“Stay another night”

LORELAI: Now, at least half the Poe group needs to stay another night, so we’re gonna need to find places to put them up.

I would have thought that if a hotel burns down a day before the end of your visit, that’s the end of your holiday, and you go home. However, perhaps half the Poes need to wait for flights at the airport the next day. With typical warmhearted community spirit, the people of Stars Hollow are prepared to take the fire-doomed Poes into their own homes for a night. Although if you were matched with Taylor or Mrs Kim, you might seriously consider just camping at the airport overnight.

A Tale of Poes and Fire

Edgar Allan Poe, born Edgar Poe (1809-1849), writer, poet, editor, and literary critic, best known for his poetry and short stories, particularly his tales of mystery and the macabre. He is widely regarded as a central figure of Romanticism in American literature. He was one of the country’s earliest practitioners of the short story, and is considered the inventor of the detective fiction genre, as well as a significant contributor to the emerging genre of science fiction. He was the first well-known American writer to earn a living through writing alone.

This episode features the Edgar Allan Poe Society coming to the inn on the night it catches fire, and the famous poet receives several mentions.

Sookie is Pregnant

SOOKIE: Oh my God, I’m pregnant! …
RORY: That’s great!
[they all scream and hug]

Lorelai suggests to Sookie she may have some kind of minor illness affecting her taste buds, then she goes into the lobby to talk to Rory, before Sookie comes out of the kitchen and announces she’s pregnant.

Pregnancy can certainly affect the sense of taste of smell, explaining Sookie’s suddenly horrible food, so this makes sense – but how can Sookie be sure? Did she just throw up in the toilet (which could be something else), did she do the world’s quickest pregnancy test, and if she had one all along, why didn’t she use it before? Has she had some other little sign, like her periods stopping, breast tenderness, and weight gain, and she’s put all the clues together?

Who knows? She just apparently knows she’s pregnant, even though she’s seemingly never been pregnant before, and everyone gets super excited and jumps around hugging each other. Nobody asks Sookie how she knows, or suggests she might be mistaken, or that it might need to be verified by, oh I don’t know, science.

Lorelai Convinces Rory to Enter the Speech Contest

Rory tells her mother that she had no plan to enter the speech contest for the Chilton Bicentennial, but now Paris is being so annoying and competitive that she actually wants to win so she can rub it in her face.

Lorelai asks why she didn’t plan to enter it, even though Rory has successfully given speeches before, as Vice-President (and for the debating team). She is said by Paris herself to be the best public speaker at Chilton! (Ha).

Lorelai makes a very good point that if Rory is serious about being a journalist and a foreign correspondent (hm, okay), then she should be comfortable with speaking in public, and that this is her chance to step up. This argument persuades Rory to take part.

Speech Contest

TEACHER: Yes, the speech will not go on your record. However, the bicentennial is going to be quite a prestigious affair. Past alumni and faculty will be there, some of these people are now professors at the same schools you’re planning an attending. Plus, C-SPAN will be broadcasting the event live. All in all, it’s shaping up to be a very exciting event. Think about it.

Here we see the high stakes involved with entering the prestigious speech contest – it will be broadcast on C-SPAN, with many illustrious guests who might very well be professors at the colleges the students have applied to.

Miss Manners

LORELAI: You’re seriously telling me that you’re gonna be the one to go out there and humiliate Gran in front of her friends, in front of her family. Just think about it, Mom. What would Miss Manners do?

Etiquette expert Miss Manners, previously discussed.

Despite Lorelai’s sound advice and Emily’s good intentions, she almost immediately snaps, and tells everyone she saw Trix kissing a man.


In hockey (ice hockey), a face-off occurs at the start of each period, or to restart play. An official drops the puck between the sticks of two opposing players, who are then said to “face off” from each other in order to gain control of the puck.

This episode has a hockey game as its focal point, at which several people will “face off” from each other in opposition, or in an effort to gain control of the situation.

Swan Song

A swan song is the final performance or activity in a person’s career, because according to folklore, swans sing beautifully just before they die.

Although this episode does have swans in it, they don’t sing, nor does it involve anyone dying, doing a performance, or ending their career. However, this is the source of the episode title.

Sherry at the Hospital

SHERRY: I’m lying in a bed. God knows what’s gonna happen … And she goes back to work. I would love to go back to work, but I can’t because I have to stay here … She’s not here. None of my friends are here. Christopher isn’t here. No one is here. No one but you. Thank God you’re here, Rory. I don’t think that I could do this by myself because this wasn’t supposed to happen until next week. I wrote it down. I wrote it down. I wrote it down!

Sherry is frightened and worried at being left alone to give birth, and seizes on Rory as the one person who can help, in the most inappropriate way possible. Rory is barely eighteen and still at school, with minimal practical skills of any sort, having travelled alone by public transport in midwinter at night for more than four hours! Yet somehow she is now the designated assistant to Sherry.

For someone who was so gung-ho to have kids, Sherry’s suddenly got very cold feet on the idea, and says she would prefer to be at work. (Yes, at night. Everyone works at night, apparently).