What Are You Watching?: “Gilmore Girls”

Gilmore Girls (2000 – 2007, The CW)

Gilmore Girls
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Take a charming town in Connecticut, add Melissa McCarthy before she was typecast by her role as Megan in Bridesmaids, and throw in a quick-talking, pop-culture addicted, snarky, sassy mother-daughter duo–there you have Gilmore Girls. This show about love, acceptance, and family graced TV screens for seven complete seasons with its quick-wit and charm.

Created by Amy Sherman-Palladino (Bunheads), the show followed the story of Lorelai (Lauren Graham, Parenthood) and Rory Gilmore (Alexis Bledel, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants) – a young mother and daughter who were more best friends or a team than part of a typical family hierarchy. This relationship that I often envied is only made more believable by the immense chemistry that Graham and Bledel have together.

Lorelai is a young mother who got pregnant at sixteen and left home to raise her daughter on her own. She began working at the Independence Inn, a small inn in the fictional Stars Hollow, and eventually became manager. Her daughter Rory was named after herself, which Rory explains: “She named me after herself. She was lying in the hospital thinking about how men name boys after themselves all the time, you know, so why couldn’t women? She says her feminism just kind of took over. Though personally I think a lot of Demerol also went into that decision.” (Season 1, Episode 1, Pilot).

Aside from the charming allure of the Gilmore Girls, the show also featured a stunning array of characters that gave the small town of Stars Hollow its character, including series regulars like Melissa McCarthy (The Heat), Liza Weil (How to Get Away With Murder), Jared Padalecki (Supernatural), and more.

I have to mention again that the show is quick, and this is primarily because the show’s actors had to attend speech lessons in order to be able to fit all 80-some pages of an episode into the 45 minutes allotted by the network. On average, an hour-long show usually has a script of about 40-50 pages and Gilmore Girls scripts were known to be around 80 pages. The jokes had to be sharp, the acting and reacting to quips needed to be well-executed, and this is why the show is so enjoyable to watch. It makes the hour-long episodes breeze by instead of dragging on like some are known to do (I’m talking to you, Revenge).

The show dealt with teen pregnancy, rejection from family, social expectations, and much more, all while keeping the heavy topics somehow light with sharp humor.

All seasons are available for steaming on Netflix and can be caught on ABC Family and The CW sporadically.

— Michael Cotter, Assistant Poetry Editor/ Blogger

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