version of “Animal” to be a little too confident. Evidently, Ryan is pickier than Goldilocks.
Finally, it’s judgment time, and Ryan has a relatively easy time choosing Hannah as the one to go. So much for getting to savor her first homework assignment victory! And we’re sad to see Hannah go, but it doesn’t seem like an egregious error — unlike, say, giving Ashton Kutcher an award for his “acting,” as the Teen Choice Awards did tonight. Now that is inexcusable.