Rory’s Boyfriends: The Patented Rory Gilmore Pro-Con List

By Nerdy Spice and Janes

It’s time, guys. We need to settle this question once and for all before the revival comes out tomorrow, so that we know who to root for: Dean? Jess? Logan? Only a Rory Gilmore-style pro-con list — weighted according to their importance so that this process remains extremely mathematical and objective — can tell us.



Pros Points (+) Cons Points (-)
 Changes a mean water bottle.  1 Gets jealous and yells at Rory like a chest-beating Neanderthal. This would score more negative points, but it’s hard to fault a guy for being totally effing correct that his girlfriend wants to make out with the brooding klepto who just moved into town. 5
 Tall. 1  Thinks Donna Reed’s husband had it pretty good, but can be educated out of it. [Janes: Can he though?] 1
 Was the most devoted boyfriend by far.  20 But she never really loved him the same way.  10
 They have the best “ship” name in Gilmore Girls fandom: the Narcoleptics.  1 His and Rory’s hair is the EXACT same shade. It’s freaky.  1
 Hangs around and watches Rory shop for books for as long as she wants. 10 But never buys any himself.  50
 Makes her a car!  5  Cheats on wife.  100
 Understands the Gilmore girls better than Lorelai’s one-time fiancé. (“But by then, they’ve already said three more crazy things you can’t figure out. So there’s no catching up!”) 20 Lies to Rory about his marriage being over. 50
 Good taste in movies.  5  Can’t come up with substantive responses to Rory’s writing.  10
 First noticed Rory for her intelligence, and appreciates that she’s smarter than he is. 10 Marries Lindsay while clearly pining over Rory.  20
 Tells Rory he loves her before they break up, not just to win her back after they have already broken  up. (see: Jess, Logan)  25 Yells at Lindsay after cheating on her, and generally blames her for everything that’s wrong in his life, even though she stays home and cooks for him all day. 20
Takes care of his little sister and even lets her third-wheel on dates.  5  Terrible at Bop-It. 5
 Lorelai “doing” Dean is a gift to humankind. “Do you think my hair looks cool?” 5

Grand Total: -164



Pros Points (+) Cons Points (-)
Wrote a book.  100  Ugh, the hair product.  1
 Likes books, maybe even as much as Rory.  50  Kleptomania, but only of books. [Janes: And bracelets!] 5
 Doesn’t like Ayn Rand. 10  Likes Kerouac. And Hemingway. AND Bukowski.  5
 Recognizes that Rory and Lorelai’s snowman is Bjork.  2 Is too macho to admit he was attacked by a swan.  2
 Wore tight jeans even before it was cool.  2 That whole thing in Kyle’s bedroom.  200
 Gets employee of the month at Walmart, indicating untapped potential to play nicely with others.  5 He’s rude to basically everyone, including Rory on occasion. Imagine having to bring that guy as your plus-one to every wedding for the rest of your life. 10
Displays an impressive amount of maturity when Rory cheats on Logan with him.  5  Pulls an Irish goodbye and then prank calls her for a few weeks, because that’s how cool mavericks break up with their girlfriends. 10
 Thinks Rory being in the DAR is stupid, which it is. 2 In season 6, thinks he knows what is and isn’t “her” even after two years with no contact, which is doubtful.  5
He’s the only boyfriend who doesn’t represent a reaction to others’ expectations. Dean is the perfect boyfriend in Lorelai’s eyes, while Logan is the society boy Rory’s grandparents want. But Jess brings out the most free-spirited side to Rory we’ve seen.  50 Never wants to do any town activities with her, unless he’s trying to manipulate her away from Dean. (see: Buy-a-Basket, dance marathon, Winter Festival) 5
 ASP totally ships them. 5 The incest issue, since he’s Rory’s mom’s boyfriend’s nephew.  1
 It’s kind of not cool how he buys Rory’s picnic basket at the town auction just to fuck with her and Dean.  10

Grand Total: -23



Pros Points (+) Cons Points (-)
 Good car? (We’re going to be stretching for pros here.)  0.5 Sleeps with sister’s friends, then calls them all stupid. 50
 Good smile. 1  Gestures with his hands and takes up other people’s personal space…SO annoying.  1
Teaches Rory to cook AND work out, an impressive feat. (Even if “working out” usually translates to “getting massages”)  25 Whines about the pressures of being a rich white kid with a famous father more often than good taste would usually dictate. 10
Defends Rory against his terrible family.  10 If she married him her in-laws would be the WORST.  10
 Unexpectedly turns out to be the most stable boyfriend. 10 Thinks writing a book is just “write down all my random thoughts and stuff that happens to me and conversations I have and just add a bunch of he said she saids.”  50
 Is honest and upfront with her about his intentions for the relationship, from the very beginning. 10 Pulls a Ross Geller and decides he’s a free agent before actually breaking up with her. 20
Goes out of his way to be there for her after Richard’s heart attack, even when Chris doesn’t.  10 Bonds with Chris over being spoiled brats who purposely got kicked out of expensive boarding schools. 5
A lot of his presents to Rory are fancy jewelry and/or Birkin bags, which some people would really like.  1 But Rory doesn’t seem to have the least interest in diamond tennis bracelets and would rather have a laptop bag than a Birkin bag. (Also, he seems to think Birkin bags buy women’s love.)  10
 Humbles himself by asking Lorelai for help getting Rory back.  5 He gives Rory a rocket representing some extremely convoluted episode of Twilight Zone in possibly the most boring B-plot any season premiere could possibly have. 5
Tells Rory that he’s told a lot of girls he loved them before, but he won’t now because he respects her too much. Which is probably the worst response to “I love you” since Han Solo in Empire Strikes Back. (Nerdy Spice: to be fair, it was one of those “this sounded better in my head” moments.) 20
They have the worst “ship” name. Rogan? Come on. Lame.  5
Tells Rory that she needs to loosen up and that she “looks like she needs a little adventure,” like he’s a frat boy creepily trying to get a freshman girl drunk at a kegger. 20
Thinks it’s hilarious to steal expensive knickknacks from rich people, as if he’s not equally rich and spoiled.  5

Grand Total: -138.5

And the winner is…


Well, duh. It’s Jess Mariano. Although all of the boyfriends are fairly terrible in their own ways (hence all of them coming out with negative net scores), Jess easily prevails as the least terrible in the end. He’s a self-important punk, to be sure, but he’s the only boyfriend who is both smart and intellectual, he brings out the best and most interesting side of Rory, and he genuinely loves her without idealizing her. All of his mistakes could be explained by his youth and traumatic childhood, with the exception of the consent issues (the single most negative entry on our list), but his other strengths pull him back into the least-worst slot.

And since Milo Ventimiglia has been most heavily featured boyfriend in the promotion for the revival, it looks like Amy Sherman-Palladino might just agree with us. We’ll see when A Year in the Life comes out in just a few hours!




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