Stars Hollows Revisited - A Gilmore Girls Revival review
It is a powerful ending, which brings tears to the eyes of all the fans of the series, and makes this journey worth taking. If only those four words weren’t uttered a moment later…
In the Red Dwarf novels, the characters get addicted to a virtual reality game, which “allows” them to live in their ideal place from movies, books, or their imagination. The main character chooses Bedford Falls, the little town in which the “It’s a Wonderful Life” James Steward movie is set, but all of us Gilmore Girls fans, would no doubt go for Stars Hollows, the fictional town in Connecticut, with its quirky characters, its weird, made up festivals, and its abundance of Autumnal leaves.
When the Gilmore Girls revival was announced, we instantly found ourselves (via our well worn out DVDs) being transported to its square with the gazebo and Luke’s diner, and Al’s pancakes world, and the troubadour, and Kirk’s running about doing odd jobs that make no sense. It is a heartwarming world we have come to love, and being able to revisit it through the revival, was a completely unexpected delight for most of us. Gilmore Girls, was a series with the best “will they? / won’t they?” and the fastest, cleverest dialogue on Television, and some pretty spot on, as well as subtle observations about human nature, relationships, families and parenthood, ever seen on TV. Add to the mix the pop cultural references, the likeable characters (played by a stellar cast), the humour and the fashion sense, and you have something quite unique.
The revival was supposed to offer closure for the characters, as imagined by the creator of the series Amy Sherman-Palladino, who was not given the chance to do that, as she exited on the sixth season, leaving us with a seventh (and last) season that felt different, if not disappointing. When the creative nous of Amy Sherman-Palladino was taken out of the equation, the fast talking dialogues with their “His-Girl-Friday”-kind-of-pace, and the obscure pop cultural references, and the quirky sense of humor, started to sound awkward, and even let us face it, kind of stupid. The revival was never thought likely to happen, because in TV land, much like in real life, no matter how much you want and wish it, you can never really go back… But an attempt was made, and so sets were recreated, beloved actors were asked to step into the fictional universe they left behind almost ten years ago, and fans were rejoiced and prompted into anticipation, which was particularly focused on those last four words which were always meant to end the series in the “proper” manner, as conjured up by its creator. So we dusted off our old DVDs, and rewatched the stories we have come to love for one more time, getting ready for the finale. (The REAL finale. The good finale!) The stories about the little sleepy town of Stars Hollows and its weird inhabitants, and the uptight and elegant grandmother Emily (Kelly Bishop), the serious grandfather Richard (Edward Herrmann), but above all, the charismatic, fast talking caffeine addict Lorelai (an exceptional Lauren Graham) and her bookworm daughter Rory (Alexis Bledel) who are more friends than mother and daughter, and the seemingly misanthropic diner owner Luke (Scott Patterson) who secretly has a heart of gold, and one hell of a crash on Lorelai; Sookie (Melissa McCarthy) the whimsical chef and best friend to Lorelai, and Dean, Jess and Logan, the three boys who captivated Rory’s heart through the years, dividing us into teamDean, teamJess or teamLogan… (After all, Gilmore Girls is for sentimental and - I’m gonna say it - emotionally intelligent girls, what Games of Thrones is for Millennials, or StarTrek is for Trekkies…) And so we watched our DVDs again, and we counted days, till finally the revival was upon us, making us dive into sweet nostalgia and also on occasion, leaving us perplexed, hungry for more, and even at times, quite mad!
