These are what we call the 'YMMV items.' Things that some people find in this work. We call them 'your mileage might vary' because not everyone sees these things in the same way. This starts discussions in the trope lists, a thing we don't want. Please use the discussion page if you'd like to discuss any of these items.
YMMV: Gilmore Girls
Acceptable Targets: People who listen to Top 40 Music. The only time that type of music was played was either when they needed actual music for a party scene or the network forced a track onto the show as Product Placement, and the few other times (when Nickelback made its way into the "Wedding in Paris" promo, for instance), it was only in network promos and not the actual episode. Quite often, upper-class people as well.
Alternate Character Interpretation: Richard and Emily: judgmental, meddling and manipulative parents who only care about appearances and money? Or the Only Sane People of the whole Gilmore Clan. Likewise, is Lorelai an immature, flighty parent, or a Bunny Ears Mother when it comes to her parenting style? And of course everyone's milage always varies when it comes to how self-absorbed and Sue-like both Rory and Lorelai (but especially Rory) come off.
Indeed, some of Richard and Emily's behavior towards Lorelai can be seen as borderline abusive. Emily never seems to run out of cutting remarks to make towards Lorelai and - on the rare occasion Richard and Lorelai have an actual conversation - he's not much better. Both of them rarely let Lorelai forget how much they disapprove of her and how much of a disappointment she is to them. Yet they wonder why Lorelai is hesitant to tell them anything or let them in on her life.
Lorelai (sarcastically describing Friday Night Dinner): Friday Night Dinners, cocktails, Mozart, mind games — good times!
The truth is probably somewhere in the middle for all characters. Lorelai can be immature sometimes, Rory can be spoiled sometimes, and Richard and Emily do show that they love and respect their daughter sometimes. Part of the series' charm is exactly that: the characters act like real people, not like sitcom characters.
Award Snub: Seriously how in the name of all that is fast-paced and witty did Lauren Graham NOT win any acting awards for her work on this show? To be fair, she did get a Golden Globe nomination... But that Emmy gold should have been hers!
Blame both the WB/CW's lousy award campaigning department and the Emmy committee, whose elderly membership probably thought that the WB/CW was solely the home of Acapulco Heat, trash Talk Shows and sitcom reruns (its block of Aaron SpellingNarm like 7th Heaven and Charmed didn't help either), and was to be avoided at all costs. The show did receive one Emmy nomination, for makeup.
"I just had a dream that Madeline Albright was my mother."
Logan, Colin, and Finn's interruption of Rory's class in "Not As Cute As Pushkin".
Lorelai's weird dream in "The Real Paul Anka".
Canon Sue: Many fans consider both Lorelai and Rory (especially Rory) to have shades of this.
Creator's Pet: April. When Rory entered the college phase, some fans began to reminisce about the old days when she was still an adorable innocent. The producers picked up on this and voila! She was meant to take up the mantle as the brainy but cute know-it-all who could give the adults a run for their money.
Rory, either for being a Dude Magnet, rarely making mistakes, or simply being more successful than her peers. In the early seasons, she was a socially awkward bookworm who eventually broke out of her shell and adjusted to Chilton. The college seasons made her inexplicably popular with her peers somehow.
Also,especially in the early seasons the writers had a tendency for portraying her as the sympathetic one even after she treated people who care about her (most egregiously Dean) awfully. Though admittedly, she didn't act this way too often.
Fanon Discontinuity: Amy Sherman-Palladino's contract ended before she got a chance to execute the way she envisioned the series to end, and many fans choose to ignore the existence of anything after the end of season six (some disregard everything from the point April shows up).
Fridge Brilliance: In a Season One episode "Rory's Dance," Rory and Dean leave a Chilton party early, and then spend time walking around Stars Hollow before they accidentally fall asleep in Miss Patty's studio. When Rory returns home the next morning, an angry Emily believes Rory and Dean slept together on Patty's yoga mats. Fast forward to the first episode of Season Five, "Say Goodbye to Daisy Miller", and guess where they have sex for the second time?
"Funny Aneurysm" Moment: Lorelai delivers a preemptive Take That speech about how upper class youth feel entitled to everything and can do anything they want. Rory steals a yacht at the end of season 5 and isn't on speaking terms with her mother for about half a season.
Harsher in Hindsight: In a season 3 episode, Lorelai eavesdrops on a conversation Rory has with Paris where she reveals that she never slept with Dean, nor had done so with Jess yet, making Lorelai proudly say to herself how she "got the good kid." Come the season 4 finale, Rory sleeps with Dean while the latter is married to someone else, greatly upsetting Lorelai and having to listen to Rory childishly attempt to excuse the ordeal.
