There is a lot currently going on the world; actual human beings are voting for Donald Drumpf, Beyoncé is going tour again, and I recently bought a Swiffer WetJet, but more importantly, all three of Rory Gilmore’s ex-boyfriends have officially signed on to appear in the Gilmore Girls reunion on Netflix. I’ll be the first to say that I was a little skeptical when it was announced that Gilmore Girls would be coming back. I was scared that they wouldn’t be able to round up the whole cast (and they still haven’t snagged Melissa McCarthy yet!), and I didn’t know how they would go on without the beloved Richard Gilmore, (played by Edward Hermann who sadly passed away in 2014), but if I’ve learned anything over the past couple of years, if Netflix can, Netflix will. Now that Dean, Jess, and Logan are signed on and ready to go, I thought it would be an appropriate time to share my last to first ranking of the past loves of everyone’s favorite book nerd and Christiane Amanpour enthusiast, Rory Gilmore.
There are a lot of fictional characters I hate in this world; almost everyone from The Walking Dead, that angry red headed doctor that got his arm chopped off on ER, and Marcel from season two of Top Chef (okay he’s a real person, but he was the worst), but out of everyone Logan Huntzberger is my ultimate TV nemesis. Nothing grinds my gears more than the elitist rich kid with even worse parents trope, and while I commend Matt Czuchry for playing the hell out of that early 80’s James Spader nightmare, Logan in my opinion, was Rory’s absolutely worst boyfriend. Logan was almost relentless in his efforts to turn Rory into the same careless prepster that he was, and while it was all fun and games when they first went bungee jumping at
that white supremacist camp the Life and Death Brigade, from there it just spiraled into boat theft, college dropouts, and a Ross and Rachel “WE WERE ON A BREAK!” garbage cheating excuse. Logan was bad news from start to finish, and the only good thing he did for Rory was proposing to her so she could reject it and then feel even more motivated to go conquer the journalism world. My sister is currently pulling for Logan and Rory to get back together in the reunion, and I am so opposed to this idea I don’t even know if I can speak to her anymore (kidding, but seriously).
It’s important to note that when Gilmore Girls first aired I was in the 6th grade, and 6th grade me loved Dean. I loved his early 2000’s bowl cut and his leather jackets. I loved that he literally had nothing in common with Rory, but was always eager to learn about her and always made her his top priority, but then (despite my family’s beliefs) 6th grade Mallory grew up. I am now late 20’s Mallory (I’m sorry that I am referring to myself in third person, and presenting myself like a next generation Barbie) and I feel a quite differently about Dean. After re-watching the series (for the millionth time) last year, Dean changed for me. I no longer saw him as doting and caring, but rather embarrassingly possessive and in his later years, a total scumbag. I’ll grant him the right to be upset once Jess worked his way into the mix and Rory clearly became interested him, but the rest of his tenure as Rory’s BF was a continuous cycle of “What are you doing? When are we hanging out? Call me when you get home!” and that got old pretty fast. My disdain for Dean grew even more after he (SPOILER ALERT) cheated on, and ultimately ended his marriage to
angry face bob haircut his wife Lindsay to be with Rory. Also, nothing could be more small town than leaving your high school bride to be with your high school ex-girlfriend. Way to represent Stars Hollow, Dean! Yeah, Rory is just as much to blame, but this a boyfriend list, not a “Reasons Why Rory is Not an Ideal Role Model” persuasive essay so just work with me here.
The only other time I have had a complete 180 change of opinion was when I finally tried guacamole again after a nearly 20 year hiatus and learned that I loved it. The other time was when I changed my mind about Jess. I had always maintained that Jess was the worst boyfriend for Rory. His annoyingly inconsistent behavior, refusal to complete high school, and how he treated Luke always irked me, but again let’s remember that I was like 11 years old when he was introduced, so my knowledge on dating, and my taste in TV boyfriends was wildly underdeveloped. That being said, I had always just chalked up his behavior to being a jerk, and never really acknowledged that his tumultuous family life, coupled with the frustration he harbored towards his absentee father in the past may have bled into his relationship with Rory, hence why he couldn’t be the boyfriend she needed (or deserved #Gotham). I’m not totally forgiving him, he did dodge town and ditch Rory’s prom, but fast forward a few years when Jess is a published author and no longer an emotionally absent drifter, and he is finally well adjusted person and ready to make things right with Rory! Oh, but of freaking course Rory is too hung up on the human equivalent of Grey Poupon (pretentious and disgusting), Logan, to give Jess another chance. Jess wrote a book, Rory. He wrote a book! Logan doesn’t even read for fun!! Ugh, I’m rooting for you on this next go around, Jess. You better have something better than Distiller tickets to offer this time if you want to lock it down.
1. (Okay hear me out, but…) Paris
When assembling the perfect TV boyfriend, there are several important factors. Are they encouraging? Do they challenge their partner? Are they present during a time of need? Besides Steve from Full House, the only other counterpart to achieve this was Paris Geller. I am fully aware that Paris was not Rory’s boyfriend, let alone a love interest, but I think it’s safe to say she did better job as a partner to Rory than any of the dudes above. I’ll acknowledge that Paris was a tyrannical monster those first couple of seasons, but once the two recognized that they excelled as a team they were nearly unstoppable (President and VP of the student body, debate teams, college apps, the newspaper, the list goes on!). Granted, TV magic lent a favorable hand in Paris almost always being involved in Rory’s life, whether it be paired up for a project, or winding up as college roommates, but imagine a universe without Paris. Would Rory had been as competitive at the newspaper without her? Would she have had the courage to run for student body elections? Would she have considered any other school besides Yale (lest we forget Paris’ meltdown was the same day Rory decided against Harvard)? Now where would Rory had been without any of those ex boyfriends? Well she wouldn’t have had to dress up like Donna Reed, get a broken arm, or go to jail, so you tell me!*
*I realize this argument is weaker than my upper body strength, but Paris doesn’t get enough credit and dangit I’m going to change that!
Who do you think was the best or worst boyfriend to Rory? As long as we can both agree that best Lorelai should get back together with Rune in the Netflix reboot, then I am all ears!