17 'Gilmore Girls' Episodes That'll Make You Appreciate Your Mom So, So Much
The Lorelai and Rory Gilmore mother-daughter relationship was, for the most part, the dream. Throughout seven seasons of Gilmore Girls and a four-episode revival, Lorelai and Rory loved each other, supported each other, and had the same pop cultural references. Their relationship was every young girl's dream. But watching Rory, Lorelai, and Emily go through life's ups and downs as mothers and daughters made one thing very clear: nothing beats reality. These 17 Gilmore Girls episodes will make you appreciate your mom the way the entire show did: fully and sometimes begrudgingly.
The relationship between a mother and her children is always complicated. Everyone has their Emily-Lorelai moments with their mom or parental figure — moments when your mom drives you absolutely crazy and you refuse to listen to her advice, no matter how good it is. And everyone has their Lorelai-Rory moments, when you're so in sync with your mother it's almost scary (and, at times, slightly disturbing). Then there's the movie nights, the stay at home sick nights, the "OMG I have a date, what do I wear?" nights. Even if you and your mom are nothing like the mother-daughter pairs on Gilmore Girls, these moments might make you appreciate her way more than you already do.
1. "There's The Rub" (Season 2)
In this episode, Lorelai and Emily are forced into some mother-daughter bonding courtesy of a spa weekend. A weekend away with your mother might not always sound like the most relaxing way to spend a few days (it certainly isn't for Lorelai), but by the end of this episode, you will be on the phone with your mom planning a weekend away.
2. "Dear Emily And Richard" (Season 3)
"Dear Emily and Richard" was an anomaly in Gilmore Girls: a flashback episode, finally giving fans a glimpse at what happened when Lorelai got pregnant at 16. It's a good episode to watch if you need a shift in perspective. What you thought about your parents' actions as a teenager probably isn't be the same as how you view them as an adult.
3. "Like Mother, Like Daughter" (Season 2)
Nothing like watching the forced mother-daughter bonding in "Like Mother, Like Daughter" to get you in the mood to bond with your own mom, or at the very least be happy for every time she didn't force you to spend time with her.
4. "The Prodigal Daughter Returns" (Season 6)
After a long time not speaking, Rory and Lorelai finally reunite in "The Prodigal Daughter Returns." Even if you've never really been on the outs with your mom, this episode will remind you how good it feels when finally see your mom after a long time apart. (Also it will make you want a mom hug.)
5. "That'll Do, Pig" (Season 3)
"That'll Do Pig" will probably make you appreciate your mom, but it will definitely make you appreciate your mother-in-law. Watching Lorelai Gilmore the first viciously attack Emily for 45 minutes will do that to you.
6. "Lorelai's Graduation Day" (Season 2)
"Lorelai's Graduation Day" is guaranteed to make every daughter feel a little bit guilty, but that's a good thing. Watching Rory miss her mother's graduation and Lorelai realize how much her parents are proud of her will make you want to pick up the phone and thank your mom for always being there for you, even when you didn't see it (or want it).
7. "They Shoot Gilmores, Don't They?" (Season 3)
"They Shoot Gilmores, Don't They?" is traditionally remembered as the episode where Rory and Dean broke up, clearing the way for Rory and Jess to start dating, but it also makes every daughter ask the question: "Do I love my mother enough to participate in a 24-hour dance marathon?"
8. "The Incredible Sinking Lorelais" (Season 4)
"The Incredible Sinking Lorelais" is one of the most relatable mother-daughter episodes of the entire series, mainly because Lorelai and Rory spend the entire time playing phone tag.
9. "Last Week Fights, This Week Tights" (Season 4)
"Last Week Fights, This Week Tights" finds Lorelai trying to play peacemaker between Lane and Mrs. Kim, the other dysfunctional mother-daughter pair in the show. As a bonus, there's a sweet reunion between Jess and his mother that will definitely make you believe that no matter what your relationship with your mom was like growing up, there's always hope for improvement as you get older.
10. "Pilot" (Season 1)
Watching Lorelai awkwardly kickstart a new relationship with her parents in the Gilmore Girls pilot really makes you appreciate your mother, or really any mother who is not the slightly scary Emily Gilmore.
11. "Gilmore Girls Only" (Season 7)
The Gilmore women are off to a wedding in "Gilmore Girls Only," an episode that further explored how Emily has felt being left out of Rory's childhood. Guaranteed to have you calling your grandmother, stat.
12. "The Lorelais' First Day at Yale" (Season 4)
Nothing makes you appreciate your mother more than when finally faced with the prospect of leaving home, even if it's just to move into a Yale dorm room like Rory in "The Lorelais' First Day at Yale."
13. "Bon Voyage" (Season 7)
Another episode about embarking on a new phase in life and, notably, leaving home, the series finale "Bon Voyage" will show you how impossible it is to ever thank your mother for everything she's done for you, but it will make you want to try.
14. "One's Got Class and the Other One Dyes" (Season 3)
"One's Got Class and the Other One Dyes" will have you nostalgic for all the seemingly irrational rules your mom used to have, like don't dye your hair bright purple.
15. "The Road Trip To Harvard" (Season 2)
If you've ever been to a bed and breakfast with your mom, then there's no way "The Road Trip To Harvard" will not remind you of those good old days.
16. "Will You Be My Lorelai Gilmore?" (Season 7)
Lorelai swoops in to help plan Lane's baby shower, which inevitably turns into her trying to navigate Lane and Mrs. Kim's tumultuous relationship. Lane and Mrs. Kim have a more traditional mother-daughter relationship than any other in the series, and will definitely remind you of at least one moment when you thought: this is one thing I will never do to my kids.
17. "Fall" — 'Gilmore Girls: A Year in The Life' Ep 4
The final episode of Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life is all about making big moves in life and, more importantly, sharing them with those you love.
Gilmore Girls really gets what that complicated, beautiful relationship can be like.