I am currently enjoying my the first half of my vacation with my best friend, so I thought I would celebrate by talking about one of our shared favorite shows. We both watched religiously on Tuesday nights then talked about it before school Wednesday morning. We may not have always shared opinions, but this was our show. One Christmas, we both decided that it would be a good idea to buy a bunch of Gilmore Girls things off of CafePress, unbeknownst to the other. I don’t know what we liked more, the actual things or the fact that we basically got each other the same gift. So in airing order, here are my 10 favorite episodes of Gilmore Girls!
Pilot (1×01) While characterizations shifted a little (particularly Emily, Richard, Sookie, and Luke) this pilot is a perfect introduction to the world of Stars Hollow and the titular Gilmore Girls. The rapid dialogue, pop culture references, Michel’s less-than-stellar customer service, and Lorelai’s coffee addiction were all there from the start, compelling people to fall in love.
Forgiveness and Stuff (1×10) Who could not love the disgusting Santa Burger? This is really the episode where we see just how deep the relationship between Lorelai and Luke runs. When something happens, he drops everything to help her. As Lorelai told her mother, they weren’t on a date, he’s just Luke. It’s also a great episode to see the relationship between Lorelai and her father. It may be strained and they may have difficulty relating to each other but that doesn’t mean they don’t care about each other.
Love, Daisies, and Troubadours (1×21) Max was never my favorite of Lorelai’s boyfriends but the 1000 yellow daisies scene is still pretty spectacular. The look on Lorelai’s face is so beautiful and touched by the gesture and it makes me so happy. I also mostly liked Dean at this point, so I love Rory’s “I love you, you idiot”. It was a moment that made me smile a lot on first watch and that’s only been diminished slightly by knowledge of what was to come with them.
The Bracebridge Dinner (2×10) For reasons that I can’t entirely explain, this is one of my two favorite episodes of the series. I love seeing the combination of the town, Paris, and Richard/Emily in one place and the crazy food they are served. It’s a gigantic party with everyone the Gilmores like and it just makes me happy to watch every time. Rune is at his best in this episode (and by that I mean grumpiest and most ridiculous), the conversation that ensues while Sookie tries to remember the word “salt” is great, and Lorelai trying to get Kirk to break character cracks me up every time.
Dead Uncles and Vegetables (2×17) This episode is the inverse of “Forgiveness and Stuff”. When Luke needs Lorelai, even if he won’t admit it, she’ll be there supporting him. She may not have known his hated uncle but she knows him and will always show up for him. It also features two delightful subplots. First up, we have Emily attempting to plan the most over-the-top wedding imaginable for Sookie. It’s a combination of people we didn’t get frequently but Emily gets so excited with planning and Sookie’s natural enthusiasm for everything comes out and it works really well. It also gives us another moment where Emily recognizes the feelings between Luke and Lorelai and comments on it. Then we have the charming, vegetable-selling troubadour making a return. He’s just so happy selling his vegetables and hanging out in Stars Hollow. You can’t help but like him. Unless your name is Taylor Doose, that is.
A Deep-Fried Korean Thanksgiving (3×09) My other favorite episode, once again probably because it features a wide variety of people. The four Thanksgiving dinner day makes my stomach hurt just thinking about it, but watching each of the dinners was fantastic. My favorite will always be the dinner at Sookie’s because drunk Sookie is truly delightful. Each dinner perfectly reflected the characters involved and had their moments of humor. Richard’s shocked face when Lorelai quotes the French part of “Moulin Rouge” will always make me laugh as will Lorelai’s confession that she had to eat the Tofurkey and her exchange with Luke about the Thanksgiving flowers and lack of vase.
The Festival of Living Art (4×07) I feel like one of my favorite picks should focus on one of the interesting festivals in Stars Hollow and this one is one of the best. It has a Taylor freak-out, the return of my favorite troubadour, lots of Kirk, and a new baby for Sookie! It also introduces Gil, who I just loved to death even if Hep Alien did kind of disappear later on.
Luke Can See Her Face (4×20) This episode kicks off one of my favorite three-episode arcs of all time. I have loved Luke and Lorelai since the beginning and to see Luke realize that he wants to be with Lorelai is very gratifying. The self-help tape is silly but that adds to the charm of the scene. I also really love the other plot with Sookie, Michel, and Lorelai figuring out things for their new inn and sleeping in the zucchini patch. It’s funny and sweet, so basically everything that Gilmore Girls is.
Raincoats and Recipes (4×22) The conclusion of the wonderful, aforementioned arc. Lorelai and Sookie’s inn has a test run and Luke and Lorelai share their first (and second) kiss. The “will you just stand still?” scene gets me every time and Kirk and his naked night terrors just adds to the charm. That is their life, crazy town and all, and there couldn’t have been a better first kiss. It’s also the start of a terrible Rory arc but I’m willing to overlook that for all the other good things.
Bon Voyage (7×22) After a rough final two seasons, I can’t have imagined a better ending for the series. It had everything that it needed to, the town was there, Emily and Richard were there, and Rory and Lorelai had some great moments. I love that it was Jackson and Zach that went to get Lorelai and Rory with the umbrellas, I love Taylor’s weird speech about Rory, and I love the effort Luke put in for both Lorelai and Rory. After everything, they are still his family and the people he cares the most about. This show was incredibly special to me and so I get very emotional during this entire episode.
Once again, you have your choice of question. What are your favorite Gilmore Girls episodes? If you’re not a fan, what are your favorite episodes of your favorite drama?