‘Glee’ Recap: Episode 17, ‘Bad Reputation’

Sue Sylvester has officially become a music video icon. Between her reenactment of Madonna’s “Vogue” in the now-legendary “The Power of Madonna” episode and last night’s embarrassing-turned-epic take on Olivia Newton John’s “Physical,” Sue could downright conquer us here at MTV (though, to be honest, we’re as terrified of her as a Cheerio).

For a brief time in last night’s episode, called, fittingly, “Bad Reputation,” Sue felt what it was like to be on the other side of humiliation when Finn, Kurt, Mercedes, Artie, Tina and Brittany decide to leak her homemade “Physical” video to YouTube. 3 million hits and a bevvy of slow-motion laughs later (including some from guest star Molly Shannon) Sue had to take a step back and reexamine what she thinks of herself and what others think of her. Turns out, in the end she only cared about impressing her sister Jean (how touching were those scenes, Gleeks?).

Meanwhile, all the glee clubbers’ (who were assigned to sing songs that failed to be cool in pop culture history) reputations (and the club itself) were at stake when news of a “glist” surfaced, which ranked all the New Directions members by promiscuity. Quinn, who learned how quickly one can fall from grace in high school, was the culprit behind the list, but Mr. Schue let her off the hook.

The “glist,” of course, set off a domino effect of everyone involved coming to terms with their own personas. The gang that leaked Sue’s vid (sans Finn) all tried, to no avail, to look more bad-ass by throwing an impromptu performance in the library. They soon found out “U Can’t Touch This” still can’t be touched, not even with parachute pants. Mr. Schuester (who was pretty darn impressive doing the tragically unhip “Ice, Ice Baby”) got a reputation of his own when Sue spilled to Emma (after bugging Will’s apartment) that he made out with Shelby (Idina Menzel) and spent the night with “world-class banana magnet” April (Kristin Chenoweth). It was nice to see Emma finally express herself to Will!

But, perhaps the person to have the most tainted rep by the end of the evening was poor, popularity-starved Rachel, who got herself some attention, but definitely not in the right way. When she opted to take on Mr. Schue’s assignment by choosing to do David Geddes’ theatrical “Run Joey Run” she secretly enlisted all the men in her life, Finn, Puck (Puckleberry!) and current boyfriend Jesse (Jonathan Groff) to appear in her uber-campy video. When all three discovered they’ve been played by Rachel, they all walked out — in the midst of the teary ballad “Total Eclipse of the Heart” no less!

Press play below to re-live a moment from last night’s episode!

What did you think of this episode, Gleeks? Did you like the cheesy song selections? Do you think Jesse will take Rachel back? Which Sue anectode made you laugh more, when she called Will’s chin a “baby’s ass” or that she created a “10 Ugliest Gingers” list?