Rory goes golfing with her grandfather, by the force and manipulation of Emily and at the reluctance of Lorelai. In spite of initial awkwardness, Rory and Richard enjoy spending time together, discover they have a great deal more in common than they thought and form a new relationship all their own. Lorelai freaks (resulting in a bizarre argument over bra size, which has to be one of if not the most ridiculous conversations in the entire series), Emily gloats and Richard and Rory are, for the most part, oblivious.
The biggest takeaway I get from this episode is the closer look at Lorelai, her parents, and their past; not so much about what what happened, but more the long-standing feelings that led up to and got buried after the schism between them, which took place after Rory’s birth. While I’m not a huge fan of this episode, I do appreciate the landscape it sets up. Lorelai does not simply hate her parents, nor is their clash in personality as black and white as it might have seemed (or could have easily been portrayed in another show). No, they don’t get along; Lorelai is unapologetic in her differences but, for the first time, we see traces of her wishing there was more cohesion among them all; that she wasn’t so left out. Lorelai, unlike her own mother, genuinely wants Rory to be happy, which she spends a good portion of the episode examining.
Emily, on the other hand, is in it for what appears to be entirely selfish reason; impressing their associates and friends at the club and proving that she’s right. This establishes the beginnings of a rivalry over Rory between Emily and Lorelai and it’s so unhealthy, I can’t stand it. Though, spoiler alert, I’m very glad this rivalry does not, in fact, last the full length of the season.
I don’t have as much else to say about this episode, really. It’s not a favorite, and not a lot else jumps out at me, but I do enjoy watching it for the most part. Sookie and Jackson are adorable, squabbling over produce and I find that I get a kick out Meagan Fay‘s performance as the mother of the twin brides.
POP CULTURE REFERENCES: 12
- “Okay, Bob Barker.”
- “I’d rather get my face surgically altered to look like that lunatic rich lady with the lion headthan go to the club with you.”
- “To me you are the teacher in the Charlie Brown cartoon.”
- “It’s like a really snooty Doublemint commercial.”
- “You look just like Tiger Woods!”
- “[Golf is] a good walk spoiled.”
- “Hey, Pepé le Pew, you wanna give me a hand with this?”
- “It’s Peyton Place.”
- “What are you thinking?” / “That Madonna and Sean Penn should get remarried?”
- “Mencken’s Chrestomathy.”
- “My Life As Author And Editor by H.L. Mencken.”
- The grounds of the Independence Inn and the golf course at the club are undoubtedly the same set/location.
- Charles C. Stevenson, Jr. plays Julian Edwards in this episode, but returns in season four, episode 16 (The Reigning Lorelai) as Reverend Wilder.
- Sean Gunn appears again in a different job, but is never called by name; neither Mick or Kirk (he is listed as “Swan Man” on IMDb). He behaves, though, as if he does not know Lorelai or any other locations around the Inn.
Episode Four: The Deer Hunters