Glee Season 4 – Guilty Pleasure – Recap and Videos

GLEE: L-R: Alex Newell, Becca Tobin, Jenna Ushkowitz, Heather Morris and Melissa Benoist perform in the "Guilty Pleasures" episode of GLEE airing Thursday, March 21 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2013 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Jennifer Clasen/FOX

Everybody has a secret, right? In tonight’s episode of Glee, titled “Guilty Pleasure”, the kids divulge their deepest, darkest, guilty pleasures, and while the reveals bring some friends closer together, why others may break apart.

Glee Season 4 – Guilty Pleasures – Listen to Full Songs! (AUDIO)
Glee Season 4 Guilty Pleasures Preview! (VIDEO) (PHOTOS) (Wham!)

The episode is filled with a ton of fun music from Wham!, Spice Girls, Barry Manilow, Bobby Brown and ABBA. But there are serious moments too.  When Rachel learns Brody’s “secret” they sing a dread-filled rendition of Radiohead’s “Creep”.  And Blaine sits at the piano to perform a heartbreaking version of Phil Collins’ “Against All Odds.”


There was a lot to like about this week’s Glee.  The soundtrack was fantastic–the cheesiest music, tailor made for show choir jazz hands. The songs–from ABBA, Wham!, The Spice Girls and Barry Manilow were a wonderful cross-section of songs we secretly love.  But really? There’s no shame in being a fan of well crafted pop,  which describes all of the music in the episode.

What I also liked was how musical Guilty Pleasures stood in for secrets that were much deeper.  When Kitty shamefully admits that she loves the Spice Girls, the reaction from the girls is a squeal of delight.  They ALL love the Spice Girls.  Sometimes, when we share something that feels shameful, we come to realize we aren’t alone. Just maybe, Kitty can let down her mean girl front and make some lasting friendships.   It’s Blaine who comes up with the idea to assign “Guilty Pleasures” as an assignment to the Glee club. But in the end, he admits to more than just a furtive love for Wham!  When he admits his crush to Sam, the two become closer than ever.

Over in New York City, Kurt is keeping his own secret.  He’s sleeping with a “boyfriend pillow” he ordered in an Ambien blackout. It’s basically a pillow with an arm attached, so the user can snuggle. (Wait. He’s got Adam, doesn’t he? Why does he need a boyfriend pillow?)  When Rachel and Santana find out about “Bruce” (Kurt’s name for his new pal) they don’t make fun of him. Well, Rachel finds it a little creepy, but Santana is absolutely delighted when Kurt gifts her with her very own “girlfriend pillow”.  It’s in that moment, when Kurt reveals the thing he’s most embarrassed about, that he and Santana begin to bond. It’s a beautiful thing.

But it’s Santana’s truth telling that brings that seals the deal. After kicking her out last week, Rachel and Kurt allow Santana back into the apartment until she finds her own place. Kurt makes Santana promise she won’t reveal Brody’s man-whoring ways to Rachel until she gets through her Funny Girl audition. Rachel has no idea why Brody moved out of the loft–just that he was gone. But she’s sure that the two will eventually get back together.  When Santana hears this, she breaks her promise to Kurt, blurting out the truth to Rachel. While this bit of unsettling news could mess with Rachel’s ability to concentrate on her audition, so could her pursuit of a man who has been unfaithful to her.  Knowing the secret forces Rachel to deal with who Brody really is.  She also learns that Finn came all the way to New York to “defend her honor.”   Rachel, unfortunately, sees nothing wrong with her ex-boyfriend  punching out Brody.  Why are men always saving women in Glee?   Why does Rachel need a man to defend her honor? She can defend her own freaking honor. And I’m still pissed that Brody was turned into a villain in order for to make way for the return of Finchel

When Rachel learns the truth, she confronts Brody. She’s pissed that he lied to her. But Rachel wasn’t exactly honest–not about her lingering feelings for Finn or that she slept with him at the wedding. She admits that she kinda used Brody to make Finn jealous and to “fill my own personal heartache.” The break up scene is full of pain–Lea Michele is especially wonderful and raw in this scene. The two perform a really emotional rendition of Radiohead’s “Creep.”  Neither is coming out of the relationship feeling proud of themselves. And that’s it.  Mid-game is over.  Brody and Rachel are kaput.

When Rachel and Kurt realize Santana was right all along, and had their best interests at heart, they forgive her intrusive ways. They invite her to move into the loft permanently.  I can’t even begin to tell you how happy it made me to see Kurt and Santana snark watching TV on the couch together–lust like old friends. I waited all season for these three to get together, and I’ll say it again. Perfection would be a show built around Kurt, Rachel and Santana as they follow their dreams in NYC. Forget Lima and the newbies.  Speaking of Kurt–who wanted desperately to know more about the “shame scene” assignment Kurt acted out in class during his  “guilty pleasures” voice over? Which, by the way, included Richard Simmons workouts (in shorts and a tank top–the fewest clothes Kurt has ever worn, making many fangirls happy, I’m sure), lots of cheesy TV and of course his secret pillow buddy.

