'The Glee Project' Recap: Falling Out of Love With a Frontrunner (PHOTOS)

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The “Romanticality” episode of The Glee Project is arguably the make or break episode for the remaining contestants. After all, what makes up the bulk of a show set in high school but relationships? Even Robert Ulrich pointed out that the key to Glee’s success is creating “convincing romance” on-screen.

Unfortunately, though, this season’s “Romanticality” saw the show falling out of love with a contestant we thought could go all the way.

Note: Spoilers ahead if you have yet to watch “Romanticality.”

The Top 6 remaining on The Glee Project were paired up right at the top of the episode, asked to perform Extreme’s “More Than Words” for their homework assignment, to be judged by none other than one half of Glee’s hottest couple, Darren Criss. Additionally, Nuno Bettencourt who was the guitarist on the original track, also made an appearance to accompany the group.

But first, the kids paired themselves off by simply choosing to “look” at each other. More eyes were averted than you might expect, leaving Aylin and Lily to fight through their — well, at least Lily’s — dislike. For “shock value,” they thought it would be really fun and surprising to kiss during the number… even after Criss pointed out to them that romance is really, simply all about vulnerability.

Needless to say, after the over-the-top emoting and big gestures, Criss called out Aylin and Lily for seeing them acting instead of seeing them feel something. Michael got the note that he was “stiff,” while Blake was ultimately chosen as the homework winner.

Moving onto this week’s music video, Rihanna's "We Found Love,” and Blake’s prize was picking his partner for the video. He stayed with Ali, leaving Criss to pair Michael with Lily, and Shanna with Aylin.

For “We Found Love,” Erik White wanted little moments to shine through from every couple — the epitome of falling in love through smiles and stolen glances. Lily managed to tone herself down and genuinely connect with Michael, bringing out the best in him. For a young woman who seems to pride herself on how fun, and free, and loose, and flirty she is, however, Aylin certainly had a hard time connecting with Shanna during the music video. They took the choreography too literally and their movements came off unnatural, and once again, “act-y.”

Ultimately, it was Blake, Shanna, and Aylin who ended up in the bottom three and had to perform Last Chance numbers for Ryan Murphy.

Aylin was given "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face," a song she claimed not to know (though isn’t that the best strategy if you then blow everyone away?). Her vocals were haunting and lit up Zach Woodlee’s face, but she forgot the words. Instead, she focused on stressing to Murphy just how much she wants to be on Glee to become a role model for young Muslim girls who don’t see themselves reflected on television at all, let alone as something other than a stereotype.

Murphy-deemed “frontrunner” and “sweetheart of the competition” Blake took on R.E.M.’s "Losing My Religion,” introducing it nervously but then singing it effortlessly and charmingly. He walked away with the advice to show the panel something they have never seen before, though, having played it exactly in his wheelhouse this time around.

Shanna belted Kelly Clarkson’s "Stronger,” but perhaps because her performance was prefaced by the label of “top girl,” Murphy told her she needed to be even bolder and tougher. Shanna admitted to the panel she thought Michael should have been in the bottom three instead of her, but that kind of moxy proved to come too late because…

After facing Murphy for the first time, Shanna is the one cut. It was certainly surprising since she had been doing so consistently well all along… or did she? Though she had never been in the bottom before, she hadn’t won a homework assignment in a while, either. She may not be used to hearing criticism, but perhaps it was because she was just safely riding the middle. And any reality TV savant knows those who play it safe get outshined eventually.

Buzz Moments

OMG!: Blake admitted on-air that he has a girlfriend back home. It’s a good thing the winner of this show isn’t chosen by viewer vote or he would have just lost the tweens who are hopeful they may have a shot with him.

Thank you, TV gods: Michael finally got through a recording session with praise and even a slight fist pump from Nikki.

Awk-ward: Aylin and Lily looked so genuinely excited when they came up with the idea to kiss during their homework assignment, as if it was a brand new idea. Also, there is still shock value in two girls kissing in 2012? Oh ladies, you need to get out more — or at least watch more TV.

Hotness: Blake sweeping Ali out of her wheelchair during the music video created a very real, “in the moment” aspect of their relationship.

Fab-u-lous: Whoever edits these music videos actually made Shanna and Aylin look semi-into each other, something that we didn’t see at all in the behind-the-scenes of their shooting.

Can. Not. Wait.: Will Zach, Robert, and Nikki really put Blake and Michael up against each other in Last Chance performances just to see them duke it out?

Celebuzz Meter (1-10): 8

Were you sad to see Shanna go home tonight? Sound off in the comments below!

-- Danielle Turchiano

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