There are countless reasons to love Gilmore Girls: the witty banter, quirky characters, unrealistic expectations about life in small-town Connecticut, and validation that it's more than OK to be an introverted bookworm rather than a stylish party girl. During the seven seasons of Gilmore Girls , we either loved Lorelai and Rory's boyfriends or loved to hate them, but the most important relationships on the show were never the romances. With its central focus on a mother-daughter pair who double as best friends, it's safe to say Gilmore Girls passes the Bechdel test with flying colors. Whether they were enjoying a movie marathon, taking an impromptu road trip, or tormenting Taylor at a Town Meeting, Lorelai and Rory always showed each other a good time.
Although Gilmore Girls depicted a happy and beautiful mother-daughter relationship, it was never afraid to acknowledge that even the closest relationships have their rough patches. Some of the show's most realistic and emotional moments occurred when Lorelai and Rory weren't speaking. We suffered along with them and cried all the tears of relief when they reconciled and all was, once again, right with the world.
Here are Gilmore Girls' eight best mother-daughter moments, from the the hilarious to the heartbreaking and everything in between.
Exploring Rory's Dream School (Season 2, "The Road Trip To Harvard")
After Lorelai breaks off her engagement from Max, she and Rory take an impromptu road trip that leads them to Harvard. They explore the campus and classrooms with delight, but they don't stop there. What college visit would be complete without sneaking into a dorm building to take a look? (I'm serious: my mom and I did the exact same thing.)
When They Get Revenge On Jess' Car (Season 3, "Take The Deviled Eggs...")
Lorelai and Rory, partners in crime. After attending the most awkward baby shower in history, mother and daughter blow off steam by hurling deviled eggs at Jess' car. (I never said they were the most mature family.)
The Stars Hollow Dance-a-thon (Season 3, "They Shoot Gilmores, Don't They?")
In addition to being the episode with the best costumes, "They Shoot Gilmores, Don't They?" showcases Lorelai and Rory's relationship at its best. Lorelai convinces a displeased Rory to be her partner at the annual Stars Hollow Dance-a-thon hoping to finally beat Kirk for the coveted trophy (side note: why didn't my tiny Connecticut town host one of these?). After plenty of witty banter, the night takes an emotional turn when Dean and Rory break up and Lorelai comforts Rory on the dance floor.
Rory's Graduation Speech (Season 3, "Those Are Strings, Pinocchio")
When Rory graduates from Chilton as valedictorian, she dedicates her speech to Lorelai. "She filled our house with love and fun and books and music, unflagging in her efforts to give me role models from Jane Austen to Eudora Welty to Patti Smith," Rory says of her mom. "As she guided me through these incredible eighteen years, I don't know if she ever realized that the person I most wanted to be was her." I'm not crying, it's just raining on my face.
Rory's First Night In A Dorm (Season 4, "The Lorelais' First Day at Yale")
Lorelai drops Rory off at Yale and all is well for a solid 30 minutes. Lorelai has barely made it back to Stars Hollow when a panicked Rory calls her begging her to come back. "You never socialized me properly. I should hate you, not miss you. Make me hate you!" she tells her mom. The Gilmore girls have an epic slumber party complete with loads of junk food (this is Lorelai and Rory, after all) before they say goodbye for real — well, until the next Friday night dinner.
Rory Goes To Europe (Season 5, "Say Goodbye To Daisy Miller")
Even the best mother-daughter relationships aren't perfect. Lorelai and Rory have their biggest fight to date when Rory loses her virginity to a now-married Dean. Rory runs away from the situation (and her mom) to spend the summer in Europe with Emily. When Rory says goodbye to her mom at the airport without so much as a hug, the look on Lorelai's face is heartbreaking. It may not have been a happy moment, but it showed the realistic complexity of their relationship.
When They Finally Reconcile (Season 6, "The Prodigal Daughter Returns")
Although their Season 6 falling-out was heartbreaking to watch, it was one of the most realistic plotlines on the show. And there are no words for the relief we felt when Lorelai and Rory finally reconciled after five months, three weeks, and 16 days of not speaking.
The Finale (Season 7, "Bon Voyage")
Before Rory sets off for her first job on the Obama campaign trail, she and Lorelai have their last breakfast date at Luke's (complete with massive mugs of coffee, naturally). But first, Rory sums up their relationship in one sentence.