Back in LIma:

  • When Blaine spies Sam stealing macaroni from the cafeteria he assumes he’s only trying to feed his economically troubled family. Nope. Sam’s guilty pleasure is a passion for creating macaroni portraits. One of his masterpieces is a portrait of Kurt!
  • Sam knows all about Tina’s vapo-rape of Blaine, and totally gives her crap about it.  Poor Tina will never live it down. Anyway, when Tina informs them that Mr. Shue is out with the flue, Blaine and Sam decide to take over the club. Musical Guilty Pleasures will be the theme, which allows Blaine to claim that Wham! is his guilty pleasure. Anything to avoid breaking down and admitting his crush on Sam.
  • To show the class exactly what they mean, the duo perform a spirited rendition of “Wake Me Up Before You Go Go” which is totally irony free and awesome.  The action cuts to the auditorium with the club dressed in day glow. It made me really really happy.
  • Brittany breaks the news to Kitty that everyone hates her. As a way to make her fellow Cheerio more relatable to the club, Brittany invites her to reveal her guilty pleasures on “Fondue for Two.  Kitty shows up, but chickens out, refusing to name her secret pleasure. But we do learn that Kitty is a two faced lying slut and that  Lord Tubbington is a secret Scientologist.
  • That clip from the promo, where Blaine asks Sam if he has feelings for him, is Blaine responding to Sam’s confession that he has a secret even darker than his love for macaroni art. The language here is therapy-speak, which makes the scene even funnier. “Until you can speak it, you’re going to be stuck in this shame spiral!” Blaine insists, in an attempt to coax the truth out of Sam. “You’ll feel so much better when you stop hiding!”  It turns out the big secret isn’t a same sex crush, but a love for the music of Barry Manilow. It’s kind of the same thing, actually.  When Sam finally comes out as a Fanilow to the club, a perfectly campy performance of “Copacabana” follows.  After, the rest of the club admits that they love “the Barry” too.  Blaine, embarrassed that he mis-read Sam’s intentions, says “only kidding” about the crush stuff. Oh Blaine–you are only as sick as your secrets. Heh.
  • When it’s established that the girls of glee all love them some Spice Girls, major casting decisions need to be made. Unique wants to be Scary Spice. “There’s nothing scarier than a girl with a penis,” Kitty quips.
  • When the girls finally perform, they are very spicy. Here’s how it shakes out. Baby Spice: Unique. Scary Spice: Tina, Sporty Spice: Brittany, Posh Spice: Marley and Ginger Spice: Kitty.  Except for Brittany, it’s cool how they’re cast against type.
  • I hate Chris Brown as much as the next gal, but there was something about the way the girls bullied Jake out of performing one of his songs that bugged me.   I draw my own line when it comes to what I can tolerate from an artist before I’m turned off their art.  But I can respect that those lines may be different for others. Lip service is paid to separating the artist from their art, but in the end, the girls’ PC ravings force Jake to ditch Chris.  The replacement for Chris–Bobby Brown–isn’t much of an improvement, and Jake winds up apologizing for performing the music of an artist who got Whitney hooked on crack.  Boo to the writers for repeating that false trope. Whitney had substance abuse problems way before Bobby. His performance of “My Prerogative,” at least,  gave Jacob Artist the chance to finally flaunt his dance skills. Good stuff.  And in the end, Marley (who confesses to loving Jessica Simpson) finds a way to forgive him. Not that I care.
  • Another of Blaine’s guilty pleasures? Goosebumps! Did you guys pick up on that?
  • Blaine sits at the piano, pouring his heart into a gut-wrenching (and 100% LIVE) performance of “Against All Odds.” All the while, glancing longingly at…Sam.  Ok I’m sorry. But he sings a devastating breakup song and it’s about Sam?  That performance had Kurt written all over it, and I’m really disappointed it wasn’t about him.  It’s silly. Blaine isn’t really in love with Sam.  Nevertheless, the performance is gorgeous.  After, Blaine tells the group the song is about Kurt, but he’s fibbing.  And Sam knows it.  In fact, nobody is really convinced that Blaine gave up his real secret.
  • Blaine can’t admit his feelings for Sam because he’s afraid it will freak him out. Sam realizes this and finally admits that he knows he’s Blaine’s guilty pleasure. Not only is Sam NOT freaked out. He’s flattered. The attention, in fact, feels kinda good. It’s a really sweet moment in the Sam and Blaine bromance.  “Dude. Please tell me that’s a pack of lifesavers in your pocket,” says Sam when they hug it out.  Yeah. They’re breath mints.  OK. So maybe Sam has a little ways to go yet. In any case, the bros are closer than ever. Blam forever.

The episode ends with a philosophical Rachel and her best friends kicking off a rendition of ABBA’s “Mama Mia.”  Rachel gets to pick the movie cause she’s heartbroken and going through a break up with a weirdo man-whore.  The song eventually incorporates the Lima kids dressed in period 70’s costumes. It’s a wonderfully edited piece, with form cuts elegantly moving the action back and forth between locations. My favorite cut had Kurt tossing a gold hula hoop to Santana. The scene dissolves to Blaine (who looks adorable in bangs) catching it in Lima. Guilty pleasures bring everyone together!

Video Performances

Wake Me Up Before You Go Go – Sam and Blaine

Copacabana – Sam

Against All Odds – Blaine

Wannabe- Unique, Kitty, Tina, Marley, Brittany

My Prerogative – Jake

Creep – Rachel and Brody

Mama Mia – New Directions + Rachel, Kurt Santana

Photo Gallery

About mj santilli 33315 Articles
Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!