Longer than my normal posts, this is for all the Gilmore Girls lovers out there who just can’t let it go.
Of all the “what if’s” in life, I occasionally dwell on the Gilmore Girls Revival. I looked forward to this with great anticipation. It is hard to imagine being more disappointed. A dated topic, I know, but relevant for those who keep going back to the series.
The Revival seemed mostly about trying to fit in all the cameos. No easy task.
Rory changed a lot in the original series. It could be understandable that she might put reading for pleasure aside during the demanding days of college, or even during her personal crisis. That now, ten years later, she hardly cracks a book, shows she is not the smart, independent girl we met in the first four years of the series. Where is her can-do spirit that made the DAR event a success and got the Yale paper out on time? In the Revival, she has no personality, convictions, or motivation at all. She is part of a lost generation, yes, but this is Rory beyond recognition.
There is too little plot for such long episodes. These are double the length, so presumably double the depth or double the events. Neither happens. Gags were given 20-minute time slots (Kirk film, musical) and potential plot points were reduced to gags (taking over the paper).
The characters were unlikeable. This is common in edgy television. Some of the love went out with the pool water.
Below is my proposal for what could have happened instead, aligned with the work others already did.
Episode One: Winter
Lorelei and Rory realize their life is far from their ideals. They are introduced as unfulfilled. Emily questions meaning and life after Richard’s death. She engages in KonMari, but instead of jeans and t-shirt, she goes for ethical minimalism. Lorelei talks her down. The town holds Starlight festival and Lorelei wishes they would have married. Rory see’s Jess and thinks of what life could have been like. The show reveals she is sleeping with Logan even though he is engaged. Let’s throw in a line, “I’ve already done this before.”
Episode Two: Spring
Taylor decides to host a town revival, got an in with a major preacher who is traveling to another big town for a bigger revival. Hep Alien gets the band back together (references to Blues Brothers). Rory wakes up to see how she has been selfishly living for herself. Lorelei decides to take a chance on opening an annex for the inn (have faith). Emily sells her house and quits the DAR finding both meaningless. The episode ends with Rory picking up a book with coffee sitting by a tree. She discovers her first true love in this way. Meanwhile, in the distance, Luke proposes to Lorelei.
Episode Three: Summer
Editor of the Stars Hollow Gazette dies. Rory becomes the editor to stop it from closing. It pays something but not much considering the credit card debt she has. Kirk’s mom dies. Lorelei is too busy with the annex to help. Rory steps up. Emily moves to a beach house to give tours in an art museum (background is art history). Luke and Lorelei marry at a simple town wedding, realizing sometimes dreams come quietly. Rory and Jess talk all night after the wedding and share a romantic kiss.
Episode Four: Fall
Looking ahead, Luke and Lorelei see Paris about surrogacy, realize it’s not for them, are willing to live with their choices. Rory sees the blond guy to break it off. He resists her decision offering a great position as his mistress. They kiss. After some time, she leaves citing actual values about being a decent person. Realizing she must pay the bills and cannot live at her mother’s house, Rory decides to work at the diner while Luke helps with the restaurant at the inn. She moves into Luke’s apartment. Lorelei eats an apple and wonders if she’s pregnant (menopause has not completed). The episode ends with Rory telling her mom she’s pregnant, just as the original series creator wanted.
What makes this different? In a way, Netflix seems to live in a world in which God and morality are dead. The original series did not do much better. Rory was not raised with explicit values, so in order to have a meaningful life they need to come from somewhere. Lorelei’s values were self-reliance. This answers the weakness of that by revival inspired faith. Rory needs to “come back to her senses.” With the revival, she can make it to the contemplation stage of change by realizing how she has fallen from where she once stood.
This approach does not forget who the characters are. In the real revival, the town was sided with Taylor and was against Lorelei on the musical. This would never have happened. Taylor was for gay pride, but his character was a stodgy, old-fashioned, prude. He would have gone the revival route for profit more easily than a liberal route of a gay pride parade.
The creator wanted Lorelei and Luke to have a wedding, but instead, cue The Office repeat. Here, viewers and characters get the wedding, but life does not end there.
We overcome Rory’s silver spoon condition. We enhance the creator’s desire to make things full circle. Realizing her spoiled life is vapid, Rory will work her way up with living a normal life (working the diner) and bring a paper to modern times (making the paper more than just a gag, make it an actual plot point).
Hindsight is 20/20 and it is a lot easier to write a plotline when you are only revising someone else’s script. So please, consider this just for amusement.