Oh for 13 More Episodes… Parenthood Gets a Short Final Season


After some dicey discussions over the weekend, Parenthood has been renewed for a sixth and final season, reports The Hollywood Reporter.

The whole shebang was up in the air last week with talk of pay cuts for the cast and executive producers – and a potentially abbreviated run.  However, as we’re well aware, something is better than nothing and agreements were reached resulting in a 13-episode run due to run in the 2014-2015 NBC schedule.  Season 5 had 22 episodes.

Oh, for 13 more episodes of Gilmore Girls.  Just imagine.

it's an honour to be your grandmother [blub]

On a tenuously related note, I’ve been reading up this week on the Need For Closure scale, a series of 40-ish questions invented in the 90s that give an idea of your need – or lack of need – for answers in an ambiguous situation.

What I’m wondering is why there’s such a seemingly universal lack of closure for Gilmore Girls.  When Veronica Mars got her kickstarted movie, it seemed the first question about it was ‘What about Gilmore Girls?’  I mean, didn’t it end OK where it ended?  Luke and Lorelai were together, which I’m guessing most of you wanted.  Rory was taking the first steps on the career she’d always wanted.  Plus she’d loved and learned and was newly single, the world at her feet.  Lorelai and her parents had a suitably begrudging reconciliation and the cast gave a formal ‘goodbye’ to camera.  

So why is there a need for more?  Or don’t you?  Do you feel that actually, it ended well enough and trying to add more might only spoil it?  Do you think the show ever jumped the shark?  

Pic c/o TheCW, clearly.



Rich originally began contributing to GIlmore News as 'Dairyman' in 2013, a reference to the character Dairyman Dick in Tess of the D'Urbervilles, (call me Rich). Here in the UK we were late to the Gilmore party and I don't remember what made me watch my first episode - the one where Lorelai picks Rory up from the police station after she and Logan steal a yacht - but I remember watching it again immediately. And then again. Thankfully, the next show was on the next day and I watched that one three times too. And then the boat one again. I couldn't believe the dialogue was so quick and so funny and I pretended to myself that I was only watching it so I could figure out who I was more keen on - the mom or the daughter. I swore that Aaron Sorkin must have been involved but I couldn't find his name attached anywhere, even on the internet. So I watched and loved and laughed and cried and the day after the series finale, they ran the entire show from the beginning again and Rory turned into a baby so then I was all about Lorelai. Lauren Graham is astonishing ("Mother: Breathtaking") and the show was - and is - lightning in a bottle. It's a treasure for those who watch and get swept up in it, like I did and like the readers of Gilmore News. It's heartbreak and chicken soup, family dysfunction and blind optimism, lighthearted romanticism and balls-out brilliant. Thanks to Arieanna and gilmorenews.com for letting me squat and allowing my inner Gilmore Geek out for air. I worry how it would otherwise manifest.

10 thoughts on “Oh for 13 More Episodes… Parenthood Gets a Short Final Season

  • May 14, 2014 at 5:19 pm

    Ah, so many possible discussion points and so little time to kibitz.

    Let’s take the easiest topic first: The royal sport of “shark jumping”. Certainly Gilmore had its’ fair share, from the worst that took significant repairs over multiple episodes to regain the fanbase to the mundane that simply fell flat on their face to the good that significantly advanced the plotline to the best which is why we watched Gilmore in the first place. So, from worst to first I would suggest:

    #10 – The Rory/Logan boat-ride. Ridiculously implausible and blew up the first third of season 6.

    #9 – The Lorelai/Luke breakup, Lorelai/Chris rebound – Unfortunately plausible but killed the first half of season 7.

    #8- The Lorelai/Chris elopement – The ultimate ramification and continuing disaster from #9.

    #7 – The Rory/Mitchem performance review – Highlighted an unbelievable lack of self-confidence at times from someone we always believed would be smart enough to know better.

    #6 – Kirk’s yee-haw moment in searching for the lost eggs. Nuff said.

    #5 – Lane welcoming Gil into the band. Another Kim woman makes an enlightened executive decision.

    #4 – The Bangles concert. Lorelai plays the Mom card to great effect.

    #3 – Jess with Luke’s help goes for a dip. The funniest unspoken one-liner in the entire series.

    #2 – The opening prologue: “Are you my new daddy?”

    #1 – You jump Jack. Extravagance never worked so well.

    As to the other topics, I’ll be back—-

  • May 15, 2014 at 3:45 am

    The need for more, in my opinion, has to do with the fact that the show deserved better than that final season. It deserved to go out with a bang and, though it wasn’t the worst television finale ever, it certainly wasn’t anything special. Yes, Luke and Lorelai got back together, but of course that was going to happen. There was no way the show was going to end with them separated, which was one of the many reasons why the whole unnecessary Lorelai/Christopher subplot annoyed and bored me to tears. It’s also why Luke and Lorelai getting back together in the final episode did absolutely nothing for me. We’d already seen Lorelai and Luke go through a big break up in Season 5, we didn’t need to see a repeat of that in the final season when they were obviously going to get back together anyway, especially when everything was building up to the Luke/Lorelai wedding.

