I loved the Gilmore Girls. There… I said it, and I don’t even have my skirt on yet. Early in their first year, a buddy told me about this mother-daughter show where pop culture references flew fast and furious, including multiple references to Mojo (the greatest music magazine ever!), the Ramones, Sonic Youth and The Bangles. How could I not watch? The theme song was an updated version of Tapestry’s “Where You Lead” featuring real life mother-daughter Carole King and Louise Goffin.
This exhilarating version of the show probably lasted four years, with the last 3 seasons being very hit and miss. But the hits kept my wife and me coming back for more. The series was always at its very best when it concentrated on the three main characters – Lorelai, Rory and Luke, and to a lesser extent Lorelai’s folks, Emily and Richard. The initial appealing quirkiness of all the Stars Hollow locals quickly wore thin and we’d often fast forward through scenes featuring Taylor, Kirk or Sally Struthers’ braying Babette.
But Lorelai and Rory were terrific characters and their intimate bond was universally recognizable. I’ll miss their Friday night dinners with Emily and Richard, their constant snack food jones, their playful verbal sparring… and yes, I know, turn in my “guy” I.D. badge at the next meeting.
From a series that featured some amazingly crisp dialogue , here’s my top ten lines/scenes from the series finale:
1. Emily to Lorelai as she tries to convince her to open a spa adjacent to the inn; “Spas are exploding!”. Lorelai: “Sounds dangerous”.
2. Luke conspiring with Suki to organize a surprise graduation party for Rory ... and Suki’s reaction.
3. Rory: “What kind of reporter freaks about leaving their mom? Lane: “The lucky kind.”
4. Lorelai tucking Rory one last time… every parent stares that fastball down.
5. Lorelai to Rory as they see the makeshift tent: “I think you’re gonna get to say goodbye to everybody”.
6. Richard to Lorelai at the party: “I don’t think this is all for Rory. I think this party is a testament to you, Lorelai, and the home you’ve created here. It takes a remarkable person to inspire all of this.” (Ahhh… I’m getting a little verklempt.)
7. Rory to Lorelai at the party: To my mom… who is everything to me. (You too Patty.)
8. Lorelai to Emily as she tries to duck the spa question: “Why don’t we just talk about it Friday night… at dinner?” (Reminded me of Lucy as she spied Elliott Garfield’s guitar “He is coming back!)
9. Emily to Rory: “It’s an honor to be your grandmother, Rory Gilmore” (Must have been a bad pollen day, cause my allergies were making my eyes watery.)
10. Luke to Lorelai: “I just want to see you happy”. And of course, at this moment, a perfectly placed pop song – “Inside Out” by The Mighty Lemon Drops plays to fade out – “You can’t stop my heart from turning inside out / Try to stop my world from turning inside out”
And then, finally, fittingly, in a 2007 update of a Norman Rockwell painting, the girls order their usual greasy breakfast of eggs, bacon, hash browns and pancakes as the camera frames the three of them – Lorelai, Rory and Luke – one last time.