Cory Monteith, who played Finn Hudson in Glee’s original cast will be honored on the two-hour finale. The episode will feature flashbacks to the year it all started, 2009, and pay a special tribute to him then.
Before Monteith died, creator Ryan Murphy knew what the ending was going to be for the series. In a eulogy he wrote for Monteith, which EW published, he said:
At the end of season 6, Lea [Michele]’s Rachel was going to have become a big Broadway star, the role she was born to play. Finn was going to have become a teacher, settled down happily in Ohio, at peace with his choice and no longer feeling like a Lima loser. The very last line of dialogue was to be this: Rachel comes back to Ohio, fulfilled and yet not, and walks into Finn’s glee club. “What are you doing here?” he would ask. “I’m home,” she would reply. Fade out. The end.
With the tragic turn of events, a new ending had to be written. According to Seventeen, we will see Finn as the episode flashes back to 2009, when he was McKinley’s quarterback. The New Directions all talk about Finn.
The cast was on The Ellen Show, shown below, and Chord Overstreet said, “There’s a moment in the last episode that we had. And then obviously when we wrapped, we all had, kind of took a moment.” Chris Colfer added, “He was there though. We could feel him. He was there.”
On their last day of filming, in February of 2015, Lea Michele posted this picture, of her leaving with the Titans jersey Monteith wore on the show. Her caption was “One last thing.”
The cast was at PaleyFest this month, and spoke about Monteith’s tribute. Michele said, “I really think that Ryan [Murphy], Brad [Falchuk] and Ian [Brennan] and the rest of our writers had a difficult task in wrapping up everyone’s story lines and also making sure everyone was happy and making sure to honor Cory and do all of that in one episode.”
Colfer said they “always had accidental fun together,” when together on press tours. “He was a very special guy,” he continued.
Monteith last appeared on the fourth season of Glee in “Sweet Dreams,” which aired on April 18, 2013. In that episode, Finn starts college and Rachel is living in New York. The final conversation between Finn and Rachel, shown below, happens when Rachel calls Finn at college to ask him advice on her Funny Girl audition.
“The Quarterback,” which aired on October 10, 2013, served as the memorial episode for Finn, and had Rachel sing “Make You Feel My Love.”