The Weakest Scene in the Gilmore Girls Revival Touches on Key Difference Between Lorelai & Rory
Like the original series as a whole, the Netflix Gilmore Girls revival, Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, mostly succeeds in everything it does, like some sort of prep-school upstart.
The idea that Lorelai (Lauren Graham) and Luke (Scott Patterson) never get married, but stay in a committed relationship following the series finale, feels like the next logical steps that relationship would take, especially considering all the drama the duo endured. Kirk (Sean Gunn) trying to capitalize on the success of Uber with his own ride-service business around Stars Hollow also feels like a natural, modern-day progression. Hell, even Michel (Yanic Truesdale) being in a same-sex marriage and dreading parenthood was a welcome and logical plot development (like many Stars Hollow residents, my bet was always on Taylor Doose as the first to come out!).
But the weakest scene in an otherwise entertaining and satisfying reboot comes in “Fall,” the final 90-minute installment. Rory (Alexis Bledel) discovers little messages leading her to believe something is coming (Petals the Pig runs by with a sign that says “Kick Up a Rumpus”). Who wants to kick it up with her? Why it’s The Life & Death Brigade, Logan Huntzberger’s group of buddies from Yale, who somehow travel all the way to Stars Hollow to cheer up an estranged classmate.
This scene rang surreal, almost like one of Lorelai’s weird Paul Anka-not-the-dog dreams. Gilmore Girls has never had a musical montage (this one is set to “With a Little Help From My Friends” from Across the Universe). How does the Life & Death gang know where everything is in Stars Hollow? How are they able to leave clues somewhere they’ve never been? Maybe GG creator Amy Sherman-Palladino wanted to up the grandness a notch since it’s a 90-minute Netflix finale, but the logistics of this musical number didn’t quite work, even if the montage was beautiful. I’m just not quite up for the suspension of disbelief that these dudes wouldn’t have something better to do that day.
But even though this scene was unnecessarily grand, it also highlights a huge difference between Rory and Lorelai. For most of the series, these two have been compared to each other, and even in the final scene, we can all agree that history repeats itself in a way. But one thing Rory has been attracted to that Lorelai hasn’t is money, and this scene perfectly encapsulates that notion.
Again, how are Colin, Finn, and Robert able to leave their lives for a day to escape to small-town America? Because they are all affluent, throwing around money and even purchasing a bar on a whim by the end of the night. Rory, unlike her mother, has always been a sucker for wealth, like her grandmother and grandfather. It impresses her.
And in a way, the scene is filmed with the intent to impress audiences with its beauty and carefree whimsy, which is why it’s almost disturbing to watch. The Life & Death Brigade represents everything that Stars Hollow isn’t: Wealthy, cosmopolitan, and ill-intentioned. During Rory’s graduating speech in Season 3, she mentions living in two worlds: one of books and one of reality. For the second half of the series, the true clash became the world of wealth versus the one Lorelai helped raise Rory in. This reboot scene, a blemish in the Netflix revival, is actually a perfect demonstration of that.
I whole-heartedly enjoyed the Gilmore Girls revival and am interested to see if the series will continue in some capacity. Even though the final four words opened a door to the past, Rory is certainly not Lorelai, which could make for fresh storylines and struggle. And we’ll see if she’ll get a little help from her friends then.