I have watched every episode of Gilmore Girls many times — I’m definitely in the double-digit count of viewings. Granted, I’m not always paying attention; Gilmore Girls is one of those feel-good shows that I like to have going in the background when I’m home alone or working on something. But, full attention or not, I’ve watched it a lot. (Not A Year in the Life, though. I’ve only watched that twice: once in a state of complete disappointment and once to try again. I haven’t collected my revival thoughts yet.)
My sister mentioned that I must really love the show and that got me thinking: Do I love Gilmore Girls that much? I don’t think so, but I do think I like it because the show is loaded with things to think about. Mother-daughter relationships, privilege, pop culture, and more!
The fun thing about having seen a show a bajillion times is that, after the first few viewings, you can watch critically. You’re not learning about the characters anymore or trying to keep up with the story; you can think about every little thing that made it into the show. It might seem a little silly to think so hard about a show like Gilmore Girls, but it’s an influential, loved show that has impacted lots and lots of people. So I will continue to watch and think and if you’re the same way, there are a few not-so-great things I’d love to chat about …
Can we talk about how rude Lorelai is to anyone and everyone when she is in a bad mood? While it seems like something that’s written into her character to make her “real”, but also as a comical aspect of her personality, it really just makes her seem immature and inconsiderate. It’s not your mother’s fault that you exploded at Sookie, Lorelai. And maybe, instead of pouting every time you’re upset, you could work on your communication skills.
Can we talk about how the Gilmores did the same thing to Dean when Rory brought him to dinner that the Huntzbergers did to Rory when she started dating Logan? Lorelai gives Richard a pretty easy pass when he has his hissy fit, but that courtesy doesn’t extend to the Huntzbergers. I would argue that, while both incidents were terrible and unnecessary and melodramatic, the Huntzbergers had a better case! Rory wasn’t likely to end up with her high school boyfriend, but it is significantly more reasonable to think that Logan, a college guy bringing his girlfriend home to meet his family, might end up with her. The Huntzbergers’ concerns might have been unfair and antiquated, but they were a little bit more realistic.
Can we talk about the way non-circle female characters have to turn into monsters in order for their story lines to move forward? Gilmore Girls is about a lot of things, but the relationships of women to other women are central. It’s interesting to me that there is this girl power, tribe mentality that exists in Lorelai’s circle, but it only applies to the women who are already included. Sure, we see Rory supported unconditionally, we see Sookie initiate her relationship with Jackson, we see Lane pushing boundaries, we see Paris being a boss, and we see Emily put her foot down and demand respect from her powerful husband (in what seems, otherwise, to be like a very “traditional gender roles” kind of relationship). They’re in the circle. But outside of the circle, we see Sherry abandon her daughter and relationship because she’s resentful of Christopher, we see Rachel as someone who always leaves and breaks hearts in the process, we see Nicole ask Luke to stick it out in their relationship only to betray his trust, and we even see April as a romantic problem instead of a person. If you ask me, that’s unnecessary.
Continue reading “Can we talk about Gilmore Girls?”