“When have we ever talked about make-up?”

RORY: You said we could talk.
LORELAI: Yes, well I thought you meant about make-up or something.
RORY: When have we ever talked about make-up?
LORELAI: Never, that’s why I thought now would be a good time.

In fact the very first conversation Rory and Lorelai had on the show was about make-up, when Rory asked her mother for lip gloss and received more options than she wanted. They talked about it again when Rory was getting ready for her first date with Dean and Lorelai advised her on make-up, and briefly again when they were all getting ready for their double dates. I think it’s safe to presume that Lorelai and Rory talk about make-up a completely normal amount for a mother and teenage daughter.

Lorelai and Rory’s Inability to Leave Their Room

[Lorelai and Rory start to walk down the steps, but stop when they see a bunch of people downstairs.]
LORELAI: Dentists. Boston dentists. Cocktail hour at the Cheshire Cat.
RORY: So?
LORELAI: So our exit is blocked.
RORY: Let’s just rush pass them.
LORELAI: Too risky.
RORY: They’re not assassins.

Unbelievably, Lorelai and Rory find themselves unable to leave their room to get food because they can’t walk downstairs and past a group of strangers. Normally you can’t shut Lorelai up, now she’s incapable of exchanging a few words with a handful of people on her way out to buy dinner. As a plot device to trap Lorelai and Rory in a room together, it’s a pretty lame one.

By what psychic powers Lorelai knows the people downstairs are all dentists from Boston must remain a mystery, but presumably cocktail hour is marked on the activity sheet LaDawn gave them.

Nicolas Cage and Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

RORY: A cool B&B?
LORELAI: Yes.
RORY: That’s like saying an understated Nicholas Cage movie.
LORELAI: Listen, I myself am not usually a fan of the B&B, but Donald’s place is different.
RORY: Captain Corelli’s Mandolin.
LORELAI: I’m serious.
RORY: “Bella bambina at two o’clock.”

Nicolas Cage, born Nicolas Coppola (born 1964) is an American actor, director, and producer. He is the nephew of director Francis Ford Coppola, and the cousin of director Sofia Coppola. After making his debut in Fast Times at Ridgemont High in 1982, in his early career, Nicolas Cage starred in slightly off-beat films such as Valley Girl (1983), Raising Arizona (1987), and Wild at Heart (1990). In 1995 he won the Academy Award for Best Actor for Leaving Las Vegas, and gained mainstream success in films such as The Rock (1996), Con Air (1997), and City of Angels (1998). His acting style has been described as “operatic”, while he himself refers to his method as “Noveau Shamanic” – hence Rory’s inference that a Nicolas Cage movie can never be understated.

Captain Corelli’s Mandolin is a 2001 war film directed by John Madden, and based on the 1994 novel of the same name by British novelist Louis de Bernières. Nicolas Cage has the title role of Captain Antonio Corelli, and the film is set on the Greek island of Cephalonia during World War II. The film received poor reviews.

In the film, when Captain Corelli first spots his love interest Pelagia (Penelope Cruz) in a crowd, he shouts out to his men: “Bella bambina at two o’clock! Eyes right!”, so that they can all witness and acknowledge her beauty.

The film was released in the US on August 17 2001, so Rory mentioning it is slightly anachronistic – according to the show’s timeline of events, Rory can’t have seen it yet, as it won’t come out for a another few days from her perspective.

Lorelai and Rory apparently now hate B&Bs, even though Lorelai and Sookie were talking about opening one a few episodes ago.

Chuppah

LORELAI: What is that?
LUKE: Oh, it’s a chuppah.
LORELAI: A what?
LUKE: A chuppah. You stand under it, you and Max. It’s for your wedding.

A chuppah is a canopy which a Jewish couple stand under when they are married. It’s usually a cloth or sheet (sometimes a prayer cloth) held up by four wooden poles. In Orthodox Judaism, there is meant to be open sky above the chuppah, just as is planned for Max and Lorelai’s garden wedding. The chuppah represents the home the couple are making together, which will always be open to guests.

