“Gilmore Girls” Returns to Massive Following in Revival

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Even with seven years, 153 episodes and countless cups of coffee, it seems fans haven’t had enough of those quirky Connecticut girls Lorelai and Rory, more commonly known as the Gilmore Girls. From first boyfriends to college applications and lots and lots of witty fast talk in between (and not to mention, more coffee), the mother-daughter team has accumulated a massive following. Nearly nine years later, Netflix has answered fan’s prayers and added to a pop culture phenomena with its revival series, “Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life.”

“‘Gilmore Girls’ is a favorite of many because of the brilliant writing and humor that’s used to tell a story about family, friends, community and the importance of coffee,” Michelle Santucci, senior, said.

Gilmore Girls takes place in the fictional town of Stars Hollow, Connecticut where Luke’s Diner is the go-to spot for breakfast – and coffee, of course. Kirk works as the assistant manger at Doose’s Market and a town hall meeting warrants lots of popcorn … or whatever Al’s Pancake World is serving that night.

Lorelai Gilmore (Lauren Graham), having run away from her rich and controlling parents, arrives in this storybook town as 16-year-old single mom. Hired as a maid for the Independence Inn, she works her way up to executive manager charming the rest of the town along the way. The series begins when her daughter, Rory Gilmore (Alexis Biedel), is a 16-year-old who has just been accepted into a pricey private school. Unable to pay for the school, Lorelai is forced to take out a loan from her parents, thus re-involving them in her life. The series follows the over-achieving Rory through high school and college (and her experiences with Dean, Jess and Logan – her much-discussed boyfriends) and – before the release of the Netflix revival – ended with her college graduation party.

"I love 'Gilmore Girls' because it's a great balance of comedy and drama while focusing on relationships, specifically that of mother and daughter. It's all tied together with the charm of a little, quirky town filled with memorable, lovable, weird characters," Jess Bowman, junior, said.

The entire series was written, created and occasionally directed by Amy Sherman Palladino and her husband David Palladino, famous for their heavy usage of rather obscure pop-culture references. The two were involved with every season, except for the last. Season 7, which ends the series, was written and produced by David S. Rosenthal. This upset many fans, especially because the two creators had very specific ideas about ending the series.

"Despite our best efforts to return and ensure the future of ‘Gilmore Girls’ for years to come, we were unable to reach an agreement with the studio and are therefore leaving when our contracts expire at the end of this season," the official statement read, according to TV Guide.

Disappointed fans, however, got their wish when Netflix picked up the series – they were also sure to pick up the Palladino tag-team. Amy and David are back, each writing two of the four episodes. The revival, titled a “Year in the Life,” is itself a pop culture reference: the title of each episode, named after a season, cites the Carole King song “You’ve Got a Friend.” The original theme song, “Where You Lead,” was also by King, who has had numerous cameos on the show, not to mention in the revival. The revival is full of surprise cameos, such as Sutton Foster, Paul Anka and Alex Kingston, just to name a few.

"'Gilmore Girls' has been a staple in my family and always gives us time to bond over something we all enjoy. It's a show that's offered comfort through the toughest times in my life," Sarah Gallopo, junior, said.

The revival begins approximately ten years after Rory’s graduation from Yale at the end of the seventh and final season. Rory, who has only found odd jobs as a journalist, is completely lost, while Lorelai finds herself unsure of her relationship with Luke Danes (Scott Patterson). The storyline, still jam-packed with references galore (and coffee) follows the two as they deal with aging.  

One of the highlights of the revival, arguably, is the development of a third Gilmore Girl: Emily Gilmore. Although she has always carried the Gilmore name, she has always served as an adversary for the series. In the revival, however, her individuality is developed as fans get to see a more independent Emily, who likes the other girls and is searching for herself as she grows older.

The four episodes, “Winter,” “Spring,” “Summer” and “Fall,” each run approximately an hour and a half and have all been available to stream on Netflix since Nov. 25. With the futures of the beloved girls hanging in the air and a surprise final four words, fans have jumped to binge-watch all four episodes this holiday season. As the Gilmores would say, when it comes to catching up with the Stars Hallow natives: life’s short. Watch fast.