Episode: The Lorelais' First Day at Chilton ...
Original Airdate: October 12, 2000
Dakin Matthews (Hanlin Charleston)
Liz Torres (Miss Patty)
Nick Chinlund (Ian Jack)
Liza Weil (Paris Geller)
Sally Struthers (Babette Dell)
Alex Borstein (Drella)
John Billingsley (Mr. Remmy)
It's Rory's first day at the exclusive prep school Chilton, and Lorelai chooses this day to oversleep. This turns the morning into total chaos because she doesn't have time to pick up her dry cleaning, which means she has nothing to wear. Meanwhile Rory is ranting while Lorelai throws on some old rags in the form of a tight tie-dye shirt and some cutoffs jeans. In short, it looks like Lorelai is heading to the local rodeo.
Things go from bad to worse when Rory informs her frazzled mom that they both have to meet the headmaster at Chilton. Since Lorelai has nothing else to wear, she puts on an overcoat and walks out the door. On the way, Lorelai meets a man named Ian, who is the father of another Chilton student. The two get to know each other better and Lorelai tells Ian where she works in case he wants to drop by.
When Rory and Lorelai arrive at the headmaster's office, guess who is already there? Lorelai's mother, Emily, who just happens to be a close personal friend of the headmaster. Emily makes a big fuss when Lorelai refuses to shed her coat and then regrets her insistence when she gets a load of what Lorelai is wearing. Needless to say, the meeting is quick and awkward with Lorelai stuttering her way through.
Rory is now flying solo and gets a lousy initiation into the world of private school. Hanlon, the headmaster, does everything by the book and tells Rory that while she has a good academic record, her social activities are severely lacking. Now life as Rory knew it is over because she has enrolled a month late making it extremely hard to catch up.
Meanwhile some other Chilton students haven taken a peek at Rory's student file to get the lowdown on her. One of the girls, Paris, is already gearing up to make Rory's life a living hell.
Back in Stars Hollow, Lorelai makes it to the coffee shop and has to beg Luke for a cup of java, it's a jumbo coffee kind of morning, and then gets a little lecture from Luke on her inappropriate dress.
In class Rory gets a bitter taste of the Chilton academic standards, while Paris answers every single question about Tolstoy's favorite writers and major influences. But a cocky boy named Tristan makes his entrance and gives Rory the once over. At the end of class, Rory gets last week's assignments and the word "daunting" comes to mind. The day keeps getting worse as Paris makes it crystal clear that she is the best student at Chilton. Not only that, but she runs the school paper and will do whatever it takes to keep it that way. Before the next class, Tristan offers to "lend his notes" and he won't stop calling Rory "Mary." What does that mean anyway?
Lorelai finally picks up her clean clothes from the dry cleaner and makes it to work, only to find Ian has arrived and wants to take her to dinner. She is flattered but declines because he is a Chilton dad and that is too close for comfort. As the day goes on, things are getting worse for Rory. She accidentally ruins Paris' homework project when she knocks Paris over as she tries to open her new locker. Paris is steamed and about to get a bad grade when Rory takes the blame and offers to help. Paris refuses, but the teacher forces Paris to take Rory's offer or she'll get a dreaded incomplete. Pair begins to feel threatened when Rory starts answering questions that are normally Paris' territory. Paris is on the border of a breakdown and vows to take revenge on Rory.
Before Lorelai goes to pick up Rory, she grabs another cup of coffee and tells Luke about her bad day and invitation from Ian. Luke says she did the right thing by declining.
When Lorelai finally picks up Rory from school, they do some major commiserating. Rory gets the truth about being called "Mary." It's an old slang term for a "goody-goody," originating from the Virgin Mary. Lorelai offers to help by talking to a teacher, but Rory says she'll handle it alone.
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