Talk about shocking! Tonight's final episode of The Glee Project was packed with one surprising moment after the other. For example, we're surprised that Alex and Samuel didn't eventually kill each other (although they certainly came close). And we're also surprised that Matheus didn't somehow find a way to take his shirt off this week. First time for everything!
The first surprise in tonight's finale, entitled "Glee-ality" (who wants to sign our petition to get that word into Webster's?), is that all eight previously ousted contestants return to join the final four on "Don't Stop Believin'." (You didn't think the Glee producers could possibly go a full season without slipping in their favorite song, did ya?) Ryan Murphy was onhand as the final judge, even though he didn't take his job all that seriously, deciding that there would be no winner for the final group number. Way to be decisive, Ryan. (Foreshadowing, perhaps? More on that momentarily...)
The final music video is a rooftop-set version of "Raise Your Glass," meaning we get one final chance to see video director Erik wearing a baseball cap that is inexplicably blurred by the network. (What possibly could be so offensive that it needs to get blurred, each and every week? Perhaps it's a hat for NBC's upcoming Glee ripoff, Smash? We'll never know.)
After a tense recording session, with Alex proving to be less-than-sympathetic toward Sam and his nerves, it was then an emotional video shoot for all, especially with the eight also-rans singing backup. (And by the way: Nice hairdo, Matheus! The '90s must have been glad to finally get its haircut back.)
In a first for the show, each of the remaining four gets to choose their song for the final performance, and they will then perform it for all of the former contestants and most of the guest judges. (But no Mark Salling? For shame!)
Lindsay is up first with a killer performance of "Gimme Gimme" from Thoroughly Modern Millie. (A Broadway tune? Way to show you can branch out.) Damian is completely charming — which was finally something that wasn't a surprise! — while performing "Beyond the Sea" in an adorable jacket and bowtie, and dedicating the song to Hannah and Cameron. Seriously, Damian — you continue to prove to be the most likable, down-to-earth guy on television. (Translation: Marry us?)
Next is Samuel, who delivers an impressively stirring cover of a song we've always loved, "Jolene," and then Alex knocks 'em dead with his drag performance of "I Am Changing." Both Alex and Samuel deservedly earned standing ovations. And now the true nail-biting begins! Dun, dun, dun...
First, Cameron — remember him? — wins the viewers' "fan favorite" poll. Then, after talking the decision over with the producers and Glee cast members, Ryan calls all four back onstage. Right away, he eliminates Alex and Lindsay, leaving Damian and Samuel still in the running. (Anyone out there shedding a sea of tears for Linds? We didn't think so.)
And then, after lauding both of the final performers, Ryan names Samuel as the winner of Glee Project, citing his "it" factor. Samuel is thrilled, and gets to enjoy a feeling that no one else will ever feel. Well, no one else will feel it for at least another few seconds, which is how long it took for Ryan to inform Damian that he, too, has won a seven-episode stint on Glee!
That's right — Damian is also a winner! And this means that we won't have to hide the sharp objects from all you members of Team Damian out there, which is good news for us, too! (We really don't have that kind of time — there are an awful lot of you.)
And then, perhaps because he was preparing to fire a slew of existing Glee cast members back then, Ryan Murphy extends one final olive branch, offering two-episode roles to both Lindsay and Alex! Hooray! Everyone wins! And clearly, Ryan Murphy has no idea how competition shows work!
So there you have it — a thrilling but satisfying end to an amazing first (and hopefully not last!) season of The Glee Project. Now you can all go back to counting the days until Glee returns to the airwaves. And don't worry — we'll let you know where we register when we finally get married to Damian. Just try not to skimp on the gift.