‘The Quarterback’ was absolutely the most emotional, heart-wrenching episode of ‘Glee’ that we could imagine. Paying tribute to the late Cory Monteith and his character, Finn, the originals gathered back at McKinley High School to say one last goodbye.
Glee Club Struggles With How To Say Goodbye
When the classmates at McKinley are going through a tough time, singing always makes them feel better. So, it’s no surprise that the current, as well as returning members, took to song to honor their fallen friend, Finn.
“Memorialize him the way we only way we know how – by singing,” Mr. Schuester (Matthew Morrison) told the students. However, it wasn’t an easy thing for the them to do.
The cast gathered for the most emotional opening yet, in a powerful group ballad of their own rendition of “Seasons of Love.”
Mercedes (Amber Riley) admitted she had been sobbing since the funeral, and needed to sing — she was the first to step up in the choir room to sing one of Finn’s favorites, “I’ll Stand By You.”
Kurt (Chris Colfer), his dad, Burt (Mike O’Malley) and Finn’s mom, Carole (Romy Rosemont) rummaged through Finn’s belongings in an extremely sad, but important family moment. Each of them displayed how they were dealing with the tragedy.
Burt regretted not hugging him more, Kurt remembered the safety he felt with Finn, and Carole realized that every day she would wake up and forget that her son is gone, and then remember again — her heart would break every time.
“Seeing him coming through the hallway wearing this, it was like Superman had arrived,” Kurt said about his big brother’s putting on his letterman jacket. The emotional scene ended with all of them crying on the floor.
Santana Grieves For Cory, Battles Herself
Meanwhile, Santana (Naya Rivera) returned from her NY adventure as well to support her friends. She faced a battle with herself, as she struggled with how to grieve for Finn through her usual catty attitude.
While she is used to being mean to mask her true feelings, it causes a run-in with McKinley’s new mean girl, Bree (Erinn Westbrook), who Sue (Jane Lynch) assigned to take candles out of the memorial in the hallway.
Santana then attacked Sue — yes, physically attacked her — she pushed her into a filing cabinet, before running out.
After making yet another fat joke about Finn, Santana went into a tearful version of “If I Die Young.” During the song, she completely broke down, proving how much she loved Finn. When the club tried comforting her, she ran away screaming.
Kurt came to her side later, giving her Finn’s jacket while she cried.
Later in the episode, Santana came to apologize to Sue, who admitted she is mean to everyone — and was mean to Finn, and we actually saw her cry.
“I don’t care about people, I care about him,” she said, crying. It was a big moment for Sue, who will be changed forever.
Shortly after, Santana revealed that the jacket was stolen and everyone immediately assumed that it was Puck.
Puck Makes Life-Changing Decision
Mike Chang (Harry Shum Jr.) and an angry and confused Noah Puckerman (Mark Salling) also returned to their high school to remember their classmate. At first, Puck’s angry — he even rips out the tree that the school planted in Finn’s memory.
He then showed up drunk and pissed off in the locker room, where he’s supported by Coach Beast (Dot Marie Jones). He admitted to her that he was afraid to cry because he knew he wouldn’t be able to stop — and that’s when he let it all out.
“He’s dead and all we’ve got left is his voice in our head,” she told him, straightforward. “I’m sorry, but it’s time you gotta be your own quarterback.”
We finally saw Puck sing his feelings with “No Surrender,” which he played while looking at the empty chair Finn once sat in. Ignoring the accusations that he stole Finn’s jacket, he replanted the tree for Finn’s memory, and revealed that he decided he will enlist in the Air Force to make a man out of himself.
Rachel Says Goodbye With Emotional Ballad
While Mr. Schuester is trying to be the rock of the glee club, reprising the role he’s played the entire series, his wife Emma (Jayma Mays) was worried about him. He wasn’t taking time for himself to grieve for his best friend — he even admitted he hadn’t cried at all.
At the end of the episode, we finally see Rachel — wearing her “Finn” necklace — who returned on Kurt’s arm in the hallway, saying she just had to return to see the memorial.
“I loved Finn, and he loved me and he loved all of you guys. I loved to sing in the car and before Finn, I used to sing alone,” she said to the glee club before taking on “Make You Feel My Love.”
She is comforted by Mr. Schu in the choir room while they look at a plaque hanging, that she made for to remember Finn. It had his photo, with a quote that he actually said, “The show must go . . . all over the place . . . or something.”
She revealed to Schu that she continues to talk to him now that he’s gone, and that she hopes she never forgets his voice. After talking to Rachel, Will arrived home, where it finally hit him.
He opened his bag and pulled out the jacket — yes, he took it — and started full on balling, falling into his arms wife.
The episode was the most powerful, beautiful yet.
— Emily Longeretta