Judge Cynthia Boris is very susceptible to signage.
Our reviews of Gilmore Girls: The Complete First Season (published May 17th, 2004), Gilmore Girls: The Complete Second Season (published February 2nd, 2005), Gilmore Girls: The Complete Fourth Season (published November 9th, 2005), Gilmore Girls: The Complete Fifth Season (published December 13th, 2005), Gilmore Girls: The Complete Seventh Season (published December 19th, 2007), and Gilmore Girls: The Complete Series (published November 28th, 2007) are also available.
"And all this without a drink in my hand! Dealing with this family is
Like many people, I too began my life as a Gilmore hater. Having never seen the show, I constantly put it down as a ridiculous feel-good dramedy full of quirky characters which would bore me to tears. Then Supernatural came along and I became obsessed with all things Jared Padalecki, which meant catching him on Gilmore Girls reruns as Rory's boyfriend, Dean. I was hooked—lined and sinkered and not just by the charming and sweet Dean. I fell for the intelligent patter, the trademark fast-talking (my husband says I sound just like them), and yes, the quirky characters. Once drawn in, I had no choice but to go out and buy all the seasons on DVD and greedily consume them. The true test? I even watched the episodes that didn't have Jared in them. Yes, I am sold on all things Gilmore. Or rather, I was, until Season Six came along.
Facts of the Case
Lorelai Gilmore (Lauren Graham) is a young single mother raising a teenage daughter who is also her best friend. Rory Gilmore (Alexis Bledel) may be the child in the relationship but in reality she's more of the parent. Rory is organized, rational, well-behaved (to a fault), and she's in bed by nine on a school night. Lorelai is wild and disorganized; she's a lover of mischievous pranks, junk food, and coffee. Did I mention coffee? Lots of it. The Gilmore Girls live in the small Connecticut town of Stars Hollow, which is populated with a cast of characters that are all a bit off bubble, except for maybe Luke (Scott Patterson). He runs the town diner and after six seasons has finally admitted that he's in love with Lorelei. It may sound like the setup for a sitcom, but it's not. Gilmore Girls is one of those shows that straddles the comedy/drama border with laugh out loud one-liners back to back with angst ridden, emotional scenes. Pay attention, because everything on this show comes at you fast and furious, and if you didn't get that pop culture reference Lorelai just made—forget it. Another one will be along any minute.
Welcome to Stars Hollow.
Grrrrrr. No, that's not puppy dog Paul Anka growling at one of Babette's gnomes. It's me watching this sixth season box set and in that, I'm not alone. Season Six was the show's most controversial, leaving fans to wonder if show runner Amy Sherman-Palladino had lost her spark. The banter was off. The plots were slow. There was too much time spent on lesser characters and…big and…Rory and Lorelai were hardly ever in a scene together, even after they got past the huge blowup that started the season off.
Part of the problem is the inevitable issue of aging whenever you have a show with a child in the lead. Meaning, Lorelai can stay pretty much the same for two years, five years, or twelve but Rory can't stay in high school forever. Once she graduated and moved on to Yale, the show lost that mother/daughterness that was the foundation. Still, they managed to keep Season Five pretty upbeat and snappy, but with six it all fell apart.
In what was likely an attempt to move the show in a new direction, Rory quit school and moved in with Lorelai's parents. This caused a huge rift between mother and daughter, which was made worse by Rory turning slowly into a miniature version of her grandmother (Kelly Bishop). There's nothing funny here. There's nothing even remotely interesting here, and watching Lorelai stomp around Stars Hollow pretending she doesn't miss her daughter is just annoying after a week. To cope with the lack of clever Lorelai/Rory scenes, the writers compensated by spending more time with Paris, Lane and her band, Luke's extended family, and a dog. Lauren Graham reportedly hates the dog. I don't blame her. Adding Paul Anka to Gilmore Girls is on par with adding Cousin Oliver to The Brady Bunch—it's a sign that the show has jumped the shark.
Yes, sorry, I said it. Gilmore Girls has jumped the shark, and knowing that Season Seven is starting without the creator of the series at the helm (she had the good sense to move on) doesn't fill me with any sense of hope for a rebirth.
Here's what's in store for you in this box set.
• "The New and Improved Lorelai Gilmore"
• "Fight Face"
• "The UnGraduate"
• "Always a Godmother, Never a God"
• "We've Got Magic To Do"
• "Welcome To The Dollhouse"
• "Twenty-One Is The Loneliest Number"
• "Let Me Hear Your Balalaikas Ringing Out"
• "The Prodigal Daughter Returns"
• "He's Slippin' 'Em Bread…Dig? "
• "The Perfect Dress"
• "Just Like Gwen and Gavin"
• "Friday Night's Alright For Fighting"
• "You've Been Gilmored"
• "A Vineyard Valentine"
• "Bridesmaid Revisited"
• "I'm Ok, Your'e Ok"
• "The Real Paul Anka"
• "I Get A Sidekick Out of You"
• "Super Cool Party People"
• "Driving Miss Gilmore"
To add to slow decline of an empire, this DVD set has no special features. Oh wait, there's a CW Network Preview on Disc Six. Ah, yes, 30 seconds of clips from this season with a voiceover telling us how well the show is doing. Grrr. Now, these DVDs never were all that heavy in that department, but come on! Not one commentary. Not one montage? Not even a gag reel? Believe me when I say, the end is neigh.
The Rebuttal Witnesses
I like the color of the box. How's that? Seriously, even with the faults of this season, Gilmore Girls is still a well-produced, well-written, well-acted TV show. It's intelligent, it's funny (usually), and it does have some terrific character actors supporting the main cast. Actually, the fact that this season annoyed me and several million other fans is a testament to Palladino's original creation. You see, we really like these people of Stars Hollow. We think of them as friends, so can you blame us when we want to see them happy? Find a way to put Rory and Lorelai back in the groove, will you? I really want to sing the praises again when the DVD of Season Seven is released.
If you've been watching since day one, you're not going to want to miss this installment of Gilmore Girls on DVD. If you've never seen an episode, however, this would not be the set to start with. Pick up Season One and enjoy the full effect of pop culture chatter coming at you faster than Emily Gilmore can hire and fire a new maid.
This court finds Gilmore Girls—The Complete Sixth Season guilty of falling into the seventh season slump a season early. (Not surprising, since they do everything fast on that show).
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Scales of Justice
Studio: Warner Bros.
Review content copyright © 2006 Cynthia Boris; Site design and review layout copyright © 2014 Verdict Partners LLC. All rights reserved.