S1:E2 – “The Lorelais’ First Day at Chilton”

Rory’s first day at Chilton, where she has a confrontation with the infamous Paris. Emily tries to install an internet connection at Lorelai’s house without asking first.

PCR count for this episode: 50
Jump to: Pop Culture References | Soundtrack | Episode Trivia

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PCR

1. Apple Venus Volume 2
As in: “Guys! New CD! XTC, Apple Venus Volume 2!”
He's the man who murdered love.

Even though this definitely sounds like a mouthful of jibberish from a streak-of-lightning Lane as she flies into the Gilmore house, it is actually a real thing: Apple Venus Volume 2 is the final album released by British post-punk band XTC before they broke up in 2005. The album features such tunes as “I’m The Man Who Murdered Love,” which is, conveniently, the next thing we hear – Lane chooses this track (actually number 6 on the CD) to play as Lorelai leaves a poor, half-polished Rory on the front porch.

2. Time lady
As in: “You know what, time lady? Go downstairs and warm up the car.”
An essential resource in those quaint, pre-cell phone days.

In the days before cell phones had the lock on displaying the correct time at all times, we used to have pick up a real live landline to find out what to set the microwave to after a power outage. For a long time, you could dial POP-CORN from any phone to reach the familiar and well-loved voice of Jane Barbe giving you the time, the weather and a myriad of other tidbits.

3. “Off with their heads!”
As in: “I remember it being smaller.” – “Yeah…” – “And less–” – “Off with their heads.”
The Queen of Hearts is a liiiiiiitle trigger-happy...

Because if there’s one thing you can’t accuse the Queens of Hearts of, it’s shying away from ordering executions. Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland features the trigger-happy monarch in all her maniacal glory – but spares her victims often, thanks to the far-less heavy hand of her husband, the King.

4. Hunchback in the bell tower
As in: “I’m just trying to see if there’s a hunchback up in that bell tower.”
Because why wouldn't there be? Egads.

Poor, lovelorn Quasimodo is the hunchback-ed star of Victor Hugo’s 1831 novel, The Hunchback of Notre-Dame. If you haven’t read the book (or seen the Disney movie), Quasimodo’s job is to ring the tower bells, over and over and over and over… And then he goes deaf and his bones crumble to dust. (Those two things are (probably) not related.) It’s a really peppy story.

5. Dukes of Hazzard
“I look like that chick from The Dukes of Hazzard!”
Because, somehow, she seemed smarter in the original.

I’m going to pretend the 2005 Jessica Simpson remake never happened and tell you about the original series, The Dukes of Hazzard, which aired on CBS from 1979 to 1985. The series revolved around the (often illegal) exploits of cousins Bo and Duke Luke, who drove a Dodge Charger named General Lee and hung out with their Uncle Jesse and their cousin Daisy – who wore teeny, tiny little shorts – just like the ones Lorelai busted out to drop Rory off at Chilton for the first time.

6. Headmaster Charleston
Charleston Collegiate
It's either this or the city, right?

This is another of my “not sure this is a reference” references, but my research is your research and whatnot. So here goes: Charleston Collegiate is the name of a fancy-shmancy prep school in South Carolina… And “Charleston” is also the last name of the Headmaster at Chilton, also a fancy-shmancy prep school. Is this a thing? Well, choose your own adventure, kids.

7. Honda
As in: “She’s totally low maintenance. You know, like a Honda.”
We can learn new things every day!

Japanese car-maker Honda Motor Co., makers of the car for the Everyman. And Everywoman. Infamously reliable – or so I hear. I’m #teamtoyota, myself.

8. Christiane Amanpour
“On your way to being..?” – “Christiane Amanpour.”
Just pick a war zone. Any war zone. Really.

Kickass lady journalist Christiane Amanpour is CNN’s Chief International Correspondent and a Global Affairs Anchor on ABC – in other words, she’s a BFD. Smart, driven and not afraid to get into the thick of violent and terrifying scuffles across the world, she is Rory’s idol.

9-12. Cokie Roberts, Oprah, Rosie, The View
As in: “Not Cokie Roberts?” – “No.” – “Not Oprah, Rosie or one of the women from The View?”
Way to grill her, Charleston. Calm yourself.

Other female journalists and tv personalities from the past 20 years. All successful and admirable in their own right, it isn’t Cokie, Oprah, Rosie O’Donnell or any one of the women from the long-running female-led news talk show The View that serve as the apple of Rory’s journalist’s eye.

13. Dixie Chick
As in: “Ooh, a Dixie Chick.”
Definitely before The Great Opinion Scandal of Whatever Year That Was.

Play on words! That clever Louise… Referencing both a green and sheltered country-bumpkin kind of gal, as well as the country music band the Dixie Chicks, which – though reunited and touring once again! – was at the height of their popularity in the days of GG Season 1. (In other words, pre-Iraq War Opinion Scandal.)

14. Big Sister
As in: “You can tutor her. Be like a Big Sister.”
That's not quite how that works.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of America is a national nonprofit that sponsors and facilitates mentor/mentee relationships between young boys and girls and volunteer mentors. Of note: Paris mentoring Rory probably wouldn’t have been considered an ideal match.

