When news broke that the “Gilmore Girls” revival would be hitting Netflix over Thanksgiving, most fans rejoiced that all four episodes would be dropped at once. Instead of waiting months between episodes, they would now be able to take in all six hours immediately.
According to Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos, the choice was made largely because of those very fans, who so passionately pushed for the revival in the first place.
“If we would not have [released them] all at once the fans would’ve killed us,” Sarandos told TV Line. “I’m petrified of those fans; they are so passionate.”
Despite rabid fans scaring their way into an en masse release, Amy Sherman-Palladino doesn’t seem too happy about the newfound binge-ability of her revival.
“I told them I was going to hang myself with a shower curtain if they put them all out at once,” she said at the 2016 TCA summer press tour. “It’s such a journey, and it’s such a build to the last four words … However, you don’t always get what you want.”
Not to be a total buzzkill, but we’re actually on Amy Sherman-Palladino’s side on this issue, wishing that the episodes had been staggered instead of released all at once.
Before you start waving your pitchforks, let us explain.
After nearly 10 years away from Lorelai (Lauren Graham) and Rory (Alexis Bledel) things are bound to have changed. Graham and Bledel’s chemistry as mother and daughter has always been amazing, but even actors that close can’t pick back up right where they left off.
The dynamic between the two characters is bound to have changed — whether in the writing or in the delivery of said writing — and the chances that this revival is going to feel just a little “off” is pretty high.
If the episodes were released one by one, over the course of the year, any awkwardness or shift in tone could be a gradual change that the audience would eventually get used to. Binging all six hours at the stroke of midnight on the night of release doesn’t really allow for that process to happen.
We’re expecting the Internet to be flooded with not just spoilers, but complaints about how this revival “just didn’t feel like ‘Gilmore Girls'” thanks to the system-shock of being exposed to a new spin on the same characters.
Moreover, the premise of the revival practically begged for a staggered release. “Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life” even has episodes titled after the four seasons. It seems more than obvious that Sherman-Palladino expected “Winter” to be released in winter, “Spring” in spring and so on.
The passage of time in a fictional world is easy to muck up when you mainline an entire season. Endings feel contrived and unearned, and major changes begin to feel jarring when you start and finish in one sitting rather than letting the time on screen go by in real life.
We expect this problem to be particularly apparent when fans watch an entire year go by over the span of a few hours.
Finally … we can’t be the only ones who were hoping to savor this revival, can we? You don’t chug a fine wine or scarf down a filet mignon. You take your time and enjoy it.
While it will probably be fun to binge the entire revival and immediately call your best friend to discuss its merits, we have to admit we were hoping to live in the world of “Gilmore Girls” again for much longer. Releasing one new episode every three months would have let the fast-talking fun drag on for a whole year instead of six hours.
Whether you’re unbearably excited to mainline the series or you plan to take your time — and then furiously dodge spoilers — we can probably all share in the sadness that we won’t get an actual year in the life of these Gilmore girls.
“Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life” premieres November, 25 on Netflix.