Directing and writing credits:
Directed by Steven Robman, written by Amy Sherman-Palladino. This is Robman's first episode of "GG," but he'll go on to direct two others: "One's Got Class and the Other One Dyes" and "Let the Games Begin." He's probably best known for his work on "Party of Five," one of those family dramas that I missed out on in the mid-90s. It's on Netflix now, so maybe I'll give it a whirl the next weekend I'm too depressed to leave my couch.
I have nothing new or exciting to say about ASP. I woke up this morning convinced she left me a comment explaining the Jane Magazine product placement strategy, but it was sadly only a dream.
Most batshit crazy outfit:
All of the outfits in this episode are standard ugly, not miraculous ugly. Rory's cast, complete with Emily sticker c/o Lane, is a cool accessory and 95% better than all of the other shit she wears. Lady Bird and Rory Gilmore make casts cool. I'm sure kids everywhere are breaking their arms intentionally with the hopes of rocking a badass cast. Not that long ago, kids were eating Tide Pods, so I think this is within the realm of reason.
Use your imagination and pretend that Julie is a blue cast-wearing Rory Gilmore.
Most irritating Rory or Lorelai moment:
I'll discuss it more later, but the way Lorelai treats Luke is unacceptable under any circumstances. Luke has done upwards of 10,000 favors for her and she can't even treat him with decency when a tough situation arises. You're horrible, Lorelai.
Number of times Rory or Lorelai treat their bff like shit:
Lane and Sookie are actually in this episode! But they're not in any substantial scenes, so they're spared the poor treatmnet.
Best literary or pop culture references:
As a female film critic, I feel like I have to at least mention this Pauline Kael reference:
After hearing a knock at the front door.
Lorelai: Oh, that must be Pauline Kael rising from the dead.
There are a bunch of good movies mentioned in this episode. Rory and Lorelai are tasked with the challenge of choosing a selection for 'Movie in the Square' night. They consider a whole host of options before they realize that they're limited to movies in a binder full of nothingburgers.
Stars Hollow weirdness:
Kirk's film is a true delight and better than most of what I had to endure in grad school technical classes. I also love this exchange he has with Lorelai:
Kirk: Okay, well, I don’t know if you know this about me, but I have great creative ambitions.
Lorelai: I did not know that about you, Kirk.
Kirk: It’s true. Don’t get me wrong, I love the blue collar work. I enjoy the plight of the every man. But as much as the mail letter delivered and the DSL line installed and the latest J. Lo flick rented fills me with a deep sense of pride, in my soul I am Akira Kurosawa.
Lorelai: "Seven Samurai," great movie.
Kirk: Excuse me?
Lorelai: "Seven Samurai."
Kirk: I’m sorry, I don’t –
Lorelai: Akira Kurosawa directed "Seven Samurai." It’s a great Japanese movie.
Kirk: Japanese movie? No, I’m sorry, I have the wrong person. Who’s the guy who directed all those "Facts of Lifes"?
Lorelai: I don’t –
Kirk: Asaad Kelada, sorry. In my soul I know I am Asaad Kelada.
Sharpest insult or one-liner:
Lorelai is a total dick at the hospital, but I did laugh at this exchange:
Lorelai: Um, hi, hi, excuse me, uh, my daughter’s here, she was in a car accident. Her name is Rory Gilmore.
Nurse: Okay, just take a seat.
Lorelai: I don’t wanna take a seat.
Nurse: It’ll be one minute.
Lorelai: Hey, do you remember in "Terms of Endearment," that scene where Shirley MacLaine is in the hospital and freaks out because they won’t give her daughter a shot? She got that from me and she toned it down a little. So, once again, I’m looking for my daughter, Rory Gilmore?
I haven't seen it in forever, but I remember loving this movie.
Books mentioned/books Rory is reading:
Jess reads "Slaughterhouse-Five" when he's supposed to be taking a test. Later, he offers to lend Rory his copy of "Please Kill Me," a great book that everyone interested in the history of punk should add to their list. Whenever they go get ice cream, Rory offers to read "Othello" to Jess.
Best song of the episode:
Elastica's "Car Song" is the perfect track for Rory and Jess's ongoing flirtation. Check out these lyrics:
Sometimes I just can't function
My heart's spaghetti junction
Every shining bonnet
Makes me think of my back on it.
Rory is clearly into Jess in a way that she was never into Dean. He excites her sexually and intellectually and she needs to break up with Dean ASAP so we don't have to deal with this nonsense anymore.
Rory and Lorelai are the absolute worst, along with a majority of the citizens of Stars Hollow. Someone should light a match, save Luke, and burn that place to the fucking ground. Jess is like a smarter, surlier, more manipulative Jordan Catalano and someone needs to scream this Kurt Vonnegut quote from "Mother Night" at him:
"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be."
Stop pretending to be a stupid dirtbag, Jess. You're better than that! Find a good therapist, do enough to pass your classes, and stop openly rolling your eyes at every single person you encounter. I have just as much, if not more, disdain for all human beings, but I've learned to mask it (sort of). It's an important social skill!
