Gilmore Girls

Season 1 Episode 11

Paris is Burning

Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM Jan 11, 2001 on The WB



  • Trivia

    • At the beginning of this episode Lorelai and Rory go to the pet fair in the town square. In season 6, episode 2 "Fight Face", you'll see the pet fair again. This is the only one of the town's many annual events (ie. Dance Marathon, Bid-a-Basket etc.) that you see more than once.

    • The coffee bar where Lorelai and Max meet in this episode is the same coffee bar where they decide to take a break in "Paris is Burning". This also happens to be the same coffee bar where Lorelai breaks up with Jason in "Afterboom" when he tells her he's suing Richard. Incidentally, this was modeled after an actual coffee bar located in Hartford, CT.

    • In the opening scene, Luke is seen in the background petting a dog at the pet fair. However, in later episodes, we learn that Luke hates dogs.

    • When Sookie and Jackson are at Luke's, talking about the squash blossoms, Sookie calls them stuffed, fried squash blossoms the first time. The second time she says fried, stuffed squash blossoms, and the third time she goes back to stuffed, fried squash blossoms.

    • Why is Rory's first class of the day immediately followed by lunch?

      Possible Explanation: it could be a double period on that day. She could also have a block of free time before first class on that day.

    • Rory's locker is different from her first day at Chilton.

    • When Lorelai gives Max the book, she hands it to him with the spine facing up. As the shots change, the spine is down and then back up again.

  • Quotes

    • Lorelai: Why are you smiling like that?
      Emily: What are you talking about?
      Lorelai: You're smiling.
      Emily: I'm happy.
      Lorelai: That's not your 'I'm happy smile.'
      Emily: Well, then what smile is it Lorelai?
      Lorelai: It's your 'I've got something on Lorelai smile.'
      Lorelai: Rory, your mother must be very tired.
      Rory: She works a lot.
      Lorelai: I grew up with that smile. I know that smile.
      Emily: (to Rory) Tell me about school.
      Rory: Well, my French final went pretty well.
      Lorelai: You can change the subject. I know the smile.
      Emily: Whatever you say, dear.
      Lorelai: I used it a few times myself.
      Rory: Mom...
      Emily: (to Rory) So tell me about Parents' day.
      Lorelai: What?
      Emily: Parents' day. Next Wednesday. When all the parents are supposed to go to class with their children all day long.
      Lorelai: The Chilton newsletter came out today!
      Rory: Yep.
      Lorelai: Right.
      Emily: You didn't read yours?
      Lorelai: Not yet.
      Emily: Ah...
      Lorelai: But you knew that.
      Emily: Well...
      Lorelai: Hence the smile.

    • Emily: Kissing a teacher? In a classroom? On Parents' day?
      Lorelai: Well, they wanted us to get more involved with school!

    • Paris: (taunting Rory after telling her that she saw her mom and Mr. Medina kissing) How's the coleslaw? Good?

    • (Lorelai pulls a box of pizza out of the fridge and looks at it.)
      Rory: What?
      Lorelai: This is the pizza from mystery Tuesday, that one's perfectly fine.... (looks at the pizza she accidentally threw out)
      Rory: Don't.
      Lorelai: It's in the box.
      Rory: Oscar.
      Lorelai: Felix!

    • Rory: Do you have any idea how many people you've hurt? Forget me and my mother--what about Mr. Medina? He likes you, Paris. He compliments you, he holds your papers up for everyone to see. And then you turn around and do something like this to him. What is wrong with you? Forget it, I wouldn't expect you to understand.

    • Sookie: A zucchini tush?
      Jackson: Just a temporary name.
      Sookie: You want me to serve my customers a genetically engineered vegetable that's named after a butt?

    • Lorelai: Where's the silver dangly bracelet?
      Rory: I'm wearing it.
      Lorelai: Why are you wearing it?
      Rory: Because it's mine.
      Lorelai: Oh...right... Hey can I borrow your silver dangly bracelet?

    • Lorelai: It's the best tiny, weird bird I have ever eaten.

    • Rory: You know what it means when a man loans you a book don't you?
      Lorelai: That he's already read it?
      Rory: Yep.

    • Lorelai: (in between kissing Max as they move towards the bedroom) But what about my required reading? But I won't make the cheerleading squad! Mr. Medina, is this my extra credit work because Missy just had to take a test!

    • Lorelai: So where did you learn to make osso bucco anyway?
      Max: Um, from this very old Italian woman who used to live upstairs. She had lost her husband a couple of years before and she kinda looked at me as like a son.
      Lorelai: Sweet.
      Max: She was.
      Lorelai: So an old girlfriend huh?
      Max: Yep.

    • Lorelai: What can I say? Watching someone work makes me hungry. If I hadn't stopped watching 'This Old House' I'd be 500 lbs right now.

