It says something about the state of this show that a leaky gas line contributes more to this episode than any of the actual characters. Three out of four (!) of tonight's plots involve said leaky gas line, which is leaking into the choir room at McKinley.
In the only non-gas line story, Kurt books a gig for Pamela Lansbury. The rest of the group thinks the venue (a Broadway-themed piano bar) is a bad fit, but he has a vision of how it will go, which we get to see via his (non-gas-related) fantasy. In reality, only one person shows up. However, that lone audience member happens to have a connection that leads to a second gig for the band at a Brooklyn hotspot. So that career setback didn't even last for one episode.
In Ohio, Blaine tries to take control of the New Directions, but gets accused of being a puppet master. This naturally leads to a gas-induced fantasy sequence in which everyone else turns into puppets hanging on his every word. His new puppet obsession leads to him creating a Kurt puppet, with whom he can argue without having his infidelity thrown back in his face. Sue naturally hates puppets and confiscates puppet Kurt. Blaine gets detention when he's caught staging a commando raid to rescue puppet Kurt from Sue's office, leading him to have to miss Pamela Lansbury's debut performance. In the end, Blaine learns the error of his ways and makes puppets for just about everyone in the cast, including guest stars he may never have actually met.
Sue is up for evaluation by the school board. Things are going well until she realizes that the handsome new superintendent thinks she's a dude. This causes her to try to femme it up, to "hilarious" result. But then she turns to Unique for guidance, and comes across as a modern-day dynamo of feminine power. She gets a permanent appointment as principal, but gets shot down when she asks the superintendent out on a date.
Finally, in the tedious bullshit teen romance department, Jake continues to be a man-slut, working his way through the entire Cheerios squad. Bree has a pregnancy scare, and then dumps his toxic ass. And Marley still won't take him back.
Featuring old chestnut "Cheek to Cheek, often associated with Fred Astaire, sung here by Will and Sue; Madonna's "Into the Groove," performed by the boys and girls of Pamela Lansbury; a mashup of the Janet Jackson classics "Nasty" and "Rhythm Nation," performed by New Puck, Boring New Idiot Rachel, and New Santana; Ylvis's "The Fox (What Does the Fox Say?)," performed simultaneously be everyone, everywhere; and Queen's "You're My Best Friend," performed by Blaine, backed up by Puppet New Directions.
We open on the New Directions farting around aimlessly in the choir room. Blaine enters and tells them that Will won't be able to attend rehearsal but still wants them to work on ideas for Nationals. This leads to a hubbub of poorly thought-out, quickly shouted out ideas. But Blaine shuts the chaos down and tries to impose his vision on the group, calling for simple arrangements with only piano accompaniment and himself on lead. When Tina accuses him of trying to turn the choir room into North Korea, he suggests they ditch instruments entirely and go a cappella. That suggestion is no more popular than the last.
Blaine Jong Il tells them that he's not trying to be bossy -- he's just trying to share the benefit of his experience. "I have won more show choir competitions than anyone in this room." Unless he was in some middle school show choir, I don't think that's necessarily true, as Artie and Tina were both members of the club that beat Blaine's old group on more than one occasion. New Puck suggests going along with Blaine's ideas, but he's the only one up for it. Blaine attempts to pull a Rachel Berry by storming out of the room, but he fails at that, too, throwing himself down on to a little settee just inside the choir room door and sulking.
Demian's Ancestral Homeland. Kurt has called the members of Pamela Lansbury together for a special meeting. Or, at least the named cast members who are also members of Pamela Lansbury, as none of the members of the band that make them a band are actually there, only the singers. Rachel is impatient in demanding to know what's going on, as she rescheduled her dialect session to be there. Which, I'm just not getting into how ridiculous this show is in its depiction of preparing for a major Broadway show. There's no way Rachel should have more than 10 minutes a day of unscheduled time at this point. Oh, I guess I did get into it.
Anyway, Kurt is there to tell them that he's booked them a gig -- at Callbacks, the piano bar which we last saw when Blaine broke all of our hearts and confessed his infidelity. Everybody except Rachel thinks this is a pretty horrible idea, as debuting at a venue known for its Broadway connections hardly seems to be the way to build an audience for a pop band. A band which, Kurt reminds them, will be doing covers of Madonna's greatest hits. The fact that they're back to that idea is news to everybody else as well. But Kurt won't hear their objections -- he has a vision of how their performance will go. A vision that we see, as the scene dissolves to his fantasy of them singing Into the Groove," complete with a teal, yellow, and melon wardrobe most likely last worn in the New Wave bat mitzvah episode of Square Pegs. The fantasy crowd is into the performance, which is quite fun. Kurt and Elliot in particular sound great together.