Alright well this post goes out to my dream reader, as it is an in depth analysis of Gilmore Girls Season one episode six titled “Rory’s Birthday Parties”. For me this episode is significant because it is viewed as Emily Gilmore’s attempts to try to connect with her daughter and grand daughter. Her first attempt is by serving “pudding” at Friday night dinner. Now, while this might not seem significant Emily is an upper class woman which is shown when Rory comments “I have never had pudding in a crystal bowl before”(1.6). So while it is pudding it is fancy pudding. Lorelai even comments later when talking to Sookie about Rory’s birthday parties that “I’s sure it was some expensive form of pudding, but it was pudding none the less!”(1.6).
Emily’s second attempt to connect with younger generations is when she offers to throw Rory’s birthday party at their house that may as well be a version of a small castle. She tells Lorelai that her and Rory will come their and have “a little party”(1.6). She wants to do this on Friday night since this is Rory’s birthday even though Lorelai would like to celebrate her birthday that night. So Rory the “lucky” girl she is gets two parties one on Friday and Saturday night(1.6). Even though Rory and Sookie would rather just celebrate her birthday on Friday and Rory comments “You couldn’t get her to cave”(1.6). These parties represent a part of contention through out this entire episode. But, this as much to do with class issues presented as the parties themselves.
But prior to these parties Emily then tries to connect with her daughter through by asking her to go shopping for Rory’s birthday present and to get something “that [Lorelai] would get her”(1.6). The shopping trip ends of being a disaster because all the items Emily picks out show that she does not know Rory at all through the choices of a “cashmere sweater” or a “Mont Blanc pen” (1.6). Class issues also come into play because Rory seems to be a practical middle class person these items would not be of use to her. Lorelai even comments that when it comes to the pen that she can “put it on the desk at her law firm?”(1.6). The many glaring differences between Rory and Emily widen more when all her classmates have to go to her birthday party or to what is coined as an “obligation party”(1.6).
Rory, even comments to her best friend Lane that “it’s bad enough that I have to see these stupid kids from Chilton everyday. But tonight? On my birthday? I have never even talked to most of them. I have only been going to this school for a couple months”(1.6). She then explains that her mom and grandma are getting along for once which is why she didn’t want to tell her about the party. Well her explanation is that “that would be the end of the pudding”(1.6). Pudding through out this episode seems to represent something positive happening which in this case is the peaceful detente in the case of Emily and Lorelai. This further shown when Deans whispers to Rory “happy birthday” and she tells Lane “I’m just thinking about pudding”(1.6). In this case the positive though is about Dean and her dating, so in this case it has romantic overtones.
But, I think their is more to the pudding than just the positive undertones, this is the shows way of trying to connect people from what seem to be vastly different worlds through the magic of food. I say this because when Rory and Lorelai are at Emily’s party for Rory’s birthday the food does not appeal to them and according to Rory ” Everything smells funny”(1.6). While, oddly enough Emily is enchanted by Sookie’s food at Rory’s second party. This just goes to show the effect that a food can have on a person, and that one’s class will determine the type of food served at something even as simple as a birthday party. Finally, it shows how detached Emily is at this time from her daughter and grand daughter, even if she is trying to bridge the gap with puddings and parties.
All quotes from this episode were from http://www.gilmoregirls.org/eguide/transcripts/episode6.html
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