If you’ve read my blog for awhile then you know my obsession with Gilmore Girls. I have seen every episode multiple times. My sisters and I quote the show to each other. We relate real life people to characters on the show. We are
mildly obsessed. Last weekend my middle sister and her best friend went to the Gilmore Girls reunion at the ATX Television Festival. To say I was envious is an understatement. I told her I needed to live vicariously through her and I asked her to write up a recap of the event to share. Take it away middle sister…
This past weekend was the ATX Television Festival. This is the 4th year the festival has taken place and this year drew the largest attendance to the festival to date. I’m not at all surprised that the most people came this year and that is due to one thing: Gilmore Girls. You tell the fans that there is going to be a reunion and we will come running. And yes, there was literal running, but I’ll get to that later.
The weekend consisted of many different panels for the television lover. There was Bunheads, Empire, Drunk History, Brooklyn 99, The Simpsons, Teen Wolf and more. There was no way to attend every panel, so my best friend and I picked what we most wanted and set out from there.
By far, the best part of the entire weekend was the Gilmore Girls reunion. I’ll admit, best friend and I were among the many, many people loitering outside the Paramount Theater in anticipation where the official line wasn’t supposed to start until 5 pm. There had been officials wandering around saying “there is no line. I don’t know why you guys are lining up when there is no line”. And they would make us scatter. And then, at about a quarter to 5, one official said “the line hasn’t started yet, but when it does it will be on the north side…” and at that point, it was every man for himself and people just started running to get in line, including us.
Technically, there were two lines. There was a line for people who had obtained Fast Passes and then there was a general admission line. Both lines wrapped all the way around the block. So we stood in the general admission line with hundreds of other people for over two hours. They didn’t even start letting people in the theater until a little after 7. By the time best friend and I got into the theater, there were definitely less than 100 seats left and hundreds of people still in line.
Note from best friend – I felt so bad for all of them, but still so grateful that we got to be in that room! And we celebrated getting in with a biscotti moment. And before, it was incredibly nice of Scott Patterson to walk the line and shake hands and thank people for waiting, so that I could steal your handshake. Right out from under you. (It’s true, she stole my handshake from Luke. ☹ )
Fifteen cast members were there, plus Amy Sherman-Palladino and her husband Daniel, who also worked on the show. There was Lorelai (Lauren Graham), Rory (Alexis Bledel), Emily (Kelly Bishop), Luke (Scott Patterson), Jess (Milo Ventimiglia), Lane (Keiko Agena), Michel (Yanic Truesdale), Paris (Liza Weil), Logan (Matt Czuchry), Miss Patty (Liz Torres), Dean (Jared Padalecki), Doyle (Danny Strong), Jackson (Jackson Douglas), Zack (Todd Lowe) and Brian (John Cabrera).
best friend – I like that they had Miss Patty sit between two hot young men, and teensy little Doyle sit between the two tallest, biggest guys. Also, Arielle Kebbel introduced the whole thing. We practically forgot she was there before the end of the show, but Lindsey was there too. I liked her better on The Vampire Diaries anyway.
Amy said the idea of Gilmore Girls kind of came up as a whim. She had a pitch meeting with Warner Brothers and she told them a bunch of ideas, that didn’t seem to be going anywhere. Then she said, and I have this idea about a mother-daughter who are more like friends and it’s set in a small town, maybe the mom works in an inn, and the WB loved it. She then called her husband Dan and asked, “what is that? I don’t know what that is.” “And by the time Monday came around, it all came into place.”
best friend – She said her and Dan went on vacation in Washington Depot, famously the inspiration for Stars Hollow. And she knew she didn’t want the parents to be too close, so she picked Hartford for them, not too close but not far off. And she talked about people actually being friendly and knowing each other, and that it was fall and there were pumpkins everywhere and that it was “leafing season”, aka “fall”.
Lauren, Alexis and Kelly were the first three cast members talked to. Each of them loved the script the moment they got it. Alexis said she had an instant connection to Rory. Kelly said when she was reading the script she knew exactly who that woman was and that she loved the words. Lauren wasn’t originally available for the show, as she was supposed to be part of another show, so she didn’t even want to look at the script. But when she did finally read the script, she said something really clicked and she couldn’t stand the idea of anyone else playing the part of Lorelai.
Sadly, they have no idea in what context some of our favorite lines were said. They were asked what line gets quoted to them the most. For Lorelai, it’s “Oy with the poodles already”. Lauren looked at Amy and asked when she says that and then looked at the audience and asked “Why do you like it so much?” Amy mentioned that the way the Gilmores interact and meddle in each others lives reminded her Jewish families, so she decided to throw in some Jewish vernacular for Lorelai.
Alexis couldn’t even remember a specific line that gets quoted to her, so she posed the question to the audience. What got shouted back to her the loudest was “Copper boom!” The best part was then Alexis questioned “What’s copper boom?”