    • Rory: So she stopped cleaning it's cage. Instead everyday she would stuff some Kleenex in there.
      Luke: You didn't?
      Lorelai: It was the quilted kind.
      Rory: So. this keeps going on and the cage is just a cage full of Kleenex that moves a little, and the smell? Really good.
      Luke: I can imagine.
      Lorelai: Oh. no you can't.

    • Lorelai: (reading the sign on a puppy's kennel) "Buttercup was found cold and wet, hovering under a hydrangea bush along Highway 26." It's a sad highway!
      Rory: As compared to all the happy highways she could've been abandoned by?

    • Max: Not only are you breaking up with me, you're doing it really badly.
      Lorelai: Am I being graded?
      Max: No, I'm a little disappointed. I would've expected a little better dumping from you.
      Lorelai: I just need space.
      Max: Well, I don't. In fact, I want as little space as possible. A hundred clowns crammed into a Volkswagen, that's the kind of non-space I'm talking about.

    • Lorelai: She's never really referred to anyone I've dated by their first name, before, I've always kept her out of that part of my life, so, it was like the 'mustache guy' , the 'earring guy', the ... (struggles) 'peg-leg guy'...
      Max: Oh, so you've a thing for pirates...?

    • Rory: Were you kissing him?
      Lorelai: (surprised) What?
      Rory: Mr. Medina! Just Now! Were you kissing him!?
      Lorelai: Yes.
      Rory: What the hell is wrong with you?
      Lorelai: I don't know.
      Rory: You said you were breaking up with him!
      Lorelai: I was!
      Rory: I know I told you to be nice, but this was a little extreme, don't cha think?

    • Lorelai: Who shows up at eight o'clock for an eight o'clock date?
      Rory: I dunno, maybe a Chilton teacher?
      Lorelai: Everybody knows that eight o'clock means eight-twenty, eight-fifteen, tops!
      Rory: Well, obviously, he was raised in a barn.
      Lorelai: I'll tell you, he's cute but this punctuality thing has knocked 10 points off his Dream Guy quotient.

    • Lorelai: I want a pet.
      Rory: You have me!
      Lorelai: You won't bring me my slippers in the morning.
      Rory: I might if you had slippers.
      Lorelai: Will you wear a collar?
      Rory: No!
      Lorelai: It'll be pink!
      Rory: You're sick.
      Lorelai: Hey, watch how you talk to me. Remember what happened to Skippy.

    • Rory: Every time Mom stuck her finger in his cage, he'd bite her.
      Lorelai: And laugh.
      Luke: Hamsters can't laugh.
      Lorelai: Oh, this one laughed - trust me.

    • Paris: I wish my mother would sleep with my teachers, it would make midterms a lot easier.
      Rory : (stands up, fuming) Madeline, Louise, would you excuse us for a minute?
      Madeline: Ooh, cat fight.

    • (After Rory tells Paris that she did also hurt Mr. Medina when she told everybody about the kiss)
      Paris: I do like Mr. Medina.
      Rory: Well I'd take some dance lessons because the way you express yourself needs a little work.
      Paris: I just didn't want people talking about me anymore.

    • Lorelai: (with Max in his classroom, arguing about whether or not they should be together) What are we, in high school? Well I know we're in high school...

    • Lorelai: Class is over!
      Max: We're back in session.
      Lorelai: Well I didn't raise my hand, so don't call on me!

    • Sookie: You must really like this guy.
      Lorelai: When did you become a relationship expert? You haven't been in a relationship in years. (Big pause, as she realizes what she just said) Wow... zero to jackass in 3.2 seconds.

    • (after Emily confronts Lorelai about kissing Max at Rory's school)
      Lorelai: It was a mistake.
      Emily: A mistake? A mistake? Is that what you call it, a mistake?
      Lorelai: Well, I tried calling it 'Al', but it would only answer to 'mistake.'

    • Rory: Buttercup is a special dog. She's extremely skittish and tends to react badly towards blonde haired females, brunette males, children of either sex, other animals, red clothing, cabbage or anyone in a uniform.
      (Luke walks up to them.)
      Lorelai: (to Luke) Hey, we just found the doggy version of you.

    • Rory: Well can you make up your mind before French Class because I'd rather you didn't start making out with Mrs. Collins.
      Lorelai: Hey, no promises until I see what she looks like!

  • Notes

  • Allusions

    • Lorelai: I just don't think that a book whose first sentence is 20 pages long is for me.

