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The Untitled Rachel Berry Project

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The Untitled Rachel Berry Project
Season Five, Episode Twenty
TURBP Stills (1)
First Aired May 13, 2014
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"Old Dog, New Tricks"
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The Untitled Rachel Berry Project is the twentieth and final episode of Glee's fifth season and the one hundred and eighth episode overall. It aired on May 13, 2014.

Rachel meets a famous television writer whose eccentric personality catches her and her friends off guard. Meanwhile, Sam and Mercedes deal with the pressure of commitment as their careers take off, and the time has finally come for Blaine’s big showcase with June Dolloway at NYADA.

The episode was directed by Brad Falchuk and written by Matthew Hodgson.

Plot

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At the Bushwick Apartment, Sam, Mercedes, Rachel, Kurt, Artie and Blaine are getting ready for an evening meal together. Mercedes offers Sam a snack, but he refuses, telling her that he has a big male modeling audition coming up later in the week. Mercedes is happy for him, but tells him to warn the other models that he is taken - and she fights dirty. Rachel excitedly throws about ideas for her show, and Artie questions whether it's normal for a network to send a writer to hang out with the star of the show. Rachel puts the reason down to her extreme notability, and tells the group that the writer, Mary Halloran, is a genius. Kurt is wary of having their Monday night dinner crashed, but Rachel is keen for Mary to really see how she lives.

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There is a knock at the door. As Rachel is answering it, Kurt whispers to Blaine that they have to find a way to get Mary to come to their showcase. Blaine distractedly agrees. The housemates receive a shock when the door opens to reveal Brittany, who is home from Lesbos after losing her passport at the airport. She is saddened to hear that Santana is away shooting a Yeast-I-Stat commercial in Iowa, but is interrupted by the arrival of Mary Halloran, who nervously enters the apartment, sickened by the wafting smell of Chinese food. Rachel begins to introduce her friends, but Mary stops her - telling her that she has a 'thing about names'. She begins to tell the group about her narcissism diagnosed by her Tuesday-Thursday shrink, but is forced to rush to the bathroom, unable to keep down the smell of Wonton soup. Before she enters the bathroom, she tells Rachel (who she calls "Randy") that she is really excited to be working with her. The friends watch her, bemused.

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Later, Mary seats herself on the floor with a typewriter, to begin processing ideas for "The Untitled Mary Halloran Project". She begins to ask Rachel questions about herself, but it quickly becomes clear that she is less interested in the truth than in what would make good television. She rejects Rachel's high school ideas, telling her that the a capella thing is "so over", but is interested with her Broadway career. Rachel rapidly becomes aware that Mary is unusual in her creative style, as she hears about her reproduction of the Anne Frank diaries from the point of view of a vacuum. Bored by the minimal amount of work she has done, Mary tricks Rachel into letting her visit the bathroom in order to go through her drawers. Rachel watches her, shocked.

At a New York mall, Mercedes laps up the fan attention she is receiving, while being interviewed by Artie. She introduces Brittany as her new back-up dancer, before performing Shakin' My Head in front of a crowd of adoring fans, while being filmed by Artie. Mary watches from the audience, dancing awkwardly. At the end of the performance, Sam hugs Mercedes. Mary applauds, impressed.

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At NYADA, Blaine is getting ready for his showcase. June arrives with food, and gives him some advice on show-business. Blaine is clearly distracted, and confesses to her that he is worried about his lie to Kurt - he has told him he will have a place in the showcase. He begs June to let him have just one line - but June refuses. She tells him that her reputation is on the line - and she cannot jeopardise her track record over Kurt. Blaine persists, but June beats him down with a profound and ominous saying before leaving. Alone in the auditorium, Blaine performs All of Me at the piano. At the end, Kurt enters and applauds the performance. He asks if he's planning to put it in the showcase - but Blaine flatly admits to Kurt that June doesn't want him in the showcase, cutting him short. Kurt is shocked by his blatant lie, and angrily shouts at him. Blaine begins to apologise, but Kurt walks out, furious.

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At the modeling audition, Sam nervously pops a rubber band on his wrist to keep him from being distracted by the girls. Charlie Darling, the head of the modeling agency, enters. She explains that there has been an advertising crisis at 'Treasure Trailz' hair removal campaign - their lead model has been sent to prison for running an underground crime ring. She is looking for a new 'Treasure Trailz' cover boy, and explains the audition process will be fast and dirty - they need to walk, and the one that turns her on the most will win. Sam and the other auditionees sing and dance with the girls to Girls on Film. Charlie joins in, and at the end of the performance pushes him onto a sofa and gets on top of him. She tells him that everything about him screams 'Treasure Trailz', and invites him back for the shoot that evening. Sam happily watches her leave, popping his rubber band fast.

