“I smell snow”… – Lorelai Gilmore
Proceed at your own risk, spoilers for Winter under the cut
When “Gilmore Girls” originally ran on The WB in the early ‘aughts, it characterized itself with the fast-talking, mother-daughter duo of Lorelai and Rory Gilmore (Lauren Graham and Alexis Bledel) in an impactful way. Audiences hadn’t seen banter the likes of what GG gave and it showed in the heaps of accolades critics gave it. Much of that magic and spark was due to showrunners (and creators) Amy Sherman-Palladino and Dan Palladino. Their creativity, drive and ambition made the “Gilmore Girls” machine an unstoppable force. And then they left.
And then we were subjected to seasons six and seven.
I’m not NOT saying that those seasons were unenjoyable and I’m not NOT saying that those seasons bore no relation to Gilmore except in name only. What I am saying, is the spark and magic of the Palladinos was gone…and the show suffered because of that.
But here we are now; “Winter” has come and it’s a good thing.
Netflix’s revival of “Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life” brought the whole gang back together (including the Palladinos) and the result is whimsical, nostalgic and…perfect. “Winter” brings the town of Stars Hollow back into our hearts and televisions ten years after the original’s series finale. Lorelai is successfully running The Dragonfly Inn, living with longtime love Luke and being the funny, sarcastic, caring resident of Stars Hollow we’re used to seeing. Rory, in her early thirties and a woman of the world, is a jetsetting writer with articles appearing in The Atlantic and The New Yorker. We can already sense the deviation: Lorelai and Rory are as close as ever but that closeness is hard to quantify when Rory is in London or New York or Austria.
“Winter” is here and Lorelai smells snow and with snow comes Rory. In a brief 36 hour trip home, Rory (and her boxes) come home to Stars Hollow. She’s given up her Brooklyn apartment so the idea of a vagabond lifestyle honestly applies. It’s odd to link that word to Rory Gilmore: valedictorian, overachiever, all-around type-A personality. In her brief visit, the Gilmore girls visit the Gilmore matron, Emily. In true GG fashion, the drama and the comedy hurl toward each other at lightning speed.
We knew with the unexpected death of Edward Herrmann (Richard Gilmore) that the show would need to address his passing in a sensitive manner. I had no worries that the writers would provide a moving, eloquent and emotional expression and I wasn’t disappointed. The struggle of grief on Emily’s (Kelly Bishop) face had me in my feelings; the scene between Emily and Lorelai screaming at one another in their sadness at Richard’s repast was…tough. It was an all-too human response to a devastating loss and the show handled it beautifully.
With death there is also life and “Winter” touches on the subject of why Lorelai and Luke never had children together. It boils down to the couple saying “I thought you didn’t,” and exploring surrogacy. In a PLATINUM role, Paris Geller (Lisa Weil) runs the top fertility clinic in the country and plans on giving the couple the elite treatment at the friends and family discount. With all the talk of top breeders, Luke gets cold feet and decides against a child with Lorelai. The disappointment and disconnect between the two is evident as Lorelai tells Paris they’ve opted out of surrogacy.
“Winter” is here, Lorelai smells snow and Emily and she are headed to therapy…
A Year In The Life is now streaming on Netflix