Lorelai and Rory Fight

Against Lorelai’s wishes, Rory tells Emily that their house is infested with termites, and they have no way to pay for the necessary repairs. Emily immediately gets out her cheque book, only asking to know how much money is needed. Lorelai turns her offer down, and afterwards freezes Rory out, refusing to speak to her or even look at her – this is a foreshadowing of how other, more serious arguments between them will play out.

This again shows how dishonest Lorelai was with Rory when she said they were a “team” and a “democracy” – but with Lorelai able to play the “mom card” whenever she likes, and Rory forced to obey her. Their fight ends with Rory being sent to bed like a naughty child, even though they have Friday Night Dinner at 7 pm. Considering that Lorelai was in no mood to hang around after dinner, it can’t be more than about 9.30 pm.

Human Behaviour

This is the song which plays out to the end of the episode. It’s a 1993 song by Björk, the lead single from her first solo album, Debut. It reflects on the mysteries of human behaviour, apparently from an animal’s point of view, although the lyrics can also be understood as from a small child’s viewpoint.

If you ever get close to a human and human behaviour
Be ready, be ready to get confused and me and my here after
There’s definitely, definitely, definitely no logic to human behaviour
But yet so, yet so irresistible and me and my fear can
And there is no map uncertain

The song was praised by critics, and was an underground smash hit, peaking at #2 on the US dance charts, and reaching #36 in the UK. It went to #1 in Björk’s home country of Iceland.

It’s a fitting tribute to Björk, whose effigy plays a central role in this episode, and we learn that both Lorelai and Rory are fans of hers. It also underlines that Rory doesn’t really understand Jess’ behaviour, and her own behaviour is going to become increasingly unclear to those around her – and herself, too.

“Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned”

PARIS: Hey, I’m the director and I’ll decide who’s born to be what, and Brad is Romeo.
LOUISE: Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.

A popular misquote from William Congreve’s 1697 play, The Mourning Bride, previously discussed. The quote is often wrongly attributed to Shakespeare, and as they are currently studying Shakespeare, I think this is meant to imply that Louise is one of those people who use the quote without understanding its origin or context. It’s the second time she has used it against Paris.

Louise is correct that Paris is barring Tristan from being Romeo out of pique that he didn’t want to date her more than once. Paris does eventually give in and give the part of Romeo to Tristan, although she clearly doesn’t have much faith that he will stick with the project until the end (her lack of confidence in him turns out to be well-founded).

Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse

SOOKIE: ‘Fran’s Old Place’! It’ll be like Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse. People will be trying to figure out who Fran is.

Ruth’s Chris Steak House is a chain of over one hundred upscale steakhouses across the United States, Canada and Mexico. The original Chris Steakhouse was founded in New Orleans in 1927 by Chris Matulich. It was purchased in 1965 by divorced single mother Ruth Fertel, who needed money to send her sons to college.

The name was changed to Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse in 1976 after a fire forced Fertel to move the restaurant to a new property. It allowed her to to keep some continuity, as she was legally not able to use the name Chris Steakhouse for any other locations than the original restaurant. Fertel admitted she always hated the name.

Note the similarities between Ruth and Lorelai – both struggling single mothers who need money for their children’s education. Both will even suffer the setback of a fire!

The Money Pit

MICHEL: How about ‘The Money Pit’?

In American slang, a “money pit” is any property, possession or business which takes up an increasingly large amount of money to maintain it – usually more than was foreseen or budgeted for.

Michel is possibly referencing the 1986 comedy film The Money Pit, starring Tom Hanks and Shelley Long as a couple struggling to renovate their recently bought house. It closely parallels the 1948 Cary Grant comedy, Mr Blandings Builds His Dream House, and received lukewarm reviews. The movie does have a happy ending, a possible foreshadowing that Lorelai and Sookie will have one too.

“Sing out, Louise”

RORY: I pledge myself to the Puffs, loyal I’ll always be …
FRANCIE: Sing out, Louise.

Francie is quoting from the 1962 musical comedy-drama film Gypsy, based on the 1959 stage musical, Gypsy: A Musical Fable, adapted from the 1957 autobiography Gypsy: A Memoir by burlesque entertainer Gypsy Rose Lee.

The film is about a domineering stage mother named Rose Hovick (Rosalind Russell), who drags her beautiful, gifted daughter June, and June’s shy, less-talented older sister Louise (Natalie Wood) around the country in her efforts to get them noticed. When June rebels and elopes, all of Rose’s efforts are poured into the seemingly impossible task of making Louise a star.

In the film (or the musical, originally starring Ethel Merman as Mama Rose), Rose makes her entrance by shouting, “Sing out, Louise!”, during her daughter’s audition. Francie is likewise encouraging the mumbling Rory to speak up while she recites her pledge.

In the film, the awkward Louise unexpectedly finds success as a burlesque star under the name Gypsy Rose Lee, which is what allows her freedom from her mother at last – a hint that shy Rory will find her own way to escape Francie’s clutches.

Dancing

Lorelai and Chris dance together beautifully, symbolically showing that they have sexual compatibility. See how happy they look together, enjoying each other’s physicality and natural playfulness, while Miss Patty presides over them approvingly.

In contrast, Rory and Dean dance awkwardly together, looking nervous and unsure of themselves. It suggests that they are not sexually fluent, being inexperienced teenagers, and is perhaps a sign that there is something lacking in Rory and Dean’s relationship. Tellingly, Miss Patty worried that Rory might hurt Dean with her bad dancing – a foreshadowing of the pain she will cause him.