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For the most part Glee‘s Christmas episodes are memorable, if not great. They’re filled with a little bit of everything – quirky drama, comedy, acts of kindness, and of course, lots of holiday tunes. But “Previously Unaired Christmas” was just plain strange. From its confusing start with America’s Jane Lynch, to an awkward ending where Kurt, Rachel and Santana are seen modeling in a mall display window. Yup, things got weird.

The Players:

  • Director: Wendey Stanzler
  • Writer: Ross Maxwell
  • Cast: Chris Colfer, Kevin McHale, Lea Michele, Heather Morris, Amber Riley, Naya Rivera, Jenna Ushkowitz, Mark Salling, Matthew Morrison, Ashley Fink, Chord Overstreet, Harry Shum, Jr., Cheyenne, Darren Criss, Jayma Mays, Jane Lynch, Dean Geyer, Melissa Benoist

Episode Title: “Previously Unaired Christmas”

The glee club members audition for parts in the nativity scene. Meanwhile in New York, Rachel, Kurt and Santana work as elves at a mall.

The Good:

  • Slutty Mrs. Claus: Rachel, Kurt and Santana get put in a tight spot when their Santa shows up drunk and then ditches them. The trio is forced to put on a cheery performance for a large group of restless kids, but when that doesn’t work, Kurt and Rachel convince Santana to show up as Mrs. Claus. But the plan goes awry because Santana doesn’t make a very good Mrs. Claus. Every time a kid sits on her lap, she can’t help but be mean and blunt. It’s completely hilarious. Her time as slutty Mrs. Claus was not enough.

Best Lines:

  • “I am going to be the best Jewish elf ever.” –Rachel

The Bad:

  • Holiday Spirit: The holidays are about giving, and no one knows that better than the glee club. Every year, they do something nice for someone, but this year they forgot all about the true meaning of Christmas. Sure, Tina and Sam made Becky feel special by giving her a glass Angel she really wanted, and the girls worked together to give Kitty the role of the Virgin Mary in the nativity scene, but that’s small potatoes compared to previous efforts.
  • Bad Santa: Kurt, Rachel and Santana get blindsided by a sexy Santa with a six-pack, and recklessly invite him into their home. As expected, he ransacks the place, but he’s not the only bad Santa. The writers also throw in a mall Santa with a drinking problem because of course! Oh, and there’s also a nativity scene because apparently the glee kids are super religious – wait, they’re not! (Honestly, Glee‘s not even trying anymore.)
  • Is This Real?: To be totally honest, this episode was confusing. We’re not sure just how real everything was. Was this episode part of an alternate universe or did all of this happen in the real Glee world? We have no idea.

The Music:

  • “Here Comes Santa Claus,” – Dressed in elf attire, Santana, Rachel and Kurt try to calm down a large group of children with a sexy number of “Here Comes Santa Claus,” but fail miserably.
  • “Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree,” – The glee club decorates their Christmas tree with a cheerful holiday tune.
  • “Mary’s Boy Child/Love Child,” – Unique, Tina and Marley perform two elaborate numbers while auditioning and doing a dress-rehearsal for the nativity scene.
  • “The Chipmunk Song,” – Santana, Rachel and Kurt get high on helium-filled balloons and have a ball pretending to be chipmunks. 
  • “Away in a Manger,” – In the end, Santana, Rachel and Kurt get a job in a mall display window, and in a very majestic manner sing “Away in a Manger.”

Overall:

“Previously Unaired Christmas” still had some of the qualities of other Glee Christmas specials, but it lacked an important ingredient – the holiday spirit. Sure, there was snow, singing elves, and festive trees, but there were no real acts of kindness. What happened to singing for the children? Or making someone’s dreams come true? It seemed like everyone was too into their own little world to think of others. On the upside, the episode was still memorable, if only for Santana’s hilarious performance as Slutty Mrs. Claus.

Rating: 5.5/10

Glee airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. on Fox.

Gallery:

What did you think of last night’s episode?