Alexis Bledel and Lauren Graham talk about their reunion on “Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life” and what fans can expect from the limited Netflix series.
If you’re into fast-talking, bouncing banter, coffee drinking, and a fast food, doughnut-eating lifestyle, chances are that you’re a huge fan of the famous Gilmore Girls: Lorelai and Rory, and, of course, Luke’s Diner!
The series, which premiered in October 2000, gained a huge fan following, and has since become a pop-culture classic. The show was simple, yet complex. It followed the life of Lorelei Gilmore, a former rich kid who fled from her family’s mansion and snooty lifestyle after she became pregnant at age 16. The story picked up years later with Lorelei and her teen daughter, Rory, living in a small town Connecticut town called “Stars Hollow” where they lived a simple life surrounded by eclectic, down-to-earth townsfolk.
Their obsession with coffee, fast food and quick wit banter won over viewers as well as their roller coaster love lives and their unique relationship that was more “best friends” than “mother-daughter.”
“It brought me back to the first time I read this part and fell in love with it. It felt like such a perfect fit, I couldn’t believe I got to do it again.”
Graham, who has had a successful career with the TV show “Parenthood,” recently reflected on the impact the show had on her. “I relished it, and I’m ruined for life because there’s no more perfect fit I feel like for me than that writing and that show,” Graham told People magazine. “I’m so glad I got to do it again. I just can’t even explain it. It was everything I wanted it to be and more.”
For Bledel, now a mother and engaged to Mad Men star Vincent Kartheiser, the show meant a lot more. It launched her acting career. “I had decided to pursue acting, like, six months before I think this show got picked up. So it was really overwhelming and really lucky. Complete shock to the system because it went on for long and I had to learn so much so fast,” Bledel said in an interview with NBC’s Today.
When fans heard that their favourite Stars Hollow residents were going to unite for a limited series on Netflix, the response was astounding.
“It was really like no time had passed. It was easy. It was fun. It was joyous. It was exhilarating. It was the old show. It’s my favorite thing to do. It’s my favorite part of the show… It brought me back to the first time I read this part and fell in love with it. It felt like such a perfect fit, I couldn’t believe I got to do it again,” Graham said during the Television Critics Association summer panel.
The actress was also pleased that the reunion was able to include alum Melissa McCarthy, who played Sookie. “Honestly, there were so many things, from other friends and family I wanted and hoped to be part of the show in some way, and that was the biggest piece,” revealed Graham. “Had that not happened, I wouldn’t have felt as gratified as I do. The scenes she did are so fantastic. The fact that that came through was the icing on the cake!”
For Bledel, she’s still surprised that people care about Rory’s love life. “I think it’s kind of interesting that that’s what people are excited about,” she said during the panel. “There is so much more to her character. It’s great when people focus on her ambition and her accomplishments.”
So will we find out whom Rory ended up with? “All of her exes make an appearance, and it was great to work with all of them,” she said coyly. “People’s questions are answered, but we can’t answer them yet.”
Lorelai’s mother, played by Kelly Bishop, does make a big return, and will address Richard Gilmore’s (played by the late Edward Herrmann) death. Graham says the death of Richard gives the episodes “a depth and emotional complexity that felt like, ‘Here’s the show, [only] more grown-up all the choices the characters make.’”
What we know so far is that Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life picks up almost 10 years after viewers said goodbye in 2007. Lorelai and Luke are together, Rory is having some career struggles, and Emily and the girls are dealing with the sudden loss of Richard.
And as for the rabid fanfare, Bledel admits that even after all these years, “It’s amazing to know that people are eagerly awaiting these episodes. It’s incredible.”
“Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life” will include four, 90-minute episodes premiering on Fri. Nov. 25 on Netflix.
—by Toni-Marie Ippolito