"Red Light on a Wedding Night"
Written by Daniel Palladino; directed by Gail Mancuso

Lorelai and Rory taste-test wedding cakes at a bakery run by Fran, whose family has been in the business for 112 years. The wedding is in two weeks and Lorelai still hasn’t chosen a flavor for her cake. Fran tells her to stand there and keep eating until she makes a decision. Rory asks Lorelai what it was like seeing Max the night before (not that she wants any details) and Lorelai says that she’s glad he’s back. (As we learned in “Hammers and Veils,” he was teaching a summer course in Toronto.) Rory has printed out some sample invitations and wants Lorelai to pick out a quote for the front. Lorelai vetoes Sinclair Lewis and Lord Byron, opting instead for Mussolini. Rory asks if it’s okay to sample wedding cakes when Sookie is making Lorelai’s. Fran brings out a mocha crunch cake and Rory answers her own question. At the Gilmores’, Kirk shows Lorelai and Max some photos, wanting to be hired to take pictures at their wedding. This would be his first gig, since he usually takes amateur shots. He also has no idea what the specifics of his camera are. Kirk has included the famous New York City VJ Day photo in his pile “as an example of the excellence that [he aspires] to.” He asks for $150 an hour, but Lorelai offers lunch and the cost of film, which he accepts. Max has to leave, which makes Lorelai complain that he’s always leaving. He points out that, in two weeks, that won’t be the case anymore. Since he’s having his apartment painted, Lorelai suggests that he stay with her and Rory for the weekend, as a trial run for marriage. Max tortures her by talking about Kirk’s nude self-portrait, which makes Lorelai consider rescinding her offer.

Dean and Rory walk around downtown, trying to decide what to do that night. Rory suggests watching Monty Python and the Holy Grail again, but Dean refuses to speak in an English accent for the rest of the night. She mentions that Max is spending the weekend at the house and that Lorelai wants to double date with her and Dean the next night. Dean says that that’s their anniversary, but Rory says that it’s the 24th. Dean says that the 24th was their old anniversary, but they got back together on the 6th, so they have to go by that now. After Dean agrees to the double date, Rory says that they can have two anniversaries and celebrate twice a month. At home, Max cooks dinner, not wanting Lorelai to help, since she always winds up hurting him. Rory arrives home and Max asks her to open the broiler. She and Lorelai are surprised that they even have a broiler. “What fallout shelter have you guys been living in?” Max asks. Lorelai and Rory joke about forming a cult and worshiping Max, since he’s so smart. The three watch a movie in the living room; Rory and Lorelai make up their own dialogue and shush Max when he tries to ask a question. He points this out and Lorelai says that he’s talking through parts they talked through last time, so it’s been a while since they saw those parts. The phone rings and Lorelai tells Max to get it, since he’s the closest. He argues that he’s not actually closer but winds up answering it anyway. The girls are happy to have him around.

Later, the girls note that Max has fallen asleep. Lorelai takes him up to bed, whispering to Rory, “Is this weird?” Max sleeps in Lorelai’s bed while she stares at the ceiling. After a little while, she goes to Rory’s room and wakes her up to point out that she has a boy in her room. Rory reminds her that it’s Max, that she likes him, and that they’re getting married. Lorelai says that they haven’t completely discussed having Max in the house and the effect it has on Rory. She’s realized that getting married means that everything changes and it won’t be just the Gilmore girls anymore. Their lives as they know them will be over. Rory tries to put things in perspective by telling her that they’re not dying. Lorelai says that things will morph into something they never could have expected. After some discussion of Max, Rory asks if Lorelai is happy. She says that she is and Rory assures her that she’ll get used to having Max there. She notices that Lorelai is falling asleep and tells her to go back to her bed. Lorelai pretends she can’t get up and Rory lets her stay for ten more minutes. The next morning at the diner, Luke wonders why Taylor is so happy; Taylor says it’s not because of anything and Luke is paranoid. Lorelai and Rory arrive and Lorelai asks Luke to clear off a table for them, even though there are already clean ones available, since Max is joining them. He’s not there currently because he went to get newspapers (he reads three a day). Lorelai tells Luke to be nice to him.