    As for Rory, it’s great that she went off on her own, but as Amy Sherman-Palladino has said, she had “other plans for her” that didn’t involve her going on the campaign trail. I would’ve loved to see what Amy would’ve done, which I think is what the fans lack of closure comes from. The show had such a distinct voice and look that completely and noticeably went away when ASP left, leaving the final season feeling really weird and out of place compared to the rest of the series. Really, I think what it all comes down to is that GG fans want to see a Palladino made ending.

  • May 15, 2014 at 5:20 am

    Actually, I think the finale was pretty good. I just didn’t like the way it got there. Yes, Lorelai and Luke did end up together (in the last five minutes), but honestly, I can’t quite understand why: their communication skills are at an all time low at that point, there’s still a lot of resentment about their break up and even their friendship seems very awkward and tentative. Like many others, I wanted to see them together (even if I can understand why some viewers did like her relationship with Christopher better), but they go from barely being able to be in the same room to kissing in the town square in about forty minutes, just because Luke made one (of many) insane big gesture. I was hoping for a little more (not necessarily a wedding, but a little talk would have been nice). I understand: feminism, that woman needs no man to achieve anything (well, except for financial and moral help to start her business, moving Rory to Yale or some support when Rory turns into Paris Hilton), but then why all that whinging about her inability to make a relationship work for seven years? Actually, I think her relationship with Christopher had a more satisfying conclusion, despite the whole french elopement fiasco, which made both of them look incredibly selfish, clueless and sad (again, you might disagree if you wanted to see her end up with Christopher). I feel pretty much the same way about her relationship with her parents: yes, they seem to get along better, but, again, I’m not sure how they got there. It feels like there’s two or three episodes missing before the finale. As for Rory, I liked the way it ended. But, again, it felt like too little too late as far as I’m concerned.

    Now, about that movie: I would like to see it happening, I’d love to see these characters happy and settled. Of course, you need a little drama, just to keep things interesting, but that’s where the idea of a Amy Sherman-Palladino finale makes me a little nervous. I know most people think that it all went downhill when she left the show, but I always thought that her last season wasn’t better than what followed (and, if you watch the last episode she wrote, it begs the question: where do you go from there?). It seems to me that, past a certain point, she was too much concerned about creating as much drama as possible. I understand her fear of becoming boring, but I sometimes wonder if she didn’t forget to make the characters likable as well. That translates into Lorelai messing her relationships in the worst possible way, Rory going back and forth from sweet smart girl to spoiled little brat, Richard and especially Emily being manipulative to a sickening point, Luke acting like a autistic bear, Christopher becoming the self-centered, drunken idiot at the Gilmores vows renewal (seriously, even if you hated him, that was just way too much), and so on. So, maybe adding more might make it worst. Still, if that movie ever gets done (and, even though I doubt it, I really hope it does), I will watch it. I’m not as obsessed about it anymore, but I still feel sad when I think about how that show ended. And I still think that a nice epilogue could make it a more pleasant experience to watch from beginning to end (something I don’t even try to do anymore).

  • May 15, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    As for Parenthood, must admit I never watched it after the first season so I do not have the attachment to it that I had to Gilmore. And even in that first season I only watched to see what type of character LG would get to portray. Unlike Bunheads where I appreciated the ghosts of Gilmore past, on Parenthood the vague resemblance of Sarah to Lorelai in terms of past plotlines wore pretty thin pretty quickly. The other problem of course was that with such a large veteran cast, the plotlines for the specific characters within a series of episodes could get pretty dilute at times. Great for the actors in terms of workload distribution, but distracting and even wasteful of time for the viewer unless you came to like the majority of the characters. While I know a lot of people did this, I never got to the point where I cared for more than a few of the characters.

    I actually was a bit surprised that it did so well for so long, mostly because that huge cast had to cost a bundle per episode. But at least being on a major network gave it a chance to draw numbers that could keep it on air. And of course what better option did NBC have as a replacement that could draw both numbers and some critical acclaim??

    So for what it’s worth I congratulate them for keeping the ball in the air for 5 years plus and for having the good sense to work things out in a way that buys them the time to close the show out properly. Too bad Gilmore could not finesse the same rabbit out of the hat—

  • May 17, 2014 at 9:37 pm

    When Veronica Mars got her kickstarted movie, it seemed the first question about it was ‘What about Gilmore Girls? –

    True enough, but that project was on the drawing board for a very long time starting all the way back to 2009.

    [See: http://www.gilmorenews.com/2009/01/22/veronica-mars-movie-scripting-gilmore-girls-hope/ ].

