Kelly Bishop Talks Emily Gilmore Without Richard

With all of this Gilmore Girls revival talk these days, I don’t know whether to laugh or to cry. Not because the news is sad, not at all, but because that is what I do when I am overcome with emotions and feeling all the feelings. I've just been sort of hunkering down and let the hysteria pass over me, because, after the news that the Gilmore Girls revival is happening broke, and that six — count ‘em, six — of the original cast members are returning for the Netflix miniseries, I’m pretty much accepting my fate as feeling overwhelmed all the time. But when Kelly Bishop — Emily Gilmore, to those of you who are fans — talked to TV Line about Emily returning to Gilmore Girls without Richard, my ambivalence took a sharp turn into tearville, and I seriously haven’t stopped crying since. The idea of Emily Gilmore without Richard totally broke my heart.

Of course, Amy Sherman-Palladino had to do something to account for Richard’s absence. After all, Edward Hermann, the actor who played Richard Gilmore, died in December of 2014. He was 71 when he passed away during his stay at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center Hospital after a prolonged battle with brain cancer. No matter what Palladino-Sherman decided to do about the huge hole in the original cast, it was going to be painful for fans of the show and the actors who knew and loved him so well.

So to hear Bishop talk about not only what the plans are to deal with Hermann’s absence in the revival, but also her own grief over her friend’s death, is pretty heart wrenching. Bishop spoke with TV Line exclusively, saying the two were “pals” and bonded over their New York acting roots. But when it comes to how Emily Gilmore will be without her husband, Bishop admits to TV Line that, “in a desperate attempt to push through [her grief], [Emily] blows between right on the edge of losing it to almost being a little manic.” The character development seems like an appropriate one for Emily, a person who is so often wound tight and incapable of expressing her emotions. Still, it’s sort of tragic to hear that her character is in such a fragile state.

I can only imagine what this plot point will do to the rest of the revival, and I’m betting this major change affects a number of characters in the new series. I guess that means we can expect a script that is an even more nuanced and mature version of the show fans know and love. Unfortunately, with maturity comes a whole lot of heartbreak, even for those Gilmore girls. Sucks growing up, doesn’t it?

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