'Glee' scoop: Ryan Murphy says he's planning for the show's characters to graduate this season

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Image Credit: FOX

Could some of Glee‘s most popular characters, like Lea Michele’s Rachel and Cory Monteith’s Finn, be seeing their final season on the Fox hit? Apparently so, according to an interview that series co-creator Ryan Murphy gave to Ryan Seacrest on Friday. There have been rumblings that the show’s seniors would indeed graduate from McKinley High at the end of season 3 and Murphy seemed to confirm that. Said Murphy, “That is true. I don’t think of it in terms of eliminating or replacing. Because I think the thing about this cast is people love them and they are incredibly talented. They’ve left sort of an indelible mark.” He added, “The thing that I wanted to do and the cast wanted to do, we didn’t want to have a show where they were in high school for eight years. We really wanted it to be true to that experience. We thought it would be really cool if we were true to the timeline.”

Murphy used Darren Criss and Chord Overstreet as examples of the show incorporating new characters, and finding fresh Glee faces is the focus of the Oxygen reality series The Glee Project, which Murphy is an executive producer and judge; the winner of the reality show will get a 7-episode role on the third season of Glee. Said Murphy, “We’ve got Matt Morrison and Jane Lynch who will stay and be the male and female lynchpins of the series, but I think the fun thing about the show is it’s a celebration of youth and talent and I think that just like with the original cast, I think finding those young unknown people and giving them an opportunity to break into the business and become stars is a really fun and exciting thing and is the spirit of the series.”

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  • abadstroller

    Makes sense. Otherwise Mark Salling would be pushing 35 and still trying to play 17…even the hugest fan wouldn’t want to see that and Mark wouldn’t want to do it either (I imagine). I looking forward to seeing great younger (i.e., closer to the ages they portray) triple-threat performers. Love the current cast, but that is one of the reasons that someone like Chris Colfer or Charice are so appealing.

    • Flip

      Makes no sense that EVERYONE in the glee club is from the SAME graduating class. Characters like Kurt, Sam and Mercedes should be younger than characters like Rachel and Finn. Stagger the graduations so the entire cast doesn’t leave all at once. From a story perspective, it would make sense for bad seed Puck and dummy Brittany to be held back a year and then use them to help integrate the new cast members.

      • Jonathan

        THIS! I don’t know why RM did not think of this idea. Maybe he did but isn’t sharing; I hope so.

      • Lenn

        I COMPLETELY AGREE! i think it will be extremely hard for the producers to keep the same audience if all characters leave at the same time! the least he couldve done is follow them through college!

      • Jake

        He never confirmed whos graduating or not and honestly it wouldnt make sense if they want to make the transition organically like theyve been saying so what graduate the 14 original glee club members (im including Sam Lauren and Blaine)this season while the 4 supposed new ones stay for season 4 and they bring in 8 more new characters thats too much.

        IMO As much as i love these chracters Rachel, Finn, Quinn, Puck, Artie, Santana and Blaine should all graduate at the end of season 3 and then you have the other 7 original characters graduating at the end of season 4.

      • Flip

        If Glee wanted to make all these kids from the same graduating class, they should have all been freshmen and they could have gotten four seasons out of this cast instead of three.

      • Bill O’Reilly

        I couldn’t believe it when they chopped Ned’s head off!! Talk about a main character not even lasting ONE season, let alone THREE!

      • sherman

        I would think that next year:
        Finn, Puck, Santana, Quinn, Britt would be seniors.
        Rachel, Puck, Amber, Tina, Mike, Sam, Artie, Lauren would be juniors.

      • sherman

        Replace Puck in my junior list with Kurt. But Blaine would be a senior.

      • Jon

        No I want them all there or none of them there glad they are all the same year.

      • Steven B

        They aren’t all from the same graduating close…Kurt is at least 1..maybe 2 years behind.

    • getitright

      No one gives a rat ass about Charice or Sunshine, please if that is who they keep they are crazy.

      In season One it is established that Kurt is 16 he got a car , Rachel was not born until Dec 1994 so younger than Kurt.. Plus the all went to Jr Prom.

      • mary q contrary

        I’m with you on Charice. I can’t stand her. She might have some pipes, but her “acting” (if you want to call her monotone reading of lines acting) is shockingly bad and it would be a huge shame if they keep her on. I don’t see it happening, though. I think that when they cast her last year, they were expecting more buzz and excitement, and it seems like nobody gives a flying monkey about her. If she were anything but a good voice, it might have worked out, but she’s really not that attractive, either. The rest of the cast, while diverse, are all attractive in their own way, and Charice reminds me of a bush baby with coke bloat.

