RORY: My feet are sore.

LORELAI: Hey, Tonto, when did you become older than me?

Tonto is the Native American companion of The Lone Ranger, crime-fighting fictional characters from the American Old West created by George W. Trendle and Francis “Fran” Striker. They first made their appearance in 1933 on The Lone Ranger radio show, but proved so popular they appeared in several other media – perhaps most memorably in The Lone Ranger television series (1949-1957), with Jay Silverheels in the role of Tonto [pictured].

The portrayal of Tonto is often seen as degrading to Native Americans, as Tonto spoke in pidgin English. From the 1980s onward, Tonto was articulate in English, and tended to be witty, outspoken, and sarcastic toward The Lone Ranger.

Lorelai addresses Rory as her loyal sidekick, like Tonto. In the radio series, Tonto was actually quite elderly, and it was only when they moved into films that he began to be portrayed as a handsome young warrior.

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