The Grief of Glee
Watching Glee has always put me in a good. How can you not smile at the joy the cast radiates when they’re belting out a tune? There’s nothing gleeful about grief, however. Grief is the price you pay for love, and we all loved Finn – and by extension the actor who played him, Cory Monteith. The actor’s death hit me surprisingly hard. I should probably note that my little brother passed away in May. At the time I heard the news about Monteith, I wasn’t even close to recovering from my own loss. I’m sure this contributed to my investment in this episode.
I watched “The Quarterback” episode for the first time alone, because I was certain that I’d be emotional. I also wanted to preview it, before deciding whether or not to let my kids (ages 12 and 9) watch. As expected, I pretty much cried throughout the episode, although I still loved it. I think the producers made the right move by not addressing the cause of Finn’s death, because ultimately it would have been too distracting, given that we all know how Monteith died. Having Finn die in any way other than an overdose would perhaps have suggested that the show was passing judgment on the manner in which the actor himself died. Yet I’m also glad they didn’t betray the history of the character by having him die from drug use. That would have changed the focus of the episode to addiction, which can be polarizing (as proven by the uproar over Monteith’s special tribute at the Emmys). I’m not saying it isn’t an important and valid topic, but like Kurt, I didn’t care how Finn died. I just wanted a chance to mourn him.
Grief is brutal and no one processes it in the same way. The show did an amazing job of demonstrating how differently we all handle these situations. The performances in the episode were spectacular and some blew me away. I read that Ryan Murphy (the show’s producer) said that most scenes only required one cut. The kids of McKinley High were grieving the loss of their beloved Finn, but those very actors were also mourning the passing of a friend, who by all accounts was a great guy. In my second viewing, I found myself studying the actors as they were listening to their costars sing. Their grief was so evident. Poor Chord Overstreet looked like he was on the verge of breaking down in almost every one of his scenes.
There were two nonmusical scenes that really resonated with me. The first was in Finn’s bedroom with Bert, Carol and Kurt packing up Finn’s belongings. There’s a haunting surrealism to sorting your loved one’s things. Who gets what? Should we give it away to charity? What should be discarded? It’s heartbreaking. All this…over stuff. It was so sad to listen to each of them voicing their regrets about things unsaid, while trying to reassure one other that “he knew how you felt about him.” That’s one of the tragedies of sudden death – you have no control over that last time you saw or spoke to the deceased, because you didn’t know it would be the last time. I get that, and it sucks. There is nothing anyone can say to make that ache go away. Watching Finn’s mother break down into tears was almost unbearable.
The second scene was with Santana and Sue (the non-confrontational one). I have no idea what Jane Lynch is like in real life, but we know Sue and she’s not a cry baby. We wouldn’t have bought her crocodile tears. So it was powerful when Sue’s emotions betrayed her and just a few tears rolled down her cheeks as she described how pointless it all was. “All that potential – pft.” On so many levels we understand and it hurts.
As always for Glee, the music was the best part. When the show opened with the cast signing “Seasons of Love,” it set the tone. This was going to be about love and loss. The new kids opened, but then they took a back seat, after turning over the reins to the original members of Glee, who all looked shell-shocked. Most of the gang got to sing goodbye to Finn in song. WOW! Those were some goose bump inducing performances. I just can’t do it justice with a description. You must download the episode, if you haven’t seen it. Vocally, each one hit it out of the park, but it was the expressions and the gestures that made me cry. The anguish was so hard to watch, especially poor Lea Michelle. Personally, I don’t have any earthly idea how she got through it. It was beautiful. She had to have had a little help from above.
I decided to let my kids watch the episode and was surprised by how grown up they were about it. We had a conversation about grief. My daughter, quite poignantly, stated that she now understood what I must have been feeling in the last few months. Then we cried. To quote Sue Sylvester, “There’s no lesson here, there’s no happy ending. There’s just nothing. He’s just gone.”
Congratulations are in order for Lauren Conrad! The former reality star got engaged to law student William Tell over the weekend. Conrad, 27, shared the news on her blog today. “I am very excited to share with you guys that William and I got engaged over the weekend. I am beyond thrilled!” She also posted a picture of her new bling, and it’s gorgeous! I was always Team Conrad during the Laguna Beach days, and it’s been fun to watch her move away from reality TV and into more fashion and design work, and I’ll definitely be interested in seeing what she chooses for her wedding dress!
