Saturday, December 03, 2016

J: Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life

Warning: Spoilers follow!!

If you were a reader of this blog at all back in the day, you know that I had a pretty strong love-hate relationship with Gilmore Girls, especially toward the end of its original run..and especially with Rory Gilmore. She started off the series so relatable and likable and gradually just became insufferable. I won't go into all the reasons, but consequently I was pretty nervous about this revival.

So, when I couldn't binge-watch all of A Year in the Life right away...I (like Mira) read spoilers. Well, not really spoilers. More like, full recaps and full analysis. LOTS of it. And it kind of led me to expect the worst! So, when I got around to watching it throughout this week, it actually was not nearly as bad I had been fearing...and yes, I, like, Mira, am generally satisfied.

The Bad:
  • The Stars Hollow Musical was almost totally unwatchable. I know a big component of the show is the Stars Hollow "quirkiness," but this was too much. Sutton Foster is great, but man, it took all I could to not fast-forward through that.
  • The Life and Death Brigade. UGH! They're so awful.
  • Rory's blitheness about her personal and professional problems the first and second episodes. I know it was supposed to be funny that she has a boyfriend that no one can remember, including herself, but that's just horrible. I'm glad she realized that and admitted it out loud later, but she still didn't do anything about it. And it still pisses me off how Lorelai excuses Rory's bad behavior...yes Paul did not fit. That didn't mean she could just treat him like crap. 
  • And her thing with Logan? I could not empathize with or feel sorry for her on that one either. 
  • As for her career, I guess it's one thing to not want to settle for a job she doesn't want, but Rory has always had too lofty goals and I didn't see any indication that she'd been paying her dues since the last time we saw her. She was expecting that her one New Yorker article was supposed to get her straight to the top? Her indignation at the interview with the online site annoyed the crap out of me too. You had no ideas and you're mad that they decided they didn't want to hire you?
  • The Thirty-Something Gang and how they were all disappointed that Rory didn't want to hang out with them. She's not that cool, ok guys?
  • I like Paris, but I found her freak-out in the bathroom at Chilton to be totally unnecessary. And her still being hung up on non-Chad-Michael-Murray-Tristan was kind of pathetic. 
  • Rory's random speech about music at Chilton was terrible too. As if the kids would really enjoy that?
  • I understand Lorelai missing Sookie, but the way she was just dismissing those celebrity guest chefs really irritated me.
  • Lorelai and Rory at the pool being catty and having those kids be their servants. Another ridiculous example of how they know they can get away with anything in Stars Hollow and have no problem taking advantage of it.
The Meh:
  • I kind of hoped Lane would be doing something more interesting. I guess it's nice that she and Zach and the band are still going, but it looks like she's still working at her mom's store so not much has changed...
  • I'm Team Jess, although I didn't have much hope that he and Rory would end up together. But I did hope he'd have a bigger role in these episodes. Oh, well. His last scene made it clear (to me at least) that he still has feelings for Rory, so who knows. There were a lot of mentions of things coming "full circle" which some people have extended to include making a parallel between Lorelai/Christopher/Luke and Rory/Logan/Jess, but I guess we will never know! Unless Amy Sherman-Palladino decides to reveal something...
  • Rory writing a book about her and her mom. Did this strike anyone else as very Little Women/Anne of Green Gables? (Or at least the movie versions.)
  • I thought Sookie's appearance was kind of a letdown, honestly. Not that her babbling was out of character, but maybe it was just too short?
  • April is still annoying. I guess that's fine...
The Good:
  • Happy ending for Luke and Lorelai! There was a lot of focus on who Rory would end up with, but my biggest shipper concern was mainly for L/L and I'm glad they did not screw that up. I really loved Luke's speech when he thought Lorelai was leaving him.
  • I thought I would hate Lorelai's "Wild" detour, but I actually thought it was pretty funny. If you hadn't read the book or seen the movie, I don't think it would have been nearly as entertaining though.
  • I thought they did a really good job with Emily and Lorelai's relationship and the aftermath of Richard's death. I'm glad Emily quit the DAR and moved out of her house. The running gag with Berta and her family and their language was too much for me though. I had the captions on, and they translated some of what Berta was saying just fine...
  • Rory kind of redeemed herself to me by the end. She realized what bad decisions she'd been making in her personal life, realized that she's not really cut out for journalism (which I kind of thought was obvious since like...Mitchum Huntzberger), and just generally seemed to be a bit more self aware.
  • The final four words. In some ways I kind of glad that the Palladinos weren't able to finish season 7 the way they wanted to. Having Rory pregnant and becoming a single mom at 32 is very different from having that happen at 22, and I think she's way more prepared for it now. Going back to the conversation with Christopher, it's clear she was trying to figure out if she should do what her mother did or if she should involve the father more. 
Odds and Ends:
  • Loved the cameos from Lauren Graham's Parenthood co-stars Jason Ritter and Peter Krause (also Lauren Graham's real-life boyfriend), as the park rangers. Unfortunately Mae Whitman's was kind of lame.
  • Why mention that Luke is friends with Kiefer Sutherland and not be able to have Kiefer Sutherland make a cameo? Major letdown!
  • I'm sad that Paris and Doyle were getting a divorce, but I did find it amusing that they wrote in Danny Strong's real-life success as a screenwriter.
  • Michel was hilarious, I'd forgotten how much I liked him.
  • Paul Anka and Petal were pretty cute.
  • Rory quoted Faith from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. This made me happy.
  • Mr. Kim exists!!

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