These Pre ‘Gilmore Girls’ Photos of Milo Ventimiglia Are So Painfully ‘90s They’ll Make You Wish You Were A Teenager Again

Honestly, I don’t know what to do with myself when I look at the recent photos of Milo Ventimiglia before he was Jess on Gilmore Girls. I alternate pretty wildly between laughing hysterically and pining deeply for the ‘90s. Because these photos are so painfully ‘90s, it kind of hurts to look at them.

But more than just how ridiculously dated they are, seeing Milo Ventimiglia as a total baby (like, even younger than he was when he got his breakthrough role in Gilmore Girls in 2001), makes me seriously wish I were a teenager again for two reasons: 1.) Because I wish I had known these pictures existed when I first fell in love with him, and 2.) I wouldn’t feel so icky about looking at pictures of someone who was barely legal when I’m painfully far from being that age myself.

Sigh. We can’t be young forever. But thanks to these throwback photos we can remember what it was like to be teenagers and to fall totally in love with Jess for the first time. Because when Jess Mariano stepped onto the scene in Stars Hollow, pretty much every heart melted across America. And it’s no wonder: The kid was a brooding heartthrob. But these pictures, unearthed by Entertainment Weekly on Monday, show a goofier side to the actor. They show an actor before his start, an actor who would do almost anything to get noticed (including posing topless), and an actor who is so incredibly ‘90s, it’s ridiculous.

Even though Ventimiglia is wearing very little in the pictures, the few items he is wearing are so perfectly ‘90s it makes me want to break out my Lisa Frank collection and make a real party of it: The flat-front khakis, the white Calvins, the bead necklace. In these photos Ventimiglia is pretty much every guy you dated (or wanted to date) in high school ever, albeit admittedly much, much hotter.

So enjoy these pre-Jess photos of Milo Ventimiglia. They’ll make you long for the days when it was acceptable for you to gawk at teenage boys. Either that, or they’ll make you long for the days when it was acceptable to wear your underwear that high and your puka shells that tight around your neck.

Image: Warner Bros. Pictures