Friday Favorites: Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life

It’s been a while since I did a Friday Favorites—but I need to talk about one of my all-time favorites, “Gilmore Girls.” The revival just came out today and I HAVE A LOT OF FEELINGS.

Spoilers ahead!

Things I Loved

  • Lorelai and Luke finally (!) get (!) married (!). Teenage me is squealing. Almost-thirty me is also squealing.
  • That “it’s-always-been-you” moment between Luke and Lorelai. Because to Luke, Lorelai is the only person who’s ever mattered.
  • Lorelai’s favorite Richard moment. It was a good story. I’m glad she shared it with her mother.
  • Rory’s struggling career. When the original show aired, I related to Rory so much—a not-so-popular bookworm who yearned to be a journalist. I loved seeing someone I connected with on television. I loved seeing her chase after her dreams. In the revival, though, I liked seeing her struggle a little. She accomplished a lot, yet still felt she hadn’t accomplished enough. I liked seeing that. It’s hard out there. I liked that it was hard for her, too. I liked that she was flailing, insecure, and unsure of herself. I like that her life wasn’t what she had imagined. I liked that she felt she deserved better—because I get it.
  • The wedding. I wish we’d gotten to see the full thing (more on that below), but what we got was beautiful and perfect and made me real emotional. It was so incredible finally seeing two characters I’ve rooted for for years finally get their happily-ever-after.
  • Emily. Her grief was so palpable. Watching her go through the stages of grief felt natural. I keep thinking back to that scene where Richard’s in the hospital and Emily demands that he let her die first. It makes sense that, after 50 years of marriage, she would be devastated by his loss and that devastation would manifest itself in a multitude of ways—trying to purge, trying to start over, lashing out at people she cares about, starting fresh. She has to learn to live again, on her own. I enjoyed her arc (and that larger-than-life painting of Richard).
  • Richard. The entire storyline revolving around the loss of Richard was emotional and handled so well. I loved when Rory kissed Richard’s portrait with her hand and said hello. I loved the references to him and his drink carts. I thought the show honored Richard well.
  • The flashbacks. I thought they might be a little heavy-handed, but I loved the way they wove some of the older scenes into the show. I was touched when Rory returned to her grandparents’ empty home and could see them sitting at the table, and a scene later, watching him typing at his desk in the study. Talk about a punch in the gut.
  • Paris. I’ve always loved Paris (as infuriating as she could be at times) and I loved seeing her on my screen again. I only wish there had been more.
  • Emily yelling “BULLSHIT.” In the middle of a DAR meeting. And then quitting the DAR. And moving to Nantucket. And becoming a museum docent. And learning to be on her own.
  • The confirmation that Christopher is a terrible father. I already knew that, but I’m glad everyone else knows it, too.
  • Lane has a dad!
  • Hep Alien. Still doing their thing forever, please.
  • Lane and Zach performing at a secret bar. And THE SECRET BAR.
  • Townie stuff. I always love townie hijinx, so I enjoyed the town meetings, the town square festivals, and the Kirk endeavors (especially the movie and the Ooober).
  • A return to comfort. I’ve described this show to others as being like wearing a warm blanket. The revival was no different. And, after a not-so-great few weeks, I was grateful for the return to Stars Hollow.

Things I Didn’t Love

  • Not seeing the full wedding. Logistically, I get why they couldn’t film it. But after all these years, I think we deserved both weddings: the elopement and the full, big wedding, with all of the incredible townies we’ve grown to love. I at least wanted Sookie there for the elopement. And Jess. I also wanted to see Lorelai’s wedding dress and I wanted the satisfaction of seeing Emily see Lorelai get married.
  • Not enough Sookie. There’s never enough Sookie, and I couldn’t be more disappointed that Sookie was only in one scene. It was a nice scene, sure, but I found Sookie’s disappearance and new job a bit unbelievable. SOOKIE ST. JAMES, one of the greatest chefs of all time, LEAVES COOKING BEHIND? And her best friend? And her business? And her goddamn husband and her family (maybe, since they don’t really explain how that all works)? It doesn’t feel right.
  • Not enough Paris. Mostly because there’s never enough Paris. But I really wanted more to her story. I didn’t love her freakout over Tristan (who was RECAST and also who never graduated from Chilton so never should have been invited to an alumni event). I wish the freakout had merely been about the being-back-in-high-school-and-having-old-feelings-resurface because that I can understand. But Tristan wasn’t even that big of a deal outside of season one and early season two. I also wanted more from her storyline with Doyle. Like, is Doyle just going to be a douche pandering to Michael Bay forever?
  • Not enough on Lorelai and Emily’s relationship. Although we got a decent amount of screen time on it—through therapy and the fights at the house—I didn’t feel satiated. I liked the authenticity in the sense that tense mother/daughter relationships are not ever really “fixed.” However, one thing I loved about the season seven finale was the moment when Richard, Emily, and Lorelai are saying farewell at Rory’s graduation party. Lorelai says she wants to continue with the Friday night dinners, even sans Rory. It warmed my little heart. But, in the new series, all of that’s disappeared. I know it’s because season seven wasn’t part of ASP’s vision, but I liked the progress of Lorelai’s relationship with her parents. So, I’m a little disappointed that the series had to end with Lorelai asking for money—again. And that it leads to a visitation arrangement—again. I get that it was supposed to mirror the first episode, but given all that’s happened over the years, I didn’t love it.
  • Not enough of Lane and Mrs. Kim. I really wanted to know more about what she was up to. How did her kids grow up? Were she and Zach doing well? (It seemed like yes, but a bit more would have been nice.) I liked to imagine her eventually running the music shop. I don’t know. I wanted something. I also wanted to see Mrs. Kim with her grandkids. There weren’t nearly enough Lane and Mrs. Kim moments. Justice for Lane, guys.
  • Not enough Jess. I’m not even a huge Rory/Jess shipper, but JESUS CHRIST. He’s doing so well and he’s all cleaned up and he looks so good and he’s clearly still into Rory.
  • Logan’s existence. FUCK YOU, LOGAN.
  • The cheating. What the fuck, Rory? I mean, yeah, OK, Rory cheats; it’s kind of her thing. But she didn’t even feel a little bad. Love yourself, Rory!
  • The Life and Death Brigade. I am full of so much hate for how much of the episode this shit took up.
  • That MUSICAL. It was 7,000 minutes too long.
  • ASP’s personal feelings inserted wherever possible. We get it, ASP. You hate technology and social media and millennials and fat people. But you love hats. Horrible, ugly hats.
  • Not enough, period. Goddamnit, guys, four episodes was not enough.

Questions I Had

  • Where was the beloved introduction? I wanted to sing along to that Carole King theme song I’ve heard a zillion times.
  • Is Rory kind of a bad person?
  • Is Paris also pregnant? (She says she missed a period!)
  • Did we really need that Jack Smith storyline?
  • Did Sookie move out of Stars Hollow?
  • Why did Emily say to Lorelai that she’d see her the following Tuesday for therapy in the winter episode, but then we don’t see them in therapy until the spring episode when flowers have already bloomed?
  • Who wrote the letter?
  • How is it possible that ASP intended for Rory to end up pregnant at the conclusion of the original series? Pregnant at 21? What? Why? And, how dare you?
  • Those were the final four words? (I preferred my husband’s prediction, which was, “Let’s get some coffee.”)
  • Will we get a season two? Please say yes. Because I’ve never had enough “Gilmore Girls” in my life.

I just really love this show and I’m happy it came back.

xo.

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