Lauren said she gets told often that is looked like she and Alexis had instant chemistry. Amy said it was pure coincidence that Lauren and Alexis both had dark hair and blue eyes. She said that the fact that they looked alike was something she “attributed to magic like pixie dust.” But part of what shows that instant chemistry people talk about was also partly due to the fact that this was Alexis’ first acting gig and part of Lorelai keeping her arm around Rory was really Lauren manhandling Alexis, getting her to be on her mark.
Amy Sherman-Palladino, Lauren Graham, Alexis Bledel and Kelly Bishop from the nosebleed seats, it was like middle sister and best friend were Lorelai and Sookie at the Bangles concert
One of the best moments of the reunion was toward the beginning, when they had a tribute to Edward Herrmann (Richard Gilmore), who passed away late last year. The tribute reel showed some of Richard Gilmore’s best moments, such as when he takes Rory golfing in the first season. It also showed the scene where Richard and Emily renew their vows and “Wedding Bell Blues” by Fifth Dimension plays in the background. It was a truly touching moment.
When the screen lifted after the tribute, the stage had been decorated with various Stars Hollow memorabilia, such as signs for Luke’s, Doose’s Market, Miss Patty’s, Kim’s Antiques and the Dragonfly Inn and there were the rest of the cast members, with an chair left empty at the end for Ed Herrmann. Amy said that Ed was the first one to say he wanted to be part of the reunion.
When Rory’s boyfriends were asked who they thought was best for Rory, none of them picked their characters. Jared said he was on Team Jess, as did Matt, while Milo said he was on Team Dean. In typical Luke fashion, Scott piped up and said “None of you were good enough for Rory.”
They went around the group and asked where they think their characters are now. Scott thinks Luke may have closed his diner and lives on a lake and has opened a bait shop. To which Lauren quipped “does he have a girlfriend?” Lauren thinks that Luke and Lorelai probably got married, which Scott agreed is a much better answer. Alexis thinks Rory is off being a reporter somewhere. Milo thinks Jess is still out being Jess and causing a little bit of trouble. Keiko thinks the band is still rocking and that she’s still figuring out how to be a good mom. That she wants to be like Lorelai, but definitely has some Mrs. Kim in her. Yanic thinks that Michel may have gone back to Paris. Better yet, he posed a question I never thought to ask, which is, how did Michel end up in Stars Hollow in the first place? Something we’ll never know. Liza and Danny agree that Paris and Doyle are still together and taking over the world. Doyle probably thinks that whoever he’s working for is an idiot, and is probably right about it. (#ParisandDoyleForever). Matt knows that Logan is definitely not working wherever he is. Liz thinks that Miss Patty eventually took over Taylor’s job as town mayor, but still calls Taylor at 3 in the morning asking how to do things. Jared thinks Dean took over Doose’s Market and it’s now Dean’s Market. Jackson thinks that the vasectomy never took, so he and Sookie now have 35 kids, and that he’s still selling produce and making crazy hybrids.
best friend – At some point Jackson said they were just farming kids! I just barely refrained from making a free child labor joke.
Todd agrees that the band is still rocking and he’s enjoying being a dad. And John thinks that his best friends are now the twins Steve and Kwan.
Liza spoke about how she originally went and auditioned for the part of Rory and got a call that they really liked her, but that she wasn’t quite right. But that if the show went on, maybe they’d find something else for her. And they created the character of Paris just for her. Liza said “The younger version of myself was really freaked out that they’d think I could do that. Now I think it’s very flattering and I’m very glad.”
The cast was asked if any of them stole anything from the set. Keiko lamented that they didn’t know the show was ending, or else she would have. She really wants the glasses she wore for seven seasons. John also wanted Brian’s glasses. And Milo admitted that he has Jess’s leather jacket.
Amy said she hasn’t seen all of the seventh season, including the series finale. That watching it is hard for her not to be able to say cut that final time. She has seen some in reruns since she keeps her TV on ABC Family and they show reruns all the time.
Everyone in the cast seems to want a Gilmore Girls movie. Though Amy did say this “I’m sorry, there’s nothing in the works at the moment. But here’s the good thing: Nobody here hates each other; that’s a very important step. It would have to be the right everything — right format, timing, budget — it would have to be honored in a certain way. If it ever came around, I think we would all jump in and do it.”
And as par for the course, Amy is still not going to reveal the final four words she had in mind for the series finale. She says it’s going to be her Rosebud. Though, Lauren Graham added that she didn’t want to know the words unless she was the one saying them or listening to someone else on the show say them in the way it was intended. “Otherwise, it would feel sad to know it was something I wasn’t part of.”
best friend – I loved Dan swearing over and over that one of those four words was “limburger”
Going to the ATX TV Festival was so much fun and it was a great weekend spent with my best friend! Being able to be in the same room as the actors from my favorite show was incredible. And knowing that everyone in that room loved the show just as much as my best friend and I did was amazing! I invested seven years of my life to that show, starting from the beginning. It was such an important part of my life. My sisters and mom and even my dad bonded watching this show. There were so many references, from history to pop culture to literature, and so on.
If you haven’t watched the show, you should! Even if you have watched it, watch it again! I’m sure you’ll get more out of it after another viewing than you did the first time. Or even the 8th time. I know I catch different things all the time. ☺