“What qualifies us to talk about Gilmore Girls like experts?” Kevin Porter asks co-host Demi Adejuyigbe, during the inaugural episode of their podcast Gilmore Guys.
“Well I have a PhD in Gilmore,” Adejuyigbe answers. “And you went to school for Girls I believe, right?”
“Yes, I got a major in girls and a minor in women,” Porter jokes.
The Gilmore Guys got their start in the fall of 2014 when Netflix began streaming all seven seasons of the classic WB show, which ran from 2000 to 2007. Friends Porter and Adejuyigbe decided to start a biweekly podcast watching and analyzing every episode — Porter a major fan of the show and Adejuyigbe never having seen an episode.
At first, the podcast was just a fun side project. But since then, the guys have flown through the show and have recorded nearly 200 episodes. Gilmore Guys has built a loyal fanbase and following on social media, even spurring a fan podcast called The Gilmore Guys Girls.
The success came as a surprise.
“You don’t start a podcast because a million people are going to listen to it,” Porter says. “It’s always like, ‘Oh maybe a few people will find it and enjoy it, and it’ll be this weird little thing.’ When you make a podcast, you make it for yourself as much as for anyone else.”
Porter says his first inkling that the podcast was more than just a side hobby was during their first live show in April 2015. They’ve gone on to do several live podcasts, selling out venues across the country. On Sept. 18, the Gilmore Guys will be at Boulder Theater, where they will dig into episode 19 of season seven, “It’s Just Like Riding a Bike.”
“It’ll be a big community party, Stars Hollow town meeting blowout,” Porter says.
The appeal of the podcast comes partly from hearing Adejuyigbe’s perspective as a newcomer to the series. Fans tune in to hear his musings and to see if they agree with their theories, including one of the most debated questions: Who was Rory’s best boyfriend? With only a few episodes left until the series finale, Adejuyigbe says confidently that he does like the show.
“Growing up it was always marketed to me as the same as any other teen drama of its ilk,” he says. “Watching it makes me realize it’s a lot more adult than you’d realize. But it also has something for everybody in the sense that if you don’t care about one aspect of it, there’s 10 other aspects about it that you can glob on to.”
The podcast has received praise for overcoming gender stereotypes — they nabbed the number one spot on BUST magazine’s “7 Awesome Podcasts That Challenge Gender Norms.” Despite originally labeled as a teen drama, geared at “girls,” neither guy thinks of Gilmore as a “girls-only” show.
“I think, truthfully, the marketing on the WB was kind of a disaster,” Porter says. “They really had a pretty interesting, multilayered show that they had to cram into the WB brand of Dawson’s Creek and Seventh Heaven, with breakups and needle drops galore from the late ’90s. And it wasn’t that kind of show.
“So I think the perception that it got was almost inevitable,” he says. “It’s nice to have some distance from it, so it can reclaim its truer, more appealing status as a cultural conversation.”
Last year, Gilmore Girls fans got a surprise when Netflix announced a reboot of the show, something the guys had theorized frequently on their podcast. Four 90-minute episodes are debuting this November, and the guys only have one wish:
“We’d love to see all three of the boyfriends get in a car wreck and pass away,” Porter jokes.
In reality, Porter says he’s cautiously optimistic.
“The worst thing that could happen is if the revival becomes not fan fiction, but if it seems like it was written by someone who really just wants the audience to like it, where they keep making references to the old show,” Adejuyigbe says. “I don’t want it to be like, oh they said, ‘Oy, with the poodles already,’ or Dean’s back and he’s still working at Dosey’s. I want everyone to be grown up and acknowledge the past, but not just lean into how much we loved the past.”
Unlike other reboots, Gilmore Girls sits in a unique position. The show’s creator and writer, Amy Sherman-Palladino, left before the final season, but she’s back for the revival.
“Amy didn’t end on her own terms, and the revival serves to rectify that,” Porter says. “Full House, Arrested Development, X-Files, Twin Peaks, I think all those ostensibly ended on their own terms with their authors. But this is the case that it didn’t.”
The Gilmore Guys will finish up the original series in the next few weeks, closely followed by the revival episodes. And for their “Epilogue,” as Porter calls it, they plan to tackle Sherman-Palladino’s one-season, cult favorite Bunheads.
But only one question remains: Team Dean? Team Jess? Or Team Logan?
“I’m Team Rory,” Porter says. “Through and through.”
On the Bill: Gilmore Guys Live: A Stars Hollow Town Meeting. 7 p.m. Sept. 18, Boulder Theater, 2032 14th St., 303-786-7030, bouldertheater.com.