It’s been 24 hours and I think I’m finally done processing Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life. I, like most people with a vagina, have been anticipating this 4-part series since it was announced. The characters in this show felt like family for so long I couldn’t wait to see them back on my screen.
I admit it warmed my heart the minute “Where you lead” started to play. And right off the bat we jumped back into the witty, fast-paced dialogue from Executive Producer Amy Sherman-Palladino that we know and love.
Lauren Graham (Lorelai) and Alexis Bledel (Rory) are so perfectly made to play these parts. They seemed to ease right back into their comfortable banter and bring these women back to life. It may have been the wine, but I was giddy and grinning ear-to-ear when they came on-screen.
Trivia side note: I used to play soccer against Alexis Bledel. I kick myself for not asking to get a picture with her after a game. Maybe I was too winded.
All our favorite townspeople were there too as the story pics up nearly 10 years after we left them. The format for the special series is a little unorthodox, but then again I would expect no less from Amy Sherman-Palladino. I don’t know why they chose to do four, 90 minute episodes but I’m sure they had their reasons.
The story takes us on a seasonal tour of one year in the Gilmore’s lives. “Winter”, “Spring”, “Summer” and “Fall” all showcase different story lines, and difference perspectives of Stars Hollow. There’s so much I want to say about each mini-movie but rather than go point-by-point I want to hit some highlights.
First, Luke and Lorelai are still together. Yay! But they aren’t married and doubt starts to creep into Lorelai’s mind about Luke’s dedication to their relationship. She eventually goes on a sabbatical, walkabout, journey, whatever you want to call it and realizes Luke is in fact still the one for her. Which we all already knew.
Rory gets hit with a case of the millennials and can’t seem to nail down a consistent job, or boyfriend. I was surprised to see her back in the arms of bad boy Logan Huntsberger (Matt Czuchry) especially since he’s engaged to someone else. The series takes us for a stroll down memory lane with all of her previous major love interests making an appearance. I loved seeing her with Logan, but really my heart melted when Jess (Milo Ventimiglia) pops up at just the right time.*Swoon*
But the majority of the series is spent dealing with the relationship between Lorelai and Emily Gilmore (Kelly Bishop). The story begins a few months after the death of the Gilmore family patriarch Richard (Edward Herrmann) who also passed away in real life.
The women in this family go to battle during this year, with each other and themselves to find out who they really are and how to deal with their choices in life. I love that the creator made them flawed, and relatable. I think that’s why so many people are drawn to them. That and their biting humor that leaves no one safe (Lena Dunham watch your back).
There are a couple of unusual sequences that went on too long like the Stars Hollow musical and the trippy Beatles/Tango room adventure. It almost felt like the producers went to NY during the show’s hiatus, saw a bunch of Broadway shows and decided to interject some of those moments into the GG world. It just didn’t seem to fit and actually slowed the pace down a little bit.
I was a big Parenthood fan as well, but 3 Parenthood cameos was a bit over the top. Mae Whitman, Peter Krause and Jason Ritter were all huge characters in Lauren Graham’s world on Parenthood and it was a little too weird to see them all here.
And I know people love Melissa McCarthy. I get it. I liked her on GG as Sookie. But her scene felt tacked on. A while back she mentioned she wasn’t invited to be on this series and social media went nuts. I feel like that pressure forced the writers to add a scene for her to quell the masses. We see her once, with a weird explanation about why she’s been missing for 2 years, then we never see her again. I would have been okay if they had just stuck to the story line that she went away on some cooking sabbatical.
I’m still torn about the ending. At first I yelled, “They Soprano’d us!” because Rory drops a big bomb about being pregnant then it cuts to black. The end. WTF? Why would they do that? Are they setting up a new series? I honestly hope so. Otherwise that is the biggest cock tease of an ending ever. The fan in me wants to see all the characters lives wrapped up in a little bow of happiness and late night coffee. But knowing that Amy Sherman-Palladino seems to push against the idea of the neat little bow makes me think she likes the fact that fans would all collectively gasp at the ending. Maybe I can get her on my podcast to ask her about it! If anyone knows her please send her my way.
Despite the WTF ending, the strange musical interludes, and the inexplicable way Rory is able to fly to London and back at a moments notice, I still enjoyed the episodes. I adore these characters, this town, and the stories they tell. The smart writing has always been too hip for the average viewer. That’s why I think Gilmore Girls fans are above average. And we so want to see these characters carry out their lives for this year, and hopefully many more years to come.
Did you watch the Gilmore Girls revival? Do you want to see what happens next? Or do you think we should part ways?
Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life is available now on Netflix.