‘Glee’ Recap: Mike Chang + Mercedes Are at the Forefront of ‘Asian F’
On tonight’s episode of ‘Glee,’ which was called ‘Asian F,’ two supporting cast members stepped to the forefront to offer a little more insight into the psyches and their makeups. Obviously, Mike Chang was a central figure, since he got an A-minus (aka an ‘Asian F’) on a chemistry test, which incited the ire of his traditionalist father. Mercedes also stepped into the ‘Spotlight’ with her version of the Jennifer Hudson song, nearly wrestling the role of Maria in ‘West Side Story’ away from Rachel Berry.
Early on, Mr. Schuester tells Mercedes that it’s no longer about doing her best, but about doing better, while Mike’s father complains about his A-minus, saying “the girlfriend is a distraction” and that “the Glee club is a waste of his time.” Mike immediately springs into reaction mode, offering to get a chemistry tutor and to pay for it himself. A tutor for a grade that most of his peers would kill for? Mike’s dad has impossibly high standards and he later admits to being overwhelmed and losing focus due to sectionals and football. For a hot second, it appears as though Mike is buying into his father’s rhetoric.
When Mercedes sang ‘Spotlight,’ she closes her performance by saying that she hopes everyone now sees her the way she sees herself: as a leading lady. Rachel was shaking in her shoes, a bit. The ladies were then subjected to call back for ‘West Side Story,’ and it’s dubbed “the ultimate Maria-off.” While Rachel assumes she will sing ‘I Feel Pretty,’ she is stopped cold and told that both singers must perform ‘Out Here on My Own.’ Rachel offers Mercedes a congratulatory hug, which she rejects, saying, “Hug me after I get the part.” Rawr!
Meanwhile, Mike engages in a solo dance, strutting his stuff when he is caught by his father, who promptly asks, “This is how you waste your time?” He dismisses the arts as “a hobby not a career, there’s no future in it.” Poor Mike, right? Well his father’s disapproval of his choices allows him to turn up the heat when he performs ‘Cool’ from ‘WSS.’
Back to Mercedes: she accuses Mr. Schuester of playing favorites with Rachel during booty camp and shouts, “I’ve outgrown you! I’ve outgrown all of you.” Schuester immediately retorts, “You walk out that door, you’re out of Glee club.” The next scene is a ‘Dreamgirls’ sequence, where The New Directions soar through ‘It’s All Over.’
Mike’s mom shows up next, and he confesses that he doesn’t want to be a surgeon or a lawyer. He exclaims, “I want to be an artist” and says the only time he feels special is when he does “that” — the “that” being a dance move. Ma Chang says she, too, is fond of the arts yet is nowhere near courageous as her son. “I let go of my dreams but you don’t have to,” she said. She reveals her love of dance and then engages in a sweet waltz with her son..
When Rachel and Mercedes participate in their “Maria-off,” Kurt sums it up best, tell Blaine that “We’ll be talking about this face-off for the rest of our lives!” Both singers nail it, but Rach admits that Mercedes was better, because, well, she was. The role was double-casted in an “Everybody wins” moment, with both singers being granted the opp to play the part and alternate performances. Mercedes is having none of it, flat out demanding Rachel to “tell me you were better than me.” She throws her hands up over ‘The Rachel Berry Show’ and bows out, since she doesn’t want to share the spotlight. Rachel wins by default and Mercedes is seen speaking to Miss Corcoran, looking defect since Miss C. is going to need some star talent.
Oh, it’s on. More next month, as the next new ep airs Nov.1.