Episode: Teach Me Tonight ...
Original Airdate: April 30, 2002
Lorelai and Rory are in line at the grocery store eyeing the new bag boy, wondering if heís after Deanís job and at the same time, are arguing with Taylor about the annual Movie in the Square event in Stars Hollow. Lorelai is so horrified that Taylor has picked The Yearling for the millionth time that she canít help but berate him endlessly. He becomes so infuriated that he relinquishes his crown and gives her the right, no, the privilege of picking this yearís movie. Lorelai and Rory rush home to pop some popcorn and pick their flick.
But maybe picking the movie isnít so easy. Titles like Crimes and Misdemeanors, The Sting, Arthur and Sophieís Choice get thrown out as suggestions, but alas there are just too many good movies out there! Then, Roryís dad calls to tell her that he doesnít have time to talk but has sent her a lengthy email to make up for it. Apparently, Christopher and Lorelai are still fighting and refuse to talk to each other and refuse to tell Rory why theyíre fighting.
At Stars Hollow High, Jess sneaks into class fifteen minutes before itís over while a test is going on. He begs Lane for a pen but she refuses to help him. When he does dig one up, itís not so he can actually take the test. No, heís just writing in the margins of his latest teen-angst novel. The teacher rolls her eyes in exasperation, and the next thing you know, Luke is being called into the principalís office to talk about Jessís problems. These problems include his complete lack of participation at school; including cutting class most of the time, and his need for a major attitude adjustment. Thereís even some accusation about missing baseball balls. Unfortunately, Luke is ill-equipped to help Jess. But something has got to be done because heís flunking out.
Meanwhile, Lorelai is narrowing down her movie list. Sheís taken off Fletch and Urban Cowboy, leaving seventy-five other possibilities. How in the world are they going to pick one movie? Just then, Taylor strolls in to Lukeís with a list of movie titles that Lorelai is allowed to pick from. It turns out that movies are expensive, so Taylor has negotiated with a company to get movies for a good price. Lorelai takes a look at the list, and it seems like itís a straight-to-video catalog because neither she nor Rory have ever heard of these films.
When Luke gets home, he heads straight to Jessís room and makes an attempt to talk to him. After a few false starts, Luke demands to know why Jess is screwing up his education. Does he really want to repeat the eleventh grade? As usual, Jess couldnít care less about anything coming out of Lukeís mouth. He refuses to take the talk seriously and then just bails. But not before insulting what Luke does for a living. Who needs an education, really, when one can find a career at a diner? Ouch.
Later at home, Lorelai announces that she has finally chosen the movie. The Yearling it is! Apparently, thatís the best of the bunch. What a bummer. Suddenly, Luke arrives with a batch of brownies and a strange request. He wants to talk with Rory. A few awkward comments later, Luke finally asks Rory for a favor. Would she tutor Jess? Rory doesnít get it. Jess is smart enough to pass any class at school. But itís not a matter of intelligence. Itís a matter of motivation. Rory agrees, and the first tutoring session will begin tonight. When Lorelai finds out about this little arrangement, she doesnít seem too pleased about it. After all, Rory is so sweet; she would never refuse to help. Lorelai thinks Roryís got too much to worry about without making sure Jess passes his classes. Unfortunately, Rory is the only one who Jess will listen to.
That night, Kirk comes by Lukeís to talk to Lorelai about the whole movie thing. He has made a short film and would like Lorelai to screen it before The Yearling. Since his biggest inspiration is the guy who directed all the episode of The Facts of Life, Kirkís film doesnít seem to have much promise. Lorelai agrees to consider it, but what she really wants to do is take it home and mock it endlessly. As Lorelai leaves, Rory requests that if Dean calls, Lorelai should say that Rory is at Laneís. This does not go over well with Lorelai. Lying is bad. And besides, if this tutoring thing is no big deal, then why not tell the truth? Lorelai and Rory continue to bicker over this issue until Jess emerges. He makes several derogatory remarks about the whole tutoring thing, making Lorelai dislike him even more.
At Lukeís Diner, where they are studying, Rory does her best to help Jess, but he distracts himself with card tricks. The whole thing is totally counter-productive because Jess would rather do anything else but open his books. After much badgering, it seems like Jess finally gets down to business. Yet, it turns out that while heís supposed to be writing an essay, he was really writing down the lyrics to The Clashís ďGuns of Brixton.Ē Finally, Jess says heís sick of studying and convinces Rory to take a ride and get some ice cream. He promises that if she agrees, he will return to Lukeís and actually do some studying.
While driving, Jess and Rory eat some messy ice cream out of their cones (itís the only way to eat ice cream, after all). Jess then asks Rory to take the wheel while he eats. She freaks out a little bit at first, but then relaxes when he takes over again. Next, Rory starts grilling Jess about why heís flunking out of school. Jess doesnít care about high school because he has no plans to go to college. While they argue about Jessís potential and lack of ambition, Jess turns the conversation around and asks Rory what her future plans are. These plans include such things as, Harvard, journalism, and other big stuff. Their talk is full of flirting and thereís even some prolonged eye contact going on. Then, Jess suggests that they could go back to Lukeís or he could turn right and keep driving for a while. Rory simply says, ďTurn right.Ē
The next thing that happens is Rory calling Lorelai at home and telling her that she was in a car accident. Apparently, a small animal ran in front of the car, Jess swerved and bang, an accident. Everyoneís fine (but the car is royally messed up). This news is hardly comforting. Lorelai is freaking out. She heads straight to the hospital to see Rory, whoís got a broken wrist. Itís no big deal, but sheíll wear a cast for a few weeks. While Rory gets her cast put on, Lorelai leaves and makes her way to Lukeís Diner.
Lorelai really wants to rip into Jess for causing harm to her daughter, but he is nowhere to be found. So by default, Luke is the one who is screamed at. And at the end of the tirade, the whole event becomes Lukeís fault. He shouldnít have asked Rory to tutor his punk-of-kid nephew in the first place. Luke is sorry about what happened, but does not believe he should take the blame. Luke takes off to find Jess, leaving Lorelai alone in the middle of town. When she sees the tow truck with Roryís crashed car attached to it, itís too much to take. Lorelai starts crying and calls Christopher. Meanwhile, Luke finds Jess, who feels pretty terrible about the whole thing. The two guys sit in silence because nothing needs to be said. They both know how serious this is.
Back at home, Rory is well taken care of. Lorelai is the perfect nurse maid, but all Rory wants to do is sleep. Lorelai is so nervous that she insists on sleeping in the chair in Roryís room. Rory apologizes for what happened but itís not necessary, Lorelai is just glad her baby is okay. When Lorelai wakes up in the middle of the night, Christopher is sitting right next to her. The two then go into the living room and make peace. Christopher says heíll take care of the car and take care of Jess. Itís a relief to Lorelai to have him there, taking charge, helping out. She likes the superhero Christopher. She likes it when he puts family first. And he conveniently refuses to answer any questions about Sherry. Maybe theyíre not together anymore? It doesnít matter right now because theyíre both sorry about what happened last time Christopher was here.
At the big movie night, Rory gives the lowdown to Lane and talks about how everything is just so out of whack. She hasnít talked to Jess, Dean is away at his grandmotherís house, Luke and Lorelai had a big fight, and Christopher is hanging around. Itís all pretty crazy. Before the movie begins, Kirkís short film plays on the big screen. Itís so bad, that itís really good. And while Lorelai watches with Christopher, he promises to be around more often because he likes being around. Thatís a good thing because Lorelai and Rory like it too. While Christopher gets some popcorn, Lorelai and Rory overhear that Luke packed Jess on a bus and sent him home to his mom.
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