Photo Credits: Jerod Harris/WIREIMAGE & Lauren Conrad
He’s here! Fergie and husband Josh Duhamel welcomed their first child together, a boy named Axl Jack Duhamel. Their rep confirmed the news with People.com, and reported that the baby weighed in at 7 lbs., 10 oz. Fergie, 38, and Duhamel, 40, were married January 10, 2009. Congrats to the happy couple!
Photo Credit: Shotwell/Invision/AP
He’s here! I’m one of the many that loves everything about the Royal Family and have been waiting anxiously for Kate to give birth. The wait is now over, as the baby boy was born at 4:24pm London time. Yes, a boy! So many reports were speculating girl and I was thinking pink all the way. While the baby is still unnamed (and could be for up to days) we did get a few more details on the royal birth. Here is the Twitter announcement from the Palace: “Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge was safely delivered of a son at 4.24pm. The baby weighs 8lbs 6oz. The Duke of Cambridge was present for the birth. The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh, The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, Prince Harry & families have been told and are delighted. Her Royal Highness and her child are both doing well and will remain in hospital overnight.”
Congrats to Will and Kate, and I’ll be looking forward to seeing the baby and finding out his name!
I won’t lie – I’ve been waiting for this shot! Channing Tatum and wife Jenna Dewan-Tatum shared a photo today of their new baby girl, Everly, on their Facebook accounts. The shot was posted on Sunday, also Father’s Day, which is a first for the family. Dewan, 32, and Tatum, 33, welcomed their first child on May 31. Cute photo and an adorable name to match!
It’s a girl! Actress Kristen Bell and fiancé Dax Shepard welcomed their daughter and expressed their happiness today on Twitter. “Lincoln Bell Shepard is here. She has mom’s beauty and dad’s obsession with breasts. Hooray!” Shepard tweeted. Bell, 32, added: “My new roommate poops her pants and doesn’t pay rent . . . basically Dax Shepard pre-sobriety. Welcome baby Lincoln.”
I’m loving the name – how about you?
I’m actually bummed out about this celebrity breakup! People.com is reporting that multi-tasker Ryan Seacrest and dancer turned actress Julianne Hough have decided to throw in the towel on their two year relationship. Dang it! I know you can never place bets on celebrity relationships, but I actually thought the next news we would be hearing from their camps is him putting a ring on it, not the complete opposite. A source “close to the couple” is saying that the reason for the split is simply due to busy work schedules. Well shucks. I’m off to Dairy Queen.
Photo Credit: Jeff Vespa/Getty
Fabulous news out of the Royal Family today! It was so funny – I was chatting on the phone with my mom about how the rumors are really swirling about Kate Middleton being pregnant, and I logged onto People.com to see their breaking news – Prince William and Duchess Kate are expecting! This is the statement People.com shared: “Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are very pleased to announce that The Duchess of Cambridge is expecting a baby. The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh, The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall and Prince Harry and members of both families are delighted with the news. The Duchess was admitted this afternoon to King Edward VII Hospital in Central London with Hyperemesis Gravidarum. As the pregnancy is in its very early stages, Her Royal Highness is expected to stay in hospital for several days and will require a period of rest thereafter.”
I have been one that is obsessed with William and Kate – I loved staying up to watch their wedding and find Kate to be a top-notch role model to young girls, and of course – her classic fashion sense. No due date was announced, but I’m sure much of the world – myself included – will be watching and waiting anxiously!
Photo Credit: People.com
It’s a boy! One of my favorite actresses, Reese Witherspoon, welcomed son Tennessee James Toth on Thursday. People.com shared this statement from her rep: “Reese Witherspoon and husband Jim Toth welcomed Tennessee James into their family today. Both mom and baby are healthy and the entire family is thrilled.” This is Reese’s third child, but the first with new husband Jim Toth. The couple married in March 2011. I have to ask – what do you think of the name?
Photo Credit: Venturelli/WireImage
Baby Lachey has arrived! Nick and Vanessa welcomed their son on Wednesday evening, and gave this statement to People.com: “We are incredibly proud to announce the birth of our beautiful baby boy, Camden John Lachey. Born today at 6:54 p.m., he came into this world at 8 lbs., 9 oz. and 21 inches. Love has truly been redefined for both of us.” This is the first child for Vanessa, 31, and Nick, 38. The couple was married in July 2011.
Photo Credit: Bauer-Griffin