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Gilmore Girls: Season Five

The Dragonfly Inn is a great success, Rory's (Alexis Beidel) doing well at Yale, and Lorelai's (Lauren Graham) started a long-anticipated romance with diner owner Luke (Scott Patterson). So what complications could possibly be in store for the Gilmore Girls in their fifth season on the air? Well, lots of things. For starters, Lorelai's parents, Emily and Richard (Kelly Bishop and Edward Herrmann), finally reconciled, are none-too-pleased that she's hooked up with someone as common as Luke — so Emily puts Lorelai's ex (and Rory's dad) Christopher (David Sutcliffe) in a mind to sweep her off her feet. His drunken professions of love at Richard and Emily's wedding-renewal ceremony doesn't win Lorelai's heart, but it does drive a wedge between her and Luke, and she stops speaking to her mother. Meanwhile, Rory's crush on spoiled rich kid Logan (Matt Czurchy) inspires her to behave in ways unlike her usual self — like offering to date Logan on a casual basis and trying to turn a blind eye to his womanizing ways. Lorelai, determined that Rory not make the same mistakes that she did, struggles with warning Rory off of what she sees as a bad choice, even after Logan decides that he's willing to give commitment a try for Rory's sake. A visit to his parents' home for dinner, though, goes exceptionally badly, with Logan's mother and grandfather flat-out saying that Rory's not good enough for their boy, and an offer of an internship with Logan's father goes from promising to devastating. Creators Amy Sherman-Palladino and Daniel Palladino maintained their strong, unique vision in Season Five of Gilmore Girls, integrating life at Yale and Stars Hollow while giving Rory a more mature — if still a bit confused — outlook on the options life offers. The secondary cast of characters were given a rich set of subplots to chew on as well, with Sookie and Jackson (Melissa McCarthy and Jackson Douglas) preparing for another baby, Lane (Keiko Agena) balancing her band, a job and a new relationship, Taylor (Michael Winters) masterminding the creation of a Stars Hollow Museum inside a historic house that Luke wants to buy, and Kirk (Sean Gunn) acting is a less grating manner than in previous episodes while battling Luke for purchase of said house. As with every season of this preposterously entertaining show, a lot happens — and the pop culture references continue to fly fast and furious, from a Quentin Tarantino-themed birthday bash (with Rory dressed as Kill Bill's Go-Go) to a third-grade production of Fiddler on the Roof starring Kirk as Tevye. It's always good to visit with the folks in Star Hollow, and nice to have the show stay on solid footing in its fifth year on the air. Warner's DVD release of Gilmore Girls: The Complete Fifth Season is of the same high quality as the previous four box sets — beautiful full-frame transfers and excellent DD 5.1 audio all in the same style of attractive, book-like packaging. All 22 episodes are included, but this time there's no "Your Guide to Gilmore-isms" booklet on the gals' pop-culture references — instead, there's a single sheet enclosure instructing you to log onto the show's website to get them, which is annoying. There's commentary by the Palladinos on just one episode, "You Jump, I Jump, Jack," a featurette on the 100th episode hosted by Mellas McCarthy, a behind-the-scenes feature on that same episode, and a "Who Wants to Talk Gilmore?" montage of witty moments.
—Dawn Taylor

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