‘Gilmore Girls’ Theories and Ending, Explained

Where you lead, I will follow
Anywhere that you tell me to
If you need, you need me to be with you
I will follow where you lead

If you can’t help but hum the entire song, welcome to the Gilmore Girls fan club. This song pretty much explains the theme of the show. It doesn’t happen very often than a show gets a revival after years of going off the air. Gilmore Girls’ ardent fans were thrilled when Netflix officially announced to drop a long-awaited six-hour long revival A Year In The Life. With Netflix taking over, this show picked up a whole lot of viewers in addition to the ones who couldn’t help but binge-watched it time and again.

This show first went on air in 2000, and I didn’t watch this show up until last year. One episode into this show and I fell in love with the Gilmore Girls. Each season of the series comprises of about 16 hours of wit, emotions, romance and rapid references to movies, bands and books which makes it more enthralling, all in all. Whether it was Lorelai’s witty comebacks, Rory’s compassion, Sookie’s imposing cooking skills, Luke’s Diner, Kirk’s naivety, Michelle’s abrasive behavior mixed with his exasperating accent, Emily’s tactics, Star Hollow’s town meetings or the conviction and honesty with which the show’s creator, Amy Sherman-Palladino let us in on their lives, I found myself more and more drawn and invested in this show. You may have witnessed tones of mother-daughter relationships before, but this one manages to stick with you. With all honesty, I was a tad too envious of how amazing this mother-daughter duo is. Gilmore Girls is one of the well-structured and wittily written shows you don’t want to miss out.

Let us give you a clear-cut forewarning that this article is surely going to ruin your suspense including the famous last four words if you haven’t watched Gilmore Girls revival already. Having established that, let’s go ahead and begin with this article.

The Plot

The show is a well-written mixture of drama and comedy genres. Gilmore Girls gloriously manages to serve a wide range of emotions, characters and their situations. The Gilmore Girls follows the heart-warming story of a single mother Lorelai Gilmore (played by Lauren Graham) and her daughter, Rory Gilmore (played by Alexis Bledel), whom she named after her but to avoid any confusion she prefers calling her Rory. They live in a dreamy & fictional town, Stars Hollow in Connecticut. This is a sweet, richly textured town filled with love, slightly hysterical, quirky yet kind inhabitants who look after each other in good times and in bad. Lorelai and Rory are more best friends than mother and daughter. They share each and every detail of their day-to-day life with each other with intricate details.

The first season of the show is sweeping set-up of not just the two main protagonists, coffee-loving 32-year-old Lorelai and her bookworm 16-year-old daughter Rory but their entire town of Stars Hollow, their thorough family relationships and the show’s distinctive quick-fire humor filled with savage punch lines.

Lorelai has always been a rebellious, fierce, sturdy and strong individual who had already established that she needs no one to take care of her but herself. Her parents, Emily Gilmore (Kelly Bishop) and Richard Gilmore (Edward Herrmann) are high-class, affluent and sophisticated people who have high standards. They’ve always had a bitter-sweet relationship going on with their daughter as she always felt suffocated and nauseating in their peculiar superiority and them towing her around telling her that she needs to change her attitude towards everything.

Amidst it all, Lorelai gets pregnant at a mere age of 16, with his high-school boyfriend, Christopher’s baby. Lorelai and Christopher’s families lay down a proposal for them to get married, in response to which Lorelai adamantly refuses the offer considering how silly it was of them to marry two immature teenagers who have their own paths and ambitions to follow. As soon as Lorelai gives birth to Rory, she runs away from her judgmental, cosseted lifestyle leaving her childhood house and parents behind to start afresh. She heads straight to the Stars Hollow and builds her own career and life along with Rory’s.

