Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Inexplicable Gilmore Girls Review: Young Lorelai Needs A Spin-Off

Warning: Spoilers follow for episodes nine through 13 of season three of season three of Gilmore Girls.

My biggest takeaway from my latest batch of Gilmore Girls watching is that we need a spin-off series about Young Lorelai. It would star a late teen, early 20s female trying to navigate her way through life as a single mother, with a sweet baby girl to support. It would be a good, meaty role for an actress, since you’d be building on the Lauren Graham blueprint, and she has put in Iron Woman work on both Gilmore Girls and Parenthood.  

“Dear Emily and Richard” is the episode we get to see Young Lorelai, and it’s a strong one. It’s a flashback / time jump episode, and while I normally find those annoying, Gilmore Girls has one of the better ones I’ve seen. You cringe and feel for Lorelai as Christopher is there for the birth of his daughter with Sherry, but he and everyone else weren’t really there for Young Lorelai.

It was a good, illustrative episode. We see reasons why Lorelai was a handful as a teenager (purposely throwing her crap around the house, leaving notes, already fiercely independent), and how uptight the parents were, which didn’t help the situation when she got pregnant. I also found Chris even more weasely than before, as he buckled quickly under pressure. He was also VERY touchy feely with Lorelai as his new lady was giving birth, which made me squirm.

Young Lorelai was played by Chelsea Brummet, who I didn’t recognize as being a cast member of All That, most prominently. I thought she did a fine job, but unfortunately, she’s probably unavailable for my Gilmore Girls prologue, Gilmore Girl. (You see, because it’ll just be about Lorelai, since it’s implied Emily was largely out of the picture.) Nowadays, Chelsea doesn’t seem to be acting anyway, but she’s taking, uh, artistic photos for Facebook. I will trust those of y’all who are still into teen and young adult dramas to properly cast this show.

Other thoughts:

- Good on Luke for getting into things with that lady lawyer Nicole! Too bad he didn’t take Jess’ advice though, to get some private time in with her above the diner. Nothing more romantic than being egged on to hump by your adopted teenage son, but still.

- Speaking of Jess, he was kind of OK for this string of episodes. He sort of supports Luke, and he doesn’t actively fight Dean, even though Dean has inexplicably gone full heel all of a sudden. A few episodes ago, it seemed like Dean was (thankfully!) gone for good, but annoyingly, now that he and Rory aren’t a couple, he has even more screen time! Ugh. Jess looks better in comparison by fault. Clara, Dean’s sister, is still cute and amusing, but is either unknowing of what a doofus her brother is, or she has to support him because blood is blood.

- And while I’m on the subject of weird heel-turns, Paris suddenly losing her shit is also high on my “wtf?” list. It seemed like she and Rory were going along swimmingly, to a strong degree, so I didn’t find it believable that simple meetings between Rory and Francie would make Paris freak out. This does double when you consider that in the previous season, Paris walked on eggshells around Francie because she ran the Puffs sorority thing.

- Emily Bergl (Francie) looks like a young Donna Prepon (That 70s Show)… Except that she’s older than Donna Prepon! She is 41 now, and she was 26 on Gilmore Girls. The only person defying age more on the show is Keiko “Lane” Agena, who’s 43. Wikipedia says Bergl was born in England, but moved to Illinois as a child, hence, no natural British accent. I was also surprised that she’s only 5’5”, two inches shorter than Alexis Bledel, since she always looks taller in scenes.

- Lorelai is engaged in subtle psychological torture with Luke, which is kind of depressing. “Hey, I’d have to be blind, deaf and dumb to know that you don’t have a thing for me, but why don’t you teach me how to fish so that another guy can get into my pants?” Ugh. Poor Luke. That’s why I enthusiastically encourage him to get with the redhead lawyer instead.

- Also, Lorelai’s new guy is Alex, who I only know is rich, and he looks like Peter Gallagher from The O.C. That show also starred Adam Brody, a.k.a. Dave Rygalski, Lane’s beau. Brody doesn’t get a ton of screen time, but what little he does get on Gilmore Girls, you can tell he’s got IT. They should have cast him as Rory’s love interest and bumped him into the main cast, instead of letting him escape to FOX.

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