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This episode is written and directed by Ian Brennan.
When several show choirs plan to gather at McKinley for a technically meaningless “invitational” competition, Rachel worries that Will’s Vocal Adrenaline team will be so stellar they will blow her still-struggling New Directions team out of the water. In a bid to prevent a spirit-crushing defeat, she implores Will to take it easy on them and asks him to purposefully underperform at the event. He agrees, but when Sue gets wind of the collusion she takes matters into her own hands. With Will’s departure from McKinley, he and Sue would apparently have no further grudges to bear against each other, but she still takes offense at even the most innocent of actions and – with a planned retirement on her horizon – decides to embark on a grand act of revenge. She takes her first step of reckoning by setting her sights on destroying Will’s protégé, Rachel; she hypnotizes Sam to make him believe he is in love with Rachel, hoping his amorous advances will distract her from the Glee Club. Meanwhile, Sue takes steps to fulfill her (heretofore unrevealed) desire to be a flower girl at a “fabulous” gay wedding and sets out to rekindle Kurt and Blaine’s fractured relationship.
In the staff room, Will sits opposite Sue. Will explains how his life has changed since the New Directions disbanded, about them being friends, while Sue voiceovers about how she’s achieved her goal of power. She reveals that she invited Will, to bury their feud once and for all, as their no longer mortal enemies. He reiterates how he parked in his old spot. As Will shows pictures of Daniel, saying he bought a piano for him, and also sings Don’t Stop Believing to him, Sue continues, saying how his voice irritates her, criticising how he has an emotional depth of a 12-year-old girl, a reason why he doesn’t have any adult friends, which she feel sorry for. He looks at his watch, exclaiming that he has to go, packing his things away, thanking her. Sue closes her eyes for a moment, before opening them again, where she see’s a disposable fork in front of her, believing that he left that on purpose for her to throw it away, outraged by this tiny act and says that he’s crossed her for the last time.
In front of garages, Sue telling Becky that she’s thinking of retiring, as they get out Sue’s LeCar. Becky is surprised, but Sue reassures her that she’s not leaving yet, as she has to tie up loose ends. She opens up a garage, as Becky asks what is that place. Sue answers that she stores her hatred, to showcase her final act of revenge, calling it her "hurt locker". The hurt locker is shown, containing dolls of ex/present members of ND, as well as Rachel hung up, with a knife above her and Will and Emma’s paper-machéd faces. She walks in, towards a board, containing pictures and information of the people she stalks, among them, being Karofsky, Coach Bieste, Artie, Will and Rachel and Klaine. A picture of the original New Directions is also shown, from their win in their first sectionals, a note over Matt’s head, stating “MISSING.” She places the fork on Will’s part of the board, and Rachels hair extensions in her part. As she does this, she talks about how most people who do this, would find it exhausting, but she finds it energizing. She vows that she’ll annihilate Will, as well as break Rachel’s heart. She asks Becky to wait in the LeCar, Becky running out. She then plays a note on a piano, which opens up another entrance, behind the original one. It shows a picture of Kurt and Blaine kissing (from Original Song) adorned with a heart, with other smaller hearts around the red room, a table in the middle. Sue reveals that she’s been shipping them since they first met. She states how, by being single, their whiny, but by being together, their perfect, being devastated by their break-up. She vows to get them together, so she can be flower-girl at their wedding. She tells picture- Kurt (calling him Porcelain) that help is on the way, as she finger-kisses their kiss.
In Sue’s office, she refers Kurt once again to Porcelain and says she wants to help him get Blaine back. Kurt looks dumbfounded as Sue insults Karofsky. He asks her when she cared about him and Blaine, to which she replies, matter-of-fact, since forever. She metaphorically compares Blaine and himself to blouses, saying that it is a term for her favorite type of gays. Kurt thanks her awkwardly, but states that he doesn’t want to get back with Blaine. Unhappy by this response, she states that's not the Porcelain she knows, as Kurt looks exasperated. Sue looks at her watch, saying that the teams have arrived for the three-day-event Invitationals. Kurt surprised by this, asks “what Invitationals?” Sue replies that she set it up to destroy the glee club. At Kurt’s astonished face, she realizes that she said that out loud when she was supposed to say it in voiceover.