      • SlyGuy

        I agree, no Charice next season. There’s no money in it for her. I mean while you fans gobble up glee albums in the millions, your favorite actor gets almost nothing…I think they got $400 each when one of the albums went #1. Charice’s stint on the show has served its purpose…other than glee stans, millions now know Charice’s beautiful voice/talent. As far as Kurt is concerned (and others for that matter) if they try to crossover to music, I doubt they’ll have the same success. Two glee stars have tried and it seems that glee fan support was nonexistent cuz sales were rather poor. So, I wholeheartedly agree, no Charice next season…she doesn’t need it.

      • Rick

        If there’s a character that needs to graduate it’s Kurt. That character is quite possibly the most annoying in the show. Did his character not pass puberty yet? I don’t know any 16 yr old boy whose voice sounds like someone scratching a chalkboard with their fingernails.

      • mari

        @mary q contrary – I agreed with your sentiment until you brought a very insulting remark at the end. Wow! You watch “Glee” and yet, you didn’t seem to get the message of tolerance that they ram down their audience’s throat.

      • sharisufan

        @mary q contrary Are you refering to the character or the actor? Your comments seems like those coming from Rachel before the last episode LOL…but she admitted at the last episode why she doesn’t like Sunshine. Do you have the same sentiments? Or maybe you didn’t get what the show is all about.

      • Lily

        I don’t know why I love “annoying Kurt” so much… so I would love him to stay another year. Maybe something bad will happen to him so that he will miss 2 months school and cannot graduate… Ok this means some Kurtless episodes then…but that is ok if he reappears in season 4… if there is a season 4… In addition , they have been messing with Blaine’s age…so now he is as old as Kurt.

      • Lily

        As much as I hate to say this.. In season 2, we did survive at least one Kurt-less episode (the Justin Bieber episode) and he was barely at the Superbowl episode… Puck also dissapeared in an episode (? duets). So if they do this type of dissapearing acts for the leads in season 3… this can make the transition to a new cast less painful…

    • Lisa

      Yes! very happy with this decision. Maybe now this show can go away completely! Yay no more Lea Michelle!!!

      • Regina

        I mean just don’t watch the show if you want it to go away…its called a remote. I am happy with the decision because there can be new fresh talent on the show and that is always exciting

      • sherman

        Regina — save your breath. If an idiot who hates the show comes here to post, then she’s just a troll looking for attention.

      • Joe

        Don’t worry Lea will be around for a while. People just like to hate on people way more successful then them.
        I will stop watching once Lea is gone. No Rachel Berry no point in watching or buying songs or going to concerts.

  • Cory

    While I agree that they seniors should graduate, I don’t want them to leave the show. I’m really hoping that they find some way to incorporate them into the show still because they’re really the reason I watch it. I love the cast, and actually Will and Sue are my two least favorite characters, so if they’re all I have left then I’m not sure how I’m going to feel about the show.

    • abadstroller

      Maybe a story arc where you see the new grads trying to make it show biz (or whatever) as the show transitions into the stories of newer characters (and the actors move on to new projects). The audience will adjust accordingly. I still trust Ryan Murphy! Don’t let us down, RM!

      • Kay

        after this season – I don’t trust ryan murphy (sorry ryan – but you lied!). he said finn and rachel would be together the whole year – they break up 8 episodes in … might be one of the reasons this season blew and ratings went down .. hoping the keep the characters happy and united this season. unnecessary drama does not draw viewers…hence the rating when finn and rachel were apart. I am hopeful – but I will never trust him. I think he figured out that viewers want a happy and united crew – especially in this “last” season. For me – it will be the last season because without Finn and Rachel, Kurt, and others – this show is just not a show anymore to me. I would imagine most of the audience feels the same. I will not watch without Finn and Rachel and Kurt on my screen – won’t happen…

      • Lily

        Trust Ryan Murphy ? Yeah right…

    • Elizabeth

      Spin-off: the seniors will all go to the same theater school in NY together, it won’t just be Rachel & Kurt.

    • Lenn

      agreed! i think keeping sue and shue is pointless, they are not the reason anyone watches the show!

  • Jojo

    They should just end the show after season 3. I liked a couple of the season 2 additions, but not enough to keep watching without Lea Michele and Chris Colfer. They were the only reason I stuck with the show with the bad writing last season.

    • Michele

      and without Cory – Cory, Lea, and Chris are the draw – they need a spin off with just themselves. Cory Monteith is the only reason I watch the show

      • Mike

        I Love Finn!!!! I want to lick him all over!

