I have been waiting and waiting for this revival since I finished watching the original series on Netflix this past summer. I know that’s probably a lot less waiting that people who have been waiting since the show ended in 2007, but I absolutely love Gilmore Girls and (most of) that characters so I was excitedly watching the show knowing that there would be more to come with the Netflix revival. It was so nice to see the characters all together nearly 10 years after the show ended (15 years after the show first started). A few of the main actors have built huge careers since Gilmore Girls (namely Alexis Bledel, Jared Padalecki, Lauren Graham, and Melissa McCarthy) so it was so cool that they could all get together and do the show again. Each episode was about an hour and a half long, which was nice because it was like a little movie for each season of the year. I was worried that they would be short episodes and wouldn’t be able to do the story justice, but I think the length of the episodes worked really well this way. I’ll split this up into my thoughts on each episode and then final thoughts at the end! This is probably going to be a longer post, but I have lots of thoughts so no regrets.
**There will be spoilers so beware if you haven’t watched all four new episodes yet!**
There’s a lot of tension to begin with between Lorelai and Luke, which is unfortunate because of course we all hoped that they would live happily ever after together. At first, I actually assumed they had gotten married. I mean, at this point, they’re in their late forties and they know they are meant to be together so why not just tie the knot? Anyways, Lorelai gets this feeling that Luke wants to raise a child, for real this time, and they go to a surrogate agency that just happens to be run by none other that Paris Geller. Paris is still her abrasive, bossy self and decides that she’ll give Lorelai special treatment as the woman was basically her only real mother figure, but Luke is not totally on board with the idea so I think they have kind of dropped it now. It’s a bummer to see that Paris and Doyle haven’t lived happily ever after and are divorcing after years of marriage and having two kids, but I guess it would be too nice of them to leave everyone with a happy ending.
I love that Luke is giving out fake wifi passwords at the diner. I am actually surprised he got wifi at all since he never allowed phones, I figured wifi was completely off the table. Then Taylor comes in towards the end of the episode and tells everyone that he’s giving them fake passwords and cheekily name drops Zoella XD To be precise, he called her “Zooella” but it was a funny joke and pretty cool for those of us who are her viewers. The town troubadour is still around and running out any other troubadours that try to plant themselves in Stars Hollow. It was a funny little gag but I would have been happy with him just being there and singing, he didn’t have to run his sister out of town…
I know that this is supposed to be a whole season, so the timeline is about 3 months per episode, but it kind of bugs me that Rory is just back and forth between Stars Hollow and New York and Hartford and London (Freaking-long-flight-away LONDON) with no rhyme or reason to her arrival. It almost seems like she goes to London for literally one day and then is suddenly back at home with her mom. But like I said, I’m going to have to let this one slide since I know that the timeline is quite long for an hour and a half to cover all of Rory’s travel time. Another thing that bugged me a lot (not a critcism of the show but a part of the plot that is supposed to feel wrong to us) is Rory’s “casual” agreement with Logan that they are together when she is in London and they just forget about it when she’s not. Logan is engaged to some French heiress named Odette and he is definitely planning on marrying so it is very wrong that both of them are doing this without much remorse. Not to mention that Rory has this utterly forgettable boyfriend Paul (also called Pete and various other names because it’s a running joke that they just forget about him as soon has he leaves their presence) I thought this was funny but also a bit useless. Yes, it illustrates that Rory is at a point in her life where everything is spiraling out of her control and she can’t even remember to break up with her uninteresting boyfriend of two years, so in that sense Paul does have a purpose.
Let’s talk for a moment about Richard Gilmore… Edward Herrman passed in 2014 of brain cancer, so they had to work his death into the story since he would not be there. I thought they did a very nice job of this. I, for one, definitely teared up each time the Gilmore ladies got emotional about him, or recounted a memory about him because I haven’t been in their shoes, but I can definitely empathize with the grief in their performance. Just watching the show, you feel connected to the characters, their families, and feeling and I felt their grief and pain at certain point in the story. A job well done to Lauren Graham especially for her performance in the emotional scenes. Aside from this they add some humor to lighten the subject a bit which is also kind of nice. Lorelai couldn’t think of a kind memory of her father at the funeral and that caused another rift between her and Emily.
This episode doesn’t have too much relating to the overall story arc except that Michel is planning to leave the Dragon Fly Inn and that’s kind of hinted at. They keep bringing in celebrity chefs (Roy Choi in “Winter”, Rachel Ray, and they mention Ina Garten though she is not actually in the show anywhere) as a coverup for the fact that Melissa McCarthy was definitely too busy for this revival and could only dedicate herself to one day of filming for the last episode. Kirk is still his crazy self with his new businesses and jobs, his main venture in this installment being “Ooober” a ride sharing service that is much less efficient than Uber. He also shows a short film in this episode, a little nod to his short film in the original series and has a pet pig named petal to take care of since the town knows he and Lulu would probably not be the most diligent of parents to an actual baby. The Logan/Rory thing especially bugged me in this episode because it just feels so wrong! There’s also this random plat line about a big Hollywood movie being filmed in the neighboring town and that everyone is bummed that the B-list actors are the only ones staying at the Dragonfly. That seemed kind of pointless, but maybe it had a point and I just missed it. Enlighten me in the comments if you can. Anyways, Spring ends with Rory moving back into her mother’s house for a bit because her book deal in London fell through and she has been unsuccessful in finding a job.
Summer (aka the worst of the four episodes)
This episode begins with Rory learning that Odette has at last moved in with Logan in London and realizing that she is being pushed out of his life more and more. The Stars Hollow Gazette is going to shut down because its old and decrepit editor has retired, so Rory decides that she needs to take over while she’s at home and keep the historical paper going. Taylor writes a crazy musical about the history of Stars Hollow that is literally awful and Lorelai goes to it to get Rory a news story about it. Taylor essentially steals ideas from very popular musicals, such as his reference to Hamilton when a guy comes out and stars rapping in the middle of a scene.
