I finally finished the revival and my head is still spinning a bit. It will take several more watch-throughs to really form a solid opinion, but right now I’m pretty happy with the episodes overall. I will definitely be getting started with the references soon (whew, there were a lot!) but here are a few thoughts first.
I love the parallels that were set up through the last scene (and the theme throughout the show of life coming full-circle). I don’t want to spoil anything in case you aren’t finished yet, but I will say that I think Rory’s path, while still difficult, will be much smoother than Lorelai’s from here on out (much of that is thanks to Lorelai’s strength in raising Rory so well).
A reader pointed out that Rory’s goodbye scene with the Life & Death Brigade was the goodbye scene from the Wizard of Oz (great catch by the way, I don’t know if I ever would have noticed that!). The reader asked if I thought Logan was the Wizard of Oz/con man. I have to say, while I don’t think the scene was intentionally set up to paint Logan as the Wizard, there are several parallels. They both use lies to get what they want in life, a young woman knows their lies, and they try their best to give that young woman what she wants. Ultimately, however, neither of them is truly helpful, and the young women find other ways to reach their goals. I don’t think either Logan or the Wizard were really con men: they had serious weaknesses and found (admittedly deceptive) ways to overcome them. They had the best intentions though, right??
I would love to hear your thoughts about the revival! Feel free to comment or email and let me know anything that stood out to you. There’s a lot to process!
In S1E18, Sookie is trying to reassure Lorelai about Gran giving Rory trust fund money. Sookie says, “Rory’s like the most unmaterialistic kid in the world!” Lorelai responds, “No, it’s not about what she would buy. I don’t care if she buys a house or a boat or the Elephant Man’s bones! It’s just that… you know, it’s about the freedom.”
“The Elephant Man” refers to Joseph Merrick, a man born in the late nineteenth century who developed severe growth defects including thick lumps and bony growths on his head, hands, and feet. He was an exhibit at a freak show as a young man until he was admitted to the London Hospital, where he lived until his death at age 27. It is believed Merrick had Proteus syndrome, a rare genetic condition that causes overgrowth of body parts. Merrick’s story was made into a movie called “The Elephant Man” in 1980, starring John Hurt as Merrick.
In S1E18, Lorelai is ranting to Sookie about how Emily told her that Rory would leave if Gran gives her the trust fund money. Lorelai says, “God, I know this is crazy. I have my mother’s voice stuck in my head. It’s like that annoying Cranberries song.”
The Cranberries are a rock band from Ireland who rose to fame in the early 90s. “That annoying ‘Cranberries’ song” is likely “Zombie,” which everyone seems to hate.”
“Zombie” was released as the lead single The Cranberries’ second album, “No Need to Argue.” It was received well in Europe, reaching No. 1 on several European charts. Take a listen and decide for yourself:
Hi to all my loyal and first-time visitors!
A little update:
I am so close to finishing up Season 1. I wish with all my heart that I was farther into the series, but alas, I graduate from college in less than a month and exams demand to be taken. I am still committed to finishing the entire series though, so bear with me.
When the revival comes out, I will take a break from earlier references and work through all the references in the revival. Once those are complete, I’ll start back wherever I left off.
As always, let me know if you think I missed a reference or if there’s a specific reference anywhere in the series that you want me to skip ahead to. I’d be happy to do it!
In S1E18, Tristan hands Rory a notebook that she forgot in class, and they both move to exit through the doorway at the same time, almost colliding. Rory says, “Well, that could’ve been a potential Marx Brothers moment.”
The Marx Brothers were a comedy troupe consisting of the brothers Groucho Marx, Chico Marx, and Harpo Marx. Gummo and Zeppo Marx also performed with them for a time. They actually began as a singing group, but switched when they realized they had a penchant for comedy. They performed on Broadway and made many films.
In S1E18, Emily gives a passionate speech about the Kennedy’s dinner conversation and the Gilmore’s intelligence and requests dinner conversation. When Lorelai’s reply is, “Do you know that a butt model makes $10,000 a day?” Emily comments, “Camelot is truly dead.”
Camelot is the fictional, romantic home of King Arthur. It is a term sometimes used to describe John F. Kennedy’s presidency. The comparison was created by Jackie Kennedy shortly after JFK’s assassination, when she said in an interview that John had liked the musical “Camelot,” especially the line, “Don’t ever let it be forgot, that once there was a spot for one brief shining moment that was Camelot.” Jackie herself said “there will never be another Camelot.” In doing this, she secured her husband’s legacy as a peaceful, benevolent, almost ideal president. Here’s a great article that goes more in-depth into the phenomenon of JFK’s Camelot.
In S1E18, Emily is trying to liven up the dinner conversation, and she says, “Do you know that every night at dinner, the Kennedy clan would sit around the table having lively debates about everything under the sun? They would quiz each other about current events, historical facts, intellectual trivia.”
The Kennedy family was a prominent force in U.S. politics for much of the twentieth century. It consisted of Joseph Kennedy Sr., a wealthy businessman and ambassador to the United Kingdom, his wife Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy, and their children: Joseph Jr., a soldier who was killed in World War II; John, 35th president of the United States; Rosemary; Eunice; Patricia; Robert, Senator from New York; Jean, ambassador to Ireland; and Ted, Senator from Massachusetts. There’s way too much to say about the Kennedy’s than can be said here, but it is true that they had strict dinner table rules and that the children were expected to intelligently answer questions posed by their father at dinner.
In S1E18, Emily comments that Rory and Lorelai are being very quiet at dinner. They reply that they’ve just been busy with school, work, life. Lorelai follows up with, “Dig it, man.” Rory replies, “Peace out, Humphrey.”
This is a weird reference, and it’s probably mostly nonsense but I think Rory is technically referring to Hubert H. Humphrey, 38th Vice President of the United States (as opposed to Humphrey Bogart, the actor who died in 1957). Hubert H. Humphrey was Vice President under Lyndon Johnson from 1965 to 1969, and he was a senator representing Minnesota before and after that. He was a pioneer for desegregation within the government and wrote the Civil Rights Act of 1964. He also introduced the first legislation proposing the creation of the Peace Corps.
In S1E17, as Rory and Lorelai are walking through a trash-filled alley to get to Luke’s, Rory starts talking about what trash says about a person. Lorelai says, “You do know, honey, that trash doesn’t actually talk at all unless it’s on ‘Sesame Street.'”
“Sesame Street” is an educational children’s television show on America’s Public Broadcasting Service. It has been running since 1969 and has won 167 Emmy awards. One of the recurring characters on the show, Oscar the Grouch, is a grumpy, green puppet who lives in a trash can and is a bit of a hoarder. Oscar the Grouch is voiced by Caroll Spinney.
In S1E17, Lorelai and Rory are forced to climb over a fence in a trash-filled alley to get to Luke’s without risking crossing paths with Dean. Rory apologizes, but Lorelai says, “No, this is good! It’s like ‘G.I. Jane’ but we get to keep our hair.”
“G.I. Jane” is a 1997 film starring Demi Moore as Jordan O’Neil. O’Neil goes through intense military training that has, up until that point, only been available to men. She has been set up to fail, but she succeeds in the training and earns the respect of her superiors. She ends up rescuing her commanding officer from a crisis in Libya and is officially accepted onto the elite Navy team.