Original vs. revival: Which Gilmore Girls ending was better?

A pregnancy reveal or an emotional going away party... There's only one right answer.


Gilmore Girls is one of the rare television series to have two different endings to its story. The show ended with its series finale on The CW back in May 2007, with the polarizing seventh and final season concluding on a note that would later be divisive to fans. Gratefully, the beloved series returned with its Netflix miniseries, A Year in the Life, in November 2016 with another highly debated ending.

For a show that's known for being quaint and calming and the kind of show to add a peaceful binge-watch to a cozy fall day, it's funny that both of its endings have been met with differing opinions and, for some fans, disappointment. Neither ending was met with as much ire as How I Met Your Mother, Game of Thrones, or Lost, though you think they would have.

But now that we're scarily nearing two decades and one decade removed from the original ending and the revival ending respectively (what is time?!), we need to finally get to the bottom of which of the endings is the definitive, superior Gilmore Girls ending. Before we dive into each ending and pick a winner, lock your preferred ending in now and see if you agree with ours!

Exhibit A: The original season 7 ending

If you search the internet about the Gilmore Girls ending, you'll find a handful of defense pieces about the season 7 finale (a.k.a. the original series finale). As is the case with most things, in time, the court of public opinion starts to change their mind. In the moment, disappointment or missed expectations can feel all-consuming. A few years later, you might realize you were a little harsh.

While a bit rushed because the cast and crew reportedly weren't sure season 7 was actually going to be the last, the series finale does an excellent job at wrapping up all of the loose threads as well as the series. It was way too hated for too long. The lingering bad taste of the Palladino-less final season likely put the series ender in a bad light. It's understandable.

By the end of the episode, Luke and Lorelai get back together and the town gathers together to see Rory off as she embarks on the political journalism career she had been working toward for the entirety of the series. She turned down Logan's proposal, and she's off on the Obama campaign. Lorelai remains on good terms with her parents and welcomes a new chapter without Rory by her side. It's bittersweet and will have you blubbering, especially at the final shot that mirrors the pilot.

Exhibit B: A Year in the Life's ending

Compared to the original ending, A Year in the Life had a bit more leeway in landing the plane in a way that was more ambiguous and open-ended. The series finale was in a position where a lot of ground had to be covered in order to leave these characters in a way that was satisfying very quickly. Being a movie-length four-episode collection, the revival could take risks.

And what a risk to go out on! Finally, with Amy Sherman-Palladino back in the driver's seat, Gilmore Girls fans learned what those storied "last four words" were after all those years of teasing. In the final moments of the revival (which had been intended for the original series' ending, had Sheman-Palladino helmed season 7), Rory tells Lorelai that she's pregnant. That's it! No additional context, no father reveal, no further life plans, nothing. We're left as stunned as Lorelai.

Earlier in the episode, Lorelai came to a shocking realization that brought her closure with her father's death and her still rocky relationship with Emily. She and Luke at long last get married, leading to the Rory baby announcement. As for Rory, her streak of professional setbacks sees a light at the end of the tunnel when Lorelai agrees to allow her to tell their life story in a book.

Although a lot of fans felt that A Year in the Life leaves the characters in the midst of a cliffhanger and us with more questions than we started with, the miniseries ended with purpose. There was a point of view at play from beginning to end. An actual reason to re-enter this world and tell this particular story. It wasn't just a victory lap, it was mother and daughter coming full circle. Another Gilmore-ian instance of life's relatability.

Consensus: Season 7 is the better Gilmore Girls ending

No matter how badly you might have suffered through the weaker parts of a season 7, a true Gilmore Girls fan doesn't find fault in the original series finale. It's the better ending if we're talking about the pureness of an ending. It's more traditional in the sense that it ties a much neater bow on the story and hits all the beats that you want it to (apart from a wedding, but let's let that slide).

For a lot of viewers, the pregnancy reveal at the last minute can feel like a betrayal. The absence of information regarding that reveal insinuates that there's more to the story, but as we know, a second season hasn't (and likely won't) come to fruition. It's a harder ending to digest for fans that aren't receptive to open-ended finales. A lot of viewers don't want to fill in the gaps themselves, and that can be make or break for an audience.

However, this doesn't mean that the revival's ending is bad or worse. It simply hits different. The series finale's final scene will smack you right in the feels, while the final scene of "Fall" will smack you right upside the head with shock. They hit different, but the original ending hits in a way that's more aligned with a series finale. If you don't agree, watch it again from the perspective that your best friend is moving away and it's your last night hanging out. Yeah... you're gonna bawl your eyes out.

All seven seasons and the revival miniseries of Gilmore Girls are available on Netflix.

Next. Gilmore Girls: Nobody Wants to Admit. 11 things nobody wants to admit about Gilmore Girls. dark