Friday, November 25, 2016

"Gilmore Girls" is/are back!


All four parts of Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, the ten-years-later sequel to the legendary WB series, began streaming today.

by Ken

Okay, I'm not all the way through all four 90-minute episodes of the brand-new Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, but heck, it only started streaming on Netflix today -- and I don't even have Netflix, and yet I'm three quarters of the way through it, which is to say "Winter," "Spring," and "Summer," with (you guessed it) "Fall" still to come.

While it's not important what I had to go through to accomplish this, away from home as I am (let's just say that even signing up for Netflix wasn't enough to turn the trick, not even with a slew of additional improvisations, all of which in the end had to yield to hijacking my hosts' living room and Netflix account), under the circumstances I'm right proud of how deep I've gotten into the thing on kickoff day. All the more so since I didn't realize until last night that this GG follow-upL, of which I'd been dimly aware, was launching today.

So I realized it wasn't pure coincidence that I'd stumbled and watched across the final episodes of the original series on cable last night, the climax of a week-long binge scheduling of all 153 original episodes leading up to launch day. Though it wasn't that long since I'd seen those episodes as part of my most recent traversal of the full 153, it was swell to rewatch the four and a half episodes I looked at again. All the more so since I am maybe the only person in creation who thinks that the seventh and final season of the original show, in which creator-showrunner Amy Sherman-Palladino and her husband and creative collaborator were allowed no part, was just as good as Seasons 1-6. I doubt that you'll find anyone else who thinks that Season 7 showrunner David S. Rosenthal did at least as good a job as Amy herself might have in getting young Rory Gilmore (Alexis Bledel) through her college years and ready to face the unknown world -- and setting her mother, Lorelai (Lauren Graham), off into the next chapter of her life.

Longtime readers may recall that I consider Gilmore Girls one of the monuments of Western culture, for the humanity and range of its exploration of the whole messy business of why we're all here -- what we aspire to and where those aspirations come from and what becomes of them. When I heard that the show was being in some fashion resuscitated, my obvious question was who would be in creative control, and was hugely reassuring to discover that it was in fact Amy and Dan, who between them, in addition to producing and directing, wrote and directed the whole of A Year in the Life. I'm not going to say anything more about the shows themselves, which indeed pick up the lives of the characters featured in those original seven years, now ten years later, except to confirm my hope that Amy and Dan wouldn't have agreed to do the project unless they could do it seriously. I think what I've seen so far is terrific, maybe even spectacular.

The big reason I tried so hard to be able to see at least part of the sequel as soon as possible is that I didn't want the experience to be spoiled by the usual chattering spoilers. I wanted Amy and Dan and their hugely talented team to be able to continue telling their story their way. And now, without guilt, I can invite you to do the same.

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