15. Balance Bar
As in: “I can give you tea and a Balance bar.”
Still going strong!

Like the brand, y’all. They were around 15 years ago, too.

16. 5th Avenue
As in: “You’re standing on 5th Avenue. There’s 100 beautiful boys marching in place behind you.”
How ritzy!

As in, hello Manhattan! Famous 5th Avenue, NYC, is home to Saks, the St. Regis Hotel – and the original Waldorf-Astoria. To Miss Patty’s point, 5th Avenue is also the route for several huge parades (think St. Patrick’s Day, Thanksgiving, etc.), so twirling your baton down 5th Avenue is not exactly NBD.

17. Brazil
As in: “No, no, keep those leotards on! This is not Brazil.”
Choose your search terms wisely.

So for this one, I stupidly Google’d “Brazil naked dance.” Not something I recommend, folks. I’ll keep this one short, as I now need to wash my eyes out with soap: Brazil is a country in South America, 5th-largest country in the world, and Portuguese-speaking. Samba is a West African-inspired genre of music and dance, native to Brazil, and sometimes danced topless. Or so they say. I’m not trying to investigate any further. If you decide to attempt a Google search, then Godspeed to you.

18. Days of the Week Underwear
As in: “Really? Because my days-of-the-week underwear only go to Thursday.”
Just in case you needed a reliable reminder.

REMEMBER THESE? Super popular in the 80s, and I’m glad to see they’re still being sold.

19 & 20. Tolstoy (Count Leo), Dickens
As in: “Tolstoy’s favorite author, for instance, was Dickens.”
All rainbows and puppies with these two.

Count Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy (say that one ten times fast), known widely as “Leo,” was a Russian writer best known for the novels War and Peace and Anna Karenina. He’d gone a little nutty by the time he died in 1910 (and effectively ran away from home), but – fun fact – he and his wife had 13 children while their marriage was still solid.

Charles Dickens was a similarly beloved author, having penned such classics as A Christmas Story, Oliver Twist, A Tale of Two Cities and Great Expectations. The Gilmore crew mentions Dickens and his characters quite often (there’ll be a “shilling for Fagin” reference coming up in Season 4), so get to know this dude.

21-23. Dostoyevsky, George Sand, Balzac
As in: “And of course, last week we covered Dostoyevsky’s main authorial influences – George Sand and Balzac.”
It's like an entire lexicon of dense and smart.

You’re killing me, Mr. Modena. Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Russian, author of Crime and Punishment and The Brothers Karamazov (and others); George Sand, real name Amantine-Lucile-Aurore Dupin, French, author of Indiana and A Winter in Majorca (and others!); and Honore de Balzac, also French, and also a huge inspiration to such literary giants as Dickens, Flaubert and Marcel Proust.

24. David Copperfield
As in: “He would turn to David Copperfield for inspiration.”
And we're not done yet...

So in addition to being the name of a famous magician, David Copperfield is a novel by Charles Dickens, first published as a serial beginning in 1849. The full title is The Personal History, Adventures, Experience and Observation of David Copperfield the Younger of Blunderstone Rookery (Which He Never Meant to Publish on Any Account), so it’s got a little bit of that Fiona Apple thing going on.

25-27. Great Expectations, A Tale of Two Cities, Little Dorrit
As in: “Great Expectations, A Tale of Two Cities, Little Dorrit – all major influences on Leo Tolstoy.”
Because there's a lot of literary name-dropping in this scene... Looking at you, Modena.

We’ve been here before. (“I recognize that tree.”) All three of these novels are major works by Charles Dickens.

28. Mary
As in: “Looks like we got ourselves a Mary.”
Biblical insults! Totally an advanced school.

This one is explained in-episode, but yes – the charming children at Chilton are referring to Mary, Mother of Jesus, or the Virgin Mary. Or even Goody Two Shoes Mary, at least when you consider that Lorelai and the Chilton’ers hold up Mary Magdalene, town prostitute, as being on the other end of that judgmental circus train. (Keep scrollin’.)

29. Quarters
As in: “I was supposed to look together and fabulous, not like I was up playing quarters all night.”
This ain't no vending machine. ...Ba-dum ching!

Have you been 21? Then you have probably heard of quarters: “Quarters is a drinking game which involves players bouncing a quarter off a table in an attempt to have the quarter land in a certain place, usually into a shotglass (or cup) on that table. It is also played in South America, where it is called “monedita,” Spanish for little coin.” Thanks, Wikipedia.

30. Panasonic
As in: “Do I look like I got Panasonic stamped on my ass?”
...I mean. I wouldn't have thought about it, Drella.

Did you know that Panasonic began in 1918? Blowin’ my mind, Wikipedia. Blowing. My. Mind. The Japanese electronics company is fourth-largest television manufacturer in the world. Despite my feeling like I don’t see their name as often as I used to (can’t hear you over the deafening roar of Apple, sorry), it sounds like they’re, you know. Holding up.

