As I mentioned in my last Watching Lately post, I’m a relative newcomer to Gilmore Girls but that didn’t make me any less excited for the new miniseries on Netflix. 10 years after the original series ended, Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life sees us return to Stars Hollow to catch up with all our favourite characters (and I really do mean all, they did an excellent job of getting just about everyone to make an appearance which is pretty unusual for a remake/reunion). There will inevitably be spoilers in this post so you might want to skip it for now if you haven’t watched the new episodes yet! Go have a Netflix binge and then come straight back here to discuss, please.
One thing I really loved about A Year in the Life was the way the episodes were set out – one for each season – which gave it plenty of classic Stars Hollow charm and managed to fit lots of events and characters into the episodes in a meaningful way. It felt like absolutely nothing had changed in the town which, although unrealistic in terms of the real world, was exactly what I had hoped for. Taylor was still insisting on ridiculous town meetings, Kirk was still making weird short movies, Lane and the band were still playing in Hep Alien and Michel was still dosing out sarcastic one-liners at The Dragonfly Inn.
I also loved Emily’s storyline – she’s one of my favourite characters in the series (alongside Kirk, of course) and she totally stole all her scenes. It was so nice to see her character progress from an “evil witch” stereotype at the beginning of the original series to a woman finally breaking out and being able to live her own life at the end of A Year in the Life. The scenes at Richard’s funeral and Lorelai’s phonecall to Emily were SO EMOSH.
It was also nice to see that Luke and Lorelai were still together as he was always my top choice for her – Max Medina who? The wedding scene at the end was also beautifully shot and completely suited the characters, I’m glad they finally got their wedding however-many years later and were able to do it their way. I also loved seeing Jess and Luke’s relationship progress – I was never a fan of teenage Jess (in fact, all of Rory’s boy-related decisions were pretty awful), but as an adult I was really impressed by his character and how he had grown up into a much more well-rounded person.
The thing that disappointed me the most was Rory’s storyline. I’ve never been a particularly big fan of her character, especially during the Logan years, but I had hoped that her character would have progressed during the 10 years since she left college to pursue her dream career. Her storyline (drifting from job to job, making terrible boyfriend decisions, those last four words) would have made a lot more sense if this had been series 8 rather than a reunion with a 10 year gap in-between. Rory from the first few seasons was so smart and driven that she (and Lorelai) would never have let herself still be floundering around without any direction in her 30s. As a 20-something this would have made a lot more sense – even the “perfect” Rory is allowed to make mistakes – but spending the whole of A Year in the Life like this just seemed unrealistic for her character.
Saying that, I kind of get why it panned out this way. Rory has always been so close to Lorelai, and seen her as her biggest role model, so it was inevitable that she would follow in her mother’s footsteps. The ending was pretty abrupt and left us all wanting more, but perhaps we don’t need to see another series because we already know what happens. Rory becomes the fiercely independent single mother, Logan becomes her Christopher, Jess becomes her Luke and the Stars Hollow Gazette becomes her Independence Inn. The circle of life and all that, you know?
What did you think of the new Gilmore Girls revival series? LET’S DISCUSS!