Max joins the girls and Luke acts overly nice to him. He tells the girls that he has blueberry pancakes and they order them. Max, however, doesn’t know what he wants, since he’s not quite as familiar with the menu as the girls are. Lorelai offers to wait to get the pancakes but Luke warns that he’s almost out and won’t reserve them for her. Max looks over the menu and Lorelai tries to rush him. He tells them to move at their normal pace. Luke brings him the lunch menu, since he stops serving breakfast in an hour. Max finally places his over and the girls shout that they want the blueberry pancakes. Luke tells them that he already set them aside. Luke spots a work crew outside and interrogates Taylor, who reveals that they’re there to install the town’s first crosswalk and traffic light. Luke runs outside and tells the crew to stop, telling Taylor that he has to inform local business orders of matters like this before they get started. Taylor, however, has found a loophole and tells Luke that he can’t stop progress. Lorelai comes outside and asks Luke if he got her wedding invitation. She asks if he’s coming but he doesn’t give her an answer. That night, the girls double date with their boys, walking around downtown after a huge dinner. The girls decide that they want ice cream and rush off to get it. Dean gives Max some advice about dealing with Lorelai and Rory, including going along with their bits, never eating the last of the parmesan cheese, and never letting them near puppies. He adds that if he thinks they’re doing something crazy, they’re not. After a while, their reasoning becomes clear, but by then they’ve moved on to two other crazy things and it’s too late to catch up. Dean asks if Lorelai knows what kind of ice cream Max likes. Lorelai answers the question by bringing him a scoop of chocolate chip.

Back at home, Lorelai asks Max why he let her eat so much. Dean tells Max that the girls will also blame him for stuff like that. Lorelai and Max go upstairs, leaving Dean and Rory alone outside, and Max wonders if that’s okay. Lorelai doesn’t have a time limit on how long they can be out there; “as soon as they both get tired of saying, ‘No, you’re prettier’ to each other, then the night’s over.” Max doesn’t think this is reasonable and would like to know the procedure in this type of situation. Lorelai tells him that Rory is low-maintenance and won’t get into any trouble. Even if something does happen, she says that he should wait until she comes home and let her handle it. Max gets upset, thinking he won’t be doing anything around the house. She admits that she hasn’t given too much thought to how their lives are going to fit together. She apologizes and tries to seduce him into forgetting the conversation. Max realizes that he’s broken Dean’s rule about not getting into a heavy conversation at night, since that’s when the girls are crankiest. Outside Luke’s, the town has gathered for the official unveiling of the new light and crosswalk. Luke is unhappy and throws a piece of paper at Taylor. Sookie and Lorelai discuss her bachelorette party and Taylor asks them to quiet down. Taylor tells everyone that they should be proud of the new light, but Luke accuses him of trying to brainwash everyone by telling them they want something and not giving them a choice. Lorelai shushes him, since he’s disturbing their party planning.

Taylor starts to instruct the townies on how to actually use the stoplight. Miss Patty reads the instructions next to the button and everyone complains that they’re condescending. Taylor points out that there have been a number of accidents in Stars Hollow, but Luke replies that they were near accidents. They start arguing and Lorelai finalizes her guest list (herself, Rory, Sookie, and Miss Patty). Unfortunately, Babette can’t come, so she asks Lorelai to stick her hand down a guy’s pants for her. Taylor announces that the duration of the walk signal will be matched to the pace of the town’s oldest citizen, Mrs. Lanahan. For the inauguration, she will press the button and cross the street while Kirk takes pictures. Miss Patty has to tell him that the cap is still on the camera lens. Lorelai tells Sookie that she won’t wear a veil at the party since she’s not wearing one at the wedding. Sookie is disappointed by this news. Luke suggests that Lorelai and Max just elope, since weddings are pointless anyway. People aren’t biologically programmed to mate for life, since animals don’t (other than ducks). He says that people evolve and grow their whole lives, and people don’t evolve and grow at the same pace as each other. “The minute you say ‘I do,’ you’re sticking yourself in a tiny little box for the rest of your life. But. hey, at least you had a party first, right?” Sookie says she’s tired of him and she and Lorelai are moving away from “Crotchety Guy.” Nearby, Mrs. Lanahan is still crossing the street.

Lorelai, Rory, Sookie, Miss Patty, and Michel wait in line outside a nightclub for Lorelai’s bachelorette party. Rory worries that she won’t be let in and Michel says that they’ll all get in trouble for corrupting a minor. Sookie encourages Rory to look older by thinking about 401(k)s and retirement. Lorelai wants to know why Michel is there; Sookie explains that he heard them planning and wanted to come. Lorelai gets a call from Max, whose bachelor party is taking a detour in the emergency room - his brother tried to jump over a parking meter. Lorelai asks how drunk he was and Max says that he claims he wasn’t, it’s just that parking meters in Hartford are higher than the ones in Duluth. Max’s brother emerges from treatment and says that he has a mild concussion, but he wants to keep partying. Max decides to take him home anyway and Lorelai says that he should go to a strip club afterwards, since it’s his last chance. After Lorelai hangs up, Sookie makes a rule that no one else can accept a call from any significant other. The group reaches the door and the bouncer challenges that Rory is 18. Lorelai lies that she’s an international supermodel. The bouncer decides not to make a big deal out of it and lets Rory in. Inside, Michel is surprised to realize that they’re at a drag club. Lorelai is even more surprised to discover that Michel has invited Emily to the party. “Hi, Grandma. Come here often?” Rory asks. The group decides to get to drinking.

