"Swan Song"
Written by Daniel Palladino; directed by Chris Long

Lorelai, Rory, and Emily eat Friday night dinner as Emily complains about Trix. Lorelai is tired of her stories and asks to change the subject. Emily promises to stop complaining but doesn’t keep her promise for long. Lorelai suggests that they find a man for Trix; Emily thinks that she did have someone for a while. Rory decides that this is the time to tell Emily that she and Dean aren’t together anymore (see “They Shoot Gilmores, Don’t They?”). Emily pretends that she didn’t know, then admits that she figured it out eleven dinners ago when Rory abruptly stopped talking about him. Emily thinks that she should have told her because she could have invited Dean to something and would have had to find out about the breakup then. Lorelai wonders what Emily would have invited Dean to. Rory tells Emily that she’s dating Jess now and Emily asks if she’s going to get to meet him. The girls try to get out of that but Emily wants Rory to bring him to the next Friday night dinner. The girls keep making excuses so Emily says that she’ll meet him at Rory’s graduation, to which she’ll bring a bunch of other people. Rory gives in and agrees to bring him to dinner the next week. Back at home, Lorelai and Rory try to coordinate their schedules, but Lorelai can’t read her own handwriting in her notes. Lorelai asks if Rory is really going to bring Jess to Friday night dinner; Rory notes that he’ll only have to deal with Emily, since Richard won’t be there. Lorelai says that Emily was pretty stealthy to make Rory feel guilty and bring Jess to dinner.

Rory and Jess look at a book together downtown and she brings up Friday night dinner. He doesn’t want to go, of course, but Rory tells him that she promised Emily. He suggests that she take someone else and have him pretend to be Jess, since Emily doesn’t know what he looks like. He finally gives in and goes back to work. Rory passes Miss Patty’s studio, where Miss Patty pulls her inside to join the rest of her literally captive audience, which is giving Miss Patty feedback on her one-woman show. Dean is there (he’s been trapped for an hour) and tells Rory that it’s mostly been Miss Patty fighting with Kirk, who’s her director. The two do, in fact, proceed to bicker about the show, including Kirk’s poor lighting choices. Rory and Dean agree that it’s a hit and will run for years. Afterwards, Rory tells Dean that it was nice of him to prevent Miss Patty from throwing a podium at Kirk. At home, Rory catches Lorelai and Alex (see “I Solemnly Swear” and “Lorelai Out of Water”) kissing on the porch when they return from their date. After Alex leaves and Lorelai comes inside, Rory decides that the girls need a kissing signal so no one gets interrupted. Lorelai tells her that she and Alex are talking about going to New York the next weekend with Sookie and Jackson. Since they want to leave during the day on Friday, Rory and Jess will be alone with Emily at Friday night dinner. Rory thinks this might actually be better, since Lorelai won’t be there to cause trouble.

Jess calls and tells Rory that news of her hanging out with Dean is all over town - there’s a blurb on posters for Miss Patty’s show that read, “Rory and Dean couldn’t stop talking about it.” Rory tells him that they didn’t plan to be there together (or at all), and they’re friends anyway. Jess asks that Rory just tell him these things ahead of time in the future. He then asks about the show, wondering why the fliers read “not in any way affiliated with Kirk” at the bottom. (He and Miss Patty had a “showbiz spat.”) Lane’s band comes over to practice, happy that they’ve almost put together a complete set. They lament that they don’t have a good love song on the set and Lorelai comments that Lane and Dave probably only want to play love songs. Zach and Brian don’t understand what she means; Lorelai covers up her remark. After Brian and Zach leave the room, Lorelai apologizes and wonders why Lane and Dave don’t come clean about their relationship. The two have come up with an overly complicated plan to meet up after practice without being spotted by Brian, Zach, or Mrs. Kim. Lorelai heads to Luke’s for coffee on her way to get some warm clothes for her weekend in New York. Luke notes that the cold weather in New York is the same as the cold weather in Connecticut, but she wants something stylish. She goes up to the apartment to get a tour book and catches Jess and Rory kissing. Lorelai agrees with Rory’s earlier statement that they need some sort of signal. Back downstairs, Luke tells Lorelai that Rory and Jess are up in the apartment all the time. He assures her that he goes upstairs every ten minutes to get something, pointing out that at least they know where they are. Lorelai tells him that it only took about ten minutes for Rory to be conceived.