      • Rachel

        No chance Mike thats my job!

      • Quinn

        You can have him Mike! After he dumped me I am done with him…..take him away from little miss overdramatic!

      • vin

        Um “Quinn” and “Rachel”: THEY ARE FICTIONAL CHARACTERS!!!!

      • Joe

        Vin do you think they actually believe they are rachel and quinn? If so you are a moron.

      • vin

        no those two idiots always comment on stuuf when it comes to Glee (ESPECIALLY MY COMMENTS) and think they are. They are starting to annnoy me.

      • Michelle

        Vin…don’t feed the trolls

      • Quinn

        We ARE Rachel and Quinn!!!

      • clearly the insane assylum added tvs and computers

        What is wrong with those two?!

      • Lindy

        Are you me? CORY MONTEITH is the only reason I watch this show.

    • Sara

      Agreed! And the writers did everything they could to ruin Finn’s character. Rachel has always been my favorite character, I won’t watch without her.

      • Lindy

        Even though they tried to ruin Finn’s character, I watched because of Cory. He’s a good actor and I love him on my TV.

    • Jonathan

      Lea and Chris need a show for just them. They are too big of talents to lose!

      • Celia

        I agree! The need to give Lea and Chris a spin-off. I don’t know how Glee will survive without them.

      • suebrody

        I agree. I want a Hummelberry spin-off. Rachel and Kurt Take New York or something. (And Finn and Blaine can visit.)

      • Hella

        I agree, that would be awsome, but could we have Finn and Blaine as regulars too? I love Darren Criss.

    • jess

      Lea and Chris are the reals breakouts. You might like Finn or Puck but the show has more change surviving without them then Lea and Chris.

      • Kay

        and CORY!!! CORY IS ONE OF THE MOST LOVED ON THE SHOW! IT NEEDS TO BE THE RACHEL FINN KURT!!!

        FURTEL!!!

      • Kon

        Yes Cory is loved but not to the degree of Lea and Chris. Just a fact.
        I give him 3rd or 4th.

      • ForsakenMoon19

        Actually I agree with Kay and disagree with you Kon and Jess!! Whether people want to agree or not the real heavy weights of this show are Cory, Chris and Lea!!! Thats a fact and without thoes 3 the show is garbage!!!

    • vin

      And Mike TMI

      • vin

        Sorry meant that for another comment (see a 8 posts above)

  • Glenn

    I’m pretty sure the characters who graduate will end up in a spin-off show!

    • Alan

      Just like “Saved By The Bell: The College Years”, you’d have Glee: The College Years?

      • Rachel

        They could always do a time jump and have them competing for broadway roles.

      • Rachel

        NBC is already doing a show about Broadway…I think’ll be called Smash, starring Katherine McPhee. It’ll start in the Fall. I cannot wait!

      • Bea

        SMASH is a whole different thing it is the about the prole making a musical. A pin off form glee would be about them making it in NY and show biz. I doubt they would be that close in storyline. Glee is a black comedy.satire. Smash seem more a drama.

  • vin

    Unless the new kids are amazing, I won;t watch season 3 if the orignal cast isn’t there. Lightning won’t strike twice for the show I think. The original cast is AMAZING and perfect for the show. If anything graduate them a couple at a time.

    • Captain

      That’s what I don’t get. Its a Glee CLub open to the entire school, there has to be some of them that aren’t seniors. Graduated 3 this year, maybe 4 next year. Give the audience time to adjust instead of graduating the entire cast all at once.

      • vin

        I agreee. For some reason I always thought that Puck, Quinn, Finn, and Rachel were the seniors in the club (But I guess its because they look older than the others). I though all the rest were younger. I’m guessin Chrod is sticking around and more characters members will join.

      • vin

        Also, I hope Charice (spelt right?) is comin to McKinley as does Balaine (but I have a feeling that is part of RM’s overall plan). I think they want viewers to beleive that everyone is affraid and embarassed to join the Glee Club though (which I totally could see happening in season one but in season two it was kinda annoying to see on the show).

      • vin

        Lastly, I want more teachers on the show. Am I really supposed to beleive that the only classes that they take (and have shown on the show or alluded to) are math, art, science, history, and spanish. It seems like thats the only classes they go to and than they either go play a sport (football or basketbal becuase apparantly finn, sam, and puck are jacks of all trades when it comes to sports) or go to glee clb meetings. Its a little thning that always has bugged me.

      • Quinn

        I am not that old thank you very much!

