Sue's Nazi-hunting mother Doris Sylvester (Carol Burnett) pays her a visit due to Sue's upcoming wedding to herself, and Finn and Kurt face the marriage of their parents, Carole (Romy Rosemont) and Burt.The school board refuses to take a stand against Karofsky’s threats to Kurt, which leads to Kurt transferring from Mc Kinley High to Dalton Academy, and Sue resigning as principal. Taking Emma's advice, Will decides to feature some of the less-heralded members of New Directions in the Sectionals competition.Sue takes over as principal when Figgins is also ill, and makes several changes including firing Will, though she is ultimately convinced to reinstate him.

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The season received generally positive reviews from critics.

The musical performances from the second season expanded on the success of the first season, with the show releasing five soundtrack albums and over one hundred digital singles.

Quinn replaces Santana as head of the Cheerios, Finn is kicked off the football team, and Tina and Mike (Harry Shum, Jr.) begin dating.

New Directions wants to perform a Britney Spears number at the Homecoming Assembly, but Will is reluctant to let them be that edgy.

Finn and Rachel secretly throw the competition so that Sam will feel welcome; the victory dinner with Sam and his partner Quinn turns into a first date for the couple.

After Will learns of Emma's newfound love for The Rocky Horror Picture Show, he impulsively decides to have the glee club perform the stage version of the musical as a fundraiser in the hopes of winning her back from Carl, recruiting her to help him with the production. Kurt, who’s being harassed by Karofsky (Max Adler), spies for New Directions at Dalton Academy, where he meets Blaine (Darren Criss), lead singer of the rival Warblers.Mc Kinley High’s glee club and cheerleading squad budgets are cut to allocate more money for the football program and its new football coach Shannon Beiste (Dot-Marie Jones), so directors Will Schuester and Sue Sylvester scheme to get their money restored.Finn and Rachel try to find new recruits for New Directions, but Rachel feels threatened by the talent of her recruit, Sunshine (guest star Charice), an exchange student from the Philippines.The faculty holds a Secret Santa gift exchange, but Sue tampers with it so she gets all the gifts.Artie finds out Brittany still believes in Santa Claus, and convinces the other glee club members not to disillusion her.Puck returns and develops a friendship with Artie through his community service project; he helps Artie get a date with Brittany.