Richard Gilmore’s death (who was played by Edward Herrmann who died recently) drives the plot of the revival it seems, prompting the characters into introspection and even evolution. Lorelai’s seemingly totally random attempt to go on a hiking trip on her own, in order to reenact the Wild book (given that in Luke’s words there would be “nothing else involved, no Music festival or Hello Kitty booth”), is an example of that, and it turned out to be a brilliant plot twist. Finding herself at a crossroads, she just feels the need to “go away”. And it is less out of character than we might think at first: she did after all look for a dramatic escape in a similar manner in the past, on the day before her wedding with Max, when she went on to have a road trip to “anywhere”, rather than face her own ambivalence about her need to be worshipped by a guy who buys her a thousand daisies, which was conflicted with her need to live her life as she pleased, no questions asked / no demands made (or painful confrontations with the mirror)
When she goes to the mountain she was supposed to be climbing, she is being faced not with the realization that her relationship with Luke is in trouble, as we are let to believe at first, but with her ambivalence about her feelings for her father: her grief for his passing, as well as her pain for the turbulent relationship she had with him. She finally finds healing by focusing on the good memories of him, (sparse as they are) and by sharing the most precious among them with her mother. By doing that, she is emerged out of it as an adult! That’s how we all do it, (this business of growing up, of becoming real adults) anyway: by letting go of the ropes that keep us tied to the hurt child in us. We all have, after all, our own private version of the kid who is playing hide and seek, hoping to be discovered by the parent who has forgotten all about it, and flew to a hypothetical "Croatia"… Like we all have the adolescent in us who was ridiculed and alone, whose act of bravery or rebellion became the source of further pain. Lorelai here manages to heal that part of her heart, by remembering her dad’s better self. The versions of him she forgotten they existed, underneath the heavy layers of his authoritative nature and the years of disappointments and regrets. By remembering that one moment of kindness and fatherly love he expressed when she was hurting, she manages to reconstruct her father’ s image in her heart, and is therefore made able not just to heal her pain for his passing, but emerge out of it finally a “grown” woman. That is why she no longer needs to climb that mountain, do the “Wild” journey. She already had her epiphany, her moment of clarity and therefore her closure.
There are after all no perfect families out there. All families, if you look close enough, and long enough, are dysfunctional. (Some with more shouting, some with more pent-up, unexpressed pain) And all children are on some level hurt by their parents, and they in turn, eventually find themselves being disappointed by their kids; and all parents are on some level disappointed by their kids, while still being hurt by their own parents… It’s the damn circle of life baby, as Lorelai herself would say… How we all deal with these turbulent feelings, how we manage to hold on to our love for our families despite of the pain and the regrets and the disappointments, is what makes us adults. And Lorelai does it here, in her own overdramatic way that involves buying a plane ticket, staying for a night in a shady motel, packing up what seems to be the equivalent of a year’s provisions, drinking wine from a box with a bunch of strangers, losing her permit, attempting to sweet-talk her way out a jam, and then resigning, surrendering, and by doing that, reaching her epiphany... She takes the long way to it, but she does arrive there…
For those of you who think that the revival did not wrap up things up in a perfect bow, I kind think it did. The bow being not her wedding with Luke that followed soon after, but her reconciliation with her father’s memory, finding the inner strength to stop seeing him as the guy who rejected her for the entirety of her life (while he was by the way, more than lenient and generous with his love when it came to his granddaughter), and by focusing on the things that connected them, the – albeit - rare moments when he was not the stern patriarch who did everything by the book – the book whose pages she had spent her entire life tearing to pieces, the book she rejected and by doing that causing herself to be rejected by him as well - but the loving father who took her by the hand when she was hurting, and bought her a bagel, and sat with her in a dark movie theatre, watching Grease on a school day, just because she needed it. She is here also finding closure and healing in terms of her relationship with her mother: when she has that thought, when she remembers this incident, she doesn’t call Luke, or Rory, or Sookie, but her mother. By offering this story to her mother, she not only restores her father’s memory in her own heart, she is also apologizing for that thoughtless blunter at the funeral. She is extending her hand, telling her she is still part of the family. That blunter at the funeral was in fact a classic Lorelai moment: a grown woman who still needs to prove that “this was a cold household, these were bad parents, all of you are more concerned with appearances instead of substance, and me, I’m different, I'm better. I feel things, and I’m hurt and I have legitimate reasons to be hurt, plus I’m a rule breaker, so now watch me break your rules. Watch me be rude at the reception after my father’’s funeral. Watch me be Lorelai!”. At that moment, she was still the kid tearing up her lacy white dress, or escaping out of the window to meet with a boyfriend just to spite her parents. She was still the hurt girl, wanting to twist that knife onto her own side a little deeper. But by finding the strength to reconnect mentally, spiritually with the good in her father’s heart, she eventually become a woman. Still hurt by her parents, but also, reconciled with her own pain. Facing the realities of her past bravely, instead of making them guide her every step, which was meant to lead her always, always, away from her ancestral home.
Later, Lorelai’s wish to expand the Inn with the help of her mother, who offers the money in exchange for two weeks in Summer and one at Xmas, which she and Luke will have to spend with her in her new beach home, brings to mind the first episode and it feels like the full circle is complete, but somehow the “you need money” now uttered repeatedly by Emily, does not sound like an accusation anymore (as it did when uttered by her father on that first episode of the series), and Emily’s demand to have Lorelai spend time with her, doesn’t seem like blackmail anymore, and Lorelai's agreement to comply, finally has no bitter aftertaste. (Not a lot anyway...)
