11 'Gilmore Girls' Episodes That Sum Up Freshman Year Of College Perfectly
Of the many things Gilmore Girls got right, the series really nailed the various growing pains faced by both Rory and Lorelai Gilmore at various stages in their lives. While Lorelai faced big career milestones with the Inn and relationship milestones with a couple engagements, Rory reached all of the big school landmarks. From transferring to a private high school to a rocky experience at college, Rory went through it all. These 11 Gilmore Girls episodes sum up freshman year of college perfectly, even if they didn't all take place during the season when Rory started Yale.
One of the most beautiful aspects of Gilmore Girls is the way it shows how nobody has life totally figured out. The show's greatest over-arching theme is that moving through life with your loved ones will help make all of the totally things feel OK since you're not going it alone.
At a time like one's freshman year of college, the lessons learned on Gilmore Girls — especially from the episodes that show Rory's college life — come in especially handy. You probably found yourself relating to so many of Rory's experiences during your own first year of college, even if you didn't have the exact same ones as her. Check out these episodes and then channel your inner Gilmore girl to face any challenge that comes your way, in college or not.
1. 'Girls In Bikinis, Boys Doin' The Twist' Season 4, Episode 17
Rory doesn't necessarily fit the mold of a typical freshman going on a spring break trip to party for a week, but she gives it a shot — sort of.
2. 'You Jump, I Jump, Jack' Season 5, Episode 7
College is all about trying new things and testing out one's independence, and Rory does just that while camping with Logan's secret society. Not all colleges have groups like the Life and Death Brigade, but a lot of them have weird traditions that freshmen get to discover.
3. 'The Lorelais' First Day At Chilton' Season 1, Episode 2
Rory's first day at her fancy new private school serves as a preview for what you might expect as a new college student. Rory doesn't know anyone and she isn't sure if she fits in at Chilton, and that's how a lot of people feel their freshman years.
4. 'The Nanny And The Professor' Season 4, Episode 10
In this episode, Rory learns that her old friend Paris is dating a professor, and it aptly describes some of the growing pains or just plain confusion that some college freshmen feel when they're not sure just how "adult" they actually are.
5. 'Nick & Nora/Sid & Nancy' Season 2, Episode 5
Back at Rory's second year at college, she finds herself being given the worst newspaper assignments from Paris. Rather than crumpling under the pressure or feeling defeated, Rory writes the best darn article on the paving of a parking lot that the newspaper advisor has ever seen. As a freshman in college, mustering up the strength to do your best even when you feel like you're destined to fail is a totally relatable experience.
6. 'The Lorelais’ First Day At Yale' Season 4, Episode 2
Seeing your new dorm and wondering if your roommates will actually clean up after themselves is something every college freshman goes through, including Rory — with Lorelai by her side in this episode.
7. 'Concert Interruptus' Season 1, Episode 13
Rory doesn't have the easiest time making friends at Chilton, and that's something many college freshmen can relate to to some degree. In this episode of Gilmore Girls, Rory makes a valiant effort to win over the cool girls by inviting them to a concert in the city. Sadly, things don't go as planned, but that's just how it goes sometimes as a new student.
8. 'Pulp Friction' Season 5, Episode 17
When Rory struggles to handle Logan's chill attitude about not being exclusive, it's a truly relatable moment for any college-aged viewer. Since everyone's "exploring" at that time, it's common for one person to prefer a more "casual" relationship, but that can easily lead to hurt feelings as it does in "Pulp Friction."
9. 'Ted Koppel's Big Night Out' Season 4, Episode 9
Rory and Lorelai go to their first Yale football tailgate with Emily and Richard in this episode, and it's the perfect episode to watch for anyone gearing up to pretend to like sports.
10. 'Kiss and Tell' Season 1, Episode7
Rory has her first kiss with Dean in Season 1, and even if you've already done that before going to college, it's likely that you'll have a lot of other "firsts" in that exciting year of schooling.
11. 'Blame Booze And Melville' Season 5, Episode 21
In this episode, Rory receives her big dream-crushing review from Mitchum Huntzberger, and as exciting as freshman year is, it's also possible that it might include some disappointments. As long as you don't overreact like Rory does and take the first piece of discouraging advice to heart, you'll be OK.
If there's any show you'll want to watch while approaching your first year of college, Gilmore Girls is it. And even if you just want to re-live the exciting time of freshman year, it's a great viewing choice.