Lord of the Rings DVD, Footloose

RORY: Do you wanna watch more of the extra supplementary stuff on the Lord of the Rings DVD?
LORELAI: Well, it’s just the drawings and that fat guy talking.

RORY: Well, let’s watch Footloose again.

At this point, only the first film in the trilogy, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, previously discussed, had been released on DVD. An extended edition was released in November 2002, with 30 minutes of new material, added special effects and music, plus 19 minutes of fan-club credits. The DVD set included four commentaries and over three hours of supplementary material. The “fat guy” was the film’s director, New Zealander Sir Peter Jackson (he has since lost weight). You can tell this is a Daniel Palladino script, with someone’s weight being mentioned like this!

You might remember that Rory balked at watching The Fellowship of the Ring with Dean another time, even though he reminded her that she had earlier said she wanted to watch it “a hundred times”. Obviously it was Dean she was sick of, not the film, as she and Lorelai got it on DVD and are even watching the extra stuff on the disc together.

Footloose, previously discussed and frequently mentioned as a favourite film of Lorelai’s.

During this scene, Lorelai and Rory have to coordinate their schedules, because with both of them so busy, it’s getting harder for them to spend mother-and-daughter alone time. Each of them are getting more conscious of the fact that Rory will be going to college later in the year, and their time for having their “secret little club” is fast coming to a close.

Sunday is the only day they have to spend together now. As they immediately start getting ready to watch a movie together, it suggests that this scene takes place on Sunday 9th February.

Easter Parade

Lorelai sings the theme song to the film Easter Parade, previously discussed, as she starts setting up the new DVD player for Emily – perhaps partly to block out Emily’s complaints!

The song “Easter Parade” was written by Irving Berlin in 1933 – the melody was written in 1917, and was originally for a song called, “Smile and Show Your Dimple”, intended to cheer up girls who had to send their husbands and sweethearts off to war. A 1918 recording by Sam Ash had modest success.

The Easter lyrics for the tune were written in 1933 for a Broadway musical called As Thousands Cheer, first sung by Marilyn Miller and Clifton Webb. It has featured in several films, including Holiday Inn, while the film Easter Parade is constructed around the song, and performed by Judy Garland and Fred Astaire. Several artists have had hits with the song, including Bing Crosby and Liberace.

Flashback 7

In the final flashback, we see Emily and Richard coming downstairs, ready to go out. Emily comments that for the first time in a year, she hasn’t tripped over Rory’s baby stroller, which Lorelai never puts away. Emily finds a note on the hall table and begins to cry – it is obviously the note that Lorelai wrote when she left home, taking Rory with her.

It’s interesting to speculate as to where this flashback comes from. It can’t be Lorelai’s memory, because she never saw this happen. Is it Emily’s memory? Or is it Lorelai’s imagining what must have happened, based on what she knows? Or is it somehow an objective picture from the past of that moment?

The seven flashbacks in this episode encapsulate the central conflict in Gilmore Girls – that Lorelai got pregnant as a teenager, and then left home with her baby, leaving only a note.

It seems clear during the episode that Lorelai, through Sherry’s birthing of Georgia, gets to relive and re-examine some of her past behaviour and choices. We get to see that Richard and Emily may not have been perfect parents, but they are by no means monsters who deserved to be abandoned and shunned by their daughter.

Emily was a staunch advocate for Lorelai when she discovered she was pregnant, and stood up for her against the cruel insults of Christopher’s parents. Richard and Emily never rejected Lorelai, or kicked her out. She still had a home with them, and they continued supporting her and baby Rory.

Obviously Lorelai was very unhappy, and wanted to make a life for herself, but in retrospect, some of her decisions seem cruel – I think even to herself. She left for the hospital to give birth by herself, not allowing her parents any role in that, and she left home the same way, leaving only a note.

We already know that Emily was so devastated by Lorelai’s leaving that she was confined to bed for a month, and much of the coldness and harshness that we see from Emily and Richard in the present stem from this rejection by their daughter, which they have never really got over.

I think Lorelai’s generous and thoughtful gift of the DVD player and nine musicals on DVD that are a combination of Emily’s favourites and hers is her way of trying to … not to erase the past, but to make a kind gesture to her mother and to try to connect with her by sharing something they both enjoy, in recognition that Emily’s life is far lonelier than Lorelai’s.

Lorelai’s Musicals on DVD for Emily

Singin’ in the Rain [pictured]

1952 musical romantic comedy film, directed and choreographed by Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen, and starring Gene Kelly, Donald O’Connor and Debbie Reynolds.It offers a lighthearted depiction of Hollywood in the late 1920s, about performers caught up in the transition from silent films to “talkies”. The film was only a modest hit when it was first released, but has now reached legendary status, often considered the greatest musical ever made.