1) Season 4 Finale: Rory sleeping with Dean while he was married, starting her on a slope of immaturity, sulkiness and partying.
2) Season 5 Finale: Probably the most common point where Rory steals a yacht, then quits school, then moves in with her grandparents. At the very least it's a Wham Episode.
3) Mid way Season 6: Luke discovers he has a daughter and doesn't tell Lorelai..
4) Season 6 Finale: Lorelai breaking her engagement with Luke and sleeping with Chris At the same time the show's creator and her husband quit from the show due to salary reasons, putting a nail in the coffin for people's hope of the final season. note It was so bad theories abounded that ASP wrote such a horrible ending to spite the network and leave the other writers in an impossible position. If it was true - it worked.
The first two points were the clear assassination of Rory's character, and the second two killed Lorelai and her relationship with Luke. So the writers carefully ensured that by the end you don't really care about either of the leads, and the secondary characters aren't much better.
Les Yay: Lorelai often teases Rory that other girls find her cute.
Paris lurks behind Rory's shadow so much in seven years (begging Rory to get her into the student sorority and be her student body vice-president, swinging things around at Yale so Rory must share a room with her, etc.) that she might as well be a Stalker with a Crush.
Paris and Rory share a kiss on Spring Break (although it took place a month before sweeps in actuality). This was foreshadowed way back in episode 2.9 ("Run Away, Little Boy"): Tristan and Rory are set to play Romeo and Juliet in a school project, and Tristan spends most of the episode taunting Dean about how he's going to be kissing Rory on stage; at the last moment, Tristan is sent to military school, and Paris takes over the role (but does not kiss Rory).
Lampshaded/parodied in a cutaway gag on Family Guy, where Lorelai and Rory exchange repartee before sharing a French kiss. (Daniel Palladino, the creator's husband, works on Family Guy as well.)
Madeline and Louise learn that they can manipulate boys by kissing each other during their freshman year of college.
Magnificent Bitch: Trix. Emily's skills in manipulating people sometimes get her into this territory as well, although when actually confronted with her mother-in-law, she stands no chance.
Narm: A lot of the more emotional moments are severely undermined by those ridiculous female vocals that play over them. They're not even singing words, just "la la la".
Ship-to-Ship Combat: Sweet Jesus, the arguments that erupted over which of Rory's three boyfriends were better for her still go on to this day. Any site that even mentions the show will have commenters arguing over Jess, Dean, or Logan, with some outliers for Tristan and Marty.
And when one of Buzzfeed's staff threw their weight behind Logan, the comments predictably started arguing.
So Okay, It's Average: Unfortunately for many, the series finale, which felt more like a Fix Fic. By then, many fans had already abandoned the show altogether.
Special Effect Failure: The season 3 episode where Lorelai's birthday is celebrated has Rory arranging for the "world's largest pizza" to be made (that ends up being Hartford's biggest pizza instead.) When we see the giant pizza being lowered to the ground by a crane machine, the image is very obviously photoshopped.
Strawman Has a Point: We're supposed to see Lorelai's parents as uptight, judgmental rich people, but they are often right about her irresponsibility.
We're also supposed to think Mitchum is a heartless monster for telling Rory "[she] don't got it" to make it as a journalist, except that he's completely right.
As was pointed out in the episode itself, Mitchum determined that she wouldn't be able to make it as a journalist and that she would be better suited as someone's assistant, yet we're never given the impression that Rory was anything more than an assistant at the newspaper.
Rory rips into a ballerina for a horrible performance in the Yale newspaper. Richard supports it because Rory would be doing the ballerina a favor since she can now pursue a different career. This is completely forgotten when Mitchum essentially tells the same thing to Rory. Likely Truth in Television, as it's common for a grandparent (or parent) to want better treatment for their grandchild (or child) from others than they expect toward non-relatives. And Richard adored Rory.
Lorelai is supposed to be wrong when she dismisses Logan as being the kind of irresponsible guy who gets drunk with his fratboy friends, then the next morning skydives wearing a stupid costume, which is merely the way he's getting to the next stupid stunt he's going to do... a season later, Logan turns out to apparently be planning to do just that.
Dean, when giving Rory a rather well deserved What the Hell, Hero? speech over her stringing him along and using for Operation Jealousy when he likes Jess. Not very gentlemanly, dumping her in public? Well, yeah. Justified? Well, yeah.