Lorelai wonders whether it would be inappropriate for she and Max to have a chuppah, and gains reassurance from Luke on that point. Luke is actually correct: there is nothing specifically Jewish about getting married under a canopy (other religions do it too), and it doesn’t necessarily have to be religious in nature. These days there’s a bit of a trend for non-Jewish canopy weddings, and as long as it isn’t actually called a chuppah it doesn’t usually cause offence.

The chuppah is a gift from Luke to apologise for his behaviour towards Max. He knows he has been bit of a jerk about Lorelai’s wedding, and wants her to know he is still there for her as a friend. At the end of the scene, Luke and Lorelai are shown standing together under the chuppah as a sign that they will be married one day (when it happens in A Year in the Life, it will take place under a “canopy” beneath the sky, but not the chuppah).

It isn’t all that believable that the Luke we have got to know so far would actually make a chuppah for a non-Jewish wedding after getting the idea from a book (how did he know how to pronounce the word from reading it in a book?), and it seems awfully contrived.

Emily at the Queen Victoria

When Lorelai looks around the club for a table, she is appalled to see her mother has already saved them one. Lorelai didn’t invite Michel to her bachelorette party – Sookie invited him – and now Michel has invited Lorelai’s mother, who he adores, because he “thought it would be a kick”.

Emily, apart from giving Lorelai a brief lecture about being late to her own bachelorette party, seems to be very happy to be allowed to join in the fun for a change. Although she looks slightly uncomfortable at first, she is unfazed by the drag club, and able to adjust to almost any social environment through sheer force of will.

Emily does question Rory’s appearance at a bar that is 18 and over, but isn’t angry or upset about it. This seems really unbelievable, except that we know Emily firmly believes that you don’t get into arguments or explanations at social events. Her own rules of etiquette seem to insist that she go along with it, however implausibly.

“Make way for Rory”

BOUNCER: It’s twelve bucks. And it’s eighteen and over.
SOOKIE: Oh, she’s eighteen.
RORY: That’s right. Last week. So it’s a new eighteen, but it’s eighteen, yup.
BOUNCER: You got some ID?
LORELAI: Hey, uh, sir, make way for Rory. That’s her name. And her only name. Rory. Single name, she’s that important. Internationally known international supermodel and sometimes spokesperson for international products.

An in-joke – Alexis Bledel, who plays Rory, was a model before she began acting on Gilmore Girls. She first modelled for Seventeen magazine, and did have to travel as a model.

In real life, it is extremely unlikely that a bouncer would allow a 16-year-old girl without any identification into a nightclub that is 18+, even when accompanied by her parent; the penalties for doing so in the US can be quite strict. Lorelai’s way of getting people to make new rules for Gilmores is really getting quite unbelievable.

Alexis Bledel was almost 20 in this scene, so in real life actually would have been old enough to get into an eighteen and over nightclub.

“Robot kid in A.I.”

MAX: Say you’re not here, I come home, there’s Rory and Dean in the dark all alone after eleven. I mean, how do I handle stuff like that?
LORELAI: Oh, Max, Rory is very low maintenance. Kind of like that robot kid in A.I., only way less mother-obsessed. Oh my God, that kid was so annoying. I would’ve pushed him out of the car while it was still moving.

Lorelai is referring to the 2001 science-fiction film A.I. Artificial Intelligence, directed by Steven Spielberg and partly based on the 1969 short story Supertoys Last All Summer Long by British sci-fi author Brian Aldiss. Development on the film was first started by Stanley Kubrick in the 1970s, but the film was not completed until after his death; the film is dedicated to Kubrick.

Set in the late 22nd century, the film is about an artificial boy named David (Haley Joel Osment), who is programmed to have an enduring love for his human mother, Monica Swinton (Frances O’Connor). The film is primarily about David’s search for reassurance that Monica returned his love.

A.I. Artificial Intelligence was a commercial success, and the 4th highest-selling film world-wide, although it did less well in the US. It received mixed reviews, with most critics seeing it as brilliant, if flawed.

This is the second time Lorelai has called Rory “low maintenance”. The first time was in regard to school, where her “low maintenance” included enormously high school fees that required wealthy family members to chip in. Now she is calling Rory emotionally low maintenance, even though Rory in fact needs her mother to face most challenges. “Low maintenance” can join “sweetest kid in the world” as one of Lorelai’s least convincing descriptions of Rory.