We have in here an obligatory Jess visit because he is Rory’s other unfinished love story. We know Jess still has feelings for Rory and it’s possible that she reciprocates those feelings. He gives her this idea that she should write her own book about her life and her mother. Jess knows Rory very well, and she takes his advice, but Lorelai is not too happy to hear that her life is going to be put on full blast for the world to read.
Lorelai is going through some type of midlife crisis here and she decides she is going to “do Wild” (she was reading the book in the pool scene earlier in the episode) and this furthers Luke’s suspicion that she might be leaving him for good. She and Luke have both been hiding things from each other and the explosion was just waiting to happen because they had both found out about each others lies but not had a confrontation about it. But really, Lorelai is struggling with her grief for her father and she feels that going into nature can help her to open her mind get some closure. Luke is pretty convinced that she’s cheating on him though which is sucky because we all know she would never do that to him.
Speaking of Richard, they include something about him in every episode, and this bit was about his gravestone constantly being messed up. Emily has apparently turned down 3 imperfect stones and one accidentally broke when it fell out of a truck so they go to the grave site to check on the 5th stone and, surprise, it’s still not perfect enough for Emily. This was a cute little bit I thought because it showed just how much Emily really loved her husband. This vision of their love also shows Lorelai something that she knows she wants to experience.
This episode begins with Lorelai in a crappy motel waiting to go out onto the Wild trail in California. She is packed and ready to go, but fate keeps telling her not to go. The first issue she runs into is that there is going to be a big storm and the park rangers advise the group of prospective hikers to wait until the next day when the weather passes. The nest day, she tries to go again but cannot find her hiking permit and the ranger refuses to let her go without it. Finally she gives up and drives to a nearby coffee shop, which is of course closed. Lorelai climbs a hill and looks out into the beauty before her and gets emotional. I love this moment, in fact, I have loved every moment where Lorelai has in some way connected with her mother. Here, Lorelai calls her mother and tells her the best memory she has of herself and her father. She has found what she was looking for, closure, happiness and now she can go back home and tell Luke what she really wants: to get married. Rory chooses to write a few chapters anyways and Emily allows her to use the house to do so. With her entering the house we get some more archive footage of notable scenes with Richard and an image of him sitting at his desk in the study before Rory sits in that very spot to begin writing her book.
This made me super excited for a wedding celebration! But we don’t actually get to see the big wedding… Boo. Sookie finally makes her appearance in a kitchen full of wedding cake choices that she makes for Lorelai. In the end, Lorelai and Luke decide to elope literally the night before their wedding because it would make the ceremony a lot less stressful for them. This was cute but I was bummed that we only got a few people there with them. this is a very important moment which was glossed over in a cheesy montage. they got to the gazebo and I was like, when did they call Lane and Michel and why didn’t Sookie and Emily get brought into this special moment if we are just going to improbably bring characters in for it. They only technically need one witness and that would have been Rory so why invite anyone at all if they weren’t going to have all of the most important people in Lorelai’s life there? I also thought that for a spur of the moment wedding late at night there sure were a lot of dancers around and where the heck did the flowers start falling from at the end there? So clearly I have a lot of criticism about the way the wedding panned out but I am glad that Lorelai and Luke have finally tied the knot. It was about dang time!
Rory has these weird “hallucinations” but it’s really the life and death brigade paying her an obligatory visit. With Logan in tow of course. These guys have apparently not changed at all in their ten years since graduating college and they can still be just as immature as they were back then. There’s a montage of silly things and walking and staring in storefronts. That part was a bit strange to me, but I did like their outfits. Of course, Rory allows Logan to woo her once again and they sleep together at a bed and breakfast that they had completely bought out for the night (in New Hampshire of all places). Bad idea Rory… Rory and Dean also have their obligatory closure scene. Dean is apparently married and has three kids (soon to be four) and lives with his wife (I’ve already forgotten her name) in Scranton, PA.
In fact, there’s lots of closure going on in this final episode. Michel has decided to leave and so he and Lorelai are interviewing possible replacements, well Lorelai is anyways and Michel is treating them all like dirt because let’s be real, who could ever replace Michel? Emily decides that she is going to sell the house in Hartford and move to Nantucket to volunteer at the Whaling museum. She has become motherly towards her new housemaid (played by the actress who is also Gypsy). I loved that she quit the DAR and decided to change her life, and also that she was willing to help Lorelai use the money Richard left for Luke to franchise for her to expand the Dragonfly Inn instead. It was a nice moment for the two of them that was similar to Lorelai asking for a loan in season one to pay for Chilton except that this one wouldn’t really be a loan to be paid back. In typical Emily style though, she has her rules which are that Lorelai and Luke visit her for a couple weeks at cetain times of the year up in Nantucket which of course Lorelai agrees to because they are really connecitng now.
The major shocker (but not really) at the end is that Rory is pregnant. I say it wasn’t really shocking because I could tell something was up with Rory when she couldn’t stop compulsively calling Logan and if that scene at the bed and breakfast wasn’t foreshadowing then I don’t know what foreshadowing is. Now obviously this is not Paul (Pete? Paul.)’s kid and obviously it’s Logan’s kid but NOW WHAT?? There’s going to be more to this story right? There has still been no real closure between Rory and Logan especially now that she is going to have his baby. There was also no closure with her and Jess because, as much as he says he’s over Rory, HE’S NOT OVER RORY. Also I really freaking want to see that wedding!!
Please comment with your thoughts on Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life below! I’m so not done talking about this! (I’ve literally added so much more to this since intially writing it. If you sat through this all the way to the end I commend you)