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Gilmore Girls is a Bright Spot, 10.05.00 ...

Finally, a show to cheer.

The WB of all places offers one of the best new series of the season, Gilmore Girls, at 8 tonight.

The smart and affecting comedy-drama stars Lauren Graham (late of M.Y.O.B.) as Lorelai Gilmore, manager of a New England inn and single mother to a bright daughter, Rory (Alexis Bledel).

When Rory is accepted to a fancy prep school, Lorelai sees her daughter getting a chance to achieve all the dreams Lorelai deferred when she got pregnant. But the prep school is expensive and Lorelai has to seek financial help from her wealthy parents (Kelly Bishop and Edward Herrmann).

In exchange for the money, Lorelai's mother demands a weekly dinner with Lorelai and Rory.

That begins to create new and different bonds among the three generations. For example, in a later episode Rory and her grandfather find common ground -- and Lorelai is by no means sure how she feels about it.

That's just one of the times where Gilmore Girls steps into territory that would have been made maudlin and phony on, say, Dawson's Creek. But Gilmore Girls -- created by Amy Sherman-Palladino -- avoids most traps in favor of well-drawn characters and generally realistic dialogue.

This is also a show that, in two episodes made available for preview, has some respect for grown-ups. Lorelai may seem a little off-kilter -- and her megadoses of caffeine don't help her equilibrium -- but she's still good at her job, a good mother and the final authority in her house. Lorelai's parents may seem a bit unpleasant when we first see them, but they have their layers, too -- and the Herrmann-Bledel scenes in the later episode are really nice.

In a season with few bright spots among new series, this is one.
Credit: Akron Beacon Journal

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