Mar 31, 2020
Netflix is Reviving Gilmore Girls. So, Now You Have To Pretend You Actually Watched It…
Keeping up with pop culture today is hard! Back in the day, all you had to do to “be in the know,” at least when it came to television, was familiarize yourself with the handful of TV programs on the primetime lineup of the big four networks. (Bonus points if you knew about the stuff on The CW too!)
But now, you also have to have a working knowledge of series on HBO, Showtime, Starz, AMC, FX, E!, Lifetime, Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu . . . and not just during the regular television season either. Networks are releasing original content all year round! So, you have to know about mid-season replacements, miniseries, summer shows, and shows whose entire season get released to the public on a random day in the middle of the year.
And don’t even think that you can forget about a show just because it’s been off the air for nearly a decade and some of its cast members have already passed on. No, no, no! After all, the 20-teens are the decade of REVIVALS. This means that any show that you used to watch (and many that you didn’t) could return from the grave like zombies, hungry for your television viewing time, and, of course, your BRAAAAAIIIIIIINNNNS!
For this reason, recent news that Gilmore Girls (which ended its initial seven-season run back in 2007) was making a limited comeback in the upcoming year with four 90-minute long “movie-lets” on Netflix has caused some members of the television-viewing public to giggle like a twelve year old and break out into a happy dance . . .
. . . and others to cower in fear that this will be the show that forces them to be unceremoniously removed from the “Cool Table” . . .
. . . just because they mistakenly thought that “Rory and Lorelai” were the names of exotic diseases one could contract by drinking water while visiting developing countries and that “Stars Hollow” was Sleepy Hollow’s fat, but friendly, younger cousin.
Fear not, Gilmore Virgins! HNTP is here to make sure you know just enough about the series to be able to fake it when they pop up in your daily conversations with friends and relatives.
This is the small fictional town in Connecticut where most of the series takes place. Even in later seasons, during which Rory attends school and dorms about a half hour away at Yale, she and her mom still spend a good portion of their time in this town where Rory grew up.
Stars Hollow and its residents are all super quirky. And though the series took place in the present day, back in the early 2000s, some of the quainter aspects of the town gave the series a more “old timey” feel. Small local businesses named after their owners like Luke’s Diner, Miss Patty’s Dance School, Doose’s Market, Kim’s Antiques, Gypsy’s Garage, and Sophie’s Music are beloved hangouts for many of the town’s residents.
In fact, entire episodes of the series revolved around town hall meetings and the town’s many local festivals, inspired by weird stories regarding its own history.
Stars Hollow even has its very own Troubadour, who randomly pops in and out of frame to serenade the main cast members with emo songs during key moments in the narrative! I bet YOUR town doesn’t have its own troubadour!
This was the name given to Alexis Bleidel’s character on the show. The series spanned her lifetime from her sophomore year in high school through her Yale graduation. When the series returns, assuming it takes place in real time, the character will be around thirty years old.
Like everything else about this show, Rory was smart, quirky and adorable. She was also an anomaly of her time because she ate dinner with her stuffy, obnoxiously rich grandparents every Friday night throughout what would have been her prime partying years . . . also because she liked books . . . actual ones, with pages that weren’t imprisoned behind a glass screen made dirty by sweaty fingertips.
Rory’s two best friends throughout the season were, in and of themselves, an indication of Rory’s diverse interests and quirky nature. They were: (1) the Type-A, quite possibly insane, Paris Geller, who was Rory’s academic rival at Chilton Prep School during her high school years but eventually ended up rooming with her at Yale . . .
. . . and (2) the kooky waitress turned small-town rock star/teen mom of twins, Lane Kim . . .
Rory had three main love interests during her time on the show, Dean, Jess and Logan. Of course, one of those love interests, Jess, was clearly way better than the other two. *ducks the arrows thrown at me from either direction by Dean and Logan fans*
Dean, a.k.a. the guy from Supernatural, was Rory’s first love. He was pretty and had nice hair, but was never really a match for Rory’s intellectual nature and charm. Dean eventually went on to marry a girl who wasn’t Rory, who he promptly cheated on, by sleeping with Rory, taking the latter’s virginity in the process. Way to keep it classy, Dean!
