Hammers & Veils
Season 2, Episode 2
Original airing: October 9, 2001
My Rating: 79
This episode had some really wonderful story moments with the continuation of the wedding story and how it is effecting everyone on the show.
The arc for Emily and Lorelai was really well done. The three scenes were framed wonderful in the wedding scenario, but really allowed some expression concerning their entire relationship. I went from incredibly frustrated with them both to incredible proud of them both by the end. The setup of their giant fight feel perfect and realistic, well, except for Max’s presence. I could have done without his awkward hang-dog stance in the background. Otherwise, it was quite emotional seeing Emily and Lorelai really let it out about something that matters. They often seem to fight in vague terms without really getting in to the meat of their dysfunction. This was much more to the core and much stronger because of it. And the reconciliation at the end was particularly powerful, in my opinion, because Lorelai led it. I’ve often complained that she’s the overly immature one in these situations, so that was very nice to see.
Rory’s plot about extracurriculars was, on the other hand, incredibly unbelievable. There’s no way she’s had her heart set on Harvard for her entire life and thought grades were all she needed to get in. But the construction plot that came out of it was very cute and entertaining to watch.
My favorite subplot was definitely the small continuation of Sookie and Jackson. Last episode had Jackson starting to freak out thinking Sookie was dropping marriage hints. His adorable offer to move in together in this episode was perfectly offset by the seriousness of it going directly over Sookie’s head. Her little giggles were fantastic.
Finally, I really liked seeing Luke start to bury the hatchet. It’s obvious it’s difficult for him to see Lorelai preparing to marry Max, but it’s really nice to also see him making an effort to support her. Of course, he loves her, but it also demonstrates how her happiness and friendship are the most important things to her. Yet another example of how Luke is such a great person.
Along with continuing the storylines for Sookie and Jackson, this episode picked right back up with the story of Lane being sent to Korea for an undetermined amount of time. Unfortunately, this is handled just as poorly as it was last week. In the prior episode we had basically no reaction from Rory, which makes it difficult to take seriously. The show seems to be hinting that we may not see Lane again. There’s no return date for her and that is something that should be putting Rory in a bit more of a tizzy. Instead, she can’t even stop cuddling Dean to go say a proper goodbye? This story doesn’t feel remotely real because nobody on the show really seems to care about it.
I was also not a fan of Rory and Dean’s little fight. It felt superficial and pointless and amplifies all the ways Dean has not changed. He gives lots of lip service to Rory’s dreams, but doesn’t really seem to support them.
Last week’s episode hit hard with the poorly presented fight between Dean and Richard. But I really thought they nailed the apology here. It was worth it for Edward Herrmann to have the opportunity to present Richard in such a vulnerable light. Emily’s words seem to have really sunk in and he also has realized that he’ll do anything, including swallow his pride, to maintain a good relationship with his granddaughter. His line, “We’re fine, right?” was just as heartbreaking as anything I’ve seen delivered on the show by Kelly Bishop. This pair is pretty amazing.
The Bottom Line:
This was a very good episode. It felt just right to pick up all the story threads form the season opener and did an excellent job resolving some miniature arcs. It didn’t quite hit on all cylinders with the mishandling of the Lane subplot and the pointless Rory and Dean drama, but overall, it was a winner.