For the love of Gilmore Girls

Ok, I’ve had this post in the hopper long enough that I might as well finish it.

First, the preliminaries: I watch Gilmore Girls (and have for years) and I really enjoy it. To me, it’s the 21st century equivalent of Northern Exposure. Quirky small town with lots of local flavor, some romance, fast-paced dialogue and characters that are both easy on the eyes and very real. Great TV, both of them.

There. I’m officially a straight man out of the Gilmore Girls closet. I feel like a giant weight has been lifted from my TiVo remote. Phew!

It seems that I’ve got a lot of friends in this hetero Gilmore Girls fraternity. Esquire recently ran this headline to a Gilmore Girls article: Gilmore Girls Is the Best Show on TV for Men. The money quote:

I was smitten from the first moment—or at least from the first moment after the Carole King theme song. The show, about a single mom, Lorelai, and her daughter, Rory (both of whom, incidentally, are quite hot), takes place in a small Connecticut town, a quirky Northern Exposure –like village free from homelessness and cops searching bags in the subway. The dialogue is clever, clipped, allusion-heavy—Billy Wilder meets Us Weekly.

Couldn’t agree more strongly. Fast-paced dialogue full of pop culture and, can it be, intelligence? Plus, quirky setting and very attractive cast. What are you waiting for?

But, statistically, you’re not waiting, you’re already watching. Gilmore Girls is the dirty little secret of the Gen-X/Millenial hetero man. Need more proof?

John Walters of Sports Illustrated on the Gilmore Girls

What’s weirder, former 98 Degrees lead singer Nick Lachey appearing on College GameDay or former Skid Row vocalist Sebastian Bach appearing regularly on Gilmore Girls? (obligatory reference to the Gilmore Girls, a show, by the way, that Esquire just named “The Best Show on TV for Men”; I feel as vindicated as Clausen. Now, if we can only get Lauren Graham to appear regularly on College GameDay, how cool would that be?)

That’s right, it’s got a little Sebastian Bach to satisfy your eerily ironic quest for 80’s hair metal schadenfreude. Nice.

And it’s not just the SI writers. Turns out the college guys are into Gilmore Girls too. Honest. Maybe not as much as Family Guy or sports, but they’re watching.

Heck, TV Squad mentioned the article and their own love for Gilmore Girls back in November, but I’m just now brave enough to admit it myself. I feel so vindicated/validated.

So now I’m free to talk about the main plot point of the first half of the current Gilmore Girls season: the estrangement of Lorelai and Rory (the aforementioned Gilmore Girls). Seems as though Lauren Graham, who plays Lorelai Gilmore, had a hard time with the plotline.

“I struggled with the idea that this character, being the parent, would go so far as to stop speaking to her daughter and not make more of an effort,” said Graham, taking a break in her trailer on the Warner Bros. lot during a slow day of filming. “We had it in bits and pieces, but it was hard for me to justify that I wouldn’t try harder, that I wouldn’t reach out more, that I could stand to be away from her for that long.”

While it wasn’t always the best television or the best Gilmore Girls has had to offer, I don’t think the producers, writers or cast could have handled that arc any better. I think if the story of these women and their lives are going to move forward as they both become more mature (older, wiser) then something had to be done. Are Lorelai and Rory back to their previous quippy ways? Sure, but I think they both have a greater appreciation of what they had (have) and who they are to themselves and one another.

Granted, some of the situations were contrived, but it’s a dramedy, that rarest of camels tv shows. My point, and there is one, is that I enjoy Gilmore Girls because it respects it’s characters and it’s audience. They feel like family to me and I can appreciate the way easy things to screw up (like romances, especially Luke & Lorelai) are handled. The estrangement was no exception and I think very realistic in some of the familial issues it explored.

I mean, without the spat we wouldn’t have had the brilliant, shaky camera dinner sequence (and fighting) a few weeks back. The whole episode really crystallized some relationships on the show and made others that much more strained.

I truly believe it made the show better and I proudly count myself as a fan. Tell the world, I’m not ashamed anymore.

One thought on “For the love of Gilmore Girls

  1. Missing Gilmore Girls…

    I came to grips with my love (and public embrace) of the show Gilmore Girls some time ago, but I’m not “out” at work. Or, rather, I’m not out with my current group of co-workers because:

    I’m in a different group since the…

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