In hindsight, “Glee” creator Ryan Murphy believes the show should have stopped after the tragic death of Cory Monteith.
Monteith, who played Finn Hudson on the popular Fox series since it premiered in 2009, died of a heroin overdose on July 13, 2013. He was 31.
While his death was acknowledged in the series, “Glee” ultimately continued to run for an additional two years — a decision Murphy admits he wouldn’t make today.
“If I had to do it again, we would’ve stopped for a very long time and probably not come back,” Murphy said on the “And That’s What You Really Missed” podcast, hosted by “Glee” alums Jenna Ushkowitz and Kevin McHale.
“I would be like, ‘that’s the end,’” Murphy went on, adding, “Because you can’t really recover from something like that.”
“It wasn’t, like, a normal death where someone is sick, and you can see them. It happened so quickly with no warning,” added Murphy, who also created shows such as “American Horror Story” and Netflix’s smash hit “Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story.”
One month after Monteith’s death, the show paid tribute to the late actor in the episode “The Quarterback” from Season 5. His character died in the episode.
“It’s an episode I was able to watch once,” Murphy said. “And I never looked at it again.”
According to Ushkowitz, 36, and McHale, 34, it was up to members of the cast to decide if they wanted to appear in the episode or not, but both said they felt pressured to say no.
“It just felt like an impossible corner we were all put in,” Ushkowitz said. “There’s no right or wrong.”
McHale said he found it difficult filming the episode, and had to walk off set on a number of occasions when it all got too much for him.
“We’re in a scene talking about a character. Obviously we’re talking about our real friend,” he said. “Then there’s a camera on you. When those things happen, you don’t know when you’re going to lose it and not lose it and break down.”
The show ended its six-year run in 2015.