The music of “Glee”: Mattress

Most Glee fans were probably glad to see the storyline involving Terri’s fake pregnancy come to an end, but it seemed to come at an expense. Sure, there were a few performances, but none of them made much of an impact.


The first song of the episode is a duet by Rachel (Lea Michelle) and Finn (Cory Monteith) on “Smile” by Lily Allen. The song isn’t the best showcase for either singer, particularly Rachel, because the vocals simply aren’t all that challenging. And the light and breezy tone of the song doesn’t call for much emotion, leaving the performance a little flat — though hardly unpleasant. Like most of what would follow, it was just OK.

Next up is the whole group doing “Jump” by Van Halen for a local mattress store commercial. We’d complain about the peppy and polished performance ruining a classic rock song, but “Jump” wasn’t exactly the greatest artistic statement by a band that, incidentally, was never really known for making artistic statements — so we’re cool with it. Besides, watching everyone bounce around on those jacked-up mattresses was kind of fun.

The episode’s third performance is extremely brief and a little weird, with Rachel singing one line of “When You’re Smiling” by Louis Armstrong internally to herself to psych herself up to smile for her yearbook photo. We won’t really grade this one, since we heard so little of it, but in case anyone was wondering what the song was — now you know.

The final number of the night is another group performance, this time “Smile” by Charlie Chaplin, sung as the glee club gets ready for its group photo for the yearbook. This may be faint praise, but it’s probably the best of the week. It’s subtle, and if you block out the fact that it’s being sung about something as trite as a yearbook picture, it’s actually pretty moving.

Photo: ©2009 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Carin Baer/FOX