There's never a character who ends up at a top university or has any sort of academic ambition who doesn't also go to a prestigious private school. All the students we see at Stars Hollow High, the only public school mentioned and one that doesn't seem too bad, are either bad students (Jess), average and unambitious (Dean), or seem to have no interest in college or otherwise don't really talk about academia or their future (Lane). Lane was an especially egregious example, since her obsession with music could have actually made her great in the music industry, as an agent or producer, with a little academic ambition. It's not even given as an option to stay at Stars Hollow High and have a hope at Harvard, nor did any character at Stars Hollow High express hope of going to a university that wasn't local, religious, or a community college.
When Rory says that her ancestors came here on the Mayflower to point out her prestigious lineage. It kind of suggests there's something about being descended from White Anglo-Saxon Protestants that immediately precludes your family from being looked down upon. Unlike everyone else. While this could just indicate pride in her background, Rory, and her mother to a greater extent, often dismiss their lineage and their family. But tell Rory that she doesn't have good breeding and suddenly she's a Gilmore! And the Huntzbergers would probably have looked down on minorities as well, or anything less than a wealthy, WASP background, so Rory's giving into that sort of perspective gives it a sort of legitimacy, since she's the protagonist.
Dean's behavior as the show went heavily implies that he's emotionally abusive, given how short he tended to get in regards to Rory and later, towards Lindsay. In the first two seasons, before Jess even enters the picture, Dean calls her house multiple times and threatened to break up with Rory over her prioritizing her schoolwork over time with him. And yet, the show portrayed Rory as holding up Dean as an ideal boyfriend, calling him "her Dean".
It is often implied that Jess suffered considerable abuse at the hands of his mother's boyfriends and Liz' poor choice is men is Played for Laughs while Jess is chastised for being hard and defensive. This gives the implication that abused children should shut up and get over it and it's entirely their fault for having problems even if their parent/guardian invited bad elements into their lives.
The episode with Liz's wedding has a pretty terrible scenes all on its own. Liz tells Lorelai about all the men she's been with and the list includes at least three husbands, several boyfriends that she admits weren't "good guys", and a couple of men that walked out on her and Jess. Lorelai - who has spent three seasons attacking and criticizing Jess, and in the very next scene mocks him for reading a self-help book - laughs and encourages Liz about her next marriage. Apparently its fine to be friends with the woman who brought this stream of not-so-good-guys into her kids life, but obviously the kid himself is the devil incarnate.
When you look back on the series as a whole, there's a lot of scenes of women frantically apologizing to men, often for things that aren't entirely their fault or aren't actually that offensive as if genuinely afraid of their reactions, rather than just as a basic wacky misunderstanding. The Lorelai/Chris/Luke triangle was fairly central to the show, but in the later seasons Luke's jealousy got to be really over-the-top, to the point where Lorelai was wildly promising never to see him Chris again (even though he's the father of her kid) and Luke was saying things like "We're not fighting...yet" in front of company. Dean showed many signs of this as well with Jess as well...and of course Rory did eventually get with Jess, and Lorelai eventually slept with (and married!) Chris, which really just makes it all worse.
Luke's character is portrayed as being a non-nonsense man, who won't take bullshit from people (especially Taylor), has a bit of a temper, but also a heart of a gold. In later seasons he interrupts a bicycle race in a manner that ends with some cyclists crashing and becoming injured, and also threatens them with a baseball bat - and it's still shown as a comedic incident, just another aspect of not going along with the town's crazy events. When he and Lorelai temporarily break up, he mistreats his customers in the diner and physically abuses some of them when they complain (as well as that one guy who just wanted to get seated). And nobody locks him in the jail or call him a sociopath, it's just treated as a natural, if temperamental reaction of a heartbroken, but ultimately decent guy.
Wangst: When Luke and Lorelai break up in 'Say Something', Lorelai takes to her bed for at least two days and cries like a child, even needing Rory to come back and take care of her.
To be fair this is Luke her best friend of the last 10 + years, and who she had feelings for almost as long but held off admitting it because she didn't want to risk them breaking up. Having that fall apart (especially over somthing so petty) would be utterly devestating.
Rory dropping out of school and having a full on Heroic BSOD because her boyfriend's dad told her that she didn't have what it takes to be a journalist. Wut?
Especially irritating as in the first season she had hoards of people (Paris, Headmaster Charlston, Madeline and Louise, Tristan, Max, even Lorelai) doubting her ability to manage at Chilton. Despite the odds she insisted she could manage and worked her way up. The difference in her reaction speaks volumes about how Rory's character regressed.