Title: Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life E01 “Winter”
Released: 2016
Series:  Gilmore Girls

Drinks Taken: 28

Cups of Coffee: 8

Previously, on Gilmore Girls

For those of you spending your days mainlining all four episodes of Netflix’s Gilmore Girls revival, I’m here with you. OH BOY, am I. Pour yourself a cup of coffee, tear open the Red Vines and let’s dish. 

Emily, Lorelai, and Rory Gilmore all with drinks in their hands

The Gilmore Girls Drinking Game Rules

Drink once every time:

Lorelai or Rory drinks coffee.
Emily gets flustered by Lorelai’s bizarre sense of humor.
Sookie is controlling about food.
Paris is controlling about anything.
Michel snubs a customer.
Luke is crotchety.
Taylor has an absurd scheme for Stars Hollow.
The girls acquire massive amounts of food and then fail to take even one bite.

Drink twice every time:

Kirk has a new job.
You see a town troubadour.
Emily gets a new maid.

“Winter,” the first episode of Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, felt right, didn’t it? Of course, it’s twice as long as a usual Gilmore Girls ep, so there’s some padding, but the allusions, the performances, the issues raised, the cameos, the sights and sounds of Stars Hollow all felt right. It feels GOOD to be back here. It feels natural instead of forced. The episode opens just the way it should: with Lorelai drinking coffee and smelling the snow, before diving into a full-speed convo with a newly arrived Rory. Dig this: Rory’s now 32, the age Lorelai was when Gilmore Girls first began. Perfect.

So Rory’s forced to move out of her Brooklyn pad after the building went condo, and she’s feeling a little aimless. She’s decided to take the opportunity to couch-crash across the globe, going wherever the story takes her. Her writing seems to be going well – she’s got a story in The New Yorker, about which Luke is cataclysmically proud – but she’s not entirely sure what she wants to do next, or where. She may be writing a book with a British feminist and environmentalist named Naomi Shropshire (Alex Kingston), or she may be writing for Conde Nast. She’ll definitely be tap-dancing her anxiety away. Either way, don’t worry about Rory – she’s got a lot of irons in the fire. 

Luke and Lorelai have been living together in her home presumably since the series finale, and they’re mostly happy. They have a very contented routine that I can’t help but love, but since the loss of her father – and since the fight with Emily at Richard’s funeral thanks to a terribly selfish mistake – Lorelai’s been feeling a little aimless herself. She and Luke never had a serious conversation about having a kid, and now she realizes he always wanted another, and she might want one, too. They go see Paris (PARIS!!!!) at her one-stop-shop fertility clinic, but Paris is unsurprisingly terrifying and Luke gets scared off for now. 

Emily is – you guessed it – also feeling aimless since Richard’s death. She’s lost her other half, her partner of fifty years, and she tries everything from adopting a family of uncertain origin (I felt pretty uncomfortable with the casual racism of this plotline) to the KonMari method to cope. Lorelai convinces her to get into therapy, and Emily happily takes Lorelai’s advice – but not without tricking her into attending a session. This should be good!

How many times did I have to drink? 


How many cups of coffee did the Gilmore girls drink? 


Where’s Sookie

On a six-month-turned-indefinite sabbatical with Dan Barber at Blue Hill Farm. Lorelai misses her bad. No other chef will do – not even Anthony Bourdain. 


She hasn’t changed a bit. She is perfect, PERFECT in every scene. 

Paris’ best line

When she downsizes her assistant for learning nothing in college but “Buffy the Vampire Slayer‘s effect on the feminist agenda.”

Most meta moment

She and Doyle have split (no!!) because he’s become a screenwriter

Kirk insanity

He’s started a ride-share service called Uuuber. Uuuber. His car breaks down after driving Lorelai to Friday night dinner, which is how he ends up attending. It’s magical. Also the town chipped in and bought him and Lulu a miniature pig named Petals to keep them from procreating. 

Michel madness

HE HAS A HUSBAND!!! His name is Frederick and he wants kids, to Michel’s utter disgust. You guys, this is major. 

Lorelai’s craziest outfit

Lorelai, no. Paul Anka, yes.

Best joke

Lorelai telling Rory: “I think any outfit you wear without underwear is gonna be your lucky outfit.”

Best pop culture reference

Lorelai joking about Stars Hollow: “The entire town was erected in a snow globe.”

Best reveal

Lorelai’s jeep!

Most surprising cameo

Oh hi, Digger. 

Second most surprising cameo

Ray Wise appears in an episode with a Twin Peaks reference.

Most surprising anything

Seeing Emily and Luke hug. 

Most welcome cameo

OH HI, LOGAN. He’s looking mighty fine, and he and Rory have an arrangement. I AM INTO THIS.

Emily’s greatest hit

“Luke.” “Yes?” “That was just my way of saying goodbye.”

Luke’s greatest hit

He keeps giving different fake wifi passwords to his diner customers.

Luke’s sweetest moment

Tied with publishing Rory’s New Yorker editorial onto the diner menus, it’s when he tells Lorelai, “Yeah, well, nobody gets to have everything they want in life. All in all, I did pretty good.”


Hep Alien Reunion! Also troubadours.

Best songs

Leonard Cohen and Dolly Parton, amen.

Poor Paul

I literally almost forgot to write about Paul. Nobody remembers that dude. 

Onto “Spring!”


Meredith Borders is formerly the Texas-based editor of Fangoria and Birth.Movies.Death., now living and writing (and reading) in Germany. She’s been known to pop by Forever Young Adult since its inception, and she loves YA TV most ardently.