The bulk of the other action is centered around Mercedes’ and Rachel’s fight for the lead role of Maria in West Side Story. The devices the writers used to show Mercedes’ change of confidence seem too sudden to be believable, but this isn’t a show that really needs to be believable. It’s suggested at the end of the episode that this change will begin a new story arc and for a show that has had issues with stagnancy, any forward motion is a good thing.
The songs are great for the most part, even the ballads maintain enough energy to keep them entertaining and the faster songs are even better. The two best performances are Run the World (Beyonce) and It’s All Over (Dreamgirls). Heather Morris comes back from a less than stellar performance last week to a gripping rendition of Beyonce’s “Run the World”. The whole cast gets in on the fun with Dreamgirl’s “It’s All Over” and Harry Shum Jr. (Mike Chang) steals the show with the realization that he actually can sing. His performance of “Cool” from West Side Story would put any Gap ad to shame.