Her “mountain” epiphany also included her decision to marry Luke, and she does ask him (for the second time) to marry her, as soon as she returns home, and he gladly accepts after he gives her that heart warming, and full of angst “the-only-way-out-it’s-in-a-body-bag”-declaration-of-his-eternal-love speech, that I bet made every woman watching, reach for the tissue box. (He is one hell of a guy isn't he? After all what else could he be being created by a woman's mind?) Though admittedly, I fount it kind of annoying that sharing her life with the guy for so long, and going through what they have gone through, was not enough of a gesture, and a priest and a whole lot of flowers and pink fabric needed to be added, in order to make it legitimate and finally OK…. But this is a show that despite its subtle (and at times questionable) feministic sensibilities, has always seen marriage as the ultimate gesture, and the lack of it, a proof of failure, or a sign of trouble, what with the otherwise fiercely independent Lorelai of Season 6 having a complete meltdown on Lane’s wedding, and drunkenly declaring her fear that she might never get married like everybody else, or the Lorelai of season 7 breaking up with the reluctant to marry her Luke, with whom she was obviously in love, and right away getting married to Christopher, just because he WAS willing to marry her…
Rory on the other hand, is found at a different sort of crossroads, stranded, suspended as it were, between words. A child still trying to find comfort, a woman still struggling to find identity, a writer still searching for her own voice. She is apparently penniless, out of a job, out of a home, her possessions scattered in boxes from Lane’s home, to her mum’s, to her grandmother’ s. She even at some point returns to live with her mother, though she can’t even own up to the fact that she does, and on top of that, she day-drinks and has one-night stands and is also in a relationship with Paul, a man she obviously doesn’t love, care about, or even remember that he exists (why was this particular plot twist necessary I ask?!) and on top of that, cheats on him with Logan who incidentally happens to be engaged to be married with another woman…
This is the part of the story that upset the fans of the series the most I think. How come good-girl-Rory perfect-girl-Rory be a drifter, living “here and there”, unemployed, without goals, passion, or apparently morals? Having one-night-stands with a guy dressed as a Wookiee - of all things- while being in a relationship with the Paul guy (whom she obviously doesn't even like, let alone love) AND the soon-to-be-married-to-another-woman-Logan? Being unprepared on job interviews, even though she obviously needs a job, then falling asleep while doing her job, being very inconsiderate when it comes to Paul, and infuriatingly condescending when it comes to Luke (who is the closest she ever had to a real father, BTW) behind his back, when he is so proud of her, that he actually reprinted his menus to include a copy of her only published article (surely the sweetest of gestures!) or indeed being dismissive to the principle of Chilton who offers her a job (when she has none at the time - not to mention is actually under qualified for it!) Or being utterly contemptuous towards the "Thirty-Something-Gang", even though she IS in every way like them, namely both unemployed and back living at home. Her sense of privilege, obviously stealing away her sense of self awareness. The idea of sheltered, eager to please, hungry for approval, privileged Rory becoming a war correspondent, in manner of Christiane Amanpour, was never believable anyway, and the revival is telling us exactly why.
Whatever happened to her, the fans of the series ask? Actually I find this to be perfectly in accordance with Rory ‘s character. And not just because she kissed Jess while dating Dean, (and Tristan the day she got separated from Dean) or has had sex with Dean, when he was a married man. (All indications of some pretty shabby coping mechanisms) This started way back: as she would get more and more close to her grandparents who worshipped her, and made her feel like she were the “Great White Hope”, the cleverest, most beautiful and accomplished girl in the entire world, donating whole Yale wings to her name, Rory, the bookish, shy, naive, baby-voiced, doe-eyed Rory of the first episode, would gradually give way to a more complicated young woman with some serious issues lurking underneath her shinning surface. Rory, let us not forget, grew up under the shadow of a deeply charismatic and charming mum, who was a true original: intelligent, independent and quick-witted, adored by an entire town, who could sweet-talk her way out of any situation, and captivate the minds, (not just the bodies - always a much easier business) of any guy she wanted. Which means that by definition, Rory was always insecure and therefore susceptible to flattery and attention, and because of that, always in danger of losing her step. She was therefore easily manipulated by her grandparents who saw in her their final hope of having the "perfect" daughter they have always desired, and believed to have deserved: docile, appreciative, grateful, demure, respectful, eager to please them in exchange for social status and money, rather than rebel against them and throw it all in their face and on top of that, be pregnant at sixteen!
