With the Warblers officially disqualified from the show choir competition, the New Directions are back in the run and have to raise money for Regionals. Tina comes up with the idea of "The Men of McKinley" calendar, taking hot photos of the current Glee guys. However, Artie isn't too keen with the idea. Sam is certain with his recent SAT score that he won't graduate from McKinley and decides to take care of his body instead. While back in New York, Rachel is asked to go topless in a student film, leaving Kurt shocked enough to call in two familiar faces for an intervention.
PlotOn a news broadcast, Hunter Clarington emerges from the Lima Municipal Court and is swarmed by the press asking about the allegations of steroid use by the Warblers. Hunter assaults a reporter when he implies he is too old to be in high school. Back in the studio, Rod Remington confirms the Warblers tested positive for illegal substances, and by technicality, the New Directions will advance to Regionals. Finn tells the glee club they need to raise money for their travel budget, and Tina proposes shooting a 'Men of McKinley' calender featuring the boys of the glee club.
Brittany welcomes Marley to her Internet show "Fondue for Two," and Marley is put on the spot when Brittany suggests she make her feelings for Jake known to him. Later Brittany and Sam discover they've earned, respectively, the highest and lowest SAT scores at McKinley (Brittany's high score was the result of creating random patterns out of the test answers). She consoles Sam by assuring him his great body will earn him a good future, while she makes ambitious academic plans for herself as "one of the smartest people in America."
Rachel lands a leading role in a student film but must commit to appearing in a topless scene - prompting a visage of her old high school self to visit her and questions her morality. She ends, dueting with her former self on Torn. Ultimately, she decides to do the topless scene.When Sam walks the halls in swimming trunks, Blaine suggests he's overcompensating for his SAT flop. Sam conducts a "seminar" in which he offers tips and techniques for posing for the sexy calendar, warming the glee guys up with "bro-ga" - "yoga for bros" - and working out to a mashup of Centerfold/Hot In Herre. Finn and the girls are impressed by the guys' efforts, but Artie remains doubtful about the shirtless photos.
Sue accuses Finn of peddling smut and vows to stop the calendar, but Finn calls her a hypocrite and suggests that he might investigate the long-standing rumor about a McKinley coach who posed nude for a Penthouse centerfold. Sue half-denies it, but then implies it to be true and insists he'll never find proof she did it.
Back in New York, Kurt is disgusted by Brody's casual nudity around the apartment, but Brody claims he's just showing his support for Rachel's decision - which Kurt opposes, insisting serious actresses don't do nudity. Brody continues to support her, and Rachel insists she's going through with it, with or without Kurt's support.
Hoping to redeem herself after her fainting incident at Sectionals, Marley rehearses a romantic duet - Christina Perri's A Thousand Years - with Jake, culminating in a kiss. She comes close to admitting she's in love with him but cowers away from it. Meanwhile, Finn taps Artie to scour through years of vintage porn for the Sue centerfold, to which he eagerly agrees. Artie then expresses his fears about posing shirtless. Finn understands and praises Artie for his bravery in admitting to his body issues.
Catching Jake and Ryder in a shirtless pose-off, Tina and Kitty reveal the sexy scenarios envisioned for their calendar. Jake confesses that feelings are getting deeper between him and Marley, and Ryder insists that Jake tell her - getting "naked emotionally" is the key to her heart. Jake responds by singing Let Me Love You (Until You Learn to Love Yourself) to Marley in the choir room. The performance moves her to tears.
Rachel returns to the apartment to find Quinn and Santana, who have shown up in New York for an 'intervention' after receiving a call from Kurt. Both of them strongly advise Rachel against filming the topless scene.
The glee guys shoot their calendar photos, but Sam starts stressing about maintaining his pumped-up look and runs back to the locker room. Blaine follows him, and he admits to Blaine that he believes he has to hook people in with his physical qualities because it's the only thing that makes him special. Blaine urges him to lighten up on himself because he'll still be loved.
Finn confronts Sue with an envelope containing the infamous issue of Penthouse, and she says she's surprised he's succeeded, as she thought she'd purchased every existing copy on eBay. She admits aloud that she did the spread and can't resist taking a look at herself again, but discovers the envelope only holds an issue of Highlights magazine - however, Finn was recording their conversation and tricked her into confessing the truth on tape.
Sam is called into Emma's office after Blaine enlists her help to find schools that are receptive to students who didn't perform well on the SATs, as well as researching other options for Sam. She also targeted scholarship opportunities for him - he just needs to write an essay about his experiences and accomplishments.