Funny Girl

Previously discussed.

Easter Parade

1949 musical film, directed by Charles Walters, with music by Irving Berlin, and starring Judy Garland and Fred Astaire. The story revolves around a Broadway actor trying to turn an ordinary dancer into a star. A critical and commercial success, Easter Parade was the highest-grossing musical film of 1948, and the second-highest grossing MGM musical of the 1940s.

An American in Paris

1951 musical comedy film, inspired by the 1928 orchestral composition An American in Paris, by George Gershwin. Directed by Vincente Minnelli, it stars Gene Kelly and Leslie Caron in her film debut. The film is set in Paris, and is about an American World War II veteran trying to succeed as an artist. The music is by George Gershwin, with lyrics by his brother Ira Gershwin. The film was the #8 film of 1951 and won Best Picture at the Academy Awards, but its reputation today is of being pleasant and attractive, rather than a really good film.

Urban Cowboy

Previously discussed.

Saturday Night Fever

Previously discussed.


Previously discussed.


Previously discussed.


Previously discussed.

“I really, really like you”

LORELAI: I’ll be right there.
RORY: I really, really like you.

A possible reference to the actress Sally Field. In 1985 she received her second Best Actress Oscar for Places in the Heart (1984), and made an acceptance speech which was both admired for its earnest sincerity and mocked for being excessive.

Its closing words were, “I haven’t had an orthodox career. And I’ve wanted more than anything to have your respect. The first time I didn’t feel it, but this time I feel it. And I can’t deny the fact that you like me … right now … you like me! Thank you!”.

Field was making a humorous reference to her dialogue in the 1979 film Norma Rae, but most people missed the reference, and it was widely misquoted as, “You like me! You really, really like me!’. Field later parodied herself when she delivered the line in a commercial for finance company Charles Schwab.

Cirque du Soleil

RORY: My point is in ninety tries, there wasn’t one other picture that was good for the group and didn’t have me looking like I’m in Cirque du Soleil?

Cirque du Soleil, previously discussed. The circus show was covered in a 2002 reality TV series called Cirque du Soleil: Fire Within, and the production Alegría was broadcast on TV in 2002. The chances are very high that Rory and Lorelai watched them, considering their fascination with circuses.

It is clear from this exchange that Paris is still angry at Rory, and they are still in a fight. Rory refused to talk about Jamie with Madeline and Louise, in order not to further aggravate Paris, so she seems to be trying to improve the situation.

Adrian Zmed

LORELAI: Angel face, you need to learn that there are going to be times in your life when you have to do ridiculous things for money. If you’re Adrian Zmed, that includes everything that ever happens in your whole career.

Adrian Zmed (born 1954), actor known for playing Johnny Nogerelli in the 1982 film Grease 2; several of his other films have gone straight to video. He is best known for the role of Officer Vince Romano on police drama TV series T.J. Hooker, airing from 1982 to 1986.

“The rain in Spain stays mainly in the plain”

RORY: But we want to be spontaneous. Jump a train to Paris, head off to Spain.
LORELAI: Oh no, it’s raining in Spain. But since the rain in Spain stays mainly in the plain . . .

Lorelai quotes from the song, “The Rain in Spain”, from the musical film, My Fair Lady, previously discussed.

The line is used in the film purely to teach elocution, and is not geographically accurate. The plains in Spain are parched and arid, and most of the country’s rainfall is in the north.

Jayne Mansfield

LORELAI: The cork fell off my hook and Jayne Mansfield over here bit … Not the brightest fish in the pond, but she’s awfully pretty.

Jayne Mansfield, born Vera Palmer (1933-1967), actress, singer, nightclub entertainer, and Playboy Playmate. A sex symbol of the 1950s and early 1960s, Mansfield was known for her personal life and publicity stunts. Her film career was short-lived, but she had several box-office successes and won a 1956 Theatre World Award for Will Sucess Spoil Rock Hunter?, and a 1957 Golden Globe Award for The Girl Can’t Help It [pictured].

Mansfield was married three times, including to Mickey Hargitay, previously discussed. She is the mother of actress Mariska Hargitay. When Jayne was killed in a car accident at the age of 34, Mariska was one of three children asleep in the back seat, who survived with minor injuries.

Although Lorelai has called the fish Jayne because she’s not very bright, Jayne Mansfield had a reported IQ of 149, received solid if unspectacular grades at school, attended acting classes at several universities, and spoke five languages.