It’s a Resignation, Not an Elimination, on ‘The Glee Project’

Ashley Fink and Mark Salling on 'The Glee Project' (Photo: Oxygen)

Ashley Fink and Mark Salling on 'The Glee Project' (Photo: Oxygen)

Cameron Mitchell was so against puckering up with his costars on “The Glee Project” that this week he decided to kiss the show goodbye.

His voluntary exit prompts questions like, do the contenders who were eliminated before him feel incredibly bitter that he held a spot in the cast that could have been theirs for a little longer? Or how anticlimactic would it be if his girlfriend back home decided she wanted to be just friends while he was gone?

We’ll probably never be privy to any potential drama that resulted from Cameron’s decision, perhaps behind the closed doors of Matheus or Marissa’s homes or with the now infamous, never-seen-on-TV Texas girlfriend.

We can, however, be fairly certain that this will be the last time Ryan Murphy leaves any wiggle room in the contract of a super religious teenager. Murphy doesn’t seem to hear the word “no” very often these days, and Cameron’s emotional dressing-room rejection appeared to genuinely disappoint the “Glee” god.

It was quite a switch from earlier in the season, when Murphy had to be persuaded by mentors Robert Ulrich and Zach Woodlee that Cameron was worth keeping around.

The shocking exit was a fitting conclusion to tension-filled episode. Now that there are fewer contenders, there’s more episode time to expose all the hand-wringing that goes on during the down time between rehearsals and shoots and such. Plus the week’s theme of sexuality led the contenders to writhe every which way and stare seductively at nearly everyone who crossed their paths.

The lack of direction they get in the homework assignments always leads to awkward, occasionally desperate, and often very similar performances from everyone that typically lack any depth. It seems like a difficult task to stand out in such a brief showing. But Samuel of the Constantly Smoldering Eyes managed to win the approval of guest mentors Mark Salling and Ashley Fink. In case you’re not keeping track, this is Samuel’s second homework win, and he’s the only remaining contender who has never sung for Ryan Murphy. He’s the definition of a frontrunner.

The contenders were paired up for different flirty scenes in the “Teenage Dream” music video, and one person from each pair ended up in the last chance rounds. Damian, Alex, and Cameron have all sung for their lives before, so it really could have been anybody’s moment to go.

Alex gave more than his usual 70 percent effort this week, and it turns out that if partial energy from him equals kinda flashy, total energy equals Flamboyant-with-a-Capital-F. He was presumably saved because he seems to listen to critiques and can probably do something with this week’s note of, “Rein it in, missy. Be real. Seriously.”

Damian was saddled with making “Danny Boy” compelling enough to keep him in the race. He did not. Murphy very frankly told Cameron that he was saving Damian by quitting the competition. This was gloriously (okay, maybe unnecessarily) emphasized by the closing shots of Robert posting the callback sheet and Cameron crossing out Damian’s name under “Not Called Back” and writing in his own.

So it’s down to just five. Before Samuel can take the prize, he’ll have to bring it against better actors Lindsay and Hannah with next week’s theme of believability. The competition has just been upped another level.

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The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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