Glee's tribute episode to the late Cory Monteith has just hit our TV screens and, like you, we're having difficulty holding it together after saying goodbye to one of the series' most beloved characters. For the past four years, Finn Hudson has encapsulated everything that Glee represents: heart, honesty, humor and raw talent.
We spoke with Glee's creator, and close friend of Monteith's, Ryan Murphy to discuss tonight's tribute episode and find out what Finn's absence means for the future of the Fox series.
Murphy told us that he hopes Glee fans have gathered with their friends this evening to lean on each other while watching the tribute. At the premiere of American Horror Story: Coven, the creator exclusively told us that this tribute was made with "pure feeling of love," and he has faith that fans will be able to absorb the episode's special message.
"We wrote it because we loved Cory. So the episode is about how all the people loved Cory and find it really hard to go on with the show so to speak, but that's the whole point of this show."
Although Murphy helped to pen the episode alongside cocreators Brad Falchuk and Ian Brennan, he reveals that watching it was an extremely difficult task. "I edited it and I could only sit through it twice—it was hard," he said.
It's hard to deny that Glee has lost one of the most important characters in the musical hit's history, so what does this mean for the fate of the series? Murphy answered, "I don't know. I mean, we're picked up through season six and we had to sort of get back on the horse. After episode three, we wrote four more, so we're up to show seven now."
Following a brief hiatus, Glee will return Thursday, Nov. 7, with a new episode entitled "A Katy or a Gaga," with episode five, "The End of Twerk," airing the week after.
However, Murphy wants to stress that just because we've said a heartbreaking goodbye to Finn Hudson does not mean that this is the last that we will hear of the character. "I just made a decision that we keep mentioning Finn." He explained, "We don't just say this is done and we're never going to go back to it, so that resonates throughout the year."
The creator says that future episodes will continue to honor Monteith's memory and highlight the themes that the actor loved most. "We're trying to be sensitive and also have some fun and go back to some optimistic stories," Murphy continued. "I think he would have wanted that, he always loved that about the show."