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Mercedes arrives at the loft to find Rachel, Brittany and Kurt seated on the floor, waiting for her. Rachel explains that they need to have a girl talk. Kurt asks if she's planning to break up with Sam before she goes on tour. Mercedes is shocked, but before she can reply it is revealed that Artie and Blaine are having exactly the same conversation with Sam over a video game. However, they are both set on being together, and pledge their commitment to each other. Rachel advises Mercedes that sometimes it is best to let go of the things you love.

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At film school, Artie tries to tell Mary about his experiences with Rachel, but is distracted by her purloining doughnuts and stuffing them into her bra. She goes on to interview Blaine, while lying under a table. She tells him that his name will have to be changed, and he incredulously asks if she's a real writer. Brittany compliments Mary on her pyjamas, but she warns her not to steal them - mice are living in the pockets (and a kitty is in the pants). Blaine sits at the table, exasperated. In Rachel's dressing room at the theatre, Kurt advises her to give Mary the boot, telling her that she's insane. He reminds her of the shaky ground she is on with Sidney, but Rachel thinks that she can go to Los Angeles and come back with 10 times the amount of money that she would earn on Broadway. Kurt pleads with Rachel to at least trust her own instincts - not Mary's.

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At the apartment, Rachel and the group sit down for the first read-through of 'The Untitled Mary Halloran Project'. The friends are all slightly put-out to find their names have been tweaked to slightly less attractive alternatives, but Rachel encourages them to push on with the reading. They begin to go through the first scene, but soon realise that the script is beyond the bounds of reality - 'Surt' wears a dinosaur outfit, while Rachel sits in the bathtub, complaining about the forgetfulness of her two gay NASA dads with the extreme use of hashtags. They skip to scene twelve, in which 'Slaine' and 'Nittany' are sleeping together - they decide to open an art gallery in the performance base downstairs, before falling back into bed together. Somewhat concerned, Rachel moves onto her 'coffee rave' - she has held an impromptu albeit empty party to try and fill the void left by her two gay dads, after they forgot her party due to being stationed on the ISS. Artie stops reading, unable to continue - he tells Rachel that the script makes no sense. All of the group - apart from Brittany - agree. Rachel tells them that she has changed her mind - if she's going to do it, it'll be her show - or no show at all.

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Outside the apartment, Blaine sits on the steps, feeding the pigeons morosely. Kurt joins him, and Blaine admits that he doesn't want to do the showcase any more - Kurt is more important to him. Kurt wonders what it's like to fly for the first time, and tells Blaine that relationships are like that - you never know what day the person you've given your heart to will drop it like a stone. Blaine begins to apologize once again, but Kurt stops him, telling him that he's not mad. He explains that trust is a choice - and he has chosen to trust Blaine, no matter if he betrays Kurt's trust now and again. They hug, and Blaine tells him that he's getting a little turned on with all the bird talk. They retreat inside.

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At the Spotlight Diner, Rachel tells Mary about her issues with the script. Mary doesn't really understand her problems, and so Rachel decides to try and express them through song. Mary is not happy about a musical performance, but Rachel tells her that this is the best way to capture her essence - and understand how she wants the script to feel. Disgusted, Mary watches as Rachel begins to perform Glitter in the Air. However, she quickly becomes emotionally involved with the performance, and is visibly shaky as Rachel finishes. She explains that she thinks she felt happiness during the performance - a new experience for her. She agrees with Rachel's idea that perhaps there is some mileage in making a show in which people don't hate themselves. Even though she doesn't think it'll get made, she agrees to rewrite the script. Ecstatic, Rachel hugs her, but is swiftly told by Mary to leave to allow her some room to shame-eat.

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At the photoshoot, Charlie attempts to get Sam to bring out his sexy side. However, she doesn't feel it, and asks him why he just isn't showing any buzz. Sam unconvincingly blames it on her assistant, and Charlie tells everyone to leave. Producing a polaroid camera, Charlie circles Sam, asking him about himself while taking pictures. Sam becomes nervous when it becomes apparent she is coming on to him. Charlie offers him a chance to get out of his sexless bubble - they can do whatever they want, and nobody has to know. Slowly, they begin to kiss.

