Lauren Graham and Alexis Bledel in ‘Gilmore Girls’/Image © Warner Bros. Television
In mid-September, Netflix made the exciting announcement that they would soon be streaming all seven seasons of the oft-quoted and all-around beloved "Gilmore Girls." The internet rejoiced!
Now it's been a little more than a week since the episodes landed - a little more than seven days to gorge, binge, and otherwise stuff yourself with beloved past episodes and best-of moments. (Hopefully you took it easier on the candy and Chinese food than I did.) But binge re-watchings have left me with a taste for more. So get your Red Vines ready and check out this guide to four can't-miss adaptations to take your "Gilmore Girls" experience above and beyond.
1) The Classic: "Willy Wonka (or Charlie) and the Chocolate Factory"
The Episode: Kiss and Tell
RORY: Well we're ordering pizza. That's enough.
LORELAI: Are you crazy? You can't watch "Willy Wonka" without massive amounts of junk food! It's not right. I won't allow it.
The quintessential Gilmore movie night: a sugar high, half a large pizza, and Oompa Loompas. Not to mention Jared Padalecki's dreamboat eyes.
But mostly the pizza. It's always worth going back to watch "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory" but don't forget to check out the classic children's book, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory while you're at it. And I guess you can always throw in the Johnny Depp adaptation if you're feeling really thorough.
2) The Subtle Reference: "The Princess Bride"
The Episode: Teach Me Tonight
Like many of the best Gilmore-isms, this one could have passed right over your head if you weren't listening for it. Before the infamous car crash of season two, Jess and Rory have a great moment while going out for ice cream in her new car. In the wake of all that happens after the crash, it's easy to forget that Rory made a small, but telling, decision to drive on.
And Jess, clearly in love with Rory at this point, responds with the iconic line from "The Princess Bride."
If, somehow, you've gotten to this point in your life and missed either the book or film version, I will hold off on judgmental overreacting. But stop whatever you are doing this instant, obtain a copy of each, and commence a simultaneous reading and viewing.
3)The Iconic: "Girl, Interrupted"
The Episode: I Can't Get Started
LORELAI: Sookie, you cannot walk down the aisle to that. Seasons in the Sun? Cat's in the Cradle? Don't Cry Out Loud? Sookie, do you even like Jackson?
RORY: Sookie. How about Lane and I come up with a few more suggestions for you? Still melodic, but not quite as "Girl, Interrupted."
Confession: I had never seen this movie until researching this piece. When I found out it was originally a memoir by the same title, well, I knew what had to be done.
There is probably not much I can add to the commentary on "Girl, Interrupted" other than to say it was precisely as crazy and uncomfortable and amazing as I'd hoped. A perfect entry in the Gilmore cannon.
It turns out that the memoir is - if possible - even more hair-raising than the movie. Somehow the experience is more terrifying and surreal without visual. Or maybe it's all just in my mind.
4) The Discovery: "Tears and Laughter: The Joan and Melissa Rivers Story" + I Hate Everyone ... Starting with Me
The Episode: Sadie, Sadie
DEAN: So what's the movie for tonight?
LORELAI: Oh my god, a classic.
RORY: "The Joan and Melissa Rivers Story," starring -
LORELAI: Joan and Melissa Rivers. A mother and daughter torn apart by tragedy.
LORELAI: Not getting "The Tonight Show."
RORY: Mean boyfriends.
LORELAI: Identical noses.
I've saved the best for last. You're welcome. Rivers's unexpected passing this summer makes this the hardest entry on this list. But she left such a footprint on pop culture as we know it today that it seems almost obligatory to explore some of the contributions she left behind.
Let's start with the film: Rent, buy, steal a copy (no, not really. Where would you even steal it from?). ASAP. This may be the pinnacle of extra-Gilmore experiences. Joan and Melissa act out the story of their (admittedly complicated) lives. As the title implies, it hits highs and lows. Refusing to shy away from the darkest parts of their story, it nonetheless is full to the brim with high drama and utter absurdity. It's everything you could ask for in a movie.
Now, this is not a typical adaptation. "Tears and Laughter" came out in 1994. In her lifetime, Rivers wrote no fewer than six memoirs, all of which to one degree or another covered the events of her self-acted biopic. You really could not go wrong with any of them. You might start with the original, Enter Talking. Or maybe, Don't Count the Candles, which would have been released closest to the film. Or branch out and take a stab at one of her advice books such as the self-explanatory Having a Baby Can Be a Scream or even Men Are Stupid, for plastic surgery beauty tips.
My personal recommendation goes to I Hate Everyone ... Starting with Me for its simple, brutal honesty. Rivers's humor has always been a pretty clear - though hilarious - defense mechanism. Here she gets to the heart of some her own shock-value, touching on something more authentic while maintaining her scathing powers of observation.
Honorable literary mention: Murder at the Academy Awards -- the first (and, as far as I can tell, only) title in the Red Carpet Mystery series. It's a winner even if only for the cover art.
Still looking for more? Okay, one more. The Dirt - the Motley Crue book Lorelei is reading in "Back in the Saddle" - is currently in development for a film. The Crue has purportedly approved the screenplay. I can't wait to see what they make of the scene where Ozzy Osbourne snorts a row of ants.