Gilmore Girls Revival: Why Sookie & Dean Are Hardly In A Year In The Life (2023)

By Amanda Bruce and Cathal Gunning

Updated

Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life brought back the original cast for the miniseries, but why did viewers see so little of Dean and Sookie?

Gilmore Girls Revival: Why Sookie & Dean Are Hardly In A Year In The Life (1)

2016’s Gilmore Girls reboot, Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, brought back most of the original cast for the Netflix miniseries, but why did viewers see so little of fan favorites Sookie and Dean? The four-episode Gilmore Girls revival brought back most of the show’s original cast but earned the ire of some fans for altering the characters. Of course, not every actor was able to put in an appearance in the revival, and some had their screen time compromised by promising post-Gilmore Girls career commitments, thus, the Melissa McCarthy Gilmore Girls reboot issue.

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Melissa McCarthy's Gilmore Girls character Sookie St. James and Jared Padalecki’s Dean Forrester were two prominent Gilmore Girls mainstays who barely put in an appearance in A Year in the Life. Although both actors do show up in A Year in the Life, they’re both only in the revival very briefly with a single scene each and a rushed explanation for their absence throughout the rest of the Gilmore Girls reboot. This was mostly down to scheduling issues, as both McCarthy and Padalecki have gone on to impressive careers since their tenure in Stars Hollow.

Related:

Why Sookie & Dean Are Missing From The Gilmore Girls Revival

Gilmore Girls Revival: Why Sookie & Dean Are Hardly In A Year In The Life (2)

Sookie is in A Year In The Life, but only briefly. The decision to minimize McCarthy and Padalecki's roles to cameos in the Gilmore Girls reboot, creating the Sookie Gilmore Girls issue, is more acceptable in Dean's case. Although Jess gets a bigger role in the reboot and Rory’s later love interest Logan is a major character, Dean wasn’t around much in later seasons of Gilmore Girls. Dean was written out long before A Year in the Life, so if anything, Rory’s stilted supermarket niceties are a relatively nice send-off for the underwritten figure. Plus, Padalecki's then-ongoing commitments as co-lead of Supernatural made a bigger return impossible.

But the casting choice is much more egregious for Gilmore Girls' Sookie since McCarthy was a main character in the original Gilmore Girls. Controversially, McCarthy later said that the creators didn’t reach out to her about reprising her role, despite the showrunners claiming she was too busy to return to the part. That suggests she might've been willing to make time for a larger role, despite Melissa McCarthy's movie career reaching greater heights since. It appears the Melissa McCarthy Gilmore Girls reboot issue was a misunderstanding since the creators and actor cleared things up in time for McCarthy to cameo in Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life.

But Sookie’s part in A Year in the Life is a disappointing letdown for fans who hoped to see her reprise her superb comic chemistry with Lorelei, as the more minor Gilmore Girls character Michel ends up with more screen time than the formerly central Sookie. While it’s understandable that the creators of Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life had to work around McCarthy’s other obligations, it’s a shame this Gilmore Girls main character Sookie received a worse send-off than an early love interest was offered.

What The Gilmore Girls Producers And Melissa McCarthy Said About Sookie In A Year In The Life

Gilmore Girls Revival: Why Sookie & Dean Are Hardly In A Year In The Life (3)

There were conflicting reports from Gilmore Girls head Amy Sherman-Palladino and actress Melissa McCarthy about just why Sookie wouldn’t be in A Year In The Life. Sherman-Palladino initially said that McCarthy wasn’t available while McCarthy initially said that she was never asked to participate. Between McCarthy’s team and the Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life producers, it seemed as though some miscommunication occurred.

When asked whether Sookie would be in Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life by TV Line, Sherman-Palladino explained, “The thing I have said [to her team] is ‘Look, if Melissa is available and has an afternoon free, I’ll write her a scene… even if just for a cameo - we would be totally game.’” Sherman-Palladino was eager to include all the original series characters if possible, according to the interview.

