Starting this month, along with my two online besties Molli and Jessica, I'm doing a Gilmore Girls rewatch-along. Every Monday I'll be talking about the episodes I watched each week, sharing my thoughts plus favourite quotes, scenes, etc. If you want to join in, you can tweet with us using the hashtag #GilmoreGirls, and if you want to join in the discussions, feel free to grab my graphic and create posts of your own, or just comment with your thoughts.
This post is really long, and I apologize in advance. I broke down each episode into a basic recap and my thoughts, but I’m not sure if I’ll stick with this format for later weeks since it’s time consuming for me to write and for you to read. From now on I might just do a general overview of my thoughts on the week’s episodes…we’ll see!
Episode 1: “Pilot”
The basics: We meet most of the characters who we’ll come to think of as the main characters: Lorelai, Rory, Luke, Sookie, Lane, Michel, Dean, Emily, Richard, Miss Patty. Rory just got accepted into Chilton, a fancy private school, and will be leaving Stars Hollow High, along with her best friend Lane. With Rory being super smart and not challenged enough at a regular high school, getting into Chilton is a big deal…but it’s expensive. Really expensive. Lorelai can’t afford it and can’t get financial help, so she does the last thing she wants to do, but the thing she pretty much has to do: she asks her parents for help. She only sees Emily and Richard on holidays, but Emily insists that if she’s going to be involved financially in their lives, she wants to be actively involved. Thus begins the tradition of Friday night dinners at the Gilmore house.
- Rory is so freaking cute. She’s awkward and rambly, and reminds me so much of myself at that age (and still).
- I love the almost painfully awkward interactions between Rory and Dean. That shy little look she gets is so adorable, and he’s so cute and looks so young! Slightly off topic, but it’s so weird because for years I thought of him as Dean from Gilmore Girls and then when I started watching Supernatural, he was Sam and his brother was Dean and it took me forever to get used to it. Now I’m going to start calling him Dean again and my poor brain will be fried.
- Luke. Ahh, Luke. I forgot how surly and disapproving he was at first! He’s like this grouchy old man in a hot guy’s body. Even at sixteen I had a major crush on Luke.
Episode 2: “The Lorelais’ First Day at Chilton”
The basics: Lorelai wakes up late on Rory’s first day of Chilton and ends up taking her to school dressed like a cross between Daisy Duke and a rodeo hand. Emily is, of course, there to see this moment of shame and assert her authority because she’s paying for Rory’s school and there's no way she'll let Lorelai forget it. The headmaster basically tells Rory that she may be smart where she came from but that Chilton is very different, has incredibly high standards, and is super competitive, and she very well may fail. We’re introduced to Paris, the mean girl, and her minions Madeline and Louise, as well as Tristan, who starts calling Rory ‘Mary’ (as in the Virgin Mary because she looks like a goody goody). Back in Stars Hollow, we meet more characters who will become regulars: Jackson, Babbette, Morey, and oddly enough ‘Mick’ who is really Kirk, which I will talk about more in a minute.
- Paris is the mean girl but not your typical mean girl. She doesn’t make Rory’s life hell because she wears the wrong clothes or has an outdated hairstyle - she’s mean because she’s smart and driven and is threatened by someone new who could potentially be competition. It’s different from what we normally see on TV and I like it…even though I despised Paris in those early days.
- I love Stars Hollow. I always fantasized about living in Stars Hollow - somewhere small where everyone knows each other and cares about each other. I love the faerie lights and Luke’s diner and Lorelai and Rory’s house and just everything. *wistful sigh*
The basics: Rory has to pick a sport for school and Emily suggests she choose golf because Richard can teach her. Both Lorelai and Richard don’t seem too keen about the idea - for different reasons - but Richard takes Rory to the club and they have some good grandfather-granddaughter bonding moments.
- I liked watching Rory and Richard bonding. She gets to see his world and he gets to see how smart she is and that he can talk to her like an adult. Because he hasn’t spent much time with her over the years, I imagine he sees her as a child, and because she’s Lorelai’s child, he would likely assume they’d have nothing in common. I like that they started to forge a relationship separate from Lorelai and Emily - something that’s just theirs. I also found it interesting that Lorelai assumed Rory would be miserable because she would have been miserable. She has trouble picturing Rory enjoying the life that she hated so much and fought so hard against at that age.
Episode 4: “The Deer-Hunters”
The basics: Rory spends forever cramming for a huge test, is late for school the morning of the test because she and Lorelai slept in, she gets hit by a deer on the drive to school. When she finally arrives at school - late - she has a meltdown in class when the teacher tells her she can’t take the test.
- Max! Even though I’m a Luke girl all the way, I still liked Max. It’s obvious Lorelai intrigues him because she’s not like all the other stuffy Chilton moms, and he clearly likes Rory and wants to see her succeed. Both these things made me like him instantly. Plus he’s got great hair. And I love his voice. If I'd had a teacher like that at Rory's age, I would have been a goner.
