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SPOILERS Reaction to Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life

As a rabid Gilmore Girls fan, I found both the idea and reality of a revival series exhillerating. After watching, while inescapably having some critiques of the show as a whole — the entirely too long and seemingly unneccessary Musical in “Summer” for example — I walked away satisfied. Months before releasing, actors and writers alike emphasized the importance of the “last four words” in the series and fans obsessively waited November 25th with coffee and junk food by their side. 

While shocked specifically at the ending of the revival, I was mostly upset with other peoples reactions. I have seen article after article both criticizing the last scene and/or demanding that there be another series in the works. I understand this reaction, but in this article hope to provide some needed optimism amongst the disappointment and frustration felt by some Gilmore Girls fans.

If you have not finished the series or seen the show at all, STOP READING NOW — spoilers await.

Rory’s Adulthood is not disappointing

At 32, Rory does not have the stability of her mother. Season 1 of the original series opens with a 32 year old Lorelai, and while her professional life is stable it is important to remember that for Lorelai, her career has not taken off yet. The creation of the Dragonfly for Lorelai is Rory’s “The Gilmore Girls” book. Journalism in general offers less security than other professions: Rory may not be Christiane Amanpour, but as a fan I would have found this more disappointing than the reality of her character in “A Year in the Life”. Rory has never really struggled. Her entire life was planned out from before the beginning of the series as if she were a machine. With the exception of her time away from Yale in Season 6, her luck, connections/family, and unnatural drive make her unstoppable. “A Year in the Life” Rory Gilmore is refreshing: She is human, she does make mistakes, her love life is a mess. I see memes everywhere on the internet saying things like “At ___ years old, JK Rowling was broke, Tina Fey was working at the YMCA, Oprah just got fired as a news reporter, Walt Disney was filing for bankruptcy…etc”. If we can cut real life people slack, we should be able to do the same for a fictional character. 

Lorelai and Luke gives my heart hope

If your eyes were dry for the last 10 minutes of “Fall”, you might have trouble processing emotion. Luke’s long and scared rant in the kitchen when he thinks Lorelai is leaving him, and his face when she tells him that she wants to get married is the perfect lead up to their elopement. The town square and gazebo (of course decorated by Kirk) made the last scene beautiful: this is the way it was meant to be. 

Jess’s Longing Stare

“So then, you’re over that, right?” “Yes, long over”. No one is convinced by Luke and Jess’s conversation about Rory near the end of the revival. Jess’s long desperate stare just after, confirms this. While some think that Jess’s presence in the revival was not enough, I believe that it gives the right amount of hope for the two characters. Jess is the only ex boyfriend that is able to be in Rory’s life. The tension between Rory and Jess echos tensions between an early Lorelai and Luke. We don’t need to know exactly how and when or even if Jess and Rory get together — we know that they will at the very least never completely be out of each other’s lives. 

The Final Four Words

“Mom, I’m pregnant”. This is the main cause of everyone’s upset. “Too much of a cliffhanger!” “Who’s baby is it?” “This means there will be a new season! There has to be!”. Rory’s shocking last line has many fans in an uproar, yet knowing the last words makes previous scenes clearer: Rory’s visit to Christopher, the parting words between Rory and Logan. All of these things set Rory up to finally be in a position of independence and closure. She knows that she needs to remember everything from her life in order to prepare herself for the new Gilmore. This process does not need to be captured for an audience — we have already seen the cycle happen once in its entirety. The words “Mom, I’m pregnant” become less of dramatic cliffhanger to continue the series and more of a much needed closure.

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Hi! I'm the Campus Correspondent for Ithaca College's Her Campus chapter and a double major in English and Politics (International Studies). I'm an equestrian, a lover of music and dance, and an aspiring writer and avid reader. While my long term goal is to teach political theory at the college level, I am planning to enter the workforce for a few years hopefully continuing to read, write, and edit. Her Campus has been my home since my freshman year, and it brings me so much joy to continue to write and run our chapter in my last year at school.
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