When 31-year-old Glee star Cory Monteith passed away on July 13, it was a shocking blow to fans of his guileless on-camera charm. Lea Michele might be the star of Glee, but Monteith was definitely the heart of the show.
Fox aired a tribute episode to the young life tragically taken by addiction in 2013, and for waht would have been his 34th birthday, Fuse is taking a looking back on five performances from Finn Hudson we'll remember the most.
The song that started it all—not only for New Directions but for the Glee Cast's enviable run of hits on the Billboard Charts. Even after listening to their cover more times than I'd like to admit, I gotta say that rewatching this performance in the context of the pilot makes it feel as fresh, energetic and downright touching as the first time I saw it. Clearly, this show was doing something special from the start.
Before they began dating in real life and at TV's McKinley High, Monteith and Lea Michele shared this explosive duet originally performed by Jordin Sparks and Chris Brown. It's no wonder they ended up together on and off screen—even this early in the series (episode 7), you can tell the chemistry between them is unstoppable.
When Finn's mother married the father of his glee club friend/competitor Kurt, Finn performed Bruno Mars' hit "Just the Way You Are." It doubled as a romantic ode to the newlyweds and as his way of expressing his admiration for Kurt's fiercely individualistic approach to life. It's a strong, assured vocal performance and maybe the sweetest moment between these two stepbrothers.
This arresting, understated song from "The Break-Up" finds Finn singing Coldplay's heart-wrenching ballad after a confrontation with Rachel. This multi-person performance is eventually revealed to be taking place only within his head while he sings alone on stage, making it somehow even sadder.
Although this song is a little less sweet when you realize Finn was singing to a child that was NOT his, it was adorable at the time when you (and he) thought he was crooning the Pretenders' ballad to his unborn child. This Glee cover is one of Monteith's finest vocal moments on the show, and following his death, Amber Riley turned in a stunning version of the song in tribute to him.