Saturday, April 9, 2011
Gilmore Girls is one of my favorite, favorite, FAVORITE shows. (I have about three favorites, and I love them all for different reasons.) But this one just blows my mind how great it is, and it also blows my mind how common it is that people (especially girls) aren't that into it!
I've been buying the seasons as I get through them. I've seen every episode so far through season 3. I am savoring the newness of the stories! They're THAT good! (And since I'm only that far, I will be keeping this spoiler-free.)
I've also been thinking a lot lately about feminism again, and guess what I realized? Feminism and Gilmore Girls go hand-in-hand. Here's why.
Lorelai and Rory Gilmore are top-notch feminist characters. They represent women in a way that encourages strength, independence, intelligence, and individuality.
It seems that in a very overall, general way, the whole point of the show is to show that women can stand alone just fine. Sure, one of the main subjects of the show is both Lorelai and Rory's love lives, but never, not once, are the girls controlled by the men in their lives. As it should be! They fall in love, but they never take that as a synonym for having someone protect them or that they are now complete human beings. 100% feminist!
Their personalities are also on the feminist wavelength. Their wit is beyond measure - making so many historical, political, and pop-culture references in each episode that a reference guide is included in the DVDs to maximize understanding of each joke. They're hilarious - a trait that's rarely attributed to women. In this article from Paste Magazine, only two females make it on the Top 10 Best Comedians list. Comedy is also generally targeted to men. When I googled "best comedians," the first link that came up was to guyism.com. ALL ten were men on this list. I'm also reminded of a Bill Maher video I watched recently where he bashes feminism and makes a comment on the sexes in television, saying that on sitcoms, the wife is usually the enlightened, intelligent character, and the husband is the "dumb fuck who's lucky to have her."
Here is the link; I don't want to post the video.
It's a valid observation, but really, the husband also usually happens to be the funny character and the main character. He's the character that gets all the laughs, and when it's a sitcom, it's the character that makes you want to watch the show. The wife is just there as the voice of reason, a simple plot device. With the Gilmore Girls, they are both intelligent and funny; they are complete human beings.
Even greater still, this isn't a feminist-type show that glorifies women and breaks down men. The male characters are all interesting individuals. Especially Luke - the man that Lorelai and Rory get their coffee from more than once a day and who has hidden feelings for Lorelai. He has basic, strong male traits but only really as a background for his more likable and unique traits on the forefront that challenge and break down male stereotypes - he's a health freak, he hates technology, he's a nurturing type of father figure toward Rory, etc. He has a "soft side," if you will, but he's still a guy in a flannel shirt and a backwards baseball cap.
I'll end here because I could go on forever. I hope everyone (male and female) can enjoy this gem of television and see why it is so important for the modern woman.