    That it took so long from truly motivated principals speaks to how hard it is to reassemble the critical mass required to jump-start and successfully complete projects that can live up to the pedigree of the original series. That begs the continuing question of if/when the three main Gilmore principals will have the time/interest/resources to pull of the same path. Of course as discussed before, we would love to see it happen.

    [See: http://www.gilmorenews.com/2013/03/22/gilmore-girls-movie-could-kickstarter-make-it-happen/ ]

  • May 17, 2014 at 11:51 pm

    first, sorry for my really bad english :D
    i dont need an 8. season or a movie. in my opinion, it wouldtn work after all theese years. its over, we cannot change that. i dont need new episodes, with a new guy for rory or lorelais marriage. the final episode was okax, but GG deserves a better ending.but its too late for me, to do a movie or something. the reason why i’m so unhappy with the finale episode is, that it wasnt the ‘real’ ending. it was not amys ending, not her final 4 words. i would really like to know them, but i don’t neet a final season….it would ruin more than it would give us…

    sorry, scool english was a few years ago :D

  • May 19, 2014 at 1:30 am

    You know what, I didn’t like the finale but after reading your post I got to take a step back and look at it from a different angle and now I think, you know what – it wasn’t that bad.

    I think my angst against this episode is more directed to the fact that I know that there was something else planned. That there were four words missing from the final episode, that Rory had a different ending. My disappointment is rather disappointment of not knowing the Sherman-Palladino ending. Don’t get me wrong, season seven dragged on with Chris and Lorelai and do not get me started on Rory and Logan – but I wanted the ending that closed it all off with the person that started it all.

    But I also agree with Michelle, is it too late for a Gilmore Girls wrap up in 2014? Would we be as interested in what has happened to Rory or Lorelai now, compared to a couple of years ago (I personally would answer yes). Would other media be better suited? A book? A web-series? A skype chat with Palladino herself telling us what she had planned? I don’t know.

    PS: My guess for the final four words is “I love you Mom” or “I love you kid”. Spoken by Lorelai and Rory respectively.

  • May 19, 2014 at 11:51 am

    Loving these lengthy and thoughtful posts, guys and gals. I’m with the consensus, that I would have loved to have seen what the Sherman-Palladinos did next, rather than watch these characters become markedly less quirky while falling through a best-bits timewarp of the previous six years.

    I’d bet good money that there’s a notebook at the Sherman-Palladino residence with scribbles of fleeting Gilmore-related lines and thoughts. They lived it for six years and voices that resonant and compelling aren’t just going to roll over and die.

  • May 19, 2014 at 4:02 pm

    What I’m wondering is why there’s such a seemingly universal lack of closure for Gilmore Girls? Didn’t it end OK where it ended? So why is there a need for more? Do you feel that actually, it ended well enough and trying to add more might only spoil it?

    Ah, the crux of this week’s wonderings, and a topic that Gilmore fans have been chewing over since the end of the show. [See : http://www.gilmorenews.com/2008/12/10/gilmore-girls-has-a-best-series-finale/ ] I suspect that depending on when the thought strikes us, we have all felt at times that the basic elements were present in the last episode to set up at least a convenient resting plateau for the characters if not a true final goodbye . Thus, not necessarily great but probably good enough for our imperfect world. And this would leave open one or more re-visitations by the principals at a later date that would even be welcomed by the fan-base.

    But then as the previous posters have highlighted, you start thinking of the insane journey of the last 25 or so episodes to get to that point. All the plot flops, u-turns, marginalized character reincarnations [a lobotomized Marty???], like a maze with a single entrance, multiple dead-end branches, and no true exit. Then the irritation returns in losing our ”friends” or worse yet having to watch them metaphorically stagger drunkenly down the street for a significant part of that last year, and we feel somehow cheated. And we also tend to believe since ASP was asking for two additional years as season six was coming to a close, that there was significantly more story to tell for the year after Rory graduated. What did she have in mind?? We’ll probably never know.

    The one upside to all of this “Gilmore withdrawal” [with the internet’s assistance] is that it tempts us to envision our own storylines for how the story would be progressing and a lot of interesting ideas have been forthcoming from the crowd. [See: http://www.gilmorenews.com/2012/11/25/would-rory-gilmore-have-a-kindle/ and http://www.gilmorenews.com/2012/12/04/what-would-you-want-from-a-gilmore-girls-movie/ ]. Some of us are even crazy enough to think we that have seen a possible first half of a Gilmore Girls movie in the most surprising of places. [ http://www.gilmorenews.com/2013/02/26/bunheads-1-18-next-recap-and-review/ ]. And until the principals come back and do it better, this will have to do [at least for me]. Finally, participating in these discussions and trying a little freehand writing related to them has been a true pleasure over the last few years. Cheers to all–

  • May 20, 2014 at 10:32 am

    Claudizzaa, did you mean ‘by Rory and Lorelai respectively’? If not and you wrote it right, that’s *cool* – Rory had a baby :O) The last few posts have stolen the rug from under the blog I was intending to write this week…


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