      Marcel Proust is known for being long-winded in a language (French) which is inherently long-winded. French does not have any problem with the English faux-pas of "run-on sentences". Monty Python's third season episode (number 31), pokes fun at this by starting off with a skit about "The All-England Summarize Proust Competition"

    • Rory: (speaking of her class nemesis, Paris Geller) Her parents are getting a major divorce.
      Lorelai: Really?
      Rory: Her dad's like this bigwig at a huge pharmaceutical company, and they're printing all the sordid details about it in the paper.
      Lorelai: Wooo, how sordid?
      Rory: Well, it's not the Rick James incident, but Hugh Grant should be feeling pretty good about himself...

      Rick James was an American funk and soul artist, who became known as the King of Funk with late 70s funk hits as Super Freak (sampled by M.C. Hammer for U Can't Touch This) and Give It To Me Baby. By the end of the 80s, though, his recreational use of cocaine had gotten out of hand, and he was convicted of assaulting two women in two different instances, one a sordid tale involving bondage and forced sex while under the influence. He served two years in Folsom Prison. He died in 2004, but will be remembered for years as the butt of a now-famous Dave Chappelle routine which depicted him as a violent, self-absorbed drug-addled misogynist, with the tagline "I'm Rick James, b**ch!". James himself is on record as appreciating the humor of it.
      Hugh Grant, well-known pretty boy English actor, is best known for his role in Four Weddings and a Funeral. He did considerable damage to his public image by getting arrested for receiving oral sex from a prostitute while sitting in a car in Hollywood.

    • Lorelai: If I hadn't stopped watching This Old House I'd be 500 pounds right now.

      This Old House is a TV program on PBS that follows remodeling projects over a number of weeks.

    • Max: I look like a Norman to you?
      Rory: I'm sorry, Psycho was on earlier and it was just the first name that came to mind. I'll think of something else. How about Alfred?

      Psycho is an Alfred Hitchcock film about Norman Bates, a taxidermist who has to take care of his ill mother and who murders Marion Crane while she is in the shower.

    • Lorelai: Rory and I have a skating date.
      Rory: I'm Nancy Kerrigan.
      Lorelai: And I'm Tonya Harding. I'm going to do the whole shoelace coming untied, nervous breakdown, let me start again act and everything.

      Nancy Kerrigan is an Olympic figure skating medalist whose poor handling of her media exposure resulted in a poor public image, which dampened her off-rink success as a celebrity.
      Tonya Harding was associated with a scheme by her then-husband in which a hired thug clubbed Nancy in the knee in an attempt to remove her from competition with Tonya during the 1994 USFS Championships. The publicity backlash, along with a history of excuses and odd problems, largely destroyed her skating career, which had been fairly successful to that point. The shoelace incident referred to was at the 1994 Winter Olympics. Since then, she has had numerous minor scrapes with the law (usually involving alcohol and domestic arguments), in addition to a minor career as a female boxer.

    • Louise: Dumb girls crave smart men. It's the whole Marilyn Monroe-Arthur Miller syndrome.

      Marilyn Monroe married playwright and essayist Arthur Miller in 1956. They later divorced in 1961.

    • Episode title: Paris is Burning.

      The title of this episode has the same title as the 1990 documentary about the world of a drag queen.
      The title is also very similar to the title of the 1966 war film Is Paris Burning about Hitler giving orders to blow up Paris to keep it from the allies.

    • Rory: They said 'hello' to me the other day.
      Lorelai: Really!? Like a normal hello, not like a "Heeere's Johnny!" kind of hello?
      Rory: Normal. Friendly. No axe.
      Lorelai: Wow, you're the new Heather!

      "Here's Johnny" was the introductory phrase for many years for Johnny Carson on the Tonight Show. It was co-opted by Jack Nicholson for the 1980 Stanley Kubrick production of Stephen King's The Shining. In the movie, Nicholson's character, Jack (John) Torrance, has gone insane with cabin fever while "housesitting" as a caretaker at a large northern resort hotel. His wife has locked herself and their son in one of the rooms, and Nicholson breaks a hole in the door with an axe. Staring through the face-sized hole in the door, and with one of his patented leers, he announces, "Heeere's Johnny!" in a classic scene.
      Heathers is a classic 1989 dark comedy about coming of age, teen angst, and conformity, with a pair of excellent performances from then-new stars Winona Ryder and Christian Slater. The plot centers about a clique at a high school, all of whom are named "Heather", and which Winona gets involved with. However, also she meets up with "J.D.", a problem child who leads her on a dark path of murder and mayhem,. Slater portrays J.D with a style clearly inspired by Jack Nicolson.

    • Rory: Oscar.
      Lorelai: Felix.

      Oscar and Felix are the two roommates in Neil Simon's The Odd Couple. Oscar Madison is a total slob, and Felix Unger is a prissy neat freak with OCD.

    • Lorelai: This was like a Damien hamster with little beady eyes, and a big forked tail and a cape with a hood.

      Damien, the main character in the Omen movies, is the AntiChrist.

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