The Waltons

LORELAI: And while some have called it [giving birth] the most meaningful experience of your life, to me it was something more akin to doing the splits on a crate of dynamite.
RORY: I wonder if the Waltons ever did this.

The Waltons (1972-1981) was a wholesome family drama TV series about the Walton family in rural Virginia, and their experiences living through the Great Depression and World War II. It was based on the film Spencer’s Mountain, from a novel of the same name by Earl Hamner Jr., who would go on to be an executive producer on the TV series. Extremely popular, the Waltons won several Emmy Awards.

The Waltons had a couple of things in common with Gilmore Girls. Both shows were set in small towns with quirky townsfolk, and the protagonist of The Waltons, John-Boy Walton (based on Earl Hamner Jr.) went to university in a nearby town and became a journalist, just like Rory Gilmore. Both shows were filmed at Warner Brothers studio, and the set for the Waltons’ house was used for The Dragonfly inn in Gilmore Girls.

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