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Stopping by Stars Hollow: A Critic’s First Watch of 'Gilmore Girls' - Season 2, Episode 1

'Come in, come in, come in.'

I can’t wait for the day when I can eat a whole cheeseburger with bacon and cheddar covered french fries, a chocolate milkshake, and a red velvet cake. Or just be able to have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. I am a woman of simple means, and one of those means is currently filled with the sadness of not being able to eat anything with flour or sugar in it.

So hey let’s go pick up some more almond butter, almond flour, and almonds to fill the void when we stop by Stars Hollow.

Season 2, Episode 1: “Sadie, Sadie”

Holy continuity, Batman! The opening shot of the town decorated in the yellow daisies is absolutely wonderful and brings a sense of magic and intrigue. It’s almost as if the looming presence of the daisies echoes the weight of Lorelai’s decision and that whatever she does it will follow her.

However having Lorelai’s state of mind and state of being reflected by her environment is not the star of this episode, though it certainly is a major highlight. No, the star of this episode is Richard Gilmore in his performance of reliving the horrors of his past and taking it out on unwarranted individuals! Richard wins this award because this scene is absolutely brilliant, heartbreaking, cringeworthy, and full of my favorite thing: past family history informing present family drama.

So Rory brings Dean to dinner in order to meet her grandfather and my goodness do things go not as planned. The thing I loved most about this is that I didn’t even see Richard’s reaction coming. I was amped up to see Richard and Dean bonding, having a feel-good time while Lorelai dealt with the drama of not having told Emily she was getting married yet. I thought they would use this moment to showcase the juxtaposition between the past and present but nope, Amy Sherman-Palladino threw me a curveball.

And let me tell you that Richard grilling Dean, judging him, and being overall upset with his presence because of his failures with raising Lorelai was so much better than a happy go lucky Richard for it informs why his relationship with Lorelai is the way it is. Throughout season 1, Richard Gilmore was more of a kind, educated, father figure for Rory, who many times I wished was one of my grandfathers. It was hard as an audience member to believe he had a dark side, no matter how many times Lorelai let us know. But in this episode, the dark, controlling manner of Richard Gilmore comes forward to add another layer of depth to the already dynamic character.

The real kicker is how Richard’s outburst gets tied into the bubbling conflict of this episode, Lorelai’s lack of communication with her mother. When Sookie calls and spills the beans about Lorelai getting married and Emily calmly hangs up the phone, walks over to Richard, demands he apologize to Rory and says, “I want to know when Rory’s getting married.” I got goosebumps. Seeing Emily upset over her past mistakes in such a nuanced manner was a genius stroke of dialogue and acting, giving the sense that this is the calm before the storm.

This episode was a solid start to the season, giving an audience a taste of the drama and character developments that are yet to come, while ensuring that the magically quaint environment of Stars Hollow is still intact and that the developments and growth made in the first season will continue to be built upon.

This season 2 opener makes the audience feel like they’ll be taken care of, and that is something I greatly appreciate as we move… 

Onto Season 2, Episode 2: “Hammers and Veils”

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Stopping by Stars Hollow: A Critic’s First Watch of 'Gilmore Girls' - Season 2, Episode 1
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