Where Netflix leads with a ‘Gilmore Girls’ revival, will you follow?

10.20.15 2 years ago 42 Comments

Warner Bros.

Back in the summer, I acknowledged my own hypocrisy about TV's sequel series craze, admitting that I can't wait for new “X-Files” and “Twin Peaks” episodes, even as I was annoyed that “Heroes,” “Full House,” “Coach,” and seemingly every other TV show ever made was getting a follow-up of some kind.

In the months since, NBC passed on the “Coach” revival, and “Heroes Reborn” was as bad as I expected it to be. But TV executives continue to oppose the idea that sometimes, dead is better, and last night brought a report from TVLine's Michael Ausiello that “Gilmore Girls” will live again on Netflix, as four 90-minute episodes written and produced by “Gilmore” creator Amy Sherman-Palladino and her husband Daniel Palladino.

On the one hand, “Gilmore Girls” was a wonderful show – one of the very best to ever air during the brief but memorable life of the WB network – and because the Palladinos left before the largely terrible final season, the series has more of a reason for being revived than, say, “The Shield,” which ended on its own terms with its creator still in charge. In the same way that I would still be happy to see David Milch finally make those “Deadwood” movies, or would watch the hell out of an Aaron Sorkin-penned miniseries about Jed Bartlet's life after the White House as a Jimmy Carter-style diplomat, I'd appreciate getting to see Sherman-Palladino bring her story to a close.

On the other hand, it's not like Sherman-Palladino's own “Gilmore” run was unblemished. (Nor, for that matter, was Sorkin's on “West Wing.”) The series was already getting pretty bumpy even before she left and new showrunner David Rosenthal was left trying to recapture her voice. (Sherman-Palladino admits she hasn't even watched that season, though she's heard about how it ended.) It's been eight years, during which Alexis Bledel has become unquestionably adult (which fundamentally alters the Rory-Lorelai dynamic that was the heart of the show), Edward Herrmann has died, and Melissa McCarthy has become an enormous movie star whose name went curiously unmentioned during the recent “Gilmore” reunion at ATX Fest.

Plenty of TV shows have done reunion movies (and this is essentially four of them in a row) where everyone was notably older, and some castmembers had either passed away or simply weren't available or interested. If these new installments are bad, they won't besmirch the memory of “Gilmore Girls” at its best, any more than the Netflix season of “Arrested Development” somehow made “Good Grief” less funny.

But like those “Arrested Development” episodes, a Netflix version of “Gilmore Girls” is going to be appreciably different due to age, absence, a change in format, the passage of time, etc. And “Gilmore Girls,” like many great shows, was alchemy. Change any one part of the formula, let alone so many parts of it, and you're no longer turning lead into gold.

What does everybody else think? Are you excited if Netflix and the Palladinos can pull this off? Or would you rather stick with the ending we got, even if it's not the one we should have?

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