A finite group in which a product of two commutators need not be a commutator: This is Exercise 3.27 in Rotman, The Theory of Groups, a construction attributed to Carmichael. Let $G$ be the subgroup of $S_{16}$ generated by the eight permutations $(ac)(bd)$, $(eg)(fh)$, $(ik)(jl)$, $(mo)(np)$, $(ac)(eg)(ik)$, $(ab)(cd)(mo)$, $(ef)(gh)(mn)(op)$, and $(ij)(kl)$. Then the commutator subgroup of $G$ is generated by the first four of these elements, and has order 16. It contains $\alpha=(ik)(jl)(mo)(np)$, but $\alpha$ is not a commutator.
A finite group in which a product of two commutators need not be a commutator: This is Exercise 3.27 in Rotman, The Theory of Groups, a construction attributed to Carmichael. Let $G$ be the subgroup of $S_{16}$ generated by the eight permutations $(ac)(bd)$, $(eg)(fh)$, $(ik)(jl)$, $(mo)(np)$, $(ac)(eg)(ik)$, $(ab)(cd)(mo)$, $(ef)(gh)(mn)(op)$, and $(ij)(kl)$. Then the commutator subgroup of $G$ is generated by the first four of these elements, and has order 16. It contains $\alpha=(ik)(jl)(mo)(np)$, but $\alpha$ is not a commutator.