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Wait -- What Airline Was That, Again?

Which leaves us with Rachel, who steps out onto the stage and announces she'll be performing "the most difficult song [she's] ever sung," which is Barbra Streisand's version of Fanny Brice's version of this song by way of Rachel's favorite movie, Funny Girl. "In your head," Jesse wonders, "are you singing to anyone in particular?" "Not really," Rachel claims, which is the exact wrong thing to say in this situation, so it's really quite a relief when we find out she's slapped a great, big, gawky close-up of Frankenteen's gormless, grinning mug against her mind's eye for the song that follows. Except, you know, for the part where that great, big, gawky close-up of Frankenteen's gormless, grinning mug makes me burst into gales of inappropriate laughter while clawing desperately at my face over the sheer horror of it all, so you'll forgive me, I'm sure, if I avert my gaze for the first several seconds of Rachel's rendition. And when the Frankenteen has passed and it's safe for us all to look again, we notice that Kurt, Mercedes, and Santana have sneaked into the back of the auditorium to witness the surprisingly fantastic performance that follows. I mean, she's no Barbra-in-the-movie, of course, but I nevertheless got chills racing up and down my back at all the right moments, which I'm pretty sure is more than what happened the last time Lea Michele threw out a none-too-subtle audition for that much-rumored Funny Girl revival on this show. Of course, the full orchestra backing her up helps. Seriously, where the hell did all of those people come from? Oh, whatever -- I'm starting to ramble. Though before I move on, I should probably note I'm convinced they deliberately set the first three kids up to fail against this song, so all those bits where Santana lacked a certain small amount of oomph and va-va-voom and Kurt was far too fey and wispy and Mercedes fried the goddamned living hell out of her vocal cords? Intentional on the producers' part, to make this song even better by comparison. Not that Lea Michele needed much help, but still: Brava.

And when it's over, a teary-eyed Kurt murmurs, "She may be difficult, but boy, can she sing!" and with that, he leaps to his feet to offer Rachel a standing ovation before Santana peevishly yanks him back down into his seat. Meanwhile, over at The Table Of Judgment, Jesse St. James smiles, "I have to be honest: That was brilliant." "I have nothing but the tip of my hat," he adds, inciting Santana to cry out, "Garbage! This whole thing is rigged!" Mr. Schue loudly reminds everyone that the final call is still his to make, and he then proceeds to jerk them all around by kicking said final call to an as-yet-unspecified later date, likely to avoid the snarling, screamy, hair-pulling slapfight that would immediately erupt in the auditorium were he to give them his decision now. Jesse tosses Rachel a secret, saucy wink, and that's it for the fun part of tonight's episode, kids!

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