Christopher Returns originally aired March 1, 2001. It was written by Daniel Palladino and was directed by Michael Katleman.
In Christopher Returns, Chris visits the Gilmore Girls in Stars Hallow.
We open with Chris wanting to be more involved with Rory’s life, and Lorelei not having a lot of faith in him.
We see Rory giving Chris a tour of Stars Hollow. This brings up a lot of questions for me. It doesn’t seem like Chris is involved in Rory’s life, and I’m not sure if it’s Lorelei’s doing or if it was Chris or a combination of the two.
They go to the bookstore, where Chris tries to buy Rory an Oxford English Dictionary…only to have his card declined. He promises to come back the next day for it, but apologizes to Rory for it outside. He tells Rory to not tell Lorelei about it.
They come across Jackson, who’s talking about Chris to some of the other townspeople. So, this has to mean Chris has never been to Stars Hollow, because otherwise they wouldn’t be making such a big deal out of it. Jackson runs away after realizing they were right behind him.
And then…Friday night dinner. We meet Rory’s other grandparents for the first and only time, and I can say with absolute certainty that I do not like them. Strob starts going off about how Lorelei is just as out of control as she was when she was 16, how she ruined Chris’ life and future by getting pregnant, how she might have aspired to something more than a blue-collar university if she had attended a university like her parents planned for her…that Chris ended his family legacy at Princeton when Lorelei seduced him into ruining his life. Emily tries to get everyone into going into the dining room for dinner, but Strob and Francine leave.
Okay, we need to talk about this scene. I hate that Strob blames the entire thing on Lorelei. Lorelei isn’t the only one at fault. Some people are perfectly happy and successful, even if they haven’t gone to some prestigious school.
Then Rory goes to talk to Richard, and thanks him for defending her. Richard, however, says that he would do it to anyone who attacked the Gilmore name. He starts talking about how she put him and Emily through hell and that it was hard to tell his colleagues that his only daughter was pregnant at 16 and was leaving school. He says they did nothing to deserve it, and that she treated him and Emily as though they were lepers. Richard wasn’t happy about Lorelei getting pregnant, and wishes she followed “the proper procedure” like she was supposed to. Chris was willing to get married, but Lorelei wasn’t. She asks him if what she wanted mattered to him, and he tells her that things have to be sacrificed in order to do what is right.
We really need to talk about this scene too. I get Richard’s point when he says that they did nothing to deserve how she treated them. I mean, we only really get Lorelei’s perspective on what happened, and we don’t really get a lot on Emily and Richard’s version of what happened. I get that marriage is one solution, but there’s also no point in getting married if it’s not right for you.
Rory and Emily talk in the kitchen, and tells Rory that it doesn’t mean anything. She tells Rory that there’s been a lot of talk of disappointment over the years, but Rory and her existence have never been included in that list. We go to the balcony, where Chris and Lorelei have drunken sex.
We also see Luke waiting in front of the diner for Lorelei. Rory and Lorelei talk about how that night, and Lorelei makes sure Rory knows the horrible things said were directed at her. Rory, however, says that they were directed at Lorelei because she had Rory. Lorelei says that Strob and Francine’s anger and pride were getting in the way of them getting to know Rory, and that it’s a big loss on their part. Lorelei wakes up and remembers that she was supposed to paint the diner with Luke. She goes over to apologize, and comes home to talk to Luke. Chris wants to marry Lorelei, and she, of course, still doesn’t want to. She doesn’t think he’s responsible enough, and knows that he can’t buy a book without his card being declined. He didn’t realize how much he missed Rory until he came to see her, but says it’s easier for him to stay away. Lorelei says to come visit more, because Rory needs her dad.
Chris leaves, and promises to call Rory more. Rory knows he asked Lorelei to marry him, but Lorelei says it wasn’t right and to trust her. Rory’s hopeful he changed, because he did come to visit them this time.
We close with Lorelei in the diner after having painted it for Luke.
Favorite lines/Scenes: Chris meeting the townspeople; Emily, in reference to Strob: “Let’s face it, he’s an ass.”
Pop culture: Lipsmackers, I Love Lucy, The Offspring, Metallica
Final thoughts: I really liked seeing everyone’s relationship with Chris. He’s not too involved in Rory’s life, and does seem really flaky, so maybe it’s for the best. We get an idea of what all of Rory’s grandparents think of Lorelei’s pregnancy with Rory, and this episode does a great job with all the different relationships and how they have or have not changed over the last 16 years. It’s a great episode, so it gets 5 mugs of coffee.