Sixteen years have passed ever since, and now Rory has grown into a sweet, kind, smart and ambition girl whom everyone adores. She has great determination to turn her big dreams of attending a top university and becoming an international foreign correspondent, into reality. Thus comes the significant tweak building this show up. In order to live this dream, Lorelai wishes to send Rory to an esteemed private school called Chilton, but she doesn’t own that kind of money to afford the big fat fee. As every other option seem to have disappointed her, she considers asking her parents for paying Rory’s school. Emily and Richard, who long for having a close relationship with their beloved granddaughter, agree upon it on one condition that Lorelai and Rory will both join them for a family dinner every Friday night. They see this opportunity to mend their relationship with their daughter Lorelai.

Emily tries her best to be involved in Lorelai’s life, and apart from customary Friday night dinners, she keeps up with them every now and then. As the show progresses, we see these characters developing and unravelling layer by layer. Dinner after dinner, they begin to bond with each other. Rory becomes the candy of the eye of her grandparents’. At times, it becomes incredibly annoying for Lorelai to be around the epitome of perfection, her mother. All sorts of tensions for the rest of the show are set up in the first season. From being a teenager to a responsible adult, from being a high-school drop out to co-owning and managing the Independence Inn on her, from being a teen to being a mother of one, she comes a long way.

As the show progresses season after season, we anticipate Lorelai to find the love of her life, but her tumultuous love department has always been rooting against her. She continues on her ceaseless quest of love, but she doesn’t seem to have a hang of it. She is consistently torn between giving it a shot with Luke Danes (Scott Patterson), who runs the Luke’s Diner where Rory and Lorelai spend a whole chunk of time every day, or a series of other eligible men, including Christopher (Rory’s Dad). Rory follows the lead and has a tough time dealing with her love interests. We watched high-school Rory hustling around over Dean Forester and Jess Mariano during the first three seasons. Later on, she happens to have a first real grown-up relationship with Logan Huntzberger, Yale’s suavest playboy.

Gilmore Girls flawlessly lets us in on a roller-coaster journey of their lives. We don’t just jump straight to see Rory graduating from her college, but Amy Sherman-Palladino makes sure to take us through the ups and highs Lorelai and Rory stumble upon ever since Rory was 16. We witness Rory’s transition from a public school in Stars Hollow to the prestigious Chilton School and her lifelong ambition of studying at an Ivy League college, Harvard (which later on becomes Yale) pursuing her major in Journalism.

One of the best things about Gilmore Girls is that they managed to keep us hooked by making every small character reappear throughout the run of the show. This quality gave the viewers a real sense of continuity to the storytelling. We have Rory’s best friend, Lame Kim (Keigo Agena), whose strict mother would constantly detest Lane’s secret defiant spirit and love of rock music. Sookie (Melissa McCarthy) is a terrific chef at the Independence Inn and is Lorelai’s best friend who’s also her partner in running their own inn. Paris Geller (Liza Weil) is Rory’s nemesis who slowly passes for a friend as they graduate from Chilton.

There are certain traits which set this show apart from the rest. We often see Lorelai, Rory, Lane and a few others to use pop and cultural references to go with a rather rapid exchange of witty and humorous dialogues which sometimes make us hit the pause button and look it up on the Internet. This trademark makes the style of Gilmore Girls unique and fascinating. The scriptwriters will usually have to work their way up to write more content per episode as these quick dialogues hardly take seconds to be delivered on screen. Another element that characterises the style of the series is a specific taste for the retro and old times, in general: be it movies, TV shows, music, their costumes or their set decorations. These are a few unexplored aspects that other shows don’t usually depict.

The Ending

Gilmore Girls Revival: A Year In The Life was telecast nine years after going off the air. Fans have waited years to finally find out what are those final four words that they’ve heard the fuss about. Are you ready? Here they are:

Rory: “Mom?”
Lorelai: “Yeah?”
Rory: “I’m pregnant.”

The minute these words came on screen, we were left unanswered with numerous questions. As sudden, controversial, potentially infuriating as it was, if you give it a thought, it was fitting to the theme of the show. It’s not a secret that Amy Sherman-Palladino always meant to end the show with an abrupt, unresolved tweak. Let’s have a look at the facts why this ending made a lot of sense.

