ryan murphy‘s Happiness it was an inexplicable phenomenon in its early years. a dark comedy musical The series set in a high school glee club didn’t seem to draw nearly 10 million viewers per episode, but the show was a huge hit for Fox from the start.
In the decade since it began, however, Happiness has been a tumultuous public image. The show’s quality dried up quickly, trying to keep up with what was popular on the radio, as well as what fans wanted from the series and its characters. On set, the drama was bubbly and hard to mask.
Then there were a series of deaths, tragic, sudden and horrific, that would make people believe that a “Happiness damn” exists. Cory Monteiththe show’s previously unknown lead who played sweet quarterback Finn, was found dead at age 31, between the fourth and fifth seasons of the show. Mark Salling, who played the less than sweet quarterback Puck, was charged with sexual assault and later possession of child pornography. He would do die of suicide in 2018. Naya Riverawho stole scenes as sarcastic cheerleader Santana, accidentally drowned in California’s Lake Piru while traveling with her son.
The interest in unraveling the mystery of what the heck was going on with the cast of this show has made the series more popular now than it was when it went off the air in 2015.
Get into the price of joya tripartite documentary film of ID and discovery+ premiereJan. 16. Unfortunately for Gleeks who yearn to know the truth about all the romances and fights that happened on set during the show’s heyday, this isn’t quite the tea party old fans have long expected. Instead, it’s a true crime poison shot that focuses on the sudden deaths of Monteith, Rivera, and Salling. Trying to understand the unexplained, the docuseries searches and fails to find answers, instead passively blaming the show and its cast for those losses.
the price of joy has a conspiratorial approach to storytelling, largely due to the fact that the actual cast refused to participate and even denounced the docuseries upon their announcement. The series relies on the actors’ understudies, backup dancers, various crew members, publicists, and even a supporting actor in big time Rush to put the story together, with many half-baked theories about what went wrong.
Instead of being a truly juicy reveal with behind-the-scenes gossip, the documentary exploits both the news and the behind-the-scenes deaths of the cast and crew. Although much of the information shared by the talking heads is speculative, this is some of what we learned from those involved in this series.
The cast’s work schedules were exhausting.
Typically, actors on hit TV shows get a few months off between filming seasons, no matter how big the show is. Happiness it was not structured like a normal show: the cast’s covers of popular songs became hits, while the show spurred an insatiable fanbase online. As soon as the first season ended, the cast was sent to the joy live! Tour, which they also embarked on in 21 cities worldwide the following year. During the first year and a half of making the series, the cast worked on the brand on and off the set. Her workdays included hours of dance and vocal rehearsal, as well as time in the booth to record the songs for her numbers and, of course, film the actual scenes.
Every talking head in the price of joy he takes the time to point out how particularly grueling and isolating their schedules were. To add more stakes, the cast of attractive young actors was becoming tabloid, paparazzi and stan bait. Filming in public became an ordeal due to the hordes of fans and cameras showing up. Monteith even had to move out of her Culver City apartment because of a stalker. Eventually, a walled tunnel was built on the studio lot to connect the actors’ trailers directly to the set to keep them safe (and yes, some of the talking heads use this walled tunnel as a cheap metaphor for the loneliness of the actors).
A cast member allegedly encouraged Cory Monteith’s relapse.
Monteith was open about his history of substance abuse as a child. He was caught up with some “bad crowd” and spent his teenage years plunging deeper into drug and alcohol abuse before his mother and his friends intervened. He had been sober for several years before being cast. Happiness, your great opportunity. Although friends of his, like his roommate Justin Neill, note how much he hated fame, Monteith seemed to be keeping him sober until the show’s fourth season. He started showing up unprepared for pitches and then disappeared for most of the season, having checked into rehab. On July 13, 2013, he was found dead in a Vancouver hotel room, surrounded by empty champagne bottles and with heroin in his system.
Speculation around Monteith death in the price of joy he is mishandled, clinging to empty notions about how and who may have caused him to spiral down instead of dealing with the reality that addiction is an ongoing disease that a person deals with throughout their lives. One of the most shocking claims comes from Dugg Kirkpatrick, a hairdresser who ran the hairdressing department at Happiness. She continued to cut some of the cast members’ hair after she left the show and cut Monteith’s shortly before her death. According to Kirkpatrick, Monteith got drunk on the haircut and told the story of how she ended up drinking again. Kirkpatrick alleges that another cast member had been at a party with Monteith and told her that it was okay for her to drink if she wanted to. Because he did not witness the actual interaction, Kirkpatrick declines to name who Monteith claimed had given him permission, saying only that it was someone she loved.
Unfortunately, Kirkpatrick isn’t the only person in the document pointing fingers. Several people in the doc spend a lot of time pointing out just how strange and disparate Monteith and his co-star are. read Michele, whom he was dating at the time of his death, were. In turn, they barely try to connect the actual allegations of her on-set misbehavior towards her co-stars and extras with Monteith’s sudden relapse.
There were several other deaths inside the Happiness family.
The tragic and sudden deaths of Monteith and Rivera, as well as Salling’s suicide on child pornography charges, have been well covered by the media. Many have considered the program to be “cursed.” Former crew members and stand-ins on the show also point out that there were many other sudden deaths of people who worked on the show behind the scenes, with many blaming the rigorous production schedule and studio pressure for some of those losses. Among the deaths that occurred while the show was still airing: a car fire that killed Mark Watson, who was Matthew Morrison’s understudy, and assistant director Jim Fuller’s alleged heart failure at age 41. Production assistant Nancy Motes died by suicide. like an anonymous rigger.
By mentioning these losses, the price of joy launches a final episode focused on the deaths of Salling and Rivera, two wildly different circumstances that don’t have to be linked.
Naya Rivera’s family continues to search for answers after her death.
The third and final episode of the price of joy focuses on Rivera’s accidental drowning in 2020 during a boating trip with her son. The episode also addresses Salling’s child pornography charges, as well as Melissa Benoist’s revelation that she was a victim of domestic violence, later linked to her co-star and ex-husband Blake Jenner (the couple joined Happiness in season four, becoming series regulars in season five).
Rivera’s father, George, details his daughter’s career as a child actress, the volatile relationship with Salling, and, later, his untimely death. The docuseries features a journalist on a pontoon like the one Rivera was last seen on with an expert offering practical reasons why a “strong swimmer” like Rivera might not have been able to get back on the boat. George hints that he’s still searching for answers, though no one suggests foul play is the cause. Some theories the researchers suggested were her history of vertigo worsening underwater, as well as her weakened physical state after saving her son in the currents.