I have been watching "Gilmore Girls" faithfully with Mrs. G. and our girls since its inception. I have enjoyed the show's wit, speed, and it must be said, fine-looking women. This season, the last, is probably the weakest. Still, we must watch, to see how they resolve the two great marriage plots of Lorelei (mother) and Rory (daughter) Gilmore.
As a sociologist I have particularly enjoyed "Gilmore Girls" because it is one of the very few ever to show rich people as more than caricatures. Lorelei's parents are Connecticut Old Money. Lorelei has both resisted this influence, and benefited from it. Her main romance has been with local working-class diner owner Luke. However, rich-boy Christopher, the boyfriend of her teen days who fathered Rory, has returned as a rival. Meanwhile young Rory, at Yale, has been torn over the years between hard-working scholarship boy Marty and reckless rich kid Logan.
At the beginning of this season, Christopher swept Lorelei off her feet, took her to Paris, and talked her into eloping. Logan, meanwhile, has been off in London learning the family business, leaving Rory in school at Yale.
I think the conventions of television require that both titular girls end up married. At this point in the series, the real contestants are on the field. SO, accepting these assumptions, there are four possible outcomes for mother's and daughter's husbands, respectively:
1) rich, rich
2) rich, poor
3) poor, rich
4) poor, poor.
The writers have it in their hands to make any of these men sympathetic enough – to make them, in other words, the right choice. The playing field was level at the start of the season.
I would have been most interested if the writers had had the nerve to take the first solution – rich, rich – which would in many ways have been the most class appropriate. Mrs. G. argued, though, that this is just not possible in American television world, and I think she is right.
At some other moment in history it might have been possible to take the fourth option – poor, poor – though it is hard for me to think when that might have been. The novel, movie, and television examples I can think of from the past usually have at least one of the heroines ending up with money.
So we are left with the middle two as the most likely. On the whole, I have been thinking the most likely outcome was 3 – poor Luke, and rich Logan. Some clues at the outset were that both men were more central to the last few seasons than their counterparts. Moreover, in the recent crisis of Lorelei's father's heart attack, the suitors got to show their true character, and Luke and Logan came through with shining colors.
I think this solution is, on the whole, the most appropriate. The rebellious independent woman finds the person who matches her entrepreneurial character and the place she has made for herself in the community. Thus, Lorelei and Luke. And the reckless rich kid is civilized by the ever-decent, and ultimately socially conforming granddaughter of her Old Money grandparents. Therefore, Rory and Logan. American individualism is honored, but in the end family and tradition win, in updated form.
We will see how the string plays out. That is my call.