Teachers' lounge. Emma and Coach Beiste sit at a table, flummoxed over how to choose between Rachel and Mercedes for the role of Maria. Will joins them, and Emma tells Will that she saw a new maturity in Mercedes when she auditioned. Will, naturally, takes all the credit, thinking that his pushing her at Booty Camp has transformed her. Ass. If they really can't decide, Will thinks he knows what they need to do.
Cut to Emma's office, where she, Artie, and the Panther have just told Rachel and Mercedes that they have to audition again. Mercedes is pissed, but Rachel knows that a callback is common in show biz. Rachel plans to sing "I Feel Pretty." You know, a song from the show that's actually sung by the character she wants to play. What a revolutionary idea. But the directors aren't down with this crazy notion -- they want both girls to sing the same song, one that they directors think will challenge them both: "Out Here On My Own," from Fame. Mercedes better count her blessing they're not making her sing a song that Maria actually sings, because I'm having trouble thinking of anyone less suited to the role than she is. You know who would be a better Maria than Mercedes? Tina. Emma. Crazy Terri. Kurt. Maybe even Howard Bamboo. Anyway, as the two girls leave Emma's office, Rachel tries to give Mercedes a good-luck hug, but is cruelly rebuffed.
Mike Chang is walking down the corridor, talking to his father on his cell phone, explaining that he's on the way to meet his chemistry tutor at the Lima Bean. As soon as he hangs up, he walks past McKinley High's fully outfitted dance studio (last seen late in the first season), and he can't help but duck in. And then he performs some scorching dance moves while having imaginary conversations with his father and Tina. It's all about how dancing isn't really a sensible plan, but is what he loves doing. (And in case you're wondering, Mike Chang just turned me completely gay again. Thanks, Gaylord Wiener!)
And then we're in the auditorium, where Mike is scheduled to audition. Except that he's not there! Until suddenly he is. He performs "Cool," and his singing practice with Tina has really paid off. I mean, it's not a lyrical tour de force, but he handles it more than admirably. His dancing is, of course, amazing. And he even gets a ton of football players to show up to dance backup. Commercials.