What happens when you mix bombastic cheerleading costumes, pyrotechnics, locker room scuffles, and a zombie shuffle? You get the over-the-top spectacle that was "The Sue Sylvester Shuffle," the biggest episode of Glee to date. Let's break it down: Cheerleading coach Sue Sylvester (Emmy winner Jane Lynch) struggled to make things interesting again (oh, the boredom!), and the McKinley High football team suffered as they approached division championships, thanks to a rift between the jocks and the glee club members on the team.
Luckily for Coach Bieste (Dot Marie Jones), Mr. Schuester (Matthew Morrison) had a plan to save the football team -- merging his glee club with the football team -- but Sue was left to her own devices. Her solution? A human cannon loaded with none other than the school's resident ditz, Brittany (Heather Morris). Along the way, though, there was plenty of song and dance, of course, including a buzzy halftime mash-up of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs "Heads Will Roll." Catch all of the night's big acts below.
While Mr. Schuester's New Directions didn't sing this 2010 Katy Perry hit, it was a spectacle nonetheless, full of bicycle tricks, flaming hula-hoops, and blue wigs as performed by the Cheerios. Only problem? Coach Sue was bored, and nothing seemed to get her out of her funk. Until, that is, an episode of Felix the Cat inspired her to top herself unlike ever before -- with a human cannon.
"Need You Now"
Lady Antebellum's country crossover hit "Need You Now" was meant to show the football jocks that glee club isn't all about show tunes. By the time Rachel (Lea Michele) and Puck (Mark Salling) were finished, though, the guys weren't all that convinced. No matter, though, because Rachel had another motive for this pretty duet: she wanted to make her ex, Finn (Cory Monteith), jealous.
"She's Not There"
Thanks to some kind words from Mr. Schuester, bully Karofsky (Max Adler) actually enjoyed rehearsing for the "Thriller" dance number, and even suggested that the larger-than-usual glee club band together to do a shuffling warm-up performance to The Zombies' "She's Not There." Finally, progress: maybe there was hope for the jocks and the gleeks. Then again, maybe a hallway encounter with the mullet-wearing hockey team would dampen Karofsky's spirits. Whatever you do, don't call him a loser.
"Bills, Bills, Bills"
Don't think for a second that New Directions' rivals, Dalton Academy's Warblers, didn't bring their A-game for the Super Bowl, either. Their a cappella rendition of Destiny Childs' "Bills, Bills, Bills" showcased lead singer Blaine (Darren Criss) as well as the vocal acrobatics of the rest of his club. Sadly, though, fan favorite Kurt (Golden Globe winner Chris Colfer) took the back seat in yet another Warbler track.
"Thriller"/"Heads Will Roll"
The New Directions halftime show promised to be big. And the club delivered — with the help of some newly (temporarily) converted football jocks and three star Cheerios who mutinied against their coach and rejoined the show choir. Good thing, because Santana's (Naya Rivera) cover of the Yeah Yeah Yeah's "Heads Will Roll" was strong and downright awesome in a Alice in Wonderland-meets-Bride of Frankenstein-turned-zombie kind of way. It was mashed up with Artie (Kevin McHale) taking the lead for Michael Jackson's "Thriller," and while we're pretty sure we'd never see that kind of performance in a high school, we have to say: it was pretty spectactular. Maybe even Sue Sylvester would have been proud.
Rebecca Harper is Hulu's editor.
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