Unless you’ve been living in a remote corner of Stars Hollow—probably somewhere on Sores and Boils alley—you know Gilmore Girls is coming back via the revival machine that is Netflix. Slated to premiere in 2016, the return of Lorelai, Rory, and Emily will be celebrated in four 90-minute episodes. With more mother daughter and bonding and snappy dialogue on the horizon (you can catch up on everything we know about the revival so far), it’s a fine time to look back at the series.
Recapping all seven seasons episode by episode would go by slower than an awkward Friday night dinner at Richard and Emily’s, so instead, I’m chugging coffee and presenting supercaffeinated recaps. I’ve split each season into three parts and will loosely cover my favorite episodes of those parts and touch on why they’re important. We’ll rinse and repeat each week so please join me in another visit to Stars Hollow. All that said, “Copper boom!”
And So It Begins
Remember when Gilmore Girls first aired? I can’t claim memories stretching all the way back to 2000 because I came to Amy Sherman-Palladino’s beautiful piece of art a little later through syndication and then DVDs… over and over again. Netflix has made my Gilmore Girls rewatching habit worse. Anyway, some pilots are weak and do the opposite of making an impression, but not here. We got a thumbnail sized portrait of Lorelai and Rory’s unlikely relationship, we learned about the bone of contention at the heart of the feud between Lorelai and her parents, we understood Lorelai’s addiction to coffee, and we became acquainted with the charm of Stars Hollow. The small town in which the Gilmores live is, after all, a character in the series.
Though there were some missteps like Sookie’s exaggerated clumsiness and Rory considering giving up Chilton just because she met Dean, the first episode was a heartwarming entry to the world. Things weren’t in focus yet because they usually aren’t at this point in a series (it would be boring if they were), but they hit all the highlights. I’d compare watching the pilot to stepping barefoot onto a plush, comfortable rug as people hand you chocolates and coffee. It’s a giant welcome home filled with quirky friends and obnoxious family members—we can all relate.
Favorite quote: “People are particularly stupid today. I can’t talk to any more of them.” – Michel
The First Day of School
Gilmore Girls smartly brought us into the world of Lorelai and Rory with Rory as a 16-year-old. We’ve gone past what could have been annoying childhood years covering the sorts of stories every family sitcom explores. Lorelai and Rory came to us with a history, and while they shared their memories, we got to come in at the most interesting part. Rory’s ambitions of going to Chilton have been realized, she and Lorelai have started to build a relationship, albeit a coerced one, with Emily and Richard, and everything is coming up Gilmore.
As you might guess from the title “The Lorelais’ First Day at Chilton,” both Rory and her mom had to appear on Rory’s first day. The episode was packed with small but juicy character tidbits. Lorelai put off all her laundry and didn’t have anything suitable to wear—I love that the woman who subsists on processed foods and coffee cares enough to actually follow the dry clean only instructions on her clothing—and Emily was manipulative to show up for the first meeting with Headmaster Charleston.
This is when we first encountered the indomitable Paris Geller and Tristan Dugray. We only knew Rory for a short while at this point, but we already understood her incredible smarts and confidence. Chilton’s high standards threw her off her game, and that was disconcerting even this early on.
Favorite quote: “That’s the last time I buy something just because its furry.” – Lorelai
Dean and Rory K-I-S-S-I-N-G
Fast forward to the seventh episode, and Rory had become more comfortable at Chilton and was kissing boys in the grocery story. Fine, only one boy and only one time. “Kiss and Tell” marked Dean and Rory’s first kiss and a more official beginning to their relationship. They took home the prize for weirdest first date ever when Lorelai invited Dean over for one of her and Rory’s epic movie nights. I can’t imagine a situation where I ever want to have a first date with a boy while I’m stuffing every sort of junk food imaginable into my face. Second dates, however…
Lorelai learned an important lesson as the plot unfolded. She realized her daughter is of an age where she might not tell her everything. It’s likely not easy to have to play the mom card or be in the dark when your daughter is more like a friend, and this was one of the first times Lorelai was confronted with the possibility Rory might not want to sit down and spill all the details.
Favorite quote: “I’m afraid that once your heart’s involved, it all comes out in moron.” – Lorelai
Which episodes from the first part of season one of the Gilmore Girls stand out to you? Head to the comments and tell me about your favorite scenes, quotes, or whatever else you feel like sharing.