Literary References of Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life: Fall

Posted by Danielle Mohlman

[TV still from Gilmore Girls, Warner Bros. Television]

We're back with the final installment of literary references in Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life. After nearly a decade away from Rory Gilmore and her voracious reading habits, we were eager to catch up with the residents of Stars Hollow and the books they’ve been devouring.

Mild spoilers ahead! Haven’t finished the series? Head over to Luke’s Diner and stream the rest of the show. We hear he’s giving out his wifi password now.



Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

We discover at the end of Summer that Wild is way more than a book to Lorelai. But when a Pacific Crest Trail Park Ranger suggests that her group start hiking the next day (for optimal boot throwing visibility) the hikers are left with no choice but to sit around the fire trading stories. And while all the women in Lorelai’s group are staunchly Team Book, one of them confesses that she was originally going to do Eat, Pray, Love before discovering her miles were blacked out.


Macbeth by William Shakespeare

When the Life and Death Brigade comes to Stars Hollow, it’s with more theatrics than Stars Hollow: The Musical. A hired unicyclist rolls through the fog with a leering “Something wicked this way comes!” It’s a line from Act IV of Macbeth, a snippet of verse from the Second Witch’s incantation over a boiling cauldron. And while there’s nothing particularly “wicked” about the Life and Death Brigade, the mere fact that they’re in Stars Hollow in the first place signals a heartfelt goodbye from this group of rambunctious men.


Call of the Wild by Jack London

“Got your Call of the Wild right here,” Lorelai says as she greets her overflowing backpack in the morning. The sun is out and the visibility is gorgeous – a perfect day to begin hiking the Pacific Crest Trail. But not before a quick literary reference in her motel room. And while it’s unlikely Lorelai is comparing herself to a St. Bernard-Scotch Shepherd named Buck, we know this trip is certainly making her miss Paul Anka.


The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum

When it’s time for Rory and the Life and Death Brigade to part ways – possibly forever – the boys playact a Wizard of Oz-inspired farewell with Rory, with Robert playing the role of The Tin Man and Colin playing the role of The Cowardly Lion. “Now I know I have a heart,” Robert says, “because it’s breaking.” When Rory gets to Finn, she assigns him the role of the Scarecrow. “You know I think I’ll miss you most of all,” she says, echoing Dorothy’s last lines to her first friend.


The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

To say Lorelai is shocked by her mother’s decision to sell the family home and move to Nantucket would be an understatement. Everything about her mother is constant and predictable; Lorelai relies on that. “You don’t move or change,” Lorelai say, flustered. “There’s a picture of you in the attic that Dorian Gray is consulting copyright lawyers about.” We know Lorelai meant Oscar Wilde, but we get thrown off balance when we’re in shock too.


Glengarry Glen Ross by David Mamet

When Emily Gilmore announces that she bought a house in Nantucket – the first thing she owns that’s in her name instead of Richard’s – Lorelai teases that she’s starting to get a little power hungry when it comes to property. After all, Emily is already scheming her next property purchase: the house next door the one she just purchased. “Hey when was the exact moment you became a Mamet play?” Lorelai jokes. And she wasn’t even in that DAR meeting.


My Struggle by Karl Ove Knausgård

It’s no wonder Jess suggested Rory write a book about her life and her relationship with her mother. He has Knausgård on the brain! After struggling to write a novel about a relationship with his father, Karl Ove Knausgård set out to write less stylistically and more plainly. What started as an exercise to combat writer’s block turned into a six-book autobiographical series about Knausgård’s own life. We see Jess making his way through the first book as he compliments Luke’s wedding suit. “I only do sincere once,” he says, clearly proud of his uncle.


Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

When we see Kirk freaking out about destroying the wedding theme, we’re certain the gazebo is going to look A Short Film By Kirk level ridiculous. But instead, the couple is met by a gorgeous immersive Wonderland, complete with oversized keys, extravagant sparkling lights, and a mad tea party. Of course Lorelai loved it. This is her kind of literary reference.