As you know if you’re an avid reader of this blog (and I hope you are), a few weeks ago I had the pleasure of chatting with the guys from the “AfterSmash” podcast. In our conversation, which you can check out here, we talked about the recent popularity of podcasts that focus on rewatching and discussing older TV shows, “AfterSmash” of course being one of them. Another great podcast that fits into that landscape is “Gilmore Guys.”
Hosted by Kevin T. Porter, a longtime “Gilmore Girls” fan, and Demi Adjuyigbe, a “Gilmore Girls” newbie, the show has gone through each episode of the long-running series (they’re currently in the midst of season five) that followed the lives of mother-daughter duo Lorelei and Rory Gilmore and discussed every aspect of the show, from its famed pop culture references to the ever-changing ffffffashion. The podcast has developed a somewhat significant following since its birth and the “Guys” can now fill a theatre with fans, eager to check out a live recording of a “Gilmore Guys” episode. They’ve also had the pleasure of chatting with several stars and contributors to the show, including Sam Phillips, the show’s composer, Liza Weil, who played Rory’s good friend (and occasional enemy) Paris Geller and even Scott Patterson, who played diner-owner (and love interest of Lorelei) Luke Danes.
With the recent announcement that Netflix is reviving “Gilmore Girls” for four 90-minute episodes, talk of the show has grown again. I recently chatted with Kevin and Demi over Skype and talked about their plans for the new episodes, as well as “Gilmore Girls” overall and their experiences hosting a popular podcast.
You’ve talked about it on the podcast, but for anyone who hasn’t listened yet, could you talk a little about how Gilmore Guys came to be?
Kevin: So I wanted to start a podcast, and I was a big fan of “Gilmore Girls” growing up. When Netflix announced that they would be picking it up for streaming last year, I kind of put it out on Twitter, half joking, half not, that I wanted to start a podcast called “Gilmore Guys,” who wants to co-host with me, and Demi responded. He was also kind of kidding, but also kind of not and we met up and talked about it a few days after that and recorded our first ever episode a couple days after that. So it all came together pretty quickly.
Looking back on it now, did you ever imagine at that time that the podcast would grow to be what it is today?
Demi: Not at all. I think when we both started we both thought it would be the kind of thing that we do as a hobby for a bit and then we’d have to pick it up in speed and do two episodes at a time or something to sort of just kind of get through it, but at a certain point we realized that it was growing.
Were you guys ever uncertain in the early days of “Gilmore Guys” of how critical you could be of the show, or how much of your own personal opinion you could share, since it’s so beloved and has such a big following?
D: I think we hit a point, I want to say around the end of season one or maybe the beginning of season two, where we realized people were getting mad and forming their entire opinion of what the future of the podcast would be based on our opinion on certain characters. I remember on 205 in particular I saw a lot of people get mad that we didn’t like Jess which is confounding to me because I think that the idea that someone would ever really like a character from the second they show up is insane. I think we realized early on that that would be the kind of thing that we would have to deal with, like if we were to deliver an opinion we would have to say that it is open to change, or if we deliver an opinion we would have to sort of temper it by saying something where we let people know that it’s like, we’ll here’s us playing devils advocate! We have to sort of play both sides instead of going hard and fast with our opinion, I think.
K: It’s interesting though, because that’s the content of the show. Obviously it’s discussion, it’s comedy, but also a lot of it is our opinion. I think that the way you communicate that and the way we communicate our opinions changed as the audience changed because I think there was a lack of, I’ll just speak for myself personally, for me there was a lack of ‘well, someone in Idaho might take offense to this next thing I’m going to say’ or ‘someone in Australia is going to write me an angry email about what’s coming next.’ So I think once the audience got to a certain point it definitely changed a little bit of the way that I delivered my opinions, maybe for good and for bad. But I think Demi’s right that we add a lot of caveats and asterisks to everything. And I think it’s hard for people to not get deeply invested in someone agreeing with them when that person has a loud voice for it. So we represent just two people talking about a show, when really there’s of course millions and millions of people around the world who have millions and millions of different opinions about the show. But because we’re the ones who have an audience and people are listening to us, sometimes there is an investment in what we have to say that isn’t totally fair. We’re not the authoritative voice on anything, we’re just a voice on something.
If you could only ask “Gilmore Girls” creator Amy Sherman-Palladino one question about the show, what would that question be?
K: I mean, the joke answer would be ‘Where the hell is Mr. Kim?’ but I think people have already asked her that so that joke’s kind of played out. I would truly ask her how she was trying to contextualize Lorelei. Something we talk about on the show all the time is, Lorelei is kind of being selfish, Lorelei is kind of being entitled, Rory is kind of being a jerk here, and so I would ask her in what light are we supposed to see Lorelei as the hero of the show. Like, is it more of a ‘oh she is really deeply selfish and entitled and not caring for other people’ sort of way or was that just a byproduct of whatever they were doing. How conscious was she of the picture that kind of gets painted over time, that sometimes the two main characters of this show, just like any other people would be, are jerks. Sometimes they’re just two big ol’ jerks. And to what extent she was conscious or aware or attempting to do something like that. That might be my question.
D: I would ask her what parts of the show she thinks she made mistakes on.
K: That’s funny too, because I think that asked her something similar to that at the ATX Festival, the reunion back in June.
D: And she said nothing. But if I’m in the room and I’m pressing her and it’s a real situation where I want an answer of like every small thing she ever made a mistake on or if she’s like, ‘ah I could have fixed that,’ that’s something I’d truly be interested in. I think her saying nothing is the ‘ahaha, let’s skip this question’ answer, but I want to know.
K: Right. Whether it was missteps with future storylines, or leaving the show or how certain romances played out or actor availability. Yeah, that would be a great question.
And finally, you addressed it a little bit after the initial news broke, but have you guys given any more thought to how the podcast will handle the new episodes once they’re released?
K: It’s hard now because we’re going through the original series and before the Netflix stuff was announced there was pretty clear endgame in mind for what we were going to do and now that’s going to change a little bit because now we’re essentially going to be going hiatus until we go back and then cover those four episodes. I mean, I guess as far as the podcast’s involvement with all that, I hope that we are a promotional stop for all those people when they have to go out and sell the show and do a bunch of interviews. I hope that, Graham and Bledel and Palladino would stop by for that. In addition to us covering the four episodes, which I assume would be, I don’t know how long, because they’re going to be about 90 minutes long each and right now our podcast is about two hours long per 42-minute episode, so I don’t know. Maybe we’ll do two part-ers, I don’t know. But we’re not going to spend four months covering four episodes or anything like that.
For more from Kevin and Demi, be sure to follow “Gilmore Guys” on Twitter and Facebook and check the podcast out on iTunes. It’s a lot to catch up on, but it’s definitely worth it. It won’t take long for you to become OBSESSED.
Are you a big ol’ “Gilmore Girls” fan? What would your one question be for Amy Sherman-Palladino? Have any particular hopes for the Netflix revival? Hold a town meeting in the comments. And, as always…