I’m a Glee fanatic. Think of me how you will, but I cannot get enough of the show. It’s funny, it’s dramatic and it’s just an all-around wonderful, feel-good show – at least in my opinion. I’ve been watching from episode one, when Tina (Jenna Ushkowitz) still had her stutter and Mr. Schuester (Matthew Morrison) was still “in love” with this wife Terri (Jessalyn Gilsig). Now, five seasons later, I started to have a hunch that the show wouldn’t make it much longer… I hate it when my hunches are right.
On Oct. 17, Ryan Murphy announced the show would be ending after Season 6. This announcement came some time after Fox renewed the show for two more seasons, and about two months after the death of Cory Monteith, who played New Directions heartthrob Finn Hudson. When I heard the news, I was indifferent because I knew the end was coming. It was just a matter of when.
Since then, I have compiled a list of the top three things that I feel have lead to the end of Glee. I have appropriately titled it, “Three reasons Glee coming to an end shouldn’t be a surprise for any level-headed Glee fan.” It can also be known as, “There was too much change.”
The Season 3 finale, “Goodbye.”
If you didn’t cry at least one single tear during this episode, you probably have no capacity to feel. Beyond the fact that the majority of the original New Directions group was graduating from McKinley High, we saw the end to a three-season long romance. Finn and Rachel (Lea Michele) went their separate ways, and Finn’s, “If you love someone, let them go” scene was by far the best moment the show had produced up to that point. This meant at the beginning of Season 4 we were left with only Tina, Artie (Kevin McHale) and Brittany (Heather Morris) from the original cast, and the show’s favorite couple had broken up. It’s one thing to lose one character, or even two, but when you lose the majority of a cast? It doesn’t matter how well you’re writing is, the fans will have a very difficult time adapting to that large of a change.
The new Season 4 cast/writers.
Let’s be honest, no matter how much you might say you like them now, the new cast was the worst thing Glee could have done after the Season 3 finale. We knew it was coming but it was just too soon to see the choir room inhabited by these new faces. And even though I’ve become invested in the new members such as Marley (Melissa Benoist) and Jake (Jacob Artist), they aren’t Rachel and Finn. It’s not to say they aren’t equally as talented, but there’s just some things fans can’t let go of. On top of that, the writers aren’t helping us move on from Season 1 because they’re reusing similar conflict. Remember the Finn-Rachel-Quinn (Dianna Agron) love triangle? In Season 4 it was Jake-Marley-Ryder (Blake Jenner). The idea was recycled on a group of wonderful actors and actresses, so the blame can’t just fall to the new members. It’s sad to think that the new cast is guilty by association, but they share the blame with the writers and producers. If the writers had created something fresh and new, chances are things might be going better for Glee.
The death of Cory Monteith.
This is probably the most pivotal moment for making the decision to end Glee. Let’s think back to Season 1 for a moment and remember why Finn Hudson is so important. When Mr. Schuester was giving up on the glee club, Finn stepped in and said, “Let’s try this just one more time.” He got everyone together, made them believe that the club could work, and it made for one of the most iconic moments in Glee history when they sang “Don’t Stop Believin’” by Journey for the first time. From then on out, it was Rachel and Finn creating something memorable for the show. They were, in essence, the backbone of the glee club. Without one or both of them, the show would literally cease to exist. Now that Cory Monteith has passed away, the show just seems to be missing something that’s irreplaceable. The producers could try to replace him, but I think if they do, the response would be extremely negative. Need I remind you how the Rachel and Brody (Dean Geyer) fling went? Brody wasn’t even meant to replace Finn, he was just a love interest for Rachel, and Finn decked him in the face. Could you imagine the outrage if Finn’s “essence” was replaced? I shudder at the thought.
People can adjust to change, people can learn to love new cast members and see past the flaws in the writing, but you can’t fill the void that is left by someone who really was everything the glee club stood for. It would be impossible. So for me, it only seems fitting that we say goodbye to the New Directions, because without Cory Monteith, without the original cast, what do fans really have to hold on to anymore?