And Rory, stop thinking that you have the power to change Jess. He is way more fucked up than you realize and you're barely equipped to deal with your own issues, let alone someone else's. Also, you have a boyfriend. If you really want to devote your precious free time to someone who will 100% disappoint you, go ahead, but break up with Dean first. You know what you're doing because as the writers of this show keep reminding us, you're like, really smart. You might be kind of naive, but you surely realize that you like Jess, he likes you back, and this whole "study session" is just a cover for hours of unsupervised verbal foreplay.
"I’m dripping here, hold the wheel."
Jess is cute, charming, and has good taste in the things that matter to a seventeen-year-old, but dude has some problems. His mom cares so little about him that she shipped him off to live with an uncle he doesn't even know because she couldn't handle being a parent. His dad hasn't been involved since birth (although that's actually debatable because the "GG" writers mistakenly give Jess's dad two different backstories). I think very few people would escape this kind of situation without a signficant amount of damage. I mean, my parents actually cared about me and I'm still pretty fucked up, so imagine if they hadn't.
I understand why Lorelai is so anti-Jess. She's old enough to identify the type immediately and to understand how dangerous it is. What I don't understand is why she's so quick to fly off the handle after a relatively minor accident. Jess is definitely suspect for all of the aforementioned reasons, but he's done nothing up to this point to exhibit dangerous or reckless behavior. I once totaled my car when a deer ran into the passenger side door. I braked in panic, fishtailed off the road, and hit a telephone pole. Shit happens!
"... because when life really gets you down, Sinéad’s really the one to teach you some perspective.
I think it's fine to caution Rory, to add this incident to the "reasons why Jess sucks" checklist, but it's unacceptable to scream at a bunch of people and treat an accidental broken arm like a stabbing with intent to kill. It's especially shitty to rage at Luke, a person who always tries to do what he thinks is right and is generally empathetic and lovely.
Lorelai: You kept pushing them together. You asked her to help him study, you knew she’d never say no. I told you it made me nervous, I told you I didn’t like it and I should’ve stopped it right there. But you thought Rory would be good for Jess, never mind what he’d be for her. That wasn’t important at all, was it?
Luke: Of course it was important.
Lorelai: Why didn’t you put a stop to it at the first sign of trouble? Why didn’t you make him leave?
Luke: He’s my nephew. I had an obligation to take him in, I had an obligation to care for him.
Lorelai: You had an obligation to this town and to me and to Rory. Where are you going?
Luke: I have to find out where Jess is.
Lorelai: Well, I’ll tell you where he’s not – he’s not in the emergency room having his arm plastered up!
Luke: Hey, I am sorry about Rory. You know I care more about her than I do myself, but at least you know where Rory is and at least you know that she’s okay. Now, I have to find Jess and I have to make sure that he’s okay, and if that cuts into your screaming time, well that’s just too damn bad!
Enjoy drinking disgusting coffee until Luke forgives you for this flagrant mistreatment, Lorelai.
This is a fitting end for the most pathetic 1-month anniversary gift of all-time.
- Lorelai and Rory go to Doose's Market for the essentials: Red Bull, Easy Mac, and Twinkies.
- A black principal?! Come on, you're taking me out of the story.
- There were many good music references in this episode: Steely Dan, Coldplay, Kurt Cobain, Courtney Love, The Clash, Sinéad O'Connor, and Marianne Faithfull. Oh, and the episode name is a jazz standard, made popular by Dinah Washington.
- Jess tells Rory, "The mind is a terrible thing to waste." I knew the phrase, but couldn't pinpoint the origin. I thought it must have been from a D.A.R.E. campaign, but it turns out that it's actually from ads for the United Negro College Fund.
- When Rory's in bed with a broken arm, there is a Buttercup glass on her bedside table.
- Jess's green quilted jacket is very cool and I wish I owned it.
- I find Christopher insufferable in this episode. Why does he care about Rory all of a sudden? He wants to talk to the doctor separately about her hairline fracture? Chill out, dude. The situation is under control.
- My husband on Babette at the end of the episode: "A smoker's whisper is like a child's yell. I feel like I can hear the cancer cells growing."
- I hate to defend Jess, but I have to agree: Rory doesn't seem tough enough to be an overseas correspondent. Girlfriend can barely deal with life's smallest setbacks, let alone dodging bombs in foreign countries.
- Apparently, Milo Ventimiglia loves this episode, especially his own line delivery of "in cones." Pretty cute.
- The girlfriend in Kirk's film is Mary Lynn Rajskub. You might recognize her as Chloe from "24," Genevieve from "Brooklyn Nine-Nine," or a bunch of other things I haven't watched.
- "The Yearling" is a brutal fucking movie that only a complete masochist would watch every single year.
- I broke my arm two times (grades 5 & 7) and my parents basically just told me to suck it up and stop being such a drama queen. I didn't get a little bell to ring for service and my mom didn't sleep in an uncomfortable chair in my room. I don't even think I got to have any fun painkillers.