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An Ode to the Gilmore Girls’ Unabashed Love of Food

2 minute read

“Did we order Chinese, Greek, and Italian food last night?”

“And hot dogs.”

So opens the official trailer for the highly anticipated Gilmore Girls Netflix revival, the two minutes of which manage to show Lorelai and Rory Gilmore still devouring Pop Tarts, tacos, tater tots, mini-donuts, and of course, copious amounts of coffee with reckless abandon nearly ten years after the show ended.

To some, the decision to include their food choices in the brief trailer might seem overreaching, but true fans of the show know, the fast-talking Gilmore girls’ endless snacking and ardent love of food is as tantamount to the show as the quirky inhabitants of Stars Hollow.

The Gilmore girls’ boundless appetites and utter disregard for nutritional value and calorie counting has long been a tenet of not only the show’s humor, but the series’ long-standing message of fearless feminism.

Just as Lorelai’s single motherhood and untraditional relationship with Rory set a new standard for family units on television, the Gilmore girls’ penchant for junk food served as a refreshing alternative to years of gendered eating habits seen from female television characters in the past. To put it simply, you’d never catch Rory and Lorelai as “women laughing alone with salad.”

In recent years, the trope of women who can pig out “like the boys” as proof of their cool credentials has circulated (one needs to look no further than Gillian Flynn’s notorious description of the “cool girl” in Gone Girl: “a hot, brilliant, funny woman who…jams hot dogs and hamburgers into her mouth like she’s hosting the world’s biggest culinary gang bang while somehow maintaining a size 2,”), and yet Rory and Lorelai’s enjoyment of food never devolved into an issue of whether or not they were perceived as “cool” or “hot.”

Both of these factors point to the one of the overarching themes of the show, however — a steadfast commitment to living life on your own terms, whether that means ordering three different types of takeout or raising a child as a single parent. In fact, Rory and Lorelai’s unabashed indulgence in food is so enjoyable for fans because it’s just that — completely unconcerned with others’ opinions. The Gilmore girls have rarely catered to convention, but that’s why we love them.

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Write to Cady Lang at cady.lang@timemagazine.com