Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Podcast #32 - S2E10 - The Bracebridge Dinner

Hello! Welcome to Return to Stars Hollow - a spoiler-free, retrospective podcast about Gilmore Girls! This is the podcast for Season 2, Episode 10 - The Bracebridge Dinner.

You can direct download the episode here: S2E10 - The Bracebridge Dinner

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Or you can tweet us at SeriouslySwatch (Cordia) or CelesteFohl!

Due to some scheduling conflicts, there will be a week delay of the next episode. Our next podcast will post on Monday, April 20, 2015 for Season 2, Episode 11 - Secrets and Loans.


  1. Secrets and Loans drives me crazy. It is my least favorite kind of TV, where the plot depends on a smart character being stupid. It is particularly frustrating because Gilmore Girls dealt with the issue of "Lorelai needs financial help from her parents" in the very first episode, so we know they can do better than this!

    1) Fifteen thousand dollars is a lot of money, but it's not an insane, there's-no-way-in-hell amount of money. It's less than the cost of a new car. Lorelai, who owns a house and a car and manages to support herself and Rory in a fair amount of style, is in such a precarious financial state that not only does she not have anything close to $15000, she can't even get a bank to return her phone call. If Lorelai were still working as a maid at the Inn, this kind of financial crisis would make sense, but she runs the place. Mia must be paying her more than minimum wage by now.

    2) It makes no sense for Lorelai in particular. The show presents her as someone who worked her way up from nothing! In all her years of being a single mom/hotel maid with no other financial support, she must have learned how to save money or she'd still be living in that potting shed. The woman who runs a business and takes business classes thinks she can get a mortgage by getting recommendation letters from her friends? Lorelai may be self-centered and careless sometimes, but it makes no sense for her to be careless in this particular way.

    3) The whole thing wraps up with an anticlimax -- Emily saves the day again -- with absolutely no consequence. Lorelai feels humiliated, but nothing results from it! There are all kinds of plot developments that could have stemmed from the Termite Infestation. Lorelai could have decided that she can't afford to quit her job and open the Dragonfly with Sookie. She could have talked with Rory about whether they can afford Harvard. Rory could have decided to get a part-time job to defray her bookstore costs (which must be astronomical). Heck, Lorelai could have asked Luke to teach her to cook so they could save money on eating out almost every meal! But nope -- nothing.

    Contrast all this with the pilot. Chilton costs a lot of money, it's a totally unexpected expense and Lorelai has no option but to go to her parents. The whole dilemma tells us a lot about Lorelai and Emily as characters, and it has lasting consequences in the form of the Friday Night Dinner. It sets up the whole show! Gilmore Girls is one of very few shows that really grapples with the interaction between money and family. The pilot did this well. Secrets and Loans does not.

    Phew. Cordia, Celeste, thank you for starting this podcast. I needed a place to say all that.

  2. My only major problem with this episode is Lorelai's letting Rory hear about the house trouble firsthand. I know they're close, but kids should never be exposed to their parents' financial issues. The conflict of going to Emily for help was great, but it still could have happened if Rory saw a repair estimate or overheard Lorelai calling banks for loans.

    I actually found Dean pretty adorable this week. He had a surprising amount of tact in telling Rory she can be stubborn sometimes. Maybe he's doing damage control in the wake of the Jess side-eye? And I'm in full support of all future Dean/Rory kisses that look like an actual couple saying goodbye, instead of two cardboard cutouts bumping together.

    I thought Lane's subplot was handled very well. It was refreshing to see two teenage girls discussing a problem face-to-face instead of avoiding each other for days. It's also an important stance for the show to take: cheerleaders only being dumb, popular girls is a stereotype, and anyone should be able to join any group they want without being judged.

  3. I like the opening joke with Luke dressing up as Dr. Frankenfurter. I like how he goes along with it until the end. Did Rory really make those waffles for Kirk or was she just too nice to say no? I love Sookie wanting to have a slumber party and hiding Jackson in the closet. lol. Jacksons pajamas are awesome!

    I like Rory whispering "asprin" after Lorelai says "roofie". Did Michel just really go there with the ping pong balls thing? I don't like the Rory and Lane fight. Feels kind of forced and I see no point in them fighting. I'm with Lane on this one. While I don't think she would become a cheerleader, I do like that she's trying to have a life outside of Rory. I love Luke offering to help. Again. I love Luke! Also have we seen Lorelai wear glasses before? I feel like we have but I can't remember when.

    I love Emily in the bank meeting scene having to keep quiet. I thought Lorelai was a bit over the top or something. But I love the after scene where Emily is hurt and upset that Lorelai assumes Emily wants something in return. I love the end scene with Lorelai apologizing. And Emily waiting til she apologizes before telling her out her meetings at the inn.

    Quote of the episode: "Two are pom poms, ones a pom!"

  4. I didn't enjoy this episode very much, but I'm still kinda going back and forth on it. It fits Lorelai's character that she doesn't accept money from Emily and wants to do it on her own without falling back on her privilege of having wealthy parents. And yet, I was really annoyed throughout the episode by her and her stubbornness to accept any kind of help from her mother. Especially in the scene at the bank she behaves immature and almost childish, and not just in front of Emily.

    I'm not sure how I feel about the last scene. On one hand, it's a very Emily thing to do, but on the other hand, I believe her when she says she just wants to do something nice for her daughter without having an ulterior motive and the end kind of contradicts that.

    I was also annoyed by Rory being so judgmental of Lane. I like that they talk about in the end and make up again. But overall this feels like a bunch of fabricated problems that get solved within the episode and don't have much consequences.

    Other things:
    I'm going to need that Dr. Luke Frankenfurter doll.
    Luke is still the best. And here I agree with Lorelai to not get a loan from him.
    Dean was not the worst.
    The que sera sera scene is very memorable but why are they so freakishly happy upon waking up? It's a little creepy.
    Does Mrs. Kim approve of cheerleading?