The Gilmore world has always dropped such jaw-dropping unexpected pregnancies throughout the run of the show. We’ve befallen Lorelai, Sookie, Sherry, Lane, Luke’s sister Liz and his ex Anna Nardini. Surprise pregnancies have always far outnumbered planned ones, and the women involved always plan on going aboard with carrying the babies to term. Childbearing is quite inevitable in this world, and its consequences are what shape up the most of its show. Lorelai had all sorts of rebellious, lofty aspirations but she chose to become a teen mom and raising Rory in an environment that was poles apart from her own upbringing. That, indeed, was the biggest act of rebellion she ever enacted. Lane getting pregnant with the twins gets in the way of her dreams of rock stardom. Sherry and Christopher were broken up, but with her pregnancy, she decides to give it another shot with Christopher. In the end, it all worked out for the best. These mommies were pretty happy how it turned out for them. Gilmore Girls has successfully managed to showcase how childbearing affects women’s lives honestly.

In the revival, we see Paris choosing fertility as her line of work and end up getting pregnant so by accident presumably. The path that led Rory to those shocking last four words also seemed apt. In every conceivable manner, this ending indeed as fitting as it gets. It fortifies the solidity between the original seven seasons of the show and the revival. It reaches a full circle by beginning and ending with an unplanned pregnancy. Rory had always looked up to her mother, who was half her present age when she had Rory. Rory and her ambitions have always been nurtured and well-protected by Lorelai. Never did Lorelai ever minced words about how she wanted Rory to take different paths as she stroked out on her own just fine.

Though, it was quite earth-shattering to watch that Rory didn’t turn out to be the same ambitious, tenacious & confident girl that she was supposed to be, given her past track. She chose to have flings despite having a boyfriend and showed up to job interviews without preparing at all, which was so unlike the Rory we knew before this revival.

If you think about it, it’s quite a quick setup for another run. So perhaps this ending wasn’t entirely disappointing because of Rory’s unexpected pregnancy.

Alternate Ending (Fan Theory)

Gilmore Girls’ ending felt frustrated, and the emotional payoff felt unjust. There have been many fan theories coming to surface as the climax rolled up. The revival left a cliffhanger and left us wondering who the father is. Of all the fan theories, the one shared on Twitter by Jessica A. Kent went viral and had been doing its rounds all over the Internet ever since it came out. It, indeed, felt so perfect that it had me in tears just imagining it to be the ending. Here it goes:

“Lorelai is working in her office at the Dragonfly late at night when there comes a ring at the desk bell. She wanders out to find a teenage girl with a baby in her arms, looking a little frantic. “Can I stay here?”

Did you feel the chills while reading this? I sure did. As sterling, as it sounds, it’s a shame that we’ll never be able to live these moments onscreen. If it were to be the ending, Lorelai would be able to give a young woman the support that she had received when she turned up at the Independence Inn with baby Rory in her arms. This alternate ending would also be featuring two of the most recurring motifs of the show- pregnancy and single motherhood. It appeals more emotionally than the one where Rory tells her mother that she’s pregnant.

Albeit Sherman-Palladino adds that she’s open to making more episodes of the show, but the prospect seems like an unlikely event as her yet another show, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel picked up marvellously and won Golden-Globe award for the same. I guess, the odds of us ever witnessing this alternate ending, are pretty slim.

Final Word

Despite what you might think or say, Gilmore Girls did manage to stay close to our hearts over all these years. It’s our eternal love that prompted Amy Sherman-Palladino to come up with the revival of the show. We cried and laughed with these characters when we saw Emily’s innocent attempt of bonding with Lorelai over a spa appointment, when Emily & Richard break into tears while they proudly watch Lorelai graduate, when we watched Rory deliver her heart-touching graduation speech, when someone as stone-hearted as Luke is blubbering after her speech. There are numerous other moments in the show that makes us fall more and more in love with the Gilmore Girls. If the audience didn’t like the show for one episode and loved the rest of it, it still passes for a phenomenal show. Speaking of the ending, having another Gilmore in the world wouldn’t be so bad either, no? Oy with the poodles already!

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