It’s hard not to fall in love with the cast of Gilmore Girls. Ask me who my favourite character is, and I can’t tell you (that’s a lie, it’s probably Kirk, or Paris. Maybe? See what I mean, I can’t choose). But really, I love Lane Kim. You have to respect a girl who can completely transform her closet into a sweet escape from the realities she faces at home. Also, stashing her CDs under the floorboards? Genius if you ask me.
I personally admire Lane because she reminds me a lot of Lorelei. Two women who have strict parents, difficult teenage years, yet somehow managed to find their happiness and stay true to themselves. They both grew up in different situations yet managed to somehow identify with each other, specifically the pressures their mothers have put on them. I’m not sure who is worse, Mrs. Kim or Emily Gilmore. Their treatment of their only children is over the top and stressful. Mrs. Kim is very aggressive with her tone and Emily is quite manipulative with her comments. It’s quite a surprise that both Lorelai and Lane are compassionate towards others and amazing support systems to their best friends, Sookie and Rory respectively.
This is why I love this show. It is about strong women. Women who are relatable, independent, career driven, determined, always learning, and usually all end up in a good place (I say usually because nobody has it perfect). But there is something that’s been bothering me since finishing the entire series this summer. Why would the writers create Lane Kim – a female who is amazing in so many ways, who has grown up quickly and has come into her own – ONLY to give her the worst possible ending?
Lane grew up with a super strict and religious mother. At times, this relationship could be read as downright abusive. Instead of being miserable with her home life, Lane decided to live two separate lives. One her mother would approve of and one that made her genuinely happy. This attempt at a double life is extremely stressful and many times, not very rewarding. As we saw on many occasions, Lane missed out on normal high school priorities like parties, concerts (remember that time she had to decline going to a Bangles concert so instead Rory brought the girls from Chilton?). Not to forget, when she tried dating her first love interest, she snuck around so much that he broke up with her before they even really got serious because it was too much work. She even tried to rebel and mesh her two identities by dying her hair purple, but fear of her mother made her switch back before the purple had even settled. Just typing about the two different Lanes has tired me out, I don’t know how she did it BUT it worked for many years, so hats off to you, Lane Kim.
Lane’s main interest and passion has always been music. This has been very apparent since the first season. Her knowledge on various music genres and musicians is impressive. The fact she ended up in a band is no surprise. Throughout the series, we all had high hopes that this small town rock and roll enthusiast would put her knowledge and musical talents towards a breakout opportunity, outside of Stars Hollow.
Lane’s attempts at romantic relationships, on the other hand, have been a learning curve. First, there was Henry. A relationship that wasn’t as successful as Lane would have hoped. It ended before it even began, which was unfortunate, but the writers rewarded Lane fans for our patience by giving us David Rygalski. THANK YOU WRITERS for David. Unlike lame Henry, David was happy to do whatever it took to get Mrs. Kim to allow Lane to date him, including pretending to be a Christian guitarist. I seriously thought they were going to go the distance but alas, David left for school (aka his own show, The OC), and Lane eventually found love with Zack.
Unlike some fans, I wasn’t into this relationship at first because he ruined the band’s opportunity to sign with a label, all because of jealousy. But then he won me over with the quality time he actually spent with Mrs. Kim. He got her interested in their love of music – I mean, she even helped book churches to for the band to perform in, well played Zack! Mrs. Kim finally accepted Lane’s passions and her relationship with a non-religious, non-Korean boy.
It seemed like life was working out really well for Lane. She was pursuing her music, she moved out and learned independence, she found a boyfriend who was mom approved. Her and Zack eventually get married and it was an epic wedding! But then, the writers ruined all of Lane’s potential and left me quite unsatisfied.
It began with the honeymoon. I won’t lie, I was really excited our virgin was going to have sex for the first time. I was anticipating all the dirty details she was going to tell Rory; as if this was a conversation I would be having with my best friend. To everyone’s disappointment, it wasn’t good, not even close. It was so bad, she vowed to never do it again. At the time, I assumed the show would explore this issue and allow the viewers to witness a couple learn about each other’s sexuality and eventually, the sex would improve, their relationship would strengthen, and so forth.
Instead, what we got from Lane’s first sexual experience was, wait for it…. PREGNANCY! Also, surprise, it’s TWINS! WTF??!!! The writers did her dirty. Sure, this is a likely possibility when having unprotected sex, but this is television! Can’t we escape this scenario, just this once and allow the newly married couple some much needed bliss?
Yet her development goes from bad to worse. Lane eventually gives birth to her twins and Zack gets the opportunity to tour. Being a class act, he insists in his contract that his family joins as well. Instead of being a rocker family, Lane decides Zack should go while she stays at home with Steve and Kwan. While I respect her decision because raising kids is hard job in itself, I really wish she took the opportunity and brought Mrs. Kim along for the adventure.
Going back to my original statement about the similarities between Lorelai and Lane, I got the impression that Lane will go on to raise the babies and once they are of age (like Rory was when Lorelai opened the Inn), Lane would then pursue her music on a larger scale. Understandably, life may have been put on hold but hopefully she didn’t give up on her musical dreams overall because of her unexpected pregnancy.
While I’m very disappointed with how things ended up for Lane in the series, I’m crossing my fingers that with this revival, her life has improved and she is still doing music and being awesome. Past revivals, in general, seem to be a second chance for creators at tying up loose ends. One example that comes to mind is Firefly/Serenity. As some of you may or may not know, Firefly was a television show that got cancelled way too soon. Fans were pretty angry, rightfully so. Joss Whedon, being the amazing man we don’t deserve but are lucky to have in our lifetime, wanted to tie up loose ends. Originally, he tried to get networks to pick it up. No such luck. He then got the idea to make it into a film and that’s how Serenity was born. As a huge Buffy The Vampire Slayer fan, I shouldn’t really complain since the show got 7 seasons but I was left unsatisfied with the final season (don’t get me started on that finale). A few years later, we were given seasons 8, 9 and 10 in comic book form. My thoughts on the comics are up in the air, but once again, loose ends have been tied, fans are happy, and we got something we never thought we would.
Thanks to Netflix, we will all be reuniting with our favourite citizens of Stars Hollow and seeing what they have been up to since saying goodbye to us 9 years ago. You can think of me, watching anxiously, awaiting Lane’s arrival and crossing my fingers that the writers have given her a much needed, kick ass ending! And maybe a Hep Alien reunion tour?