Fox's "Glee" has sung its way to its 100th episode, and on Tuesday night it celebrated by bringing back old friends.
From guest stars Gwyneth Paltrow and Kristin Chenoweth to former series regulars Dianna Agron, Mark Salling, Harry Shum, Jr. and Heather Morris, episode "100" was like a walk down memory lane.
So why wasn't it a fun one?
The episode had all the right elements: There was Holly Holiday (Paltrow) and April Rhodes (Chenoweth) belting out Pharrell Williams' infectious "Happy" along with Mr. Schue (Matthew Morrison).
Mercedes (Amber Riley) and Rachel Berry (Lea Michele) had a "Diva Off":
There was an Amy Winehouse rendition:
And it's always a great "Glee" episode when the show's patron saint, Britney Spears, is invoked:
But all of that singing and good cheer just made The Daily Beast "want to throw a slushie in ('Glee's') face."
Yet considering that "Glee" is a long way away from being the influential comedy series it was when it debuted in 2009, The Washington Post doesn't blame the creative team of Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, and Ian Brennan for trying to relive some of "Glee's" better days.
"Five years later, it barely made a blip on the pop culture radar as it celebrated its 100th episode," the Post said. "Perhaps sensing it’s not the groundbreaking force it used to be back in the day when it spawned an era of singing shows, the writers wisely took the opportunity to gaze back into the past."
The problem wasn't so much its intense nostalgia - which was also due to the fact that Tuesday's episode was the last one set in Lima, Ohio - but because it was so paint-by-numbers.
"It (was) just another rote reunion," a disappointed A.V. Club reviewer said, giving the episode a "C" grade. "Even the credits (were) just going through the motions. ... Couldn't we at least see something new and exciting? I'm falling asleep over here."
Hopefully the change of setting will help shake "Glee" fans awake. Now that Sue Sylvester (Jane Lynch) has shut down the New Directions, "Glee" itself is moving to New York to focus on its now more adult characters.
"We're just ready to start telling adult stories with these kids," Falchuk told TV Guide. "They've grown up and they are going to keep growing up. There are stories you can tell for 20-, 21-year-olds that you can't tell for 16-year-olds. I think people love those characters and they want to see where they end up and what happens to them and see how they react to the world, which is different to how they react to high school."
Did you catch "Glee" on Tuesday night? How was it?
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