40. PTA
As in: “You know, Rory just started there, and I should let her fall in with the bad crowd before I start hooking up with the PTA.”
For Moms By Moms. And Dads. And other legal guardians.

PTA stands for Parent-Teacher Association, and this group isn’t just your local moms and school faculty; any group that calls themselves “the PTA” is actually part of the National Parent Teacher Association, based in Alexandria, Virginia, founded originally in 1897.

41. Harry Potter
As in: “That’s the new Harry Potter on your heads. If they should drop, then Harry will die, and there won’t be any more books.”
Now boarding on Platform 9 3/4!

Harry Potter! Oh, Harry Potter. HP and friends certainly need no introduction, but just for kicks: Harry Potter is the 7-novel fantasy series penned by Britain’s inimitable (and Twitter-sassy) JK Rowling, who famously scribbled her idea for a series chronicling the adventures of the young witches and wizards on a train napkin. The series was still very new at this time in Gilmore-world.

42. Nokia cell phone
As in: What Lorelai answers in the diner
Shut up, how are these still around??

As in: my first cell phone. No joke. These were the first phones to be really popular and widespread, and do you remember all of those case options?? My favorite was sparkly purple. I especially liked how, when you changed those covers, it looked like you were gutting the phone entirely. Splendid.

43. DSL
As in: “I’m supposed to install a DSL for Lorelai Gilmore.”
That was some expensive stuff back in the day.

This was HIGH speed in 2000, y’all, and it still used a phone line. I remember talking about having DSL like I was pretty fancy. I really tried to make sense of this Wiki article to break it down for you here, but my eyes are glazing over, so. Have at it, if you’re so inclined!

44. Shakespeare
As in: “Nothing Shakespeare couldn’t turn into a really good play.”
Best. Insults. Ever.

Who doesn’t know and love the Bard with the Beard? English poet, actor and playwright, nightmare of high school English classes everywhere and purveyor of such fine insults as “I bite my thumb at you, sir!” and “A plague on both your houses!” Romeo & Juliet, Hamlet, Macbeth, As You Like It… Good stuff.

45. Martin Luther
As in: “Who said this?” – “Martin Luther.” – “Very good, Miss Gilmore.”
Reformer or... reformer?

As in NOT MLK, father of the Civil Rights Movement. Martin Luther was a German professor who, fed up with the Medieval Catholic idea that you could basically buy your way out of a fiery afterlife, was a key player in the Protestant Reformation. He may or may not have nailed his theses to a church door and he definitely did appear in front of a council so interestingly named the “Diet of Worms.” Better than eating them, maybe.

46. Triple caps, easy foam
As in: “Triple caps, easy foam, If that doesn’t work, we’ll stick our fingers in a light socket.”
You can skip this one if you're a barista. Also, we salute you.

A cappuccino with three shots of espresso and only a little bit of foam on the top. Sounds like more of a latte to me, but whatever floats your caffeine dreams.

47. Mary Magdalene
As in: “What would they have called me if they thought I looked like a slut?” – “Well, they might have added a ‘Magdalene’ to it.”
Well thank goodness they didn't go THERE.

Mary Magdalene, town prostitute! Repentant, of course, Jesus having cast a whole seven demons (7! That’s a lot of demons) out of her. She was present at the Crucifixion and given a whole ‘nother story in 2003’s The Da Vinci Code, also later referenced in Gilmore-world.

48. Cult, shaved heads
As in: “You guys can shop and study, join a cult and shave your heads.”
Can you say 'Branch Davidian'..?

I have no idea, really, if the Branch Davidians actually shaved their heads, but I was 10 in 1993 – so the word “cult” will remain firmly synonymous with “Waco, Texas” until the day I die. (Sorry, Waco. I’m sure you deserve more than that.) A shaved head is a pretty trademark tell of a cult, I’m sure to the chagrin of prematurely-balding dudes worldwide. I’d be mildly concerned if you saw them in large groups. There’s no usually no good that comes of that.

 

49. French braids
As in: “What if I learn to French braid her hair?”
I didn't learn to do this until I was like 27.

I have friends who still can’t do this, and you know what? I don’t blame them. French braiding takes some finger-witchery, and we’re not all dexterous like that. But somehow, French braiding someone else’s hair has become – in our cultural milieu – akin to being besties for life. So if you’ve got your eye on a potential new friend but aren’t sure how to make the first move: Google can legit help you with that.

50. Moose Mason
As in: “A parent, a teacher, a big guy named Moose?”
He dated Midge Klump.

According to Wikipedia: “Moose Mason is a fictional character in the Archie Comics universe. He attends Riverdale High School where he is typically depicted as the best athlete but the poorest student. His difficulties with school were later attributed to dyslexia.” …Oof. Well, Moose *was* the strongest, and he was often the guy called upon to solve the problems that just needed some plain ol’ brawn. You know, like parents and teachers. They get called on for that stuff, too.

Soundtrack

MUSIC

“I’m The Man Who Murdered Love”

Track #6 on Apple Venus Volume 2

 

“I Don’t Know How To Say Goodbye To You”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=11S4iRL_TNI

 

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