When the “Glee” cast paid an emotional tribute to Cory Monteith Thursday night, the genuineness of their emotion throughout the episode were felt by the viewers at home, who also broke out tissues to say goodbye to Monteith’s character, Finn.
No matter how difficult it was to watch “The Quarterback,” Gleeks took to social media during and after the episode to remember the actor, who died on July 13 at the age of 31 from a mixed drug toxicity involving drugs and alcohol.
“It was hard to watch tonight’s #Glee,” @MikeyPiff wrote. “That wasn’t acting. You knew those tears were real. #RememberingCory.”
@AlyssCampanella shared the sentiment, adding, “You know all the emotions in tonight’s #Glee were 100% real. And that’s what made it hurt my heart the most. #rememberingcory.”
The episode took place weeks after Finn’s death, which remained unexplained, as the glee club reunites to remember their pal through songs including “Seasons of Love” from “Rent” as well as covers of the Band Perry, the Pretenders, Bob Dylan and more. The songs only served to highlight the mournful tone of the goodbye episode.
“Watched this part of the ep,3 times..the boyf[riend] was there to comfort me. It’s so sad!#rememberingcory #gleetribute,” liyanahanim shared on Instagram.
Monteith’s on- and off-screen girlfriend Lea Michele performed Dylan’s “Make You Feel My Love,” and gave an emotional speech where she described him as “my person.” Prior to the episode, Michele opened up about what she described as a “perfect” tribute to Monteith, and fans could feel her emotions.
“When u realize Lea’s tears on glee are real heartbreaking tears,” @OneOfTheWeasley shared.
When u realize Lea's tears on glee are real heartbreaking tears :'( #RememberingCory
— Potterhead ⚡ (@OneOfTheWeasley) October 11, 2013
During the airing, while fans were asked to light virtual candles in Finn’s memory, many of Cory’s co-stars took to Twitter to remember their friend.
“Dearest Gleeks, saying goodbye is terribly difficult- we at #glee have had our time. Tonight’s ep is not just for Cory, but for all of you,” @DarrenCriss wrote.
Dearest Gleeks, saying goodbye is terribly difficult- we at #glee have had our time. Tonight's ep is not just for Cory, but for all of you.
— Darren Criss (@DarrenCriss) October 11, 2013
Kevin McHale, who performed the James Taylor classic “Fire and Rain” in tribute, shared, “Tonights Glee was made out of a lot of love & a lot of tears by our incredible crew, cast & creators for our friend Cory. We miss you Cory.”
Tonights Glee was made out of a lot of love & a lot of tears by our incredible crew, cast & creators for our friend Cory. We miss you Cory
— Kevin McHale (@druidDUDE) October 11, 2013
Show creator Ryan Murphy, who had been the most vocal in the press since Monteith’s passing over the summer, thanked the fans for all their support as the show heads into hiatus before returning on November 7. “Thank u for all the kind words tonight. I miss you, Cory,” he wrote.