      • vin

        @Quinn: um ok? I think somebody needs to look in the mirror and see that he or she isn’t Quin from the show since she is a FICTIONAL character.

      • jess

        Sunshine was a bad idea and added nothing to the show.

      • Ann

        @Jess, I agree. Charice is a horrible actress. I hope they don’t make her a full-time gleek.

    • Lenn

      i think the kind of talent ryan murphy stumbled across only happens once in a lifetime! the characters are what makes glee gleeful! without the original cast the show will not survive, atleast i dont think. i just dont understand why they couldnt start of the first season with them being freshman! and its true, what a coincidence they are all in the same grade?! unrelistic…i can’t believe all the writers overlooked this!

      • JackieB

        Disagree.. I think it will be good for the show to switch it up. The entire show cannot just take place in that choir room with the club singing swing numbers and playing football. Seeing the kids maybe go to community college, try out a long-distance relationship, audition for college groups (with the realization they are a small fish in a BIG pond) — all of these are fascinating storlines Ryan and Glee could do.
        However I do know what you mean about the characters… maybe it was because of the way they built the show with a few, but Quinn, Rachel, Finn, Puck, Kurt – they are hilarious and special. I HATE that Glee competition show and most of the kids on it… especially that girl who looks ten.

      • vin

        I like two people on that show: Alex and Damien.

      • Quinn

        I think somehow someone else besides Chord/Sam will stick around (hopefully mercedes becuase I love her voice and she doesn’t look like a senior

      • Quinn

        But then again she is getting my sloppy seconds

      • clearly the insane assylum added tvs and computers

        Thanks crazy lady….back to ur padded cell now

      • crazy people!!!

        Ok so Quinn: look at yourself and get mental help!

  • idviceroy

    As much as I think I’d miss Rachael and Finn, the viewers don’t need the endless drama of the on-again-off-again relationships that develop with love interests. Several of my favorite shows over the years have lost key players – 90210, Melrose, Desperate Housewives, Battlestar Galactica, Smallville, yet they continued to be entertaining.

    • abadstroller

      Absolutely right, idviceroy. Same thing with ER and others…the core audience will stick with it and other on-again-off-again viewers will tune in and out as they find what engages them. Viewers are resilient and smart enough (hey, no snarky comments or eye rolls!) to make the adjustments.

      • Dash

        I always forget how frequently ER changed up the cast. It worked pretty well. The didn’t do it all at once though. One or two cast members would peace out every other season.

    • Kay

      The only reason I watch the show is because of Finn and Rachel – I will watch a spin off of them alone. They are the best TV couple in years. Considering they f’ed them up this season – I can’t believe I will only get to see them happy on my screen for 1 season… I need more – the viewers want more of finchel!!

    • Lily

      As much as I love Rachel and Kurt… I have to agree with you… There should be a way for Glee to survive , even without the original cast…

      • JackieB

        Yes, and how many songs can Lea sing while squinting her eyes shut!?

      • stop already

        Stop Lea is just find people are so weird about this. She sells more song than the others eyes wide open or not. Get over it that is how she is being directed to be dramatic ala Rachel.

      • CC

        Anything that gets rid of Lea M. works for me.

    • kim

      Rachel and Finn don;t have to be just about a relationship.

  • Jane D’oh

    All I want is time for Darren Criss to return to Michigan so he can make A Very Potter Threequel.

    • Leah

      they’re in chicago now…

  • Jethro

    Keep the kids and dump Sue Sylvester. Her character is wearing and how much more ideas can see come up with to rid the Glee Club. It’s thinning real fast than Fin and Rachel.

    • Wilhelmina

      As Charlie Sheen says, this atrlcie is “WINNING!”

  • BobS

    A spinoff show could deal with some of them working their talents with further schooling while others fight the battle to break into showbiz.

  • apk

    no college years…please. i’m talking to you saved by the bell and 90210

    • Luke

      ^More logic in the above post than in the network board rooms.

  • Kristin

    This is great news. I was worried they would be there well into their 20s.

    • Geegeedub

      I’m hoping you mean the characters and not the actors – a few of whom are pushing 30 as it is now, and rest are in their 20s.

  • Jojo

    If there was such widespread complaints about the writing in S2. What makes them think they can keep going without this cast. Most fans stuck with them because they loved the cast.

