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Edited by Sanjana Hira

 

The year is 2016. Everyone is going through a ‘Gossip Girl’ phase. Next thing you know, people are talking and behaving like they’re champagne drinking, bratty trust fund teenagers (and there’s nothing wrong with it if you're into that). I too went through that phase and safe to say, it was a lengthy and wild one. The time came to re-watch it once again and this time, Netflix was my partner in crime. Gone were the days of recording the show on TV and waking up early to catch a glimpse of the episode before school. Now, I had a service that was available 24x7 to feed my addiction of behaving like an adult.

I typed the letter ‘G’ into Netflix’s search bar and the first recommendation that popped up was something called ‘Gilmore Girls.’ The name sounded interesting but the show seemed ancient to me.. 2001 is basically the stone age. The year of low waist jeans and the release of Ocean’s Eleven. Simpler times. Nevertheless, I clicked on it and from there began my mental transformation. Sounds dramatic I know, but hang on.

If you, like the majority of people I know, haven't watched Gilmore Girls, here is a gist of the show. It follows a mother-daughter duo and explores their very comfortable and close relationship. They talk about everything under the sun. From the mother Lorelai’s failed relationships to her daughter Lorelai's (who was better known as Rory - they were not very creative with the names) problems at her new expensive school.Very clićhed problems and the plot of the show sounded relatively mundane so why and how did it change my life? 

Lorelai Gilmore, the mother, in my opinion, was the glue that held the whole show together and made it what it was — witty and spicy. She is the reason for my undying love towards this fictional family. In the first episode itself, Lorelai is portrayed as this young, carefree woman who couldn't care less of what the world thought of her. This sounds like the personality trait of every female movie character now but there’s something unique about Lorelai -- something fresh. Something we hadn't seen sixteen or eighteen years ago. Her choice of clothing and music was outrageously unconventional. In my opinion, she would be the poster child for ‘Rebel with a Cause.’ Watching her, I felt empowered and free. I felt like I could express myself in any way possible; through my clothes, or the music I listened to, the sky was my limit. We’ve been told as children that if we sway from the path set for us we will often end up confused and neglected . However, Lorelai Gilmore showed me different. She was all set to be an heiress. Her parents were filthy rich and if she had followed the path they mapped out for her, she would have probably been married to another trust fund baby, attending coming out parties and organising luncheons. However, this lifestyle was the opposite of the life she desired. She, like most of us, craved freedom and wanted to break free from the robotic cycle of the 21st century. She made something of herself even if it was something as small as the manager of an inn. I saw a bit of myself in her. We, in an Indian society are all born with our fates almost handed to us (even as literally as a paatri or a birth chart which reveals our destiny) and hence, to break away from that path and be ‘independent’ is a daunting move. Now that we’ve got Lorelai’s business side covered, let’s move on to the lighter things. The show’s core is Lorelai’s relationship with her daughter Rory. Lorelai had Rory when she was sixteen, hence the age gap between the two is almost negligible. Their fun, caring and charismatic personalities towards each other gave me the much-needed push I required to be a better child, to say the least . I, too, am an only child like Rory (just not as good looking ) and my relationship with my mother was roughly shaped by Rory’s relationship with her mother. It taught me to be more open and forgiving. Parents make mistakes too and I was alien to the idea until Gilmore Girls targeted the topic. 

I truly believe that our ideas are shaped by a lot of what we see on television and upon asking a few more friends who had watched the show, they were willing to admit the same. They too had improved or made an attempt to improve their relationship with their respective guardians. With so much going on in the world right now, I would like nothing more than to re-watch a show as easygoing as Gilmore Girls. Looking at the cosy relationships, the constant flow of notable literature and music and the constant love escapades shown on the show fills my heart with warmth. All this may sound cheesy since it is, after all, a television show set in a fictional town with fictional characters, but for me, it’s a celebration of life - the good, the bad and the ugly. An idea of how you aren't defined by the family you are born into or the person you love. You are what you make yourself to be. Growing up, I always wanted to be like Lorelai - balanced .She taught me that it was okay to make mistakes and because of that, I feel like I am a better person today. 

Now I know that this is not a  New York Times review, but it is the raw and uncut version of how a TV show can change your life. 

A 19 year old who enjoys fantasy tv shows, books and the occasional 'ria'lity check.
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