Though she talked freely about writing in a cameo in interviews, the producer also explained in the same interview that no storyline was even planned for Sookie in A Year In The Life because of Melissa McCarthy’s busy filming schedule for other projects. She told reporters, “[Sookie] was a character we knew we could not count on in terms of story because [Melissa] just simply wouldn’t have that sort of time to carve out for us.” Leaving McCarthy out of the revival series didn’t sound like an intentional snub, but rather a lack of timing.

Before Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life dropped on Netflix, McCarthy did get asked about the series by reporters while promoting her movie, The Boss. McCarthy explained to E!, “I don’t think I am,” when asked if Sookie would appear in the Gilmore Girls revival because, at that point, she wasn’t sure if she would still have a chance to appear. She further explained, “I didn’t actually get asked to do it. But I think they thought I was busy, and then by the time it did come up, then I actually was.

McCarthy did, however, voice her excitement for the revival as well. She proclaimed herself “thrilled” about the revival, and that she would love to get the chance to play Sookie again for Gilmore Girls. “That was seven years of my life and it was really great. I was proud of that show.

A Year In The Life Season 2 Won't Happen, So Sookie Has Been Wasted

Gilmore Girls Revival: Why Sookie & Dean Are Hardly In A Year In The Life (4)

If Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life wasn't likely to be the last time audiences will ever get to visit Gilmore Girls' Stars Hollow, McCarthy's very minor appearance as Sookie wouldn't feel so disappointing. However, Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life was a limited series that won't be getting a second season any time soon, so the reboot's first run was the only shot to send Sookie off with style just like everyone else.

This makes McCarthy's cameo and the Melissa McCarthy Gilmore Girls reboot issue even more of a let-down, as it was really just a brief waste of both her talent and a beloved character that will never get the chance to develop further. The rest of Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life may have been charming enough, but this Gilmore Girls disservice is still glaring – this didn't provide the Sookie Gilmore Girls reunion that fans deserved.

Sookie And Dean May Have Dodged A Bullet

Gilmore Girls Revival: Why Sookie & Dean Are Hardly In A Year In The Life (5)

In the end, the Melissa McCarthy Gilmore Girls revival debacle may have worked out in the Bridesmaids actress' favor, as A Year in the Life wasn't that well received. The same goes for Jared Padalecki's Dean. Neither Dean nor Sookie missed out in the Gilmore Girls revival. Unfortunately, A Year in the Life was lambasted by critics and viewers alike. The Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life ending garnered substantial criticism. Rory's character in particular wasn't treated well within the reboot series, and her ending was laughably out of character for the once ambitious journalist.

It's better that McCarthy and Padalecki stayed away, as first off, their presence would not have made the journey any better. Instead, all it would've done is attach the two actors to a sinking ship. All in all, Melissa McCarthy and Jared Padalecki dodged a bullet by bowing out of Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life, as their presence wouldn't have changed anything.

FAQs

Gilmore Girls Revival: Why Sookie & Dean Are Hardly In A Year In The Life? ›

This was mostly down to scheduling issues, as both McCarthy

McCarthy
Melissa Ann McCarthy (born August 26, 1970) is an American actress, screenwriter, and producer. She is the recipient of numerous accolades, including two Primetime Emmy Awards, and nominations for two Academy Awards and two Golden Globe Awards.
https://en.wikipedia.org › wiki › Melissa_McCarthy
and Padalecki have gone on to impressive careers since their tenure in Stars Hollow.

Does Dean appear in A Year In The Life? ›

Melissa McCarthy's Gilmore Girls character Sookie St. James and Jared Padalecki's Dean Forrester were two prominent Gilmore Girls mainstays who barely put in an appearance in A Year in the Life. Although both actors do show up in A Year in the Life, they're both only in the revival very briefly...

Why wasn t Richard Gilmore in A Year In The Life? ›

Sadly, Herrmann passed away in 2014 and the Netflix revival, "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life" went on without him. Fiction mirrored reality in this case, as Richard Gilmore was also written as having passed away in the reboot.