On the set, Rachel cannot bring herself to drop her robe for the topless scene. She asks for the rest of the crew to go topless too; to her surprise, they quickly doff their shirts. Ultimately, she can't go through with it because she's not ready. The director kicks her off the set and assumes the topless role herself. Rachel leaves singing Love Song with Quinn and Santana. After the performance, Rachel invites them to dinner. Santana indicates an interest in staying in New York because it is more 'her speed' than Kentucky.
Sam is struggling with his personal essay and doubting himself. Blaine presents him with a video in which his friends reveal the many things he's accomplished and what he's brought to their lives. Moved to tears by his friends' words, Sam embraces Blaine, thanking him for his help.Sam approaches Artie one last time to convince him to help fill out the empty calendar pages. Artie's expresses concern of being the only one with his clothes on, but Sam assures him he won't. When the calendar comes out, it is revealed that Sam kept his shirt on for his shots. At the calendar release and signing, Jake offers Marley a signed calendar, having written "I love you" on it. "I love you back," she tells him. Sue tells Finn she is impressed by the calendar's success and she considers him a worthy adversary. Re-energized by the success of the calendar, New Directions celebrates by performing This Is the New Year.
|Song Title||Original Artist||Performer(s)|
|Torn||Ednaswap (Natalie Imbruglia version)||Rachel Berry|
|Centerfold/Hot in Herre||The J. Geils Band/Nelly||New Directions Boys and the Cheerios|
|A Thousand Years||Christina Perri feat. Steve Kayzee||Jake Puckerman and Marley Rose|
|Let Me Love You (Until You Learn to Love Yourself)||Ne-Yo||Jake Puckerman|
|Love Song||Sara Bareilles||Quinn Fabray, Rachel Berry,|
and Santana Lopez
|This Is the New Year||A Great Big World||New Directions|
- Oh Yeah by Yello - Plays in almost every scene that features someone shirtless.
- Trouty Mouth from Glee - Sung by Santana Lopez during the video for Sam.
- Jayma Mays as Emma Pillsbury
- Dianna Agron as Quinn Fabray
- Iqbal Theba as Principal Figgins
- Alex Newell as Unique Adams
- Samuel Larsen as Joe Hart
- Melissa Benoist as Marley Rose
- Jacob Artist as Jake Puckerman
- Becca Tobin as Kitty Wilde
- Dean Geyer as Brody Weston
- Blake Jenner as Ryder Lynn
- Nolan Gerard Funk as Hunter Clarington
- Leah Pipes as Electra
- Lauren Potter as Becky Jackson
- Bill A. Jones as Rod Remington
- Earlene Davis as Andrea Carmichael
Absent Cast Members
- Ryan stated on Twitter that the Men of McKinley calendar storyline had been an idea since Season One.
- The rumor of Sue posing for Penthouse and taking horse estrogen was previously mentioned in a voice-over by Will in the extended version of Pilot. It was brought up again in The Rise and Fall of Sue Sylvester when the superintendent found a copy of the magazine in Sue's Hurt Locker.
- This marks the first appearance of Brittany's internet talk show Fondue For Two since its only appearance in Season Two episode Rumours.
- Starting in this episode, Fondue for Two has become a recurring act in the series.
- Several names of websites are shown to have been altered when Rachel looks for Santana's sex tape online. For example, imdb.com is changed to icdb.com and tumblr.com is changed to ramblr.com
- Finn states that Regionals takes place in Indianapolis. Ryan Murphy, who wrote this episode, was born and raised in Indianapolis, IN.
- Yoga for men, or "Broga" as Sam calls it, really exists. link
- When the episode aired in Australia, the line where Sam was talking about selling his semen was cut from the episode.
- This episode got a 2.1 rating with a total of 5.48 million viewers. Source
- In the scene where Rachel, Brody and Kurt are all at the table, Rachel grabs a banana, and while she's telling Kurt about her participation in the topless scene, she eats a piece of it, then the camera pans to Kurt and then back to Rachel, and now the banana is farther away from her, un-open.
- Rachel and Kurt playing the Game of Life.
- More Blaine and Sam scenes (Blaine talking about his crush).
- Quinn revealing she is no longer dating her professor.
Sam: If you want to make it in this world, you have to be special.
Blaine: But you are special. Even without your body.
Rachel: Oh my god! What are you doing here?
Santana: Lady Hummel called asking us to do an emergency intervention.
Rachel: On who?
Topless is as nude as anyone is ever gonna want to see you.
Chicks dig hot guys who are willing to get naked for a calendar, but what they're really looking for is a guy who will get naked emotionally.
I love you back.
I don't get it. A year ago you were all plaid skirts and 'Do you think Finn likes me?' and now you're slutty Barbie asking misogynist Ken to move in with you, doing pornos. Whats happening to you?
It's not just girls who have body issues. Sometimes guys aren't cool showing off their bodies either.