- I like how Rory eventually realizes that it’s ok not to be perfect. She can work hard and get good grades but she doesn’t have to be the best at everything or know everything or do ALL THE THINGS and drive herself crazy. Chilton is hard, but she’s determined to do it so she can live her dream of going to a good school, and I admire that about her.
Episode 5: “Cinnamon’s Wake”
The basics: Another encounter between Rory and Dean; Babbette and Morey’s cat Cinnamon dies and they have a wake for her, where the whole town shows up; Max thinks he and Lorelai should date.
- That interaction between Rory and Dean made me laugh so hard. She’s so uncomfortable around him, it’s just the cutest thing. She wanted to see him so badly but then when she did, she didn’t know how to act and it’s so awkward and painful. I can so relate to this.
- Lorelai is afraid to date Max because he’s Rory’s teacher and she’s afraid that would be too weird for Rory. I love how protective she is of Rory; for being so eccentric and cool and modern, she’s a fantastic mother. I liked the interaction between Babbette and Lorelai when Babbette told her someday she’d have to live a life without Rory and she deserved to have a life of her own. Lorelai is afraid no man would ever like her because she’s neurotic - again, something else I can relate to.
Episode 6: “Rory’s Birthday Parties”
The basics: It’s Rory’s seventeenth birthday! Lorelai Leigh Gilmore was born on October 8th at 4:03am. Rory’s birthday falls on a Friday and even though Lorelai tries to get them out of Friday night dinner, it doesn’t work. Emily throws a big party and invites everyone she knows, along with all of Rory’s schoolmates, which is humiliating for Rory, who ends up yelling at Emily in front of the guests. The next night Lorelai has Rory’s traditional birthday bash at home and the whole town comes…and so do Emily and Richard.
- I loved the scene where Lorelai gets in bed with Rory at the time she was born and asks her what she thinks of her life so far. That part always makes me teary eyed. It’s funny but sweet and touching.
- We finally get to see a softer side of Luke when he makes a cake and has balloons at the diner for Rory’s birthday - AWW!
- I thought it was interesting that we got to see the room Lorelai grew up in and that it’s basically the same as it was when she left - really fancy with beautiful dolls and a huge dollhouse (I WANT THAT DOLLHOUSE), gorgeous bed, posters on the wall. It’s like a time capsule but the only personal touches were the posters - you can tell the rest would have been Emily’s doing because it’s not Lorelai’s style. What must it have been like to grow up in a room that was yours but not yours? It says a lot about Lorelai and the types of things she has in her own house, I think.
- Speaking of Emily, god what an unyielding bitch! It seemed like she loosened up a tiny bit by listening to Lorelai and getting Rory a present she would actually like instead of what Emily thinks she’d like, but then she invites all of Rory’s schoolmates to her party assuming she was friends with them, plus a bunch of her and Richard’s friends and business acquaintances. Hello, it’s a birthday party for a seventeen year old! Then when she realizes she can’t control Rory (just like she couldn’t control Lorelai), she gives her the cold shoulder. She makes me so angry!
- I did, however, think she made the right decision to go to Rory’s birthday party when Rory invited her, and I felt the tiniest bit bad for her when we learn she and Richard have never been to the house and they meet all these eccentric townspeople who have known and loved Rory her entire life. Rory’s basically still a stranger to her and these people who are strangers to Emily know her granddaughter better than she probably ever will. It’s her own fault, but it is kind of bittersweet.
Episode 7: “Kiss and Tell”
The basics: Dean kisses Rory in the middle of the grocery store and word spreads fast…problem is, Rory hasn’t told Lorelai about what’s going on between her and Dean. Then when Rory and Lorelai see Dean in the market, Lorelai invites him to their movie night.
- We finally meet Taylor Doose, owner of Doose’s Market, who will be a big part of the show (and who, by the way, I find ridiculous and hilarious)
- HA! Dean kissed Rory right there in the middle of the grocery store and she said ‘thank you’. If she were any cuter, I think I’d die.
- More Luke! Oh Luke. *sigh*
- When Rory says that when it comes to boys and dating, she’s a total spaz, I yelled “YES, ME TOO”…at 16 and even now, sadly lol
- Was it just me or did Dean’s attitude toward Lorelai drive anyone else nuts? He’s new in a small town where everyone knows everyone else, wanting to date this girl, who happens to have a young, hot mom - you’d think he’d try to impress her, but he’s all flippant and semi-rude. I don’t know if I noticed that before but it rubbed me the wrong way this time around.
