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Singing the praises of 'Glee' for its finale

REASON TO WATCH

First-season finale of this celebrated series.

WHEN/WHERE

Tuesday night at 8:59 on Fox / 5

THE SHOW "Glee"

CATCHING UP

Last week was kind of a downer, but it was titled "Funk," so caveat emptor and all that. As pressure grows and the regionals loom, so grows the psych-out between Vocal Adrenaline and New Directions. And poor Rachel Berry (Lea Michele) got egged in the McKinley High parking lot. Worse, Jesse St. James (Jonathan Groff) egged her square on the forehead after admitting, "I did love you." Then Rachel felt guilty about the unborn chicks.

But, New Directions danced the funk, prompting a spooked St. James to observe: "We've never been able to pull off a funk number." ("That's because we're soulless automatons," his VA colleague observed.)

WHAT THIS EPISODE IS ABOUT Yup, the regionals, with Sue Sylvester (Jane Lynch), Olivia Newton-John and Josh Groban as judges. Any guesses who the Simon Cowell of the bunch will be? Fox didn't send out the finale, titled, "Journey," although the Web is full of spoilers involving the relationships between Emma Pillsbury (Jayma Mays) and Shue (Matthew Morrison), as well as Finn (Cory Monteith) and Rachel.

MY SAY It's a wrap, Gleeks, and next stop is Aug. 29, when this show will almost certainly be awarded Emmys for best comedy, supporting actress (Lynch), direction and writing. Morrison should score as best actor, too, but that category's a little less certain. What will all that mean? The obvious: "Glee" really was the best of the best this year, while creating a unique - and occasionally magical - fusion of music and drama.

Examples? When Vocal Adrenaline coach (and Rachel's birth mother) Shelby Corcoran (Idina Menzel) sang a duet with Rachel from "Les Misérables" ("I Dreamed a Dream") a few weeks ago. Or when Morrison sang with Kristin Chenoweth. Or just about any time Lynch opened her mouth. "Glee" is a wonder of the small screen.

GRADE A+

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