Wednesday, December 06, 2006

"Gilmore Girls" -- Why Do I Keep Watching?

It's hard to say goodbye to a show you've loved. But the current season of "Gilmore Girls" is beginning to spoil my entire appreciation of the series. The last two weeks have been especially annoying: Lorelai and Rory are now the least likable, most annoying characters on their own show! Lorelai and Christopher have been married for about two seconds and they already seem headed for divorce. So why get them married? So they could fight and turn their solid friendship after years of estrangement into something bitter and ugly? Thanks. Lorelai's mom used to be smart and together but very difficult and usually wrong or at least wrong-headed, with Lorelai's witty comments a nice rejoinder. Now Lorelai seems like a spoiled brat unable to spend two seconds in the company of her mother. Her mom pops up on Lorelai's doorstep, offers some heartfelt and well-intended (and good!) advice and you long for Lorelai to at least say, "Thanks Mom" or reach out to her in some way but she says nothing. And is Christopher an idiot? A guy we've grown to like is now a moron -- did he really think Lorelai would want to move away from Star's Hollow (where her business is located, I might add) and live in another town nearby? Why? And Rory has no friends. Her best pal -- Lane -- is pregnant with twins and I don't think we've seen Rory pay a visit to Star's Hollow to share in the joy. After years of working on the Yale newspaper, she doesn't even like any of her coworkers and can't be bothered to go for a drink with them after they give her a going-away gift. (Believe me, in college journalism circles, not going for a drink is supremely rude.) Who are her friends? Two idiots we barely know and don't care about. When Logan -- the man she's been pining for -- suddenly appears from London, does Rory drop everything to be with him? Nope, she insists she has to go to the birthday party of one of these two gals, whom she's known for all of 30 seconds. Does Logan say he'll join her right after his business dinner? Nope. But at least he's not behaving like a child; Logan refuses to lie to cover up the fact that Rory knew her gal pal's boyfriend for years, a fact Naked Guy inexplicably wanted to hide. And Luke! Luke was completely wrong in promising a 12 year old girl she'd spend all sorts of time and Thanksgiving and part of the summer with him before discussing it with her mom. And then he brutishly threatens all sorts of legal action against the mom. That could have been a last resort, but why couldn't he have made his case first with heartfelt affection for the daughter he never knew he had? In short, every relationship is poisoned: Rory and Logan, Lorelai and Luke, Lorelai and Christopher, Lorelai and her mom, Luke and the mother of his child, Rory and the people she spent years working with at the school newspaper, Rory's new best friends and on and on and on. Everyone is bitter and angry with everyone else and the two people most wrong in most cases are Lorelai and Rory, the women we fell in love with because they were so bright and together and fun. Now they're just pills and I'm tired of swallowing their behavior.


Daryl Chin said...

I agree totally, but one thing that really bothers me is that, even if the "creative team" behind a show changes, it used to be the fashion to make sure that the in-coming writers/directors/et al were "up to speed" and knew the character-development from past seasons, etc. You can see this in shows like "Perry Mason" (which cecrtainly went through its share of personnel changes) or "The Mary Tyler Moore Show". But shows like "Will & Grace" started falling apart after the second year, and now "Gilmore Girls" is virtually incoherent. It no longer makes sense, because no one is acting in a way viewers who have watched since the beginning would understand. (The most glaring example: though Lorelai and Rory would sometimes bicker, it was their incredibly close bond which was so appealing. Lorelai - always the impulsive one - would mess up, and Rory - her wise-beyond-her-years daughter - would help out her mother, especially if it meant keeping something from her grandmother, and this would always make them closer than ever. But now, Lorelai and Rory don't even seem to know each other. What a mess: it's as if the current staff of the show wants to make sure the show is dead.

Michael in New York said...

Good points. But did the creative team behind Will & Grace move on? I know they were distracted by launching other shows (that all failed) but didn't they stay day-to-day since nothing else clicked? But even trying to launch a new show is a major distraction and means you can't give a series the same loving attention. I see the same problem with Battlestar: Galactica since SciFi has the creative team involved in all sorts of different possible shows. And yes, the characters on Gilmore Girls are completely at odds with who they've been over the past six years. Rory ALWAYS wanted to be a journalist a la Christiane Amanpour and after finishing her job as editor of the Yake newspaper, she is completely at sea and doesn't know what she wants to do with her life? If she'd rejected journalism, I'd say okay. But isn't that still her passion? I think I have to stop watching. But I wouldn't blame solely the new guys. The show has been struggling creatively for a good two years now, at least, when the originaol creators were afraid of letting the characters grow and move on.