What led her into being a cheater and a drifter in the revival, started quite early actually, on that “meat market” party her grandparents threw for her, to which they invited only boys from rich families, in an effort to manipulate her into giving up Dean. Sadly, it did work: it took nothing but a designer dress, a tiara and a few compliments from rich young men for it to happen, didn’t it? As she went out to meet Dean, who was dutifully waiting for her outside her grandparent’ s mansion, along with a bunch of guys who were competing for her attention, it became obvious to the both of them I think, that he was not meant for her. And as she returned home in that limo laughing and happy (even though she just split up with Dean), a bunch of rich young men calling her from the car as she made her way to her house, with Lorelai watching with horror from behind the curtain, what was to follow was already “written”. Young Rory was captivated and even corrupted (how come you guys haven’t noticed it?) by the wealth and the overwhelming attention and the lifestyle of her grandparents’ s world, and was therefore more than ready to belong to it. She gradually became the kind of girl who thinks that "loosing " her favourite tree under its shade she liked to read is a real tragedy! That is why Logan’s attention was more precious to her than Dean’s, or Jess’s, who by the way, both loved her more. Her need to have Logan’s love was more urgent, and her heartbreak when she didn’t have it, unsufferable, because like all insecure girls, it meant more to her not to be actually loved, but to be loved by a guy who had so much choice: who was rich and therefore could be with anyone. By choosing her, he validated her in manner that the average-Joe/small-town-boy-Dean, or the penniless-with-a-chip-on-his-shoulder-moody-unpredictable-Jess could not. And being the daughter of a charismatic mum (which means being insecure), being adored – along with her – by an entire community, and then being put on a very high pedestal by her grandparents, being gradually thrown into a new world of privilege and status, meant that she started to believe that she deserved to be worshipped, turning into a very entitled young lady. It also meant that for as long as she was unaware of her own self, the guy who would reject her, would have her heart for good. That is why she was crashed (not to mention surprised) when golden-boy / Sun hero-Logan was initially not smitten with her. And that is why she was impressed by his family and his home, even when they rejected her, while her need for Huntzberger senior’s approval never really diminished, even after she knew the kind of man he was. Even in the revival, she is STILL counting on his help! (and it is a testimony to Amy Sherman-Palladino ingenuity that we are never spoon-fed these truths. We are not told that she is entitled, or insecure but it's there in how she behaves...)
If Rory was indeed the self assured girl everybody thought she was, she would not have been crashed by Huntzberger senior’s rejection, go on a bender and end up in jail, and she also wouldn’t choose to live in the pool house, away from the mum who adored her but very rightly so, reprimand her severely about her bad choices. She wouldn’t have spend all that time not speaking to her mum, being pampered by her grandparents, betraying in this very special way Lorelai and the life she has created for the both of them at high costs, basking in the glory of being seen as “special” by her grandmother’ s DAR friends. Not to mention that for a supposedly shy and humble girl, she never missed a chance to take credit, and was always a little too happy to step into the spotlight - from Lane’s shower, to the DAR 40’s themed party- announcing to all that she was the one responsible for organizing them, which is always a sign of a deeply insecure person which in turn, makes all that is happening in the revival episodes to make perfect sense to us.
If she were a girl with a healthy self-esteem, she would also have the good sense to see Logan for what he was: just a brat. A selfish and irresponsible, albeit charming young man, who cheated on her (and at the same time cheated another woman with her) just because he could, who was condescending, rude and even cruel when dealing with people who didn’t belong to his class (see: Jess, Marty etc), and who knew he could always get away with anything. (How telling is it, that when she asks him if there is anything in his home that he doesn't want her to see - meaning that belongs to his other girl(s), he actually brags that he would never do that to her. He is OK with having relationships with other women but he draws the line at leaving clues around. And obviously sees that as a sign of him being considerate!)