In the auditorium, Vocal Adrenaline rehearse, as Will watches something in the distance. Rachel comes and stands next to Will, stating how Sue shocked them with the Invitational. She asks how he feels to be back. He answers that it's just like an organized practice. They both walk together, Clint watching them, as Rachel tells him how her kids aren’t used to it, referring to how they (Artie, Finn, Mercedes, Kurt, Tina, and Rachel) went to see VA. He laughs, stating how he was surprised at how they didn’t quite at that moment, to which Rachel replies at how they were committed to it, which her kids aren’t there yet. She states how they don’t see how important it is to them, saying how his team’s performances will lose hope for them, and glee club will finish. Will realizing what Rachel is saying, asks her if she wants him to throw the invitational, as flying camera appears, watching their conversation. Rachel states how it's not a big deal. She understands that he’s in Carmel, but questions whether she would protect where he started. He states that he’ll think about it, but will do anything for her, as Sue watches them through the camera. He states how she doesn’t know how much pressure he is under, as they want VA to be the best. He asks how they’ll go to sectionals with only four members, to which she states she needs more time. She begs him to help her, telling him that the place has helped him so much, so he should repay the deed. He goes back to VA, looking at Finn’s and Lillian Adler’s plagues, deciding to throw the competition. He talks to VA, saying to come up with newer songs. They all complain, but Will assures that they’ll improve their improvisation skills and learn to work as a team better. He walks away, as the hovering camera watches, flying to the hallway, terrifying the students. It goes to Sue’s office, and lands on Sue’s desk, as she praises it.
In the boy's locker room, Sue walks up to Sam, and questions him to what extent do suggestions affect him. Sam, confused, says he doesn’t know, asking Sue what he thinks, to which Sue says he is. Sam agrees. Sue then asks if he’s familiar with a movie, which he questions her if she thinks he is. Sue, happy, says never mind and starts to hypnotize him, to which Sam stars at the clock, as it moves side to side. As he stares, a spiral spins behind her, and Sue states that she’ll say a series of words: “Piano,” “Flat-bed truck” and “Let’s do a song.” She states that the next time he’ll hear these words, he’ll be filled with love for Rachel, and will kiss her. Once he has kissed her, he will not remember anything. She snaps her fingers, and Sam awakens. He says hi to her, believing she just arrived. Sue, astonished by this, walks away, smiling, as Sam continues his routine.
Backstage in the auditorium, the Warbler’s are warming up. Blaine talks to Kurt and Rachel about the rules, one being that there are no judges, so they can boast. He states how his team is taking it seriously. Kurt and Rachel are taken back by how Blaine is talking with them. Blaine asks how their team is going, to which Kurt says its just Invitationals. Blaine goes on, saying how it might be bad for their team. Rachel states that they just want them to know whats up ahead, and asks Blaine to take it easy on them. Blaine straight away says no, saying the Warblers are taking it seriously like them. His phone rings as he says if it scares them, they should quit. He sees a text for Karofsky, where it says their’s an intruder in their apartment, all three going. They burst in, Blaine asking what happens. Karofsky, standing on a table, holding a chair as protection, says its in their bedroom. They rush to the room, and find a bear on the bed. They exclaim at why there’s a bear in the bedroom, to which Kurt replies that he may have an idea why.
That night, in Breadstix, Rachel and Sam are sitting opposite, eating. They debate how their lifestyles that they know life, from how they lived in New York, Rachel saying NY was fast-paced. When Sam asks what she does in her free time, she says she watches Patty Lupone’s young arts master class, besides crying. She asks Sam what he does, where he says he blows up glass. Rachel is surprised, yet curious. Sam moves away from the subject, saying they need to be pro-active. He asks her what she always wanted to do. She says she wanted to always play the piano. Sam, once again, goes back into a hypnotised stare, at the word “piano,” and says thats his too. He awakens slightly, saying he’ll ask Blaine to teach them. Rachel, touched, says thanks. She states how its been a long time since being alone with a guy, saying its not a date. Sam agrees how is not a date, since he and Mercedes broke-up. They have an awkward silence, to which Rachel looks slightly saddened.
