Author Topic: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.04.06  (Read 16111 times)

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Offline peaceful

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'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.04.06
« on: December 05, 2006, 09:30:12 am »
'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue'
By Oscar Dahl
December 4th, 2006

Dialogue is an overlooked art. The words spoken by our favorite TV characters are, by and large, taken for granted. We deemphasize both the great dialogue and the terrible, instead focusing on aspects like story or action or character. Mostly, this is the right course of action. Dialogue is the vessel through which we tell the story. Numerous great filmmakers (and wide audiences), in this vein, hold little regard for the importance of dialogue. Stephen Spielberg once said that, if you want to know the mark of a true filmmaker, see if you can turn off the sound while watching one of their movies.

Of course, this isn't a universal phenomenon. Fellini might not need dialogue to tell his story. Tarantino does. Both are still great. The interesting part about this is that great movies can still be considered great, even if they contain terrible dialogue.

Star Wars is worshiped by millions, yet most rational fans will admit that (with the exception of Empire Strikes Back) the dialogue in Star Wars is mostly horrendous. But, obviously, fans don't watch Star Wars for the dialogue. On the other hand, there are movies (anything by Kevin Smith or David Mamet) that are successful only because of the dialogue. However, there are far less of these types of films (dialogue-centric) than there are of films that only use dialogue for practical purposes (action movies, slapstick comedies). The reason for this is simple. Dialogue is hard to write. So, given this truth, it's clear why most films and television shows put little importance on the art of dialogue; it's a hell of a lot easier to focus on the action.

Which is why I don't think Gilmore Girls has ever received its proper due. Gilmore Girls is so unlike anything else on network television, it's flummoxing. For instance, their typical script is 15-20 pages longer than any other show. Why? Because it contains that much more dialogue. There is less action. Less scenes of the obligatory heartthrob staring off into the ocean. Less of the scenes that all of us have seen a million times before.

Gilmore Girls is dialogue. That is the basis of the show. And it succeeds.

This is kind of a big deal. No other show is like this. On Gilmore Girls, the viewers watch riveting scenes of characters TALKING ON THE PHONE. One of the first things they tell you in film school is to not write scenes of people talking on the phone, because it's boring and it's sloppy to film. Yet Gilmore Girls makes these phone conversations highly entertaining.

Most shows rely on dialogue as a crutch, as a pragmatic tool that allows them to move the plot along. Gilmore Girls embraces the art of dialogue and has created a signature rhythm and cadence, specific to the main characters. It's a verbal exercise for the audience. Can you understand what they said? Can you parse out the important bits? Though the Gilmore Girls speak in a signature verbosity, the emotions contained in each monologue and back-and-forth are subtle.

I think we simply need to realize how far off the normal end of the dialogue spectrum Gilmore Girls actually is. Especially for TV. Films have their exceptions when it comes to dialogue. TV has only one exception. It's called Gilmore Girls.

-Oscar Dahl, BuddyTV Senior Writer

Credit: http://www.buddytv.com/articles/gilmore_girls/gilmore_girls_and_its_underval-2548.aspx

I really liked what was said in this article about the dialogue on the showshow so I just had to put it up.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2006, 03:24:56 am by Heidi »

alexisx3

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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.4.06
« Reply #1 on: December 05, 2006, 01:27:54 pm »
I agree. GG has well written dialogue, and it deserves more credit. The basis of the show is the dialogue.

Offline peaceful

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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.4.06
« Reply #2 on: December 05, 2006, 01:28:48 pm »
Yeah that is excatly what I think.  I was just so happy when I found this article.

Offline L*F

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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.4.06
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2006, 03:41:19 pm »
yeah i completely agree!thank you for post that  ;)


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Offline wmushell

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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.4.06
« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2006, 03:58:59 pm »
I really enjoyed this article -- thank you!  :)  The dialogue in GG is so sharp and intelligent.  It is nice that someone has taken the time to appreciate it!  What a feat - for the writers and actors - to deal with so much verbally.  I have heard that, much like the great Aaron Sorkin, ASP had the actors do scenes over and over until they were "word-perfect".  She had such a clear vision of what it should sound like in her head that she wanted it to come across that way on-screen.  The result = a very high quality television show.

