Sue reflects on the holiday season, imagining it as a setting for a series of plot lines sandwiched between commercials breaks, much like the movie "Love, Actually" - "which is a movie that I don't think anyone cares for but is constantly on cable."
After an angry, humiliated Artie slips on the ice and cuts his face, Finn helps him to the nurse's office, where he stews about being helpless and pitied and wishes he never had to be in the wheelchair. As he tries to rest, he slips into a fantasy in which his legs are completely mobile. Surprised, he tests his legs and walks around McKinley, quickly realizing that reality has changed when no one is surprised at his mobility.
After Artie realizes that Tina still has her old stutter, a guardian angel appears to him in the form of foreign exchange student Rory, who grants Artie's wish that his accident had never happened. However, this means that he never joined glee club, so some resultant changes - like Tina getting over her stutter, and Becky learning self-respect - have never happened, either. Finn and Puck are both bullies, terrorizing Kurt, who's been avoiding school and has yet to graduate and has never met Blaine; Will never started the glee club and lives in an alcoholic haze, still married to Terri, while Emma actually married Coach Tanaka; Rachel is still in Lima working as a librarian, never pursuing dreams of stardom. Rory reveals to Artie that, without his accident, he'd focused on football and never became the glue that held the glee club together.
Artie tries to set things right, assembling his friends to convince them they should be in glee club together, offering a performance of Jose Feliciano's "Feliz Navidad" as an example - but Finn deems it "so gay." Artie learns that Quinn never got out of her own wheelchair without his support and ultimately died of a broken heart. The shock brings Artie back to reality, where his mother has come to pick him up, and this time he graciously accepts Finn's help back into the chair, realizing that it's part of who he is and how he's affected his friends.
Despite Rachel's pleas to join her in Lima, Kurt plans a solo holiday in New York to save money for school, but he's surprised by the arrival of his Christmas tree-bearing father Burt. Burt recalls how he forgot to get a tree the year that Kurt's mother died until he saw the disappointed look when Kurt had nowhere to hang his favorite ornament, made from his mother's perfume bottle. He realized the tree's importance and would never forget again to focus on their holiday traditions.
Over hot cocoa, Burt reveals to Kurt that he has prostate cancer - but the prognosis is pretty positive. Still, Kurt's concerned that when he finally achieves his dreams, Burt may not be around to see it. Burt advises Kurt to hold the people he loves close to him, no matter what, and later they exchange gifts. Burt instructs Kurt to pick his up at a particular address, and Kurt is stunned to discover Blaine awaiting him at a skating rink - Burt had him flown out so they wouldn't miss their traditional holiday duet. They sing "White Christmas" together as Burt watches, and they recognize that even if they don't get back together romantically, they'll always be there for one another.
Jake has a fight with the taunting football players until Puck breaks it up. Puck convinces Jake to put his school troubles aside and join him for the holidays in Los Angeles. In Hollywood, Puck brings Jake along on a meeting at the Paramount Pictures studio lot, where they show off their musical skills singing "Hanukkah, Oh Hanukkah." They get Star of David tattoos together and chill by the pool at Puck's "rented" mansion - until the real owners return home and discover their pool boy Puck taking advantage of their absence. Puck admits his charade was an attempt to get Jake to move out to L.A. with him because he's lonely. Instead, Jake invites Puck and his mother to join him and his mother for dinner at the holidays - there's no reason for any bad blood to exist between them. At Breadsticks, the tension is thick, but Puck and Jake remind their mothers that their father is the one at fault for such a messed-up family - but they are a family nonetheless.
Brittany gives everyone lavish holiday gifts after watching a documentary on the Mayan prediction of the imminent end of the world, having cashed in her savings so that everyone can enjoy themselves at the end. Sam is a believer as well, having studied it extensively. Feeling they need to express their true feelings about their friends to them, they form the 2012 Mayan Apocalypse Club and hold its sole meeting - their comments to their friends are blunt and, for the most part, insulting, and the club disbands immediately. Left with only each other, Sam sings to "Jingle Bell Rock" then surprises Brittany by pulling out a ring and proposing to her. Coach Beiste tells them she is already ordained in the Mayan church and officiates their immediate wedding. With three days left, they plan to make their time count but are soon surprised to discover that the world hasn't ended - and they remain married.
Sue selects her faculty and staff Secret Santa and draws lunch lady Millie Rose - Marley's mother. Failing to find a gift to satisfy Becky, Sue frets about getting a present for Millie but doesn't really care if she succeeds. Faced with tough money choices over the holidays, Millie asks Marley to simply sing for her and receives a pitch-perfect rendition of "The First Noel," which Millie calls "the best Christmas gift I've ever gotten." After overhearing them, Sue tells Becky she's feeling overly indulgent and wants to sell her beautiful Christmas tree to a toothpick factory and give the proceeds to charity. The Rose women wake up on Christmas morning to discover that their own tree has been stocked with a plethora of presents as well as cash - Sue and Becky peer in the window and admire their handiwork.
Puck and Jake watch their moms swapping war stories about their father, and Puck decides to return to Lima to see his newly extended family. Meanwhile, Coach Beiste confesses that she isn't actually ordained and she'd fooled them in order to spare them from making a huge life mistake. Blaine reveals to Kurt and Burt that he's thinking of applying to NYADA after graduation, and Kurt gives him his blessing. After bribing Becky with candy for the truth, Millie thanks Sue for her generosity but tries to return the money; Sue in turn says they both know how hard it is to be a single mother and presses her to keep the cash. To thank Sue, Marley assembles the glee club to serenade her with "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas."
Episodes appear online day after airdate. Learn more
|Episode Title||Description||Air Date||Expires|
Alliances are formed in threes.
Keep your friends close and your frenemies closer.
|5/3||The Quarterback (44:45)||
The New Directions remember Finn.
|5/8||Previously Unaired... (42:29)||
It's the Christmas special that never was (until now).
|5/7||Puppet Master (43:16)||
Blaine gets bossy.
Episodes are available day after airdate to subscribers of participating TV providers. Learn More
Episodes unlock 8 days after airdate.