No need to mince words. This month is all about the return of Gilmore Girls on Netflix. I’ll give extra space to Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life but I won’t completely give the other premieres short shrift.
Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life – November 25 on Netflix
This is the big one and it’s almost here. After shows like Full House, Arrested Development, 24 and The X-Files returned with limited series, Gilmore Girls creators Amy Sherman-Palladino and Dan Palladino got the gang back together. Lauren Graham and Alexis Bledel are back, along with Scott Patterson, Milo Ventimiglia and even Melissa McCarthy for four new 90 minute episodes of Gilmore Girls.
“It was literally like no time had passed,” Graham said. “It was not difficult. It was easy. It was joyous. It was fun. It was exhilarating. It was the old show. I mean, there was no sense of having to resuscitate something, you know. It was just like it was meant to continue.”
Bledel agreed, “Yeah, jumping back in, it really was as if no time had passed. It’s all on the page. Amy’s writing just informs you right away. You know how it’s supposed to be said, and it’s all there for you.”
The premise of Gilmore Girls was that as a young mother, Lorelai Gilmore (Graham) wasn’t that far away from her daughter Rory (Bledel). When Gilmore Girls returns, Rory is now an adult herself, so the shows are about different sort of family bonds.
“I guess how these bonds take us through all the different stages of our lives,” Graham said. “I mean, to return to the show, it’s not a story about a little girl anymore who’s in high school. It’s a story about a young woman and kind of the struggles she faces. Yet the dynamics between me and my mother, between I think these two characters, they’ve grown up, but they’re the same. And that kind of foundation of ‘Here are the people you have to rely on’ can take you through any age. I think that’s what this show continues to tell us about family anyway.”
Of course, Gilmore Girls fans will be just as excited to see who Rory is dating when A Year in the Life begins as they are to see if that changes throughout the season. “Well, we’re not supposed to disclose where we pick up with her romantic life,” Bledel said. “But all of her ex-boyfriends make an appearance in these chapters in one way or another, and it was great to work with all of them again. I think people’s questions are answered by the end of it, but we can’t answer them today, unfortunately.”
Red Oaks: Season 2 – November 11 on Amazon
Amazon produced a series that is set in the ‘80s and pays homage to all the great movies of the ‘80s. Craig Roberts plays a young man working at a country club during a summer break from college, when his father has a heart attack and his mother begins to come out. They even did a body swap episode like the classic ‘80s movie genre.
A true ‘80s icon plays the mom. Dirty Dancing and Ferris Bueller’s Jennifer Grey stars in Red Oaks and previewed what season two has in store for her character.
“For me, this whole season was about Judy Meyers figuring out who she is after 22 years of being in a time machine,” Grey said. “It’s like she comes out, and the world is different than it was when she became a mother and a wife. I would say her whole identity was taking care and making sure that she’s doing the most incredible job as a mother and a wife. And all of the sudden, she’s basically fired. Fired to herself, quit. She’s now out of a job for the first time, and I don’t think has a clue as to how to orient herself in this very, very changed landscape, and not sure about what she even likes or doesn’t like on any level. And because it’s then, not now, and because she came from a time when it wasn’t okay to be gay, and it’s just so new, the idea of what that is, nothing she has ever explored. And I do get to have a new friend, who is played by Beth Stelling. So I got to kind of explore the beginnings, but more like a young person, you know, putting her tongue in the bottle, if you will.”
The Crown – November 4 on Netflix
Netflix’s last original series is a historical drama about young Queen Elizabeth II from the screenwriter of The Queen. Peter Morgan created the series which stars Claire Foy as Elizabeth a 25.
“From a research point of view, finding out about her was so interesting and also there wasn’t a lot,” Foy said. “She doesn’t express herself. That’s sort of part of the job. So that’s where the other side of it, Peter Morgan’s side came from. So emotionally, I just sort of had to imagine, I suppose, imagine what it’s like with being a girl who wanted to live in the countryside with her husband and have horses and dogs and children and who was a shy, retiring sort of type. Very close to her lovely sister who was sort of the opposite and vivacious and full of energy. And suddenly, she’s given the top job in a weird way, and she’s the most unlikely person to have it, and what that means dynamically in the family and in a marriage and all those sorts of things. Essentially, I just think she’s a very, very, very good, good, good person who has given her life for her country, whichever way you look at it, and has done the most incredible job. But obviously, I had to sort of forget all that, because we don’t know where it’s going in the fictional land of fiction.”
Beat Bugs: Season 2 – November 18 on Netflix
Have your kids gotten addicted to Beat Bugs yet? If so, get ready for more Beatles songs covered by these animated backyard insects. Season 2 promises Rod Stewart singing “Sgt. Pepper,” Chris Cornell doing “Drive My Car” and Jennifer Hudson doing “I’ll Follow the Sun” among many others!
Standup Comedy on Netflix
When I was in high school, Dana Carvey had a standup special that played over and over on HBO and then Comedy Central, yet it never got old. He did “Chopped Broccoli” and his Ross Perot impression, and it was timeless. So I can’t to hear what he talks about 20 years later in “Dana Carvey: Straight White Male, 60” on November 4.
New SNL alumnus Michael Che also has a special on November 25 called “Michael Che Matters.” Given the topical reference to Black Lives Matter, I’m also looking forward to hearing what he says about current events, maybe stuff that wouldn’t make it into Weekend Update.