It is no surprise that he ended up using her, because in her early thirties, she was still too weak, too insecure and hungry for his approval as much of his love, too eager to please him and prove she was worthy of his attention: she was still too eager to be seen as too “cool” to mind that things were not "serious" between them, even if it killed her. Being the “other woman” is after all a common tactic used by insecure women, whose floundering feelings of self-worth find comfort in the idea that a guy – preferably a rich guy – is betraying another woman for them, (forgetting that he is also betraying them with another woman…) As for the so-called closure of the book she is to write about the Gilmore Girls, it too is part of the same journey of the “lost girl” who is looking for solutions, not in herself, but in others. Who is trying to be seen as “worthy” instead of actually looking for worthy things. Even though there is beauty in the story-within-a-story “gimmick” , the book that is referential to the same story we are now watching, in terms of Rory’s evolution, this is a poor proof of it: she is again looking for greatness in the wrong places, looking for a way out of her bad predicament, by using her mother’ s story, who is understandably, again, feeling betrayed and reluctant to offer her approval of that, at least initially – (I loved the fact that Amy Sherman-Palladino had Lorelai have negative feelings about the book!) It is also a roundabout admission of defeat: she, who is supposed to be a great writer, cannot come up with new stories, and so has to claim her mother’s story, make it her own, in order to be seen as an individual at last: as a writer of some worth, and therefore as an independent adult. And even that, she couldn’t come up with it herself! Jess had to suggest it. Jess who has been a guiding voice whenever she is floundering, like when she was living in her grandparents’ s house, not going to school, proudly attending the DAR meetings, as if this was what she meant to do. He stepped in and prompted her to return back to Yale, and to the self she once was (or rather the self everybody believed she was). Here he is again, believing in her, offering solutions, and even though he claims not to have any feelings for her anymore, that full of longing look into her window, reveals that he was lying, turning us all into “TeamJess” enthusiasts…
Jess, sees her as she is, but also, as the best version of herself, as the woman she could become - and that’s all anyone of us could ever hope for really... This is how Luke sees Lorelai too: he knows about her shortcomings, her occasional selfishness (remember that priceless “Right back at you?!” when Jess and Rory had that accident?), he is infuriated about her seeming lack of rationality, her bad eating habits and her messiness and her whatever-ness, but the knowledge of her everyday, mundane self or her baser self, does not alter in any way his love for the idealised Lorelai: the intelligent, whimsical, loving, fast talking creature with the scarfs and the hats who is quick with the pop culture references and the witty banter, and whose heart is in the right place. Max, by the way, was the only one who while being mesmerizing by her larger than life persona (he did call her a “mythical creature” didn’t he?) he was actually able to cut through the layers of her charm and be quite frustrated by her narcissism (and all charismatic people can be narcissists). When he was infuriated for still not having the keys to her home one day before their wedding, and asked her to stop thinking only of herself, he was already dead to her heart. That is why she bolted hours before their wedding. How could she end up with someone who could not blindly adore her? (and who knew that she could be selfish? as in "human"!) Rory too had a similar moment with Logan, when she wrote that piece for a website that criticised rich people and was coldly reminded by him that she too was living rent-free in his luxurious apartment, taking advantage of all the privileges of his class. Lorelai would have bolted out with a storm and never look back, but Rory, the insecure, hungry-for-approval-Rory was hurt yes, but in the end it didn’t have lasting consequence on her relationship with him. Her need for validation, (not real love!), is in a nutshell the thing that keeps her from finding resolution to the great issues of her life, and leads here being still stuck to Logan and his world. In any case, Rory’s story is the one which is still open, her evolution and her closure still not at hand, which is in a way good news, as it gives us hope for new series…
Interestingly enough, Emily is the character who is evolving the most here - even if it is hardly likely... After Richard’s death, having lost along with him also her acquitted role of the “society wife”, she seems to find a new purpose and a new self. We watch her too, being led to a symbolic adulthood, breaking the chains that kept her a prisoner to appearances and a life that was comfortable and well structured, but devoid of real substance or purpose. She starts the process by declattering her home from things that bring her “no joy”, throwing away most of her pricey possessions, and being dressed in jeans and a T-shirt while doing it, instead of in her immaculate elegant outfits (we would be less shocked if we were to watch her walking around in her living room naked, with nothing but a feathery boa and a cigar, mind you) - though in defense of her old self, she does still wear a string of pearls… Things escalate after that. She is for example cool with living with the whole family of her new Latina maid (played by the same actress who plays Gipsy, for some reason) – she, who would change maids daily, on account that they spoke too softly, scared too easily, didn’t know how to make a waldorf salad, or didn’t answer the door on the third doorbell! But it is particularly enjoyable to watch her turn into a kind of “Lorelai” herself, feeling bored with the banalities and the superficiality of the DAR meetings (which used to be not just the epicenter of her social calendar, but also the epitome of her existence), or getting up to eat a cookie not only just because she feels like it, even though it is not prescribed by the correct protocol which has always been the guidebook of her every move, but also – in manner of Lorelai – as an act of rebellion (and it is deeply satisfying watching her do it), or later exposing the hypocritical agenda of the DAR ladies to the trophy wife who is being interviewed to become a member. She also puts her stately home for sale, starts dating, and chooses to live with the noisy family of her maid in a smaller beach house in Nantucket, of all places. She even - one assumes - for the first time in her life, gets a job as a tour guide in a museum, scaring the visitors with bloody tales about whaling, and enjoying every minute of it.
