Did Glee do Whitney Houston's songs justice?

The Fox musical series honored the late music icon by tackling her notoriously hard-to-sing hits, including "How Will I Know" and "I Wanna Dance With Somebody"

"Glee" honored Whitney Houston by packing its hour-long episode with renditions of the singer's most iconic songs, including "I Wanna Dance With Somebody."
(Image credit: Beth Dubber/FOX)

Glee has made a tradition of paying tribute to music icons like Madonna, Britney Spears, Lady Gaga, and Michael Jackson through hour-long episodes devoted to their music and legacies. Tuesday night, the Fox musical series remembered Whitney Houston with an episode that featured seven of her classic hits, juxtaposing the characters' fears about graduating high school and having to say goodbye against their mourning over Houston's death two months ago. The show opened with an a cappella version of "How Will I Know" (Watch the video below.), and also included hits like "I Have Nothing" and "Saving All My Love For You." Glee already received raves for a fortuitously timed cover of "I Will Always Love You" that aired days after Houston's death, leaving some critics to wonder if a tribute episode was necessary. Did the episode impress?

It was nearly perfect: The quality of the performances never wavered says Lauren Hoffman at New York, from the "beautifully arranged and tastefully performed" "How Will I Know" opening to the radiant rendition of "I Wanna Dance With Somebody," which was bolstered by a phenomenal dance turn by Heather Morris as Brittany. Blaine's "It's Not Right, But It's OK" was immensely satisfying, and, more importantly, furthered the plot. By the "My Love Is Your Love" finale, fans who have recently been unimpressed with the show were reminded that "when the music is good, when the characters seem like high-school kids, when it's goofy and fun," Glee is still amazing.

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Kevin Fallon is a reporter for The Daily Beast. Previously, he was the entertainment editor at TheWeek.com and a writer and producer for TheAtlantic.com's entertainment vertical. He is only mildly embarrassed by the fact that he still watches Glee.