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Mercedes greets Sam with binge foods as he returns home. However, its clear something is wrong, and he sits down. When she asks him, she admits that he has cheated on her. He tells her about the kiss, and then reveals that he became so upset he started crying. Charlie took some photos of him sobbing in his underwear, before leaving. Mercedes doesn't think he cheated on her - but is concerned about what Sam's sexless life is doing to him. She tells him that she loves him immensely, but can't tell him to wait until he's thirty to have sex with her. Sam assures her that he's OK with it - but Mercedes tearfully explains that she doesn't want him to resent her for what she's asking him to do. Sam tells her that no matter who he's with, or what he's doing, he'd rather be doing it with her. She nods, and they hug, both upset. Mercedes suggests a deal - if she decides to change her mind and not wait, she'll give him a call. Smiling, Sam agrees.

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At the showcase, Blaine and June perform No Time at All. The flatmates watch them happily and applaud Blaine onto an encore. As they watch him, June complements Kurt on rising above everything and being such a good friend to him. Kurt retorts by saying that he will always stand with Blaine, and nothing or no one will ever come between them. On stage, Blaine thanks June for teaching him to have passion in his work, and explains to the audience that he has chosen his last song to express his passion about his fiancé. He invites Kurt onto the stage to perform the song with him. June is clearly horrified, but can do nothing as Blaine takes him by the hand and leads him onto the stage. They perform American Boy to a cheering audience. At first, June watches, unimpressed, but she slowly begins to get into the performance, and by the end joins the flatmates on stage, dancing along. At the end Blaine starts to apologize for singing with Kurt - but June stops him. She tells him never to let anyone - not even her - cause him to doubt what he is sure of. She suggests that they all have a party, and the group gather around in a group hug.


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Back at the apartment, the friends finish reading through the new script that Mary has produced. Apart from Brittany, who maintains the first draft was better, they are all delighted with the new result. Rachel reflects that she always thought Fanny was the role that she was born to play - but has realised that the script that she holds is where she really belongs. They toast the two years that they have spent in New York, but before they can celebrate further, Sam rushes outside. Following him, they discover him admiring an image of his semi-naked body, plastered to the side of a bus on a 'Treasure Trailz' advert. Sam reveals that he has decided to end his modeling career - he has reached where he wants to be in the industry. He tells the group that he plans to go back to Lima - especially since everyone seems to be scattering anyway. There is a moment of sadness, as they all realise that it is the end of another era.

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Rachel tells the group that what with Finn and the glee club, she doesn't think she can lose anything else, but Kurt tells her that he's sure their friendships will survive being apart. They agree to meet up back in New York in six months' time, Rachel telling the group that if she has learnt anything in the past year, it's that her friends are her life. They hug it out.

Rachel, Kurt, Brittany, Blaine, Mercedes, Sam and Artie perform Pompeii through the streets of New York. Mercedes leaves with Brittany for her tour. Artie continues on at film school. Blaine arrives at the Bushwick apartment, suitcase in hand, having just moved in with Kurt. Sam walks through McKinley's hallways again, looking into the old Choir Room.

Pompweiglee

Rachel gets a call from the network. She reveals to Kurt and Blaine that they love the script - and want to make it into a pilot. Realising that she's going to LA, she hugs them, delighted. As the song ends, Rachel stares up into the sky, pensive, before continuing to walk down the street.

Songs

Song Title Original Artist Performer(s)
Shakin' My Head Glee Mercedes Jones
All of Me John Legend Blaine Anderson
Girls on Film Duran Duran Sam Evans with Charlie Darling
Glitter in the Air P!nk Rachel Berry
No Time at All Cast of Pippin Blaine Anderson and June Dolloway
American Boy Estelle feat. Kanye West Blaine Anderson and Kurt Hummel
Pompeii Bastille Alumni

Guest Cast

Special Guest Star

Guest Stars

Absent Cast Members

Trivia

  • This episode was watched by 1.87 million viewers with a 0.6 rating, a new series low.
  • This is the first season finale in which Emma, Mike, Santana, Tina, and Will are absent.
  • Naya Rivera had recorded songs and filmed scenes for this episode, but was cut and written out due to unknown reasons.
  • This is the third time a season finale ends with a song, the first time and second time being Journey and Goodbye .

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