Logan, a.k.a. the guy from The Good Wife, was Rory’s college boyfriend. Like Rory’s grandparents, Logan’s family was filthy rich, and his father was the head of some big newspaper empire. Rory, then an aspiring journalist, quickly fell under the spell of Logan and his wealthy world.
This, unfortunately, resulted in her having a crisis of confidence when Logan’s asshat father told Rory that she didn’t have what it took to be a good journalist, causing her to drop out of Yale for an entire semester and pretend she was Logan’s bored housewife . . . a fate which undoubtedly would have befell Rory for real, if she stayed with Logan.
Fortunately, Rory kicked Logan to the curb in the final season, returning to and graduating from Yale, then heading off to cover the Obama campaign as a journalist in the series finale.
Jess was Rory’s boyfriend during her late teens, an,d while not without his flaws (anger issues, at times caustic sarcasm, a rebellious streak that often got him into trouble), he matched Rory in her thirst for knowledge, love of books, and desire to one-day lead an adventurous life, outside the confines of Stars Hollow. Jess was also the nephew of Rory’s mom’s main love interest, Luke, which made things a wee bit incestuous on the show for a while.
After Rory and Jess broke up, Jess left Stars Hollow for Philadelphia, and became a successful published novelist. When Jess returned to Stars Hollow later, it was he who convinced Rory to get her head out of her ass and go back to Yale, when asshat Logan and his dad unwittingly convinced her to drop out.
One of the best things about Gilmore Girls was the fun, fun-ny, super genuine, and totally admirable relationship Rory had with her youngish mom, Lorelai. In a world populated by shows where teenagers hate their parents, seeing a relationship like this on television was amazingly refreshing.
Rory’s mom, Lorelai (played by the effervescently charming and frustratingly ageless, Lauren Graham), is the quintessential cool mom. She always seemed like the kind of mom who would let her kid stay out late and throw house parties, if Rory was the kind of girl who liked doing either of those things.
Though raised in an uptight, upper crust family, Lorelai found herself knocked up with Rory by her perpetual man-child boyfriend Christopher at the age of 16. This caused Lorelai to drift from her parents’ old-monied lifestyle into a much more independent hand-to-mouth single mother living in Stars Hollow. (Though she still agreed to the whole “Friday Night Dinner” thing.)
Though not Yale educated like the rest of her family members, Lorelai was smart in her own way, and super resourceful, managing to keep her daughter’s much-beloved fast food on the table, by getting her associates degree at the local community college, working as a maid at the local hotel, and eventually coming to own and manage her very own bed and breakfast, with her quirky pals Sookie (played by Melissa McCarthy, who, by now is probably way to famous to make an appearance on the revival series) . . .
. . . and that grumpy guy with the funny French accent, whose name escapes me.
Lorelai had some dull boyfriends throughout the series run (including Rory’s dad) . . .
. . . but from pretty much the pilot onward, it was clear that though, Lorelai and curmudgeony diner owner, Luke, were complete opposites in temperament . . .
. . . they were positively made for one another.
Emily and Richard Gilmore
Lorelai’s parents and Rory’s grandparents were stinking rich, and Yale educated. Though at the start of the series, Lorelai is a bit estranged from them, due to the whole “running away from upper crust society to have a baby, and become a maid” thing, they eventually worm their way back into her life, by offering to help pay for Rory’s prestigious private high school, and, eventually, college, education, on the condition that Lorelai and Rory attend dinner at their home every Friday night for the entire run of the series.
At first, as a fan, you really want to hate Emily and Richard, due to the whole filthy stinking rich thing . . .
. . . but eventually you come to grudgingly love them, partially because they are unintentionally hilarious in their snobby woefully out-of-touch ways, and partially, because they clearly love their offspring, and show it in some heartwarming and unexpected ways.
Edward Herrmann, the actor who played Richard Gilmore, died this past year. I suspect the revival series, will find some way to pay tribute to his legacy during the course of its four episode run.
And there you have it, all the facts you need to pretend you watched all seven seasons of the Gilmore Girls series, just in time for its Netflix revival. Don’t say the folks at HNTP never gave you anything!
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