The next day, in Sue’s office, Kurt confronts Sue about the bear. She states how she thought Karofsky was attracted to bears. Kurt states the other meaning, saying its insane to put a real bear. Sue states how since she became principal, its expanded her horizon of what is and isn’t insane. She refers to Will proposing to Emma, on a platform in water, as insane. Kurt asks her to stop with her plan, saying he’s moved on and has met someone online, called Walter. Sue tsks at this, saying he’ll not come out of it alive because he’ll be the to be first to eat. Kurt, thunderstruck, states he's leaving. Sue starts to over exaggerate, about his and Blaine's future wedding, screaming louder as he leaves.
In the auditorium, Blaine plays on the piano, as Sam and Rachel look astounded. Rachel thanks him for taking time to help them. Sam states how he asked Brad first, but stumbled upon him looking at pictures of women’s feet. Blaine, dumbfounded, starts the lesson, as Rachel and Sam sit. Rachel states how she did play piano once, but she didn’t keep it through. Blaine observes how its very unlike her, taking her smile off her face. He starts to teach them the notes, as Sue comes down from above, from a construction lifter. Sue states how she fell asleep when Blaine talked. She stops, as Becky presses a button. Rachel states how she has no business there. Sue says how she thought the exact same thing when Rachel came back. Blaine decides to reschedule, but Rachel protests. Sue agrees with Blaine, asking Sam’s opinion, to which he agrees, hypnotized. Becky states how Sue is one badass, crazy, super-bitch. Sue agrees and begins to sing Bitch. She walks out of the auditorium, to the hallway, with a fire extinguisher, spraying people with it. She appears in Rachel’s drawer, in Jane’s locker, moving things around in Emma’s office, smashing the astronomy things and licking Rachel’s food. She walks to her office, Becky and a jail recruit singing back-up. She sits down, a name-plate saying “BITCH.”
That evening, Blaine and Karofsky sit in Breadstix, Blaine stating how so much has changed. Karofsky restates his high-school, moving on. Blaine states how he admires him for that. A man walks up to Karofsky, recognizing him. Another one comes in, and suddenly all of Breadstix is buzzing of people who know he is. Blaine questions whats happening. Sue goes up to them and answers that she took the liberty to invite Karofsky’s ex-dates. She continues about how she ran a DNA test, revealing that their both cousins. They are surprised, to which Sue concludes that they’ll be now having sex as family members, before walking away.
In the choir room, Rachel plays on the piano, as Sam comes in. She complains how its hard to play, with the pressure from Blaine and Sue, and Sam states how it doesn’t come straight away, that it takes practice. Rachel says how she doesn’t want to do it anymore, but Sam asks her to close her eyes. He states how she doesn’t need her eyes and tells her to play notes on his hands, before tickling her. She thanks her, and says that he’s amazing.
In Carmel High, Sue waits to be seen by the principal. She goes in and talks to Principal Gunderson. Her back is towards Sue when she says this, but it revealed the Principal Gunderson looks like Principal Figgins, as Sue believes that it is him. Principal Abigail Figgins Gunderson reveals that Principal Figgins is her brother, revealing how they both wanted jobs in high school administration and that Principal Figgins first name is Principal. Sue is startled by this. Principal Gunderson goes on, telling her she has a problem with Will, to which Sue says there is. She shows the footage she recorded to Principal Gunderson, explaining his plan. Principal Gunderson says it shocked her, to which Sue advises her to talk to Will.
