My Thoughts on Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life

At 7AM, on the day after Thanksgiving, my mom, sister, and I gathered in our family room to watch Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life. Now we had some fun stuff going on yesterday, so we didn’t get to finish the episodes until a little while ago. But now we have watched them all, and I can react to how the series has ended.

***SPOILERS FOR GILMORE GIRLS: A YEAR IN THE LIFE AND “ THE LAST FOUR WORDS” FOLLOW. DO NOT PROCEED UNLESS YOU ARE READY.***

***NOT KIDDING: SPOILERS FOR GILMORE GIRLS: A YEAR IN THE LIFE AND “ THE LAST FOUR WORDS” FOLLOW. DO NOT PROCEED UNLESS YOU ARE READY.***

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YOU SURE?

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OK, HERE I GO.

Oh my GOD.

OH MY GOD!

To say I really was not expecting the last four words is a bit of an understatement. But it all makes sense. The series creator said she had these words planned for ages. And this series is all about cycles: the seasons, Lorelei and Emily’s relationship, Emily’s life in society; why not the mother-daughter relationship that Rory and Lorelei have going on?

So Rory is pregnant, with what must be Logan’s baby. During my initial freakout as the credits rolled, my sister pointed out that Amy Sherman-Palladino had said Logan was like Rory’s Christopher.(We all just didn’t know how close the parallels were gonna be, now did we?) Sis also suggested that this might make Jess her Luke. I was really getting hopeful for their relationship after he showed up for the day before the wedding. During that last close up on him watching Rory,(mothering Kirk!) his face was so sweet and thoughtful.

Prior to that, I really thought Logan was going to appear at the wedding, announcing he had jilted his fiancee for Rory. While I’m surprised Rory has learned nothing about being the other woman from her time with Dean, the Life-And-Death-Brigade-ish evening was very fun to watch, and the Rory-Logan goodbye was full of warm feelings. (Side note: Another observation that my sister and I shared was that Rory was basically the Wendy to Peter Pan and the Lost Boys in that parting scene. We just needed a Nana.) Anyway, though the couple had that final goodbye, I wasn’t sure. But then the show seemed to be framing Jess in a good light, and I just wanted it to be Jess. And it might be, with an open ending like that. (Fanfic writers, I hope you’re ready because there’s some great material here!)

My mom and sister grew exasperated at Rory during her fight with Lorelei. I rudely snapped at them to shut up, and apologized when the episode ended. I still identify with Rory on the bookworm-writer-what-the-hell-am-I-supposed-to-be-doing-now front and I think I wanted to know that she would be ok.

It might seem a bit cliche for the show to end with her pregnancy. And maybe ten years ago, it would have been too predictable. What helps is that the show did not go out of its way to drop hints. I can’t even pinpoint where Rory might have realized she was expecting. (My sister thinks the questioning of Christopher was more for her than for her book, and I could definitely see that.) But there weren’t any pregnancy tests lying around, or mentions of doctor’s appointments, at least, that I remember. So it wasn’t cheesy, just sudden. I’m satisfied and think it was an interesting way to end Rory’s story. Despite all of her employment setbacks, I had strong hopes that she would work something out. But she’s always struggled in her personal life, and now her life is still changing and as turbulent as ever. It fits Rory.

The rest of this is reverting to bullet points of my random thoughts because I am too overwhelmed to put them in any order.

  • As Rory’s story ended how it should have, so did Lorelei’s story. I’M SO GLAD SHE AND LUKE GOT MARRIED. I was pretty unhappy with their fighting in episode 3 but their making up was worth it. And the wedding! Simply beautiful.
  • Emily went out like a boss. Her calling bullshit on the DAR ladies was probably one of my favorite moments of these episodes, second only to her frightening children as a docent! She’s satisfied in her life, still living fancy, but with less restrictions and with things that actually appeal to her.
  • And she has a community of sorts with her housekeeper and her family? (I wasn’t super keen on the “can’t figure out what they’re all saying” joke. It felt racist. I need to find out if there was a real complex language they were speaking or what.)
  • On that note, diversity was mildly better with the acknowledgment of sexual orientations beyond heterosexual, but they still could have done more.
  • Luke shouting at Lorelei that he’s staying with her and will do whatever it takes was my favorite moment for him. He’s come so far and learned how to speak his feelings. And he’s loved. Good for Luke.
  • Dynasty Maker – I was concerned about the clinic’s name until we could hear Paris. Everything clicked then. I like Paris as a adult! (despite her shots at media studies and screenwriters) Her bathroom door kick was legendary. I’m sorry that she has to put up with Doyle.
  • Dean is not sad! Dean is happy! Go Dean!
  • But the town musical was sad. As it started, I knew I wanted to see more than one musical number, but I quickly regretted that. It went from funny bad to running too long pretty quickly.
  • With these episodes, there have been at least 3 actors from Twin Peaks playing love interests of main/secondary characters:
  • The Parenthood cameos were nice too, as were the Bunheads ones.
  • Kirk was at peak Kirk levels., not too over-the-top, but still weird.
  • Michele got a husband and a significant role boost in these episodes. That was good.
  • Sookie got in for one good scene. Melissa McCarthy is awesome for making it work.(I read that she hadn’t been asked to return, then was asked but was busy, then worked it out.) Her in-universe excuse for being gone was a little difficult to follow, though.
  • To end this,  I’m just going to do a sub-list of things I didn’t understand. Maybe a rewatch will help, or if anyone has insights, feel free to leave them in the comments:
    • How was Rory affording the back-and-forth to London? Even with savings, roundtrip is freaking expensive.
    • Why were she and Logan having an affair. He really did not seem attached to his fiancee at all. AT ALL. What was keeping him from breaking it off? (My sister suggested family pressure, but I think he’s past the age where that should matter? Was he working for his family?)
      • (Oh no, Rory is having a Huntzberger baby. That just hit me.)
    • Was April’s freakout about her concerns that she’s not ready for the real world? If so, as a 22 year old, I’m mildly insulted at the way that was handled. But I really didn’t get what she was trying to say.
    • Did Rory just drop the Gazette after starting her book?
    • Why were they paying kids to be their pool attendants?
    • Was Kirk’s film drawing influence from The Shining and Schindler’s List?
    • Where has Mr. Kim been all this time?

I’m satisfied with the series end. I wouldn’t object to following Rory in some fashion as she navigates what’s next for her, but I’m also content with letting fans decide how they want to imagine what happens next.

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Seems appropriate to show the remnants of snacks consumed during the show. These are pumpkin cheesecake crumbs; not pictured are hash browns and a lot of coffee.

 

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