With only one month to go until Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life arrives on Netflix, we decided to put together your ultimate guide to all of the Stars Hollow goodness. Let’s be honest, unless you have a coffee addiction to rival Lorelai Gilmore, it will be nearly impossible to watch the whole series before the revival. So don’t go running around the town square like Kirk running out of The Dragon Fly Inn because of night terrors, this list will catch you up completely and fill you in on all of the Luke and Lorelai will they/won’t they drama you’ll need before the revival. Also, who doesn’t want to relive all of Rory’s dreamy (and at times jerky like) boyfriends?
****Please Note: It took everything in me not to put every episode on this list, because let’s be real, they are all mandatory viewing!***
1. Pilot (Season 1, Episode 1)
You can’t start binging Gilmore Girls without starting from the very beginning. In the pilot we begin our journey with the incredibly unique and beautiful people that occupy the dreamy, fictional town of Stars Hollow, Connecticut. It’s a pilot episode for the books and it shows us first hand the one of a kind of relationship we’re in for with Rory and Lorelai.
2. The Road Trip to Harvard (Season 2, Episode 4)
This is the episode that follows Lorelai and Max’s breakup. An irrational Lorelai takes Rory on an impromptu road trip. The two drive until they reach a hilariously odd B & B where Lorelai then surprises Rory by taking her on a “unoffical” Harvard tour. Rory gets to understand what her life will be like at Harvard (*spoiler* she winds up going to Yale) and it’s a huge bonding trip for her and Lorelai.
3. They Shoot Gilmore’s Don’t They? (Season 3, Episode 7)
This is great in so many ways. Mainly because brooding Jess and Rory finally sort of admit they like each other, also there is a dance competition, and Dean pouts a lot, so it’s a super productive episode. Rory is heartbroken after Dean thinks something is going on between her and Jess (I mean there kind of was) and breaks up with her at the dance competition, Lorelai is going through some stuff of her own and also this episode features one of Dave Rygalski’s cutest moments!
4. Dear Emily and Richard (Season 3, Episode 13)
To me, this is the most underrated Gilmore Girls episode. It’s essential to understanding Lorelai’s upbringing. In “Dear Emily and Richard” we go back and forth between the present and the past. In the present, Sherry is in labor with Rory’s half-sister and Rory is stuck alone with her in the hospital waiting for her father, Christopher to arrive. In the past, we see a young Lorelai who has just found out that she is pregnant with Rory. She is barely 16 and is scared out of her mind, we also get a close glimpse at Lorelai’s relationship with her parents at this time.
5. Those are Strings, Pinocchio (Season 3, Episode 22)
Look, I’m not saying I think Rory’s Chilton graduation speech should be made into a historical document and be praised around the globe or anything–actually yes, that’s exactly what I’m saying! In this milestone episode, we got to see our Rory graduate as valedictorian and move on to another chapter in her life. We also learn that Lorelai and Sookie (Melissa McCarthy) get the Dragon Fly Inn, and we get to see that all of our friends of Stars Hallows dreams are slowly coming true.
6. The Lorelai’s First Day at Yale (Season 4, Episode 2)
Probably the “cutest” of all of the episodes, mainly because it shows the audience just how close our favorite mother and daughter duo actually are. In this episode, Lorelai helps move Rory into Yale and after Rory has a slight breakdown she invites Lorelai to spend the night. Lorelai stays and throws a party with all of the girls on Rory’s floor and helps them find the best take out places in the area, and in doing so gives Rory some confidence about embarking on this new journey. We also learn in the episode that Paris is one of Rory’s roommates and that getting rid of a mattress from Yale is nearly impossible! The episode was and still continues to be one of the most wonderful hours of television I’ve ever seen.
7. Raincoats & Recipes (Season 4, Episode 22)
This episode gave the fans the one thing they had been waiting for since the very first episode, Luke and Lorelai finally accepting the fact that they are perfect for each other. During The Dragon Fly Inn’s first night open to the public (sort of, it was mainly a test run with the townspeople) Luke and Lorelai embrace after a crazed Kirk sprints past them, naked and half asleep. It was beautiful and magical and everything we’ve waited for. Also, that night Rory slept with Dean and Lorelai found them as soon as Dean was scrambling to leave. This would have been fine when Dean was that perfect young man that she dated in Season 1, and even a little of Season 2–right before he became super controlling and began hating on perfect and brooding, Jess (Milo Ventimiglia)–oh and also if HE WASN’T MARRIED! We can’t always get what we want, and that’s what Gilmore‘s Season 4 finale showed us.
8. You Jump, I Jump, Jack (Season 5, Episode 7)
This was our first sort of formal introduction to one of Rory’s serious boyfriends. We had met Logan before but in brief encounters and all we really understood about him was that he was kind of a jerk, but he liked Rory. In this episode we got to see what he would bring to Rory’s life if they dated, he would bring suspense and adventure and that is something she seriously needed in her life. Say what you want about Logan while they dated, but he really helped break her out of her Stars Hollow bubble that she grew up in.
9. Will You Be My Lorelai Gilmore? (Season 7, Episode 16)
This episode is adorable in every way possible, from Lane’s (Keiko Agena) crazy baby shower to her quiet and personal moment with Rory. It displayed in the most beautiful way that this show, at its core, was about friendship and relationships with the ones that matter most in life. During this episode Lane asks Rory, “Would you be their Lorelai Gilmore, I can’t think of anyone better. I mean, you already have the name.” Lorelai served as the mediator between Lane and her mother her whole life, and served as Lane’s surrogate mother for her whole upbringing. It was such a special moment for Lane to ask Rory to be that person for her children.
10. Bon Voyage (Season 7, Episode 22)
OK so we didn’t get to have our queen, Amy Sherman Palladino, close the book on our favorite show, but at least we will get that now with revival! Overall though, this finale was pretty solid as it encompassed everything we knew and loved about the show, and it felt like the perfect way to say goodbye to the characters we grew to love so much. It’s interesting now that we have the revival coming out to think that what we saw so long ago isn’t the last we’ll get to see of our girls. In a way the title was perfect, “Bon voyage” wasn’t a permanent goodbye. the show and our favorite characters just went away for a while, on their own journey, and now with the revival we will get to catch up with them after all of this time!
Are you a Gilmore fanatic? Are you counting down the seconds till the revival comes out? Grab a cup of Luke’s coffee and let us know in the comments!
Gilmore Girls: A Year in The Life premieres November 25 on Netflix.
Victoria loves all things TV! Whether it's binging Grey's Anatomy (for the 4th time) or talking Orphan Black plot lines with her Professors, she's fully in love with the medium. Victoria loves television so much that she is studying it at Monmouth University. If you love hearing long rants about why Luke and Lorelai are meant for each other you should follow Victoria on twitter @VictoriaNelli.