Rory is… back in Stars Hollow, in spite of her fervent denials. Feeling like a failure and unable to think her way out of that corner under her own steam, she moves back in with her mother and Luke.
Summer is easily the weakest out of the four episodes, so this review will be relatively brief, at least compared to the one about the somewhat meatier Spring.
Here’s the tl;dr video version of my review, complete with ranting and a few sidebars:
Belly alert… is not funny. Not in the sense that it’s a joke that doesn’t land, it’s distinctly un-funny. And is not something that would have happened on the original show, I feel.
The family dinner with April is cute, even though they really don’t seem to know what to do with her, or at least with her and Rory in the same room, considering she’s really the more left-brained side of the coin. Very much modelled on Rory’s perfect student, April is sort of the Scary Smart version of her, and it was a little less creepy how little effort went into her Season 6 characterisation when she just shared screen time with Luke or Lorelai, not Rory directly. Now, it’s just weird, and Rory in that scene in her old room is probably all of us.
I never blamed April for what happened with Luke and Lorelai’s relationship, and I didn’t even hate the Luke has a kid he didn’t know about storyline that much. It’s totally a cliché, but the reason it came so far out of left field is the way the writers used poor April to throw flaming bags of poo at that one relationship everyone had been waiting for forever. She was used as the reason for a break-up that no-one wanted and that was unearned.
I liked seeing April again, but that scene was such a weird little interlude.
In other news: Odette moved in. Rory is disappointed, and the hotel suggestion really drives it home that she’s the Other Woman. She’s the mistress, tucked away in a fancy hotel so that Logan can sneak away from his duties to his future wife to see her. And yet, Logan has a weekend planned? With, like, dinner and a show? In public? It still amazes me how that is even a thing when Odette is in London.
In any case, Rory was happily deluding herself until now, but she is the home wrecker, or potential home wrecker. And it’s funny that she’s ticked off now sleeping in Logan’s bed is fine, but a hotel? Not Rory Gilmore!
“Like I’m a geisha?!”
Wow. That is so incredibly disingenuous. Rory, you are the other woman, you do not get the right to be angry, here, not at the fact that he wants you to take a hotel room while meeting him for secret trysts. Jesus.
And Logan is just… cajoling her. This tips the scales more towards making Logan the villain of the piece here, stringing poor Rory along; except Rory is 32 years old and should know better, does know better, so I’m just mad at both of them, here.
The Thirty-Something Gang thing is just… dumb. This desperate need to make Rory the symbol of floundering millennials everywhere is an embarrassment. Not only that, but it forces the story into a corset that doesn’t fit, because such a story needs Rory to be helpless when that doesn’t fit with what we’ve come to expect of her over the years she’s apparently been successful. She’s unbelievably headstrong, but apparently her stubbornness in this story extends to excessive self-pity and day-drinking.
She needs a distraction so badly that she takes over the Stars Hollow Gazette?! And then, the scenes with Esther and Charlie aren’t even funny, they just drag on and on.
And then, Jess turns up to, well, save the day. Same as when he did and convinced Rory to go back to Yale (a kick in the pants I still believe she needed); but now he’s giving her the idea for the book she should write.
“Ruts are normal.”
THANK YOU, JESS.
“Passion? Is that really a thing?”
Oh my gosh, Rory, just please pull your head out of your ass!
She is so incapable of dealing with something not going according to plan, or going swimmingly, even. It has to just work and not be hard, or she’ll just give up. I didn’t think we’d see that kind of Rory at 32, not with a decade of experience under her belt. But, apparently, as soon as it’s not easy, she throws her common sense out of the window and doesn’t go working for a solution, she waits one to run up to her. And, like the faithful puppy that he is, Jess does.
We’re only getting a small window into Rory’s life here, and it’s ok for her to freak out, but all we hear is her freaking out. We never see her actually hearing other people’s perspective or advice (also mostly because she never asks for it, pretending that everything is ok at first and then just shutting herself in her self-flagellation). We never hear her say, “Maybe you’re right, maybe I’m just in a rut and I need to take some time to figure out how to proceed.” She’s always either on the phone with Logan or hysterical about being a failure.
And the book idea… why does Jess have to rescue her again? This is so forced and shoe-horned. He’s barely on-screen for two minutes and he has THE IDEA. The One Idea. The holy grail.
Pitching the idea to Lorelai, and then venting about it at Lane’s place… Rory is the one who’s selfish. Let me say this once:
NOT EVERYTHING IS FODDER, RORY.
“It’s something only you can write.”
Oh, good, pandering to Rory feeling so ~~special.
It’s her mother’s life, and Rory’s acting as though it’s her prerogative to pick it up and play with because ~~she’s a journalist. She is completely tone-deaf here, and so blind to what she’s asking, she should be mortified. She sort of acknowledges that she stepped over the line and that she didn’t accept Lorelai’s objections because it’s something she wants to do so much, but that’s a mark of how self-centered Rory can be: how much she wants to do this shouldn’t be her first thought going into a conversation like that. Her first thought should be asking her mother for permission, and sharing how much it excites her as a way of convincing her. Where she chose to do it, too, speaks volumes. They basically argued about this on top of Richard’s grave. Like, jeez.
She doesn’t even ask, at first, she doesn’t even stop to consider that Lorelai might not be a fan. She’s had some time to think about this, but it hasn’t occurred to her. She’s Rory Gilmore, her ideas are always right and made of gold and she must have her way.
And can I please get some bleach to get rid of the scene with panic-calling Logan? Ugh, so dumb. She’s 32, acting 22, at most.
Breaking up with him is the right thing to do, though. Ages too late, but it’s there now.
On the whole, it grates on my nerves how much Rory still hasn’t grown up, and I’m about as annoyed with her now as I was at the end of Spring. Good going, Ms Gilmore.
Luke and Lorelai’s sort of smoldering conflict is now coming to a head: each incensed over the other keeping stuff from the other, they scare the customers by arguing whilst clearing tables. Lorelai comes fresh off being caught out by her mother over not knowing Luke was shanghaied into scouting for diner locations; and Luke has managed to work himself into a grump thinking Lorelai’s having an affair. At 10.30 every Tuesday morning. Oh, boy.
And that’s how everything then blows up for real, with Lorelai really having taken what her mother said about having a roommate, not a partner, to heart, and asking how it happened that everything’s so separate. Luke saying, “April’s mine, I got it,” when the question of who’d be paying for the trip to Germany comes up; Luke declaring the state of the union in keeping their crazy families away from each other was how Lorelai set it up and he just went along with it. Lorelai keeps the elder Gilmores away from everybody she cares about, it’s instinct.
And now, a song makes Lorelai want to do Wild. And I suppose it’s partly because Lorelai never had anything like that. As a child and teenager, she lived in that big house with parents she loved but didn’t understand, and then she was pregnant and felt so alone that she ran away; and then she worked every day of her life from when she was 16 to ensure that Rory would have a good life and be protected, and would get into the schools she needed to fulfill her dreams. And then, when Rory was mostly raised, she opened her own inn and worked and worked and worked and never stopped. When Rory moved out, Luke moved in, and that’s the way it was. Lorelai never got to just live by herself and be on her own; and so it really is never… or now.
Michel leaving makes me sad, but I get it. He’s been with Lorelai and Sookie for so long, he’s destined for bigger things.
But also, the hiding the Secret Bar from Taylor bit is Classic Stars Hollow. And actually funny!
The whole musical sequence… look, I know nothing about musicals. I enjoy listening to them more than I enjoy watching them, and I don’t pretend to know anything about music in general. All I know is that I just wanted it to end.