It’s prom time again, and as usually happens, the idea is better than the execution. When Principle Figgins (Iqbal Theba) tells Brittany (Heather Morris) she must improve her feeble record as class president – or he will abolish the position – she decides to take on senior prom and make it the best one ever! In a wonderfully droll and deranged dialogue, written by Glee creator Ryan Murphy, we witness Brittany’s twister of a brainstorm. Her brilliant idea: Prom-asaurus. Everybody loves dinosaurs. And there will be prehistoric food and caveman costumes … but no hair gel, much to Blaine’s (Darren Criss) dismay, since it didn’t exist back then.
When Coach Sue (Jane Lynch) announces the nominees for prom king and queen, overlooked Becky (Lauren Potter) is overwrought – smashing every xylophone in sight, upturning every cafeteria tray – and her inner voice (the delicious Helen Mirren) vows revenge on prom. Of course, Becky isn’t the only one upset. Rachel is still verklempt over her choke last week, once again seeking consolation in a darkened auditorium. Blaine and Kurt (Chris Colfer) join to lift her spirits, but I remained unconvinced by their lackluster version of Fergie’s “Big Girls Don’t Cry.” While commiserating, the trio decides to host an anti-prom, which Becky and Puck (Mark Salling) later agree to attend.
After such fun setups, the episode begins to unravel, despite the able direction of gleek veteran Eric Stoltz, who also helmed last year’s prom episode. When we finally get to prom night, I was expecting to hear the old skool “Walk the Dinosaur” by Was (Not Was), but Brittany instead chose the pedophilia-themed “Dinosaur” by Ke$ha. Like the song, the dancing was energetic but creepy – and it wasn’t only the floor-humping choreography. I was a little freaked and worried by those awkward dinosaur heads the Cheerios had to wear.
Next up is Santana (Naya Rivera), singing Selena Gomez’s bland “Love You Like a Love Song,” which is thankfully interrupted when Finn’s (Cory Monteith) argument with Quinn erupts into a shoving match with Joe (Samuel Larsen). Just like last year’s prom, Coach Sue ejects Finn. When he arrives at the anti-prom, he tells Rachel and the gang that prom sucks without them, and they all decide to head back to the school auditorium. With everyone together, the evening hurries toward its crowning moment.
While Joe leads the boys in an overly kinetic version of One Direction’s overly sentimental “What Makes You Beautiful,” we quickly tidy up the subplots: Rachel apologizes to Quinn for being jealous, Becky diverts Sue while Puck spikes the punch, and Kurt accepts Blaine without hair gel. Then Principal Figgins announces the winners. Finn, as expected, is Prom King. But there is anarchy again this year with write-in votes for Prom Queen. Kurt looks worried, but the winner is … Rachel. It’s a prom miracle! Quinn and Santana share a knowing smile as they sing Berlin’s “Take My Breath Away.” We witness one final miracle – the wheelchair-bound Quinn standing at the mic – before the evening ends with couples crying, cuddling, and posing for pics with dinosaurs.