In the choir room, Kurt and Rachel say they have the first two songs for Invitationals. Roderick, Jane, Madison, and Mason sit in the empty choir room, Roderick stating how they need more people. Kurt tells him that they don’t need more people for Invitationals, saying there will be no judges. Mason and Madison whisper that they’ll have more stage time. Rachel shows her piano skills, Kurt looking irritated. Jane starts to clap slowly, but no one else does. Rachel continues, saying there are no winners or losers and says how Invitationals is the time to introduce them to everyone, to which Roderick says their screwed. Kurt, seeing their attitude, says the exact same thing.
In Sue’s office, Will storms in, stating how his job is on the line, believing they were friends. She states how she thought that too, before making her clean up after her, to which Will doesn’t know what she’s talking about. Will looks thunderstruck as Sue explains how he left the fork and wants to be honest with him. Will, exhausted, says ok. Sue then talks about how she messed with his cake, by putting plague in it, Will looking disgusted. She continues, by saying how the liquid he’s been rubbing in his hair, was her pee. He looks further disgusted. She stands up, asks rhetorically asks why she did all this, and answers herself is because she hates him. She insults him further, saying his ruined the definition of being a teacher, by the awards he’s been given, even though he doesn’t do anything that is considered for that award. She states how he favors kids, but neglects others, referring to Joe, Rory, and Matt. She then tells him that she neglected the most important piece of the group: the band. She states how they always knew what song to play, when the members asked them to play them, but still treats them badly. He starts to smirk, as Sue insults him off getting Finn from the showers, believing it's from his childhood and also his vests hide him from lactating when he starts to do a pep talk. Sue tells him to get out, stating how he should release the fart he’s been holding in, and ruin another Journey song. Will tells her how he knows that she’s making retirement plans. Sue correctly states how it must have been Becky who tweeted it, which she tried to hide. He continues saying that he’ll make the glee club a permanent place in McKinley, and leaves, leaving Sue outraged.
In the auditorium, Kurt talks Principal Figgins about the gum under the chairs. Principal Figgins states how he shouldn’t blame him, but the parents. Blaine walks in, stating how he can’t find Sam and Rachel for the piano lesson. Figgins says he saw them in the courtyard, believing that its another glee club romance. He leaves, and Blaine sits, explaining the night to Sue revealing his relation with Karofsky and the guys he’s dated to Kurt. Kurt reassures him that they're not related and that Sue wants them to break up, so they can get back together. Blaine wonders how no one can understand that they don’t want to get back together, but be great friends. Kurt states how he’s met someone, Blaine being taken back, stating how that's good. He awkwardly talks to him, but then states he needs to go. They hug before Blaine leaves.
In the choir room, Sam once again walks into Rachel playing the piano and sits next to her, saying she’s being good. They then sing Thousand Miles. At the end of the performance, they kiss.
The following day, in the hallway, Sam talks to his football students and Rachel walks up to him. She straightway says she needs to ask him something about their kiss. Sam, not remembering their kiss because of Sue’s spell, asks her what kiss. Rachel, reassured by how he’s behaving, says how them knowing each other and working together could ruin their relationship, but states how she liked hanging out with him, asking him on a date. Sam states how he’s still not over Mercedes and walks away. Rachel is saddened but feels like someone is staring at her, as Sue glides sideways, behind her. Rachel turns around as Sue leaves.
In the boy's locker room, Sue once again hypnotizes Sam, telling him he’s done well, and that phase two will start, by tormenting Will, as well as Rachel. She states that he’ll steal the mail from his house, to which Sam says “Awesome.”
Later that night, in Breadstix, Kurt sits alone waiting for Walter. A man walks up to him. Kurt, believing he’s a waiter, asks him to get him a drink. The man is revealed to be Walter, Kurt being surprised at their age difference, stating how his online photo was different and asks how old he is. Walter replies hesitantly that he’s 50, but feels like 30, which is why he used that photo. He begins to explain his life before coming out, stating how he has kids Kurt’s age, to which Kurt replies uncomfortably. Kurt says how he never mentioned he was in 50’s or had kids, to which Walter answers that they kept talking about Golden Girls, Kurt agreeing. Walter says he’s right, saying he should have been more honest, saying he wasn’t diluted but was enjoying getting to know Kurt. He decides to leave, but Kurt says how its a lot to take in. Walter negotiates with Kurt about how they should start as friends, to which Kurt agrees.
