Gilmore Girls: Partings
It's hard to think of a TV show in recent memory that has had so many detractors even before it aired. Ever since the news of the final scene was leaked out to the Internet a few weeks ago, the on-line community has been going wild, decrying the scene and the season. It got to the point that Robert Bianco commented in his USAToday
TV Column yesterday that fans need to calm down and see the scene in the context of the show before they start riotting in the streets. And you know, I've got to agree with him.
That said, knowing where Lorelai ended up at season's end did help soften the blow a bit. Since we all knew it was coming, it didn't feel as much like a giant punch in the stomach. Instead, I kept hoping against hope we wouldn't see the scene and that it was all some elaborate Joss Whedon-like ruse to deflect attention away from the real cliffhanger or end of the season. For example, maybe they'd pull something like--Lorelai meets a nice guy named Jack who wears a hooded sweatshirt and is really intense.
So did I like the season finale? Not really. Did I loathe it? Not really.
It was just sort of there. An hour of isolated scenes that worked in a vaccum but overall don't add up to an overall complete episode. Scenes I liked: Rory's confrontation with Mitchum in the elevator, Lorelai's therapy session with Christopher's "date" and Logan's attempts to have Rory talk him into staying. Those were nicely done. It's just the rest of it that didn't quite gel for me. I still don't understand the motivation of Emily in setting Christopher up with someone and inviting Lorelai along for the date. Seems to me that would be a bit awkward for Christopher's "date." And Emily knows from last week that Lorelai is in a pretty vulnerable, place and so to force her to be on a date with the father of Rory..it all seems a bit off to me. Of course, it could be part of Emily's plan to get rid of Luke.
Ah, Luke....where do I start?
First of all, I'm not sure Lorelai coming to him with the ultimatium of it's now or never was the best idea. While she's had some time to work through and process these things going on inside her head, Luke is being confronted with these feelings and thoughts for the first time. So the man might need more than two minutes to process what Lorelai is saying to him. She's had time to think through what she's feeling and how to express it. Luke hasn't and it's not fair to him, even though you can point out that most of what Lorelai said to him shouldn't be seen as "news." Also, in the state Lorelai was in, I'm not sure any action wouldn't be met with regret later. While we did see her lying in Christopher's bed with that stunned, "Holy s***, what have I done?!?" look at episodes end, I'd argue that we'd see the exact same reaction and scene if we somehow had Luke and Lorelai run off and get married. I think that any decision Lorelai made at the point she was at last night would have met with that stunned look of regret. Of course, you can aruge that she wanted to marry Luke so once that wore off, the dealing with the consequences would be a bit more pleasant.
And so, we're left with a cliffhanger and I'm assuming next year will start to pick up the pieces. I will go back to what I said last week--I know that Amy Sherman-Palladino has said that in the end Luke and Lorelai are together. I get that, I really do. But I think she was trying to get a two year deal for herself and setting up a story to run for two years with next year being Luke and Lorelai estranged and the final year having them back together and married. But I guess we'll never know exactly how the masterplan was supposed to play out or what the alleged final three words of the show were supposed to be.
Veronica Mars: Not Pictured
I wish I'd caught this potential Easter Egg, but I didn't.
"It's a done deal."
Message to the adoring fans? Man, I sure hope so.
Especially after last night's stunningly great season finale. I don't know what Lost and 24 are going to do to end their season finales but I will say this--Veronica Mars has set the bar extremely high early.
I called it a few weeks that somehow the bus crash was tied to incorporation and that Woody Goodman was too obvious a suspect. I also felt like somehow Beaver would be involved. But even though we know now that Beaver orchestrated the whole bus crash because he didn't want the secret that Woody Goodman has molested him to get out, my bigger question is: how much about this did Kendall know? And how much of it did she use to her advantage to manipulate Beaver? I get the impression she's worth a good tidy sum of cash now thanks to Beaver's naming her the beneficiary in the real estate company they started. And now that Kendall doesn't have to be a gold-digger, will she dump Aaron Echolls like a hot potato? Kendall is a user but now she doesn't have to use anyone to get the money she wants to support her lifestyle. So what did she want with Keith? And what was in the suitcase? Are we to assume that it was money or was it something else?
Meanwhile, a lot of plot threads from this season and last all came together. Veronica got chlymedia from Beaver when he raped while she was roofied last year. Of all the twists and turns, that one was came from out of left field but yet it worked. I love it when a show pulls of a stunner like that and it works based on the history of the show. And to see all the various plot strands from the season weave together to reveal that it was Beaver behind the bus crash and why he did it--genius. Absolutely genius.
But that's not all. We find out more about Jackie, we see Veronica's dream of what might be a perfect life (interesting that in her dream, she's not going to Stanford) if her mom were around and her dad were sheriff. Also, we see that Lamb is still an ass, knowing exactly how to not only arrest Weevil but how to make sure it's as humilating as possible. Is there a character that I've enjoyed disliking this much since the CSM in the early seasons of The X-Files? Please, Veronica Mars, let's not try to explore and humanize Lamb...he deserves to stay the glorious jerk he is.
Talk about next to perfect--this episode was it. Rewarding, stunning, well written. And even the manipulation of emotions in Keith's apparent death worked well. I am telling you I had a lump in my throat when he came through the door alive and well. Even though I knew they couldn't take Veronica to that dark a place, I was still utterly relieved when he turned up alive. Lamb is a posturing jerk, but he saved Keith's life this time...so mabye I can cut him some slack there.
posted by Michael Hickerson at 5/10/2006 08:24:00 AM
All I know is--CW, you'd be foolish to not pick up this superlative show. I've heard next year will go to three shorter mystery arcs to help keep the show accessible. As long as it's a brilliant as it has been the first two years, I'll be there loyally and faithfully.