Offline honkifuluvGG

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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.4.06
« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2006, 05:19:38 pm »
What a great article - thanks for posting it Tadd.  In this current trend for having the crap kicked out of the show, it's nice to see some positive spin out there.  I agree that this is a dialogue driven show, and unlike many of the other fans out there, I have found something to be taken out of every episode.  Sure some episodes are packed more solidly than others, but the standard has always been higher than most other shows out there.


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the_real_paul_anka

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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.04.06
« Reply #6 on: December 06, 2006, 02:51:25 pm »
i really like this artical, tadd. thanks for posting it! *christmas presents*

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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.04.06
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2006, 09:29:54 am »
you are welcome and some christmas presents for you too

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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.04.06
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2006, 04:34:06 pm »
Wow, thanks for posting that! I totally agree! GG deserves so much more!
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Offline Loridhhp

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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.04.06
« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2006, 09:31:15 pm »
I definitely watch GG for the dialogue. I think the show is incredible and I like this season as well. The difference seems to be much less La Las- the wonderful Sam Phillips musical cues between scenes- and bits of popular music as well as more emotional reactions. The tone is more serious due to the theme this season being the fallout of Lorelai and Luke and their respective journeys toward hopefully finding each other again. In my opinion, the dialogue is still great. We are just so used to seeing these characters in a certain light that people are having trouble adjusting to the changes this year. There is a reason Lorelai is not herself and I believe they are using the lack of music and more uncharacteristic seriousness to convey the tone this season. I have watched GG from the begining for it's wonderful characters and witty dialogue and I will continue to do so even if many perceive this season as the worst ever. I disagree. It's refreshing to see our favorite characters go through challenges this season. I like the shake up on the show.

Long live Gilmore Girls!     Until next time........ ;D Lori

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Offline echoia

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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.04.06
« Reply #10 on: December 20, 2006, 08:54:03 pm »
(first post from me, had to register to say something on this)

YES! I agree with the article, -however- - it can be -very- difficult to appreciate the dialog in the show the first time around. I like to watch each season for the drama, the events, the action and -then- go back and watch it for the banter and the more intimate details. Sometimes that can get just maddening! The show does take its time moving along each season, it seems there is something big to happen from episode 1 to episode 11, then something else big from episode 11 to episode 22 (or roughly thereabouts). I was recently telling a friend of mine that he should watch it but it is better to watch it with someone (me) who can guide him through the important episodes first on DVD so that he can then go back and watch it and appreciate it for all that it is.
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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.04.06
« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2006, 08:24:31 pm »
I agree fully. Most people think that the show is just like any other drama on the tube,when, in reality, You have to be actually really smart to understand what they are talking about.All the refernces really make the show. Sometimes I'll laugh out loud when my friend doesn't get it,and vice versa. This show is alot like "The Simpsons" because to really understand it,you have to have some background in pop culture,books,and much more.

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Offline KaraGilmore

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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.04.06
« Reply #12 on: January 02, 2007, 07:50:19 pm »
I agree absolutely.  I talk a lot like the gilmore girls.  I am glad it is not just one liners that pause for a brief moment to hear a fake laugh and applause.  I love the fast paced thrill of it.  It makes you have to really think.  Like Dean said once, I can't quote it exactly, but, I know they may sound crazy, but they aren't. Just by the time you have made sense of what they said, they have already said three things else that you have to catch up with. (To Max Medina).  I believe that is all true.  I see your point about the Simpsons, but i also think it is sad to compare such a show to the simpsons.

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Re: 'Gilmore Girls and Its Undervalued Dialogue' - 12.04.06
« Reply #13 on: January 07, 2007, 02:25:22 am »
You have to be actually really smart to understand what they are talking about.All the refernces really make the show. Sometimes I'll laugh out loud when my friend doesn't get it,and vice versa. This show is alot like "The Simpsons" because to really understand it,you have to have some background in pop culture,books,and much more.
oh my, i sooo agree! when i tell my friend i love GG some of them are like "What?! how can u like that show? it s silly and cheap." And i m like "Have u ever seen it?" I also tell them, that you actually DO have to be quite smart to understand everything they talk abt. I do consider myself quite well educated and I dont get all of the jokes and references (Ok, some stuff might be due ti the fact that i watch it in english and english is not my mother tongue (but the german synchro i just don t like). for a non native speack of english, sometime they justa re to fast for me, but then i just rewatch it till get it :D I hate when my friends judge the show, think it s stuid without giving it a chance :( and es, this show is soo much abt the dialogues, that s a reason why i like it so much (the other reason is for course Lauren Graham  ;D)

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