- Holy awkward, Batman! Having your mom invite the boy you like to your house to watch movies and eat junk? I'm torn between whether it's unbelievably humiliating or an awesome thing to do. I was so incredibly uncomfortable around boys at that age, I think if I'd had a young, cool mom I wouldn't have minded if she'd invited a guy over...at least it would save me from doing it! Actually...when I was that age, I liked a boy and my brother and his then-girlfriend were the ones who invited him to come out with us for coffee one night because they knew I wouldn't do it...and if it hadn't been for that, I likely wouldn't have ever dated him, and considering he was my first love...well...
Episode 8: “Love & War & Snow”
The basics: A town meeting, the first snow, Rory’s stuck in Hartford overnight with her grandparents, Max ends up in town and he and Lorelai finally get to go on a date.
- First town hall meeting! I love the town hall meetings. I think it’s hilarious that Rory and Lorelai go with snacks, like it’s a show, and don’t really contribute anything, they just watch and laugh while other people get pissed off and yell at each other.
- I like that we’re getting to see all these very real sides of Rory. She seems like this perfect kid, but the thing is, she’s not - and she is a kid. She makes mistakes, she gets wrapped up in her own life, and she wasn’t there when Lane needed her, because she’s so obsessed with Dean. I think we’ve all been through something like that - either as the friend that should have been there, or as the friend who gets ditched for a guy. When Lane said to Rory “You seem to have this really great life going and I don't fit in there” - I’ve SO been there. One of my best friends from high school ditched me for a guy in college and her life seemed so perfect and shiny, and I was jealous and hurt because I didn’t fit into her life anymore.
- Oh god when Lane runs her hand through the guy's hair I just about died. Even though I've seen that episode half a dozen times, I still yell at the TV “DON'T DO IT!” It's so embarrassing and hilarious and believable to have that moment of insanity where your hormones are acting on your behalf.
- When Rory spent the night with her grandparents, it was nice to see a bit of a fun side to them and know they’re not always so uptight, especially Emily.
Inconsistencies so far:
- The guy we eventually know as Kirk shows up in “The Lorelais’ First Day at Chilton” and “Kill Me Now”. At first he’s “Mick” the DSL guy, then he shows up working in the grocery store and Miss Patty refers to him as ‘this guy’. Then when he’s finally Kirk, they act like they hardly know him but later on we find out he’s lived there his whole life.
- Emily and Richard were talking about Lorelai I (Richard’s mother) in the past tense, as if she were dead, but she’s not.
I love that Lorelai is a self-made woman. I don’t know if I ever really appreciated that before. She came from a privileged background but left that life, and didn’t fall back on it like so many rich kids do. She made a name for herself, rose through the ranks of the inn to become the executive manager and she did it all based on her hard work, not who her parents were or how much money they had. I have a newfound respect for her this time around. Also something different this time around: I’m finding myself relating to Lorelai as much as I do to Rory. When I originally watched the show I was the same age as Rory and now I’m closer to Lorelai’s age (*groan*). My life is very different from hers, but I get her in a way that I didn’t as a teenager. The disappointments of life, and it not turning out like you thought it would, but going with it anyway because what choice do you have? I think that's what's so great about the show - no matter how old you are, there's something and someone to relate to.
Also, I have a girl crush on Lorelai.
“She can finally go to Harvard like she’s always wanted and get the education I never got, and do all the things I never got to do, and I can resent her for it and we can finally have a normal mother-daughter relationship.” ~ Lorelai
“People are particularly stupid today. I can't talk to any more of them.” ~ Michel
“Does he have a motorcycle? ’Cause if you’re gonna throw your life away he better have a motorcycle.” ~ Lorelai
Luke to Rory: “You do not want to grow up to be like your mom.” Rory: “Sorry, too late.”
“That’s the last time I buy anything just because it’s furry.” ~ Lorelai
“Gnome kicking says a lot about a man’s character.” ~ Babbette
“You could use your mother’s old golf clubs. They’re upstairs collecting dust along with the rest of her potential.” ~ Emily
“Is there a You’re Crazy team? ’Cause I think they’d make you captain.” ~ Lorelai
“To me you are the teacher in the Charlie Brown cartoon.” ~ Michel
“We can’t all just call everyone ‘sweetie’ and get away with it.” ~ Michel
“Rory is my life. She's my pal. My everything.” ~ Lorelai
Luke to Lorelai and Sookie: “How do you guys get any work done?”
Dean: “Do you have a second?” Rory: “No. I have gum.”
“The world changes when it snows. It gets quiet. Everything softens.” ~ Lorelai
Lorelai to Max: “I think it’s very important that you know my faults as well as my many attributes.”
What do you think of these eight episodes? Do you like Dean? Do you prefer Luke or Max? What do you think of Emily? Paris? Could you handle a school like Chilton? Do you fantasize about living in a town like Stars Hollow or would you go nuts in a place that small? Did you ever have a friend like Lane? Who's your favourite character so far? I want to hear your thoughts, whatever they are!