Gilmore Girls || The Development of JavaJunkie (Lorelai x Luke)

I was requested to analyse Luke & Lorelai's relationship in the revival in detail. Here goes:

There are two key themes which underpin their relationship in the revival: the fear nothing except marriage will be enough and the struggle of communication. Watching the revival the first time, it's very easy to feel like you're watching a do-over of Season 6/7. Lorelai and Luke have progressed to a de facto relationship, but their communication skills throughout the revival leave a lot to be desired. 

From Lorelai's end - consistent belittlement of their relationship by Emily has seemingly taken a toll on Lorelai. They're happy, stable and together - but it's not enough because they've been there before. Even being engaged still ended in a breakup - so when Emily insists Lorelai is not 'as good as married', but rather 'roommates' - it's a stinging assessment. And the reality is Lorelai cares what her mum thinks. 

In 2x02 - Hammers & Veils, Lorelai apologises to her mum for not informing her about her engagement to Max Medina earlier. This is what she says:

I don't know how to tell you things Mom. Um, I don't know if you've noticed this or not, but we don't communicate very well. When something good happens to me, I'm just afraid you're gonna make me feel bad about it. And when something bad happens to me, I'm always afraid you'll say 'I told you so.' I'm not sure if that's always fair, and I'm sure I share part of the blame for this circle we get into, but you think your words don't have any effect on me, but they do. And, I just didn't want to feel bad about this, so I waited. And I really didn't mean to hurt you. 
It's an issue that arises throughout the series - as Lorelai never tells her parents about her relationships, instead letting a third party pass the news on. The only exception is in 2x22 - when Lorelai implies her and Christopher have rekindled their relationship. There's an element of selective trust going on - where Lorelai only informs her mother of news she knows won't cause friction. However, it's not just that. It's a defensive technique Lorelai upholds because it's the only way she can truly ignore the internalised fears she's not enough. The internalised fear seems to have manifested itself ever since the disaster of Roysten St Claire III and is evident in how Lorelai never confronts Christopher for his general absence. And in the case of Luke & Lorelai, even her certainty about their relationship is tentative because of the fears she holds onto - fears that Luke unconsciously allows her to believe when he yet again shuts down when they talk about April's tuition and travel costs. Her fears are what cause her to lie about therapy, lie about the fact she's worried she's not enough for him, and make her overly insistent about surrogacy. She's constantly beared the brunt of her mother's resentment that Lorelai left and her monologue also seemed to be something she repressed - something she didn't want to mention - but something she had to if she ever wants to have a relationship with Luke without all these recurring issues. While it's typical of relationships to hit snags, there's a specific brand of emotional baggage carries which heightens its effects on the relationship.

On Luke's side, his biggest issue is learning to say what he means without a harsher undertone. Part of it is because of Lorelai's persistence, but his insistence comes across over-the-top at times - a personality trait I don't really expect Luke to change. What actually becomes the issue is the sudden realisation they didn't really have serious conversations. Luke's presumed dynamic of their relationship also creates an imbalance. Luke upholds this expectation that Lorelai drives the relationship and that makes their relationship precarious because it puts the burden on Lorelai to keep the relationship going. It's probably a common issue - but it's ironic too. Luke was probably the first guy Lorelai felt the urge to share the responsibility of a relationship with, rather than dictating its play and pause points - but over time, it seems Luke can accidentally slip from the role and not even realise. 

Ah, but then it comes together and it's BEAUTIFUL.

When Lorelai comes back from her 'Wild' (the book because Lorelai is a purist) journey, Luke interjects with a long speech to ensure Lorelai won't break up with him. Did my heart melt? YOU BET IT DID.

You're getting ready to leave me and I have to tell you it's a big mistake. I see the signs. I'e seen them coming for months - the bolting signs, the distance, the therapy, then suddenly you're gonna do 'Wild'? Really? You're gonna go hiking alone with nothing else involved, no music festivals, or Hello Kitty booths, just you and nature. I don't care what anybody says. Needing space is never a good thing ever. I needed space before. I needed space with Nicole and we got divorced. I mean, that's what needing space means. It means 'I need space and the number of a good attorney'. We have been through too much here..... I am not unhappy. I am not unsatisfied. You think that I'm unhappy and unsatisfied and I can't convince you that I'm not. This, right here, is all I'll ever need.... I know I'm not the easiest guy in the world to build a life with.... but there is no one who will be more here for you than me. I will never leave, I will never think about leaving...
To save my slow typist skills from the work it'll need to do, I'm not going to quote the whole thing . Just watch it :) 

Let me back up and analyse. Lorelai's catalyst for her return is the epiphany she has in nature. The memory that comes flashing back to her is not one we've ever heard before - not one that has even been referenced - and that's the point. Lorelai had pushed that memory so far back, because it might've been the best birthday of her life getting to share a full day with her father, who wasn't disappointed in her, who didn't love her any less - but it was a day where someone basically insinuated she wasn't enough. It was a day where Roysten St Claire III didn't just say she wasn't enough for him, but she wasn't even a Gilmore. I can't imagine the psychological damage that did to Lorelai - to have her best moment with her father tied to a moment of teenagers showing their ugliest side. 

Imagine the amount of times the things said to Lorelai, that she probably tried to repress - that kept coming back every time someone blamed her for Christopher leaving. Even in snarky joke comments like Emily's 'it's not your looks that keep them away' (4x15) seem awful. And Luke steps up here. He tells Lorelai what she needed to hear - that she is enough - that Lorelai, in all her multi-faceted glory - is enough. The best thing about it is this though: Lorelai doesn't need it as much anymore. Lorelai getting out that memory in a emotion-churning monologue is the first step to Lorelai acknowledging the words - and rejecting it because she knows she's a Gilmore and she, as a person, is valuable.

Before I end this, I want to address one thing I read on Tumblr - suggesting that Luke's speech was too reminiscent of Chris in his most manipulative form. I low key understood the perspective, particularly in this line, 'there is no one who will be more her for you than me' - but Luke has one thing behind him which distinguishes him from Christopher.

He has always been there - I don't feel it's a manipulative ploy when Luke has been there always and that's what made Lorelai so certain that she proposed in Season 5.

Anyway to finish this off, my ship got MARRIED and waltzed to 'Reflecting Light'.

4x22 & 6x01 || Fall (JavaJunkie) - Read below for additional message

The END.

P.S. As I was writing this post, the 'Seinfeld' episode with Lauren Graham came on. A channel I rarely watch and Lauren Graham appears? Fate.

If you have any more things you want me to discuss about Gilmore Girls, The Good Wife, or any other show - Direct Message me on Instagram @tgwlover 

Thanks for reading! x

Happy New Year to y'all and I hope my first 2017 post is enjoyable to you.