Season 3, Episode 5
Date of release: August 9, 2019 (Netflix)
Arthie finally got her wish and she was able to perform a different character for once. I’m actually surprised that she wasn’t wild about the idea of a switcheroo for the night’s show, considering how log she hated playing the mad terrorist in the ring after the beer can she almost got in her face during the first season finale. Besides that, I was glad to see that this season of GLOW delivered some actual wrestling performances and decided to depict what the live show actually looks like. I felt reminded by what I said earlier about the live show being frozen, which means there was no way to actually depict it regularly in the narrative, simply because it would have been repetitive. But the idea of the women switching roles and playing different characters was quite the way to circumvent that repetition and bring on an already established number and dress it up anew. Seeing Ruth and Debbie switch their roles was fantastic, as for once the sweetheart American girl that is Liberty Belle actually looked like she would come from the Midwestern part of the country, which means there was finally a way to properly depict the character of Liberty Belle. On the other side of the ring there was Fortune Cookie played by a white chick, and that was kind of ridiculous, although I do have to say that Melrose sold the craziness that was the trope of a white actor being cast for an Asian role. Plus points for Sheila going through a change with this episode. I would almost hope that with the wrestling show staying for the rest of the year, Sheila would choose to play Liza Minelli as a wrestler for the next few episodes, even if it means her She-Wolf character is being put to the ground. Then again, doing Liza Minelli may also be an answer to the acting lesson she got recently.
The live show was fun, and I would have loved seeing more of it than what the episode eventually delivered. Bash was freaking annoyed by all the changes and Sam seemed to be having fun in the ring witnessing it all — the latter is probably thanks to the fact that Sam doesn’t have a lot to say anyway these days. Like Bash said, Sam is basically on a paid vacation (and now on a year-log paid vacation) and the show is frozen. There is nothing to direct and there is no way for the show to have anything else in it than the story elements it already has. Of course he wouldn’t be bitching about the fact that his directorial duties are being take away from him, and now that he actually has time to get a little healthier and to write a screenplay, of course he will have fun watching the show for once. It’s fitting that Sam would feel like he’s on acid and has the time of his life as the referee in the ring, while Bash is almost having a heart attack, because his show was practically taken away from him and he didn’t like that feeling a single bit.
Which could make him the central character of the narrative in the next episode. He did not talk to the women about the extension, and he definitely has not come to the realization what the women are going through to put on this show six days a week for even just three months. Bash forgot that it’s the women who literally throw each other in and out of the ring and that it might hurt after a little while, and that the women need a break. Bash could become the villain here if he both forces the show to goon, while also firing all the women for not complying his wishes to continue the show. And besides that, it could be seen as a parable of the real-life criticism Vince McMahon gets for constantly pushing his athletes week after week without giving them proper safety, let alone time to recuperate both mentally and physically. It’s almost like the writers purposely turned Bash into a McMahon-kinda figure with this episode, but the difference between GLOW and WWE is that Bash may be doing all this just to continue hiding in the closet, and as long as he can focus on being the producer, he doesn’t have to think about the potential truth that he may have a crush on Bobby.
Meanwhile, it looks like Tammé will be the first casualty, as I can’t think of a reason why she would stick around with an almost-broken back that continues to give her problems with each step she takes. It could be the first depiction of how a character says goodbye to the wrestling show and her friends (after Reggie was not given that time, since she had to get out of the gym in rage after getting fired in the second season premiere), and it could be a plot device to have a premise that showcases the casting of a new wrestler slash actress. By the way, with Justine finally making her appearance in this season after being absent for four episodes, maybe there is a spot for her in the ring now? She loved the show she was watching, so one might think she is interested in performing herself, now that she has sort of caught the bug of the business by writing her own screenplay.
In the same process, Justine could be best friends with Sheila, who definitely had her Liza Minelli down in that first appearance. “Put a scotch into that,” singing “I love the stage,” drunkenly realizing that “I’m plastered,” while choking Reggie in her rad nun character outfit… I felt in love with that depiction of Liza Minelli immediately and it is my greatest wish for Sheila to continue that path and realize this way that she could be a great showman. Not a wrestler, but maybe someone like Bobby.
This episode was enjoyable as “Live Studio Audience.” It sort of came out of nowhere and you could see that the cast had fun shooting the episode, no matter how much training and exercise they needed to keep up with the performances. In a way this could be the midway fun episode, because now I’m feeling it’s about to go back into the drama regions again.