Michel is disappointed that there’s no dancing, since the ladies supposedly like his moves. After a Mae West lookalike takes the group’s orders, Emily asks Lorelai how she feels about getting married. Emily says that the week before her wedding, she was a nervous wreck. Miss Patty was before all of hers. (She married three different men, one of them twice.) Emily says that she married Richard 34 years ago and can still remember it clearly. She talks about how in love she was and how she tried on her wedding dress and looked at herself in the mirror. It made her feel safe and honored. Everyone is so touched that Sookie calls Jackson and Rory text messages Dean. Lorelai leaves the table to make a call, but instead of Max, she calls Christopher (last seen in “Christopher Returns”). She tells him about her upcoming wedding and he asks for more information on Max, trying to determine what he’s like. He teases her about her musical tastes, then asks why she’s calling him from her bachelorette party. She says that she just wanted to tell someone she knows really well that she’s getting married. Christopher congratulates her and she asks if he can picture her married. He says he can, to the right guy. Lorelai rejoins the group and Sookie asks how Max is; Lorelai says he’s fine. At the inn the next morning, Lorelai and Sookie nurse hangovers. Michel arrives and explains that he spent most of the night at a table with Celine Dion and Janet Jackson impersonators. Lorelai goes out to the lobby to meet Max, who Lorelai is disappointed to see isn’t as hungover as her. He’s there because he doesn’t have a set of keys to her house yet, even though she promised she would get him one. They fight over whether this means anything and he accuses her of being self-involved. Max decides to leave before the fight gets any bigger.

At the house, Lorelai and Rory talk about the upcoming new school year. Rory mentions that she got a call from Christopher and Lorelai tells her that she called him during the bachelorette party. She pretends that she thought she’d already mentioned that to Rory. Rory says that Christopher called her because he thought it was strange that Lorelai called him. Rory wonders why Lorelai said she was calling Max when she wasn’t. Lorelai blames her Long Island iced tea. Rory says that she and Christopher both want Lorelai to be happy. Lorelai implies that she is happy. Luke brings over a chuppah for the wedding, which he made himself. He tells her that he wanted to dress up the backyard for the ceremony. Lorelai wonders if God will smite her and Max for standing under a chuppah when they aren’t Jewish; Luke thinks that He’d have to get a license from Taylor before he could smite anyone in Stars Hollow on a weekend. Lorelai asks if Luke meant everything he said about marriage and he tries to soften it so that he won’t hurt her feelings. He says that if you can find that one perfect person for you, then marriage can work out. They wind up standing under the chuppah together. That night, Lorelai runs into Rory’s room and tells her to pack because they’re leaving. She wants to take a road trip and won’t answer when Rory asks her what they’re going to do about Max and the wedding. Lorelai finally tells her that there won’t be a wedding because she doesn’t want to try on her wedding dress every night. Rory asks where they’re going, but Lorelai doesn’t have a plan. She says they’ll leave early in the morning and Rory goes along with it. The next morning, the two pack up the Jeep and head out of Stars Hollow. “We’re almost there and nowhere near it,” Lorelai says. “All that matters is we’re going.” Before they can leave, though, they get stuck at the town’s new red light.

MEMORABLE QUOTES: Rory: “Okay, our house is burning down, and you can save the cake or me. What do you choose?”
Lorelai: “Well, that’s not fair. The cake doesn’t have legs.”

Rory: ‘‘Billy Jack, I’m gonna kill you if it’s the last thing I do.’”
Lorelai: “Ugh, he so jinxed himself with that one.”
Rory: “Yeah, he should’ve said, ‘Billy Jack, I’m gonna kill you or buy myself a lovely chenille sweater.’”
Lorelai: “Ooh, yeah, either way, he wins.”

Lorelai: “Oh, well, we’ll miss you.”
Babette: “Yeah, well, stick your hand down the front of some guy’s pants for me, would ya?”
Lorelai: “I hope you’re talking about a stripper.”
Babette: “Whatever.”

Max: “We’re coming out of the restaurant and we’re heading toward our next stop when my brother decides to leapfrog over a parking meter.”
Lorelai: “Why did he do that?”
Max: “Middle child.”
Lorelai: “Poor Jan.”

Michel: “This is a drag club.”
Sookie: “It’s called the Queen Victoria. What did you expect, tea and crumpets?”

Back to Gilmore Girls episode guides

Back to Fun and Games