Back at home, Lorelai asks for Rory’s help with a packing crisis - specifically, she has no crisis because she knows exactly what she wants to take to New York and has already packed everything. Rory tells Lorelai that she’ll go to the elder Gilmores’ house after school, Jess will meet her there for dinner, and afterwards he’ll drive her home. Lorelai suggests that Rory spend the night with Emily instead. Rory sense that Lorelai doesn’t want Rory and Jess to be at the house by themselves. Rory tells Lorelai that she’s barely even thought about sex and reminds Lorelai that they talk about everything anyway. Rory heads to Friday night dinner, which Jess is late to. When he finally arrives, he has a black eye and won’t tell Rory what happened. Jess meets Emily, who then goes to check on dinner while Rory asks for the story behind the shiner. Jess still won’t fill her in. He and Emily make small talk at dinner while Rory keeps trying to figure out when Jess got the black eye. She thinks that he got into a fight with Dean and notes that Jess isn’t denying it. She pulls him into the study and repeats that nothing happened between her and Dean at Miss Patty’s, so Jess had no reason to get into a fight with him. Jess wonders why Rory doesn’t think that he might have been defending himself; Rory doesn’t think that Dean would throw the first punch. She adds that Jess is being a jerk to Emily and has embarrassed Rory in front of her grandmother. Jess announces that he’s leaving and heads off.

Lorelai, Sookie, Jackson, and Alex leave the theater after the show in New York and agree that it was awful. Sookie and Lorelai make fun of the show and Jackson thinks that their version is better. Lorelai checks her phone to see if Rory has called; Alex reminds her that she told him to stop her if she tried to call Rory for the wrong reason. The next morning, Lorelai calls Rory at Emily’s and wakes her up, pretending that she forgot the time difference between New York and Connecticut. Rory fills her in on dinner, then gives the phone to Emily and leaves the room. Emily blasts Lorelai for letting Rory date Jess. Dave, Zach, and Brian run into Mrs. Kim downtown and Dave tells Mrs. Kim that the three of them play in a “Christian combo.” Mrs. Kim warns Dave that Lane has a crush on him and she wants him to be careful around her. Rory goes to the market and brings up Jess’ black eye. Dean tells her that he had nothing to do with it. At the diner, Luke notices Jess’ black eye and asks when he got into a fight with Dean. Jess tells him that isn’t what happened. Luke remembers that Jess went to dinner with Rory and wonders if Emily punched him. Rory calls and, since Jess doesn’t want to talk to her, Luke tells her Jess isn’t there. He then drags Jess into the storage room and demands to know where he got the black eye, since Jess is exhibiting signs of violent behavior and Luke is responsible for him. Jess admits that he wasn’t in a fight - he was attacked by a swan. He grabs a ladle, vowing to “do a little beaking of [his] own.” Luke objects, since the ladle is new. “Take the baster!” he says.

Luke and Jess row to the middle of the lake to wait for the swan to show up. Luke wonders, “Does it act all peaceful and Bambi-like and then suddenly attack like the rabbit in Monty Python?” He asks about dinner at the Gilmores’ and warns that by dating a girl like Rory, Jess is involved with her whole family. He notes that Jess doesn’t need to be jealous of Dean, since Rory picked Jess over him. He can’t keep acting jealous, because eventually Rory will get fed up. Jess still doesn’t want to take Rory’s calls; Luke doesn’t think he cares. Jess spots the swan and Luke taunts that it doesn’t exactly look vicious. Rory talks to Lane about Jess as she sets up for band practice at the Gilmores’ house. Lane notes that she can’t really give her advice; she and Dave haven’t fought because they haven’t really started dating yet. The guys arrive and reveal that they ran into Mrs. Kim. Dave and Lane think that their relationship has been discovered, but Brian and Zach just think that they’re Christians. They promise that they’re cool with it as long as they don’t have to play any Creed. Rory goes out to greet Lorelai, who’s back from New York and is starving because she hasn’t eaten in a while. Rory heads downtown for food and runs into Jess, who tells her that he was about to call her. Rory says that she knows he didn’t have a fight with Dean; she tells Jess that she needs to trust him as much as she trusted Dean. Jess promises that things will be better the next time he goes to dinner at her grandparents’. Rory asks again how Jess got the black eye and he lies that he was hit with a football. Rory heads home and tells Lorelai that she has been thinking about sex and that it might eventually happen with sex. She promises to tell Lorelai before she does anything.

MEMORABLE QUOTES: “The woman taught me everything I’ve already forgotten about dancing, baton twirling, and gymnastics.” - Rory, re: Miss Patty

Rory: “What’s he wearing, a jogging suit?”
Lorelai: “Yeah, and then after, he and Paulie are hitting the Bada Bing.”

Luke: (re: the swan) “It beaked you?”
Jess: “You still don’t believe me.”
Luke: “I just never heard anyone use the word ‘beaked’ as a verb before.”

“When you date a girl like Rory, you’re involved with her whole family. Just like that last girl you dated, you were involved with her whole petri dish.” - Luke to Jess


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