As the series wraps up, and while we are watching Lorelai getting married to Luke, we also watch a casually dressed Emily kiss Richard’s portrait, and lovingly cover her sleeping maid and her maid’s child with blankets, take a lantern and head for the beach, where she sits on her white patio chair sipping her wine, smiling with content, obviously feeling finally at peace with how things are, with how life has turn out. It is a moment of great significance, that symbolizes the changes in Emily’s life in the best possible way. At the same time, back in Stars Hollow, Luke and Lorelai are finally sharing their first kiss as a married couple, while we hear "Reflecting Light", the song that was playing at Liz’s wedding, when the two of them had that first dance together as anything other than friends, which made Lorelai gasp the next day, as she realizes she actually has feeling for him: “Luke can Waltz!!” It is a powerful ending, which brings tears to the eyes of all the fans of the series, and makes this journey worth taking. If only those final four words weren’t uttered a moment later…
On a completely different note, I personally loved the fact that none of the cast was visibly bottoxed, or surgically altered to the point of being unrecognisable - not counting Luke’s hair which looks suspiciously thicker (and blacker?), or Miss Patty’s dramatic weight loss. They all look good, and at the same time, exactly like people look, after 10 years have gone by: older in a “human” (instead of plastic) sort of manner, if you know what I mean. Which is pretty unusual these days, and on some level, it adds extra credibility to the series.
Even though the revival offered some very satisfying conclusions, and some satisfying returns for a few of the supporting characters (namely Paris, Kirk and Taylor) it did follow some questionable paths as well. How come for example there was time for Kirk’s movie, or the (otherwise fun) musical (a mention ought to be made to the excellent Sutton Foster, and her heart-wrenching performance of the "Unbreakable" song!), or the whole Paul plot line, or the absurdly long Death Brigade scenes (nevermind that they were beautifully directed or that they were cleverly referencing the Wizard of OZ or whatever), which would only made sense if these were “normal” episodes in a long new series with time on its side, and not the final (EVER!) four episodes, where old characters needed to be revisited, and loose ends needed to be tied? And how annoying was the whole surrogate thing? How bad is their relationship anyway, that they only get to talk about having kids NOW? Being cute and coy about such things in your thirties is one thing, continuing to do the same in your fifties is honestly kind of sad. Why was it necessary for new characters to be added in the mix, when we haven’t even catch up with most of the regulars? How come there were infuriatingly long and completely, utterly pointless scenes involving the British woman whose book Rory was supposed to write, and then didn’t, or with the three guys from the Death Brigade, who were more present in the revival than in the entirety of the 7 seasons (their only accomplishment, or point of interest still being that they buy things when drunk), but hardly any with Miss Patty or Babette, or a good, long, "proper" one with Jess, or Sookie or Lane, instead of the couple of minutes they all got, for that matter? And how good is Michel at his job anyway, that Lorelai needs to buy an entire new property in order to keep him from leaving?? (though it IS gratifying to see that he is finally out of the closet!) I mean we only get to see him being mean to people... And how come Lane and Michel were present at Luke and Lorelai’s wedding, but NOT Sookie, who as we have seen a few scenes back, is finally back in town and still Lorelai’s best friend? It just doesn’t make much sense… Yes, when it came to Sookie, there were apparently scheduling conflicts, what with Melissa McCarthy’s stratospheric success and everything, but couldn’t they find a way for an extra minute of filming, just so the fans of the series would see the two beloved friends together in that significant moment, and by that, make them suspend their disbelief about Sookie’s departure from the Dragonfly Inn, Stars Hollows AND Lorelai’s life (she is doing WHAT now??) But above all, why, why, why THOSE four words: