Disclaimer: Before anyone throws cyber pitchforks at me, let it be said that I love – LOVE – Gilmore Girls with the intensity of one thousand suns.
However. Recently, I took a few days off work to catch up on my favourite light-hearted noughties drama, and realised something: There’s not a snowflake’s shot in hell Season One would air on our televisions today.
While the show’s creator Amy Sherman-Palladino can’t be blamed for changing attitudes since 2000, it sure is interesting to look back and see how much our social standards have changed.
Let me explain.
1. The language
The language used in Gilmore Girls is enough to warrant a torrent of complaints, according to the Television Code of Practice.
For starters, before her first date with Dean, Rory said, “God, I’m such a spastic” – causing my eyebrows to slam into my living room ceiling.
‘What on earth was Rory SAYING?’ I thought to myself with a mouth full of dark chocolate Maltesers. ‘She’s our sweet, innocent, studious, polite nerd. How did Lorelai just… not react to that word? WHAT IN THE WHAT IS HAPPENING IN STARS HOLLOW?’
Of course, “spastic” is a derogatory term to describe people with a disability, and one the universe swiftly trashed circa Crocs and crimped hair. So saying it in a family-friendly drama? That’s a no-go zone, Rory.
2. The slut shaming
Has anyone else realised Season One of our beloved Gilmore Girls is littered with a big handful of “sluts” and “skanks”?
Both Rory and Lorelai use the term “skanky” to describe items of clothing, and refer to anyone who is sexually expressive as “little sluts”.
LISTEN: What The Binge team really thought about Gilmore Girls. (Post continues after audio.)
It’s pretty clear that, according to the pair, being a slut is an undesirable, gross, dirty thing. Would we see anything like this on our tellies today?
With a very vocal, hilariously feminist army of Twitter users, I highly doubt it.
3. Flagrant racism
Does anyone remember Mrs Kim, the Korean mother of Rory’s friend Lane? Yeah, well, the show’s depiction of one of its only Asian characters is nothing short of racist.
Whenever Mrs Kim enters the dialogue, it’s pretty clear what her role will be: to come across as rude, cold, harsh, a cheapskate, unreasonable, and socially regressive.
Mrs Kim is shown yelling at her shop customers to pay for things in broken English, plotting to set up Lane with a “nice Korean boy”, and grounding her daughter for going to the movies.
If the first season of Gilmore Girls is anything to go by, all Asian mothers are obsessed with school marks and arranged marriages, which is as bemusing a stereotype as it is a frustrating and totally outdated one.
What do you think, would Gilmore Girls Season One cause a social media storm today?