    • Kay

      true – maybe with some new writers on their team, they can stick to a storyline and make it authentic. I felt like everything this season was out of character. Quinn and prom queen??? Finn wanting Quinn but pining after Rachel the whole time. Rachel wanting stardom when all she ever wanted was to be loved and chosen… like – what the heck show is this?? I just want Finn and Rachel to be happy and united. Leading the group to victory without crazy drama because it was contrived at best. I truly believe rating suffered because 1)finn and rachel broke up (viewers have been wanting them happy for so long) 2)themed episodes – I just want a damn storyline that is more than one episode 3) pushing agendas – bullying, gay rights, etc. I am all for it if it is worked into a storyline, but when it is not it seems like there is some agenda being pushed…

      Just stick to the awesome storylines about unity, acceptance, and authenticity…and trying to win! that will be enough to keep viewers entertained. I just want some happiness. It is GLEE FOR GOODNESS SAKE!

      • Lily

        I did not mind the gay (bullying) agenda to be shoved into our throats in season 2… if it can save some teenage lives… why not…

      • Steven

        I agree that they need to improve their writing but everyone is complaining about unbelievable and goofy storylines of this past season should remember 2 words from season 1– “fake pregnancy”.

        Their biggest thing they need to do is keep the storyline focused on the competitions. Near the end of the season, it was at times completely forgotten (such as during the episode about feeling good about yourself) and it defied believability that Will would be waiting until they got to New York to start writing original songs. You would think he would have had those done weeks before that time, such as starting immediately after winning regionals. By forsaking it for the theme eps, it slowed the storyline down.

        The biggest thing is to cut back on the theme episodes. The Madonna one was good but they became obsessed with it and started trying to write storylines around the songs (such as the Super Bowl episode) instead of finding songs that fit the episode.

        On the plus side, the season DID give us the heartbreaking episode where Kurt’s dad had a heart attack. That was sensitively handled and had one of the best music scenes of the series (“I Want to Hold Your Hand”) that showed what the show is capable of when it’s working correctly. It’s for moments like that that I keep tuning in.

  • Mike Querol

    Seems to me very Degrassi-esque in bring new characters and graduating older ones . . . my only problem is finding the right combination of singers and dancers to replace the current cast. I like the move, but it will be most difficult to replace “Lea Michele’s” character on the show!

    • Captain

      That’s the problem. He developed Rachel to be the “star” of the show. What he should have been doing was developing Sue and Will (if he did envision them as the “lynchpins” of the show) as the fan favourites so that when the kids left, we didn’t miss them as much. FNL did this. They made us really care about the true stars of the show (the Coach and his wife) so that when the teens graduated, the show could continue smoothly because it was never really about them.

      • Jonathan

        I fully agree with this. At this point, he should just have Will transfer for some reason (believability went out the window a long time ago) and skip ahead so that Rachel can be the new Glee club teacher. Will’s character is incredibly grating, and Rachel is a far better developed character that could stand the test of time.

      • Frank

        Will and Sue are not the lynchpins at all. Rachel Berry is the lynchpin to the whole show.

      • Celia

        Sue used to be great, but she was ruined in season 2. Will Shuester is a horrible character. I don’t like him at all anymore. Rachel Berry and Kurt Hummel are the ‘lynchpins’ of Glee.

  • Mike

    I’m hoping that Kurt, Rachel and the gang might get some side stories in NYC or something. I also hope Brittany S. Pierce never graduates, I can see getting a few more years with her at McKinley.

  • Steven

    I’m happy to hear that they are allowing the characters move on. Watching aging actors play teenagers becomes extremely silly after a while. Also, it allows for some new blood to come in to help freshen up the show. What they should do is keep Kurt around for season 4. At that point, he could be a senior and adopt the Rachel/Diva role using the tone of “I’ve been here from the beginning and I know what’s best for us” and also act as a mentor to some of the new members. That also allows for a bridge between old cast and new cast which makes the transition easier.

    What I wouldn’t want to see is a spinoff. It would be difficult to believe that ALL of the glee club members would be going out for showbiz/music careers. To be honest, the only one who would be seriously going for it would be Rachel. The others would be doing their own non-music items (going to college, getting jobs, raising families, etc). Keep in mind that only a few of them wanted to be in Glee club originally. Most (including Finn) had to be tricked or persuaded to join. Thus, it wouldn’t be believable that they now all have the showbiz bug.

    Also, unlike other shows (90210, Buffy) that followed charactors out of high school, these weren’t portrayed as a super tight group. Yes, they’re friends but, like most High School friendships, they tend to separate after graduation. Be honest, how many of your close friends in high school do you keep in regular contact with (for me, it’s 2)? Thus, it would be hard to believe that Puck would still be hanging out with Artie and Santana would go anywhere near Rachel.

    Instead, allow the actors to move on with their careers and allow the show to grow and change. That will probably be the best thing for the show.

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