At Will’s house, Will sees Sam stealing his mail. Sam waves to him. Will confused, asks why he’s stealing it. Sam lies that Rachel asked him to steal it, so it will give them an advantage over VA. Will, surprised, states how there friends and that she asked him to throw the competition. Sam continues, stating how she blames him for her failed show, Run Joey Run, and her broken nose. Will tells Sam to go away, as he explains how she wanted to get him to come at night.
In the auditorium, the Warbler’s and the New Directions are seated, as VA prepare to perform. Will starts to give them a pep talk, as Vocal Adrenaline looks at him awkwardly. He does the show circle, to which no one joins in, saying no one likes him. Disheartened, he walks off stage. Sue talks to them from the front of the stage stating their be bloodshed, and refers to The Hunger Games, saying "May The Odds Be Ever In Your Favour". She walks off stage, as VA begin to perform Rock Lobster. Will takes his seat, staring at Rachel. Everyone looks astonished at their performance, especially the ND members. Rachel looks outraged towards Will, as he smirks at her. Kurt observes how he’s not throwing it. The hovering camera appears again, Sue and Becky (in a Lobster costume and dancing) watching the performance. After the performance, the audience claps slowly, as VA change their costumes and perform Whip It, to which everyone looks further astounded. At the end of this performance, Will claps enthusiastically, as everyone else claps slowly, looking shaken, ending with Rachel looking angered.
|Song Title||Original Artist||Performer(s)|
|Bitch||Meredith Brooks||Sue Sylvester|
|Thousand Miles||Vanessa Carlton||Rachel Berry and Sam Evans|
|Rock Lobster||The B-52's||Vocal Adrenaline|
- Glee: The Music, The Hurt Locker is an album accompanying the music from this episode.
- Iqbal Theba as Abigail Figgins-Gunderson / Principal Figgins
- Max Adler as Dave Karofsky
- Max George as Clint
- Harry Hamlin as Walter
- Lauren Potter as Becky Jackson
- Trilby Glover as Carmel's secretary
- Samantha Marie Ware as Jane Hayward
- Noah Guthrie as Roderick Meeks
- Billy Lewis Jr. as Mason McCarthy
- Laura Dreyfuss as Madison McCarthy
Absent Cast Members
- This episode was watched by 1.82 million viewers and got a 0.7 rating, was the lowest watched episode until it got surpassed by What the World Needs Now with a new low.
- This episode marks Will's (Matthew Morrison) hundredth appearance.
- The episode contains a reference to the popular TV series Game of Thrones, based on the "A Song of Ice and Fire" novels by George RR Martin: When Sue's drone returns to her after showing her that Will plans to throw the invitational to give Rachel's New Directions a confidence boost, a pleased Sue says to the drone: "Good dragon, your Khaleesi loves you". This is in reference to the character Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones.
- Sue mispronounces the term Khaleesi. Although many people think it to be pronounced as written (Khal-LEE-see) it is actually pronounced Khal-LAY-see according to the author.
- At 29:38 you can see Lea Michele looks and smirks to one of the crew members of the show, probably because she flips her hair when she is supposed to be playing the piano with both her hands.
- This is the first episode of Season Six that has a recap segment.
- As of this episode, Sam has kissed all six original New Directions' girls (Quinn, Santana, Brittany, Mercedes, Tina and Rachel).
- The first two-part episodes to actually have the same titles with "Part One" and "Part Two" labels.
- However these episodes didn't air on the same day.
- The episode reveals Figgins' first name to be Principal, by a statement made by Abigail Figgins Gunderson, his sister and Carmel High School principal.
- Iqbal Theba had previously said that he would choose Principal as Figgins' real first name.
- The Jonah Hill joke that Sam tells the football players is most likely a reference to a Jonah Hill interview with Jimmy Fallon in which he says that he was the punchline of one of Matthew Morrison's jokes.