The doors closed on McKinley High School five years ago. That’s when the Fox show “Glee” aired its final episode, wrapping up long-running storylines and providing a glimpse into the future of characters fans came to know and love.
Part of the finale found McKinley transformed into a performing arts school with Will Schuester (Matthew Morrison) as principal. It was a fitting end to the musical comedy, which followed members of the New Directions glee club as they faced off against competing choir groups and navigated the highs and lows of high school and beyond.
Morrison, for one, has fond memories of the series, but at the same time, it’s all a bit of a blur. Looking back now, he says, it’s hard to differentiate among the episodes, particularly because of the way the show ― heavy on choreography and music ― was filmed.
“It felt like one long show to me … For us, we shot these episodes not one episode at the time,” he told HuffPost at Build Series during a March visit to discuss his new album, “Disney Dreamin’.” “The show was so hard to film. We did 16 hours a day — in the recording studio, dance rehearsals and the filming of it as well.”
“Glee” was not only a ratings hit, but it was also nominated for 19 Emmys and four Golden Globe awards. Now available on streaming, “Glee,” which ran from 2009 to 2015, is being introduced to a new audience for the first time. When asked whether he thinks the series would still have the same relevancy if it debuted for the first time today, Morrison wasn’t so sure.
“It hit at a certain moment, and I guess to answer your question I would say no because I feel like it was so timely when it came. I feel like we were all ready for it,” he said. “I feel like the underdog story was so prevalent and whoever was in the White House was so prevalent. Yeah, it was a certain moment.”
Throughout its run, “Glee” tackled topics ranging from sexuality and dating to familial relationships and inclusion.
“That was the best part of the show for me because you see the effects,” Morrison said. “I call it the ‘Glee’ effect that it has on high school bullying, on being gay in high school, and all that stuff. And for me, just to see the global impact the show had. I think it is because music is the language we all speak. So, that show did so well internationally and I think it opened people’s eyes. The perfect thing I can think of is a family sitting down and watching that show and having a conversation afterward, just talking about what they just saw. It was a stunning show to be a part of and what a legacy to leave behind.”
With that, could Morrison ever imagine getting the cast back together for a reboot?
“I can’t. Just because honestly there’s so much tragedy that happened with the show, as well with a couple of cast members passing away and I don’t know if this would be the right time,” he said, referring to the deaths of actors Cory Monteith (who played Finn) and Mark Salling (who played Puck).“If anything I feel like there would be a really cool benefit concert where we all got together to raise money for a really great cause.”
Check out the full Build Series interview below, where Morrison discusses his new Disney covers album, guest-starring on “American Horror Story” and more.