Are Lauren Graham and Melissa McCarthy friends? ›

Graham and McCarthy are still friends and super supportive as each other. They made over 100 episodes of television together after all!

How does Rory end up with A Year In The Life? ›

Yeah, things just got complicated. Rory doesn't end up with Jess, Logan, or Dean, who is married with three kids and a baby on the way. She ends up with a baby. Needless to say, it made for a polarizing ending that fans have been picking up for a while.

Why wasn t Sookie in the reboot? ›

McCarthy's Sookie appeared throughout the show's 2000-07 run and her chef/BFF character was a consistent fan favorite. But show creator Amy Sherman-Palladino told TVLine in February that there was no story for the character because the "Ghostbusters" star was so busy.

What happened to Dean in Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life? ›

Padalecki made a brief return to the role in 2016's revival Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life during the final episode "Fall". There, he catches up with Rory, and it's revealed that he now lives in Scranton, Pennsylvania with his wife, Jenny, with whom he has three children (and she's pregnant with a fourth).

Is Rory single at the end of A Year in the Life? ›

In the end, Rory ends up alone, though her final words to her mother — “I'm pregnant” — should indicate this story is still far from over.

Who didn't come back for the Gilmore Girls revival? ›

Dave Ryjaski, who played Lane's boyfriend and bandmate also won't be in the revival, despite all of his band members, Brian, Zac and Gil all featuring alongside Lane. Neither Madeline and Louise, Liz nor Marty will be coming to Netflix in the four-part series.

Will we ever know the father of Rory's baby? ›

until now. Thanks to costume supervisor Valerie Campbell, we know it's none other than Logan Huntzberger. The costumer supervisor for A Year in the Life (who also worked as a key set costumer on Gilmore Girls) finally answered the question that's been on fans' minds for years.

Are Lauren Graham and Scott Patterson friends in real life? ›

Both actors have only good things to say about one another

However, shutting down the speculation about this, Lauren told TV Guide in 2007 that the whole situation had been "overblown" and insisted that things between herself and Scott were "totally great". "It's a working relationship like most of them are," she said.

Who is the father of Rory's baby? ›

Logan Is Likely the Father of Rory Gilmore's Baby

During the events of A Year in the Life, Rory had been sleeping with Logan for a while.

Are Kelly Bishop and Lauren Graham friends? ›

Kelly Bishop is a Close 'Bossy' Friend to 'Gilmore Girls' Star Lauren Graham - IMDb.

Is Rory's baby Logan's? ›

Valerie Campbell, who worked on 2016's Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, has declared in a series of TikTok videos that Logan Huntzberger (Matt Czuchry) is the father of Rory's (Alexis Bledel) baby, ruling out the forgettable Paul (Jack Carpenter) and the Wookiee that Rory had a one-night stand with in the series.

What age does Rory get pregnant? ›

Rory is 32 now, twice the age Lorelai was when she got pregnant with Rory. Had this pregnancy put a stamp on the end of the original series, when Rory was in her very early 20s, it would not have felt as fitting as it does now.

How old is Rory at the end? ›

Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life picked up almost a decade later, so Rory was 31 at the beginning, and then would've turned 32-years-old by the final episode, "Fall", since her birthday is October.

What episode does Dean appear in a year in the life? ›

"Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life" Fall (TV Episode 2016) - Jared Padalecki as Dean Forester - IMDb.

What episode of Supernatural does Dean come back to life? ›

supernatural-dean-deaths2

Resurrected By: Castiel in “Lazarus Rising” (Season 4, Episode 1) on God's orders, because Heaven had work for Dean to do.

Does Rory sleep with Dean in a year in the life? ›

Rory has sex for the first time with Dean in the season 4 episode "Raincoats and Recipes." This definitely changes their relationship as after being exes for a while, they're now in a strange place where they realize they still share an attraction and real feelings.

What episode does Dean come back alive? ›

Lazarus Rising (Supernatural)
"Lazarus Rising"
Episode no.Season 4 Episode 1
Directed byKim Manners
Written byEric Kripke
Production code3T7501
9 more rows

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