Y’all. I am going to say it. I am a Gilmore Girls expert. No humility, no shame. I watched the show as it came out and have been constantly cycling through each season for the last 7 years, with a steady 2-4 episodes a week. Needless to say, I can quote every episode and have lots of opinions, but I don’t watch because its perfect, or because I agree with all the decisions all the characters make. I watch because I feel like a citizen in the whimsical world that is Stars Hollow.
If you have been living under a box the last year, you might have missed that the series is returning to Netflix for 4 miniseries episodes. Ahhh… so exciting! People have come out of the woodwork, as old but lapsed Gilmore girls fans, new and passionate fans, and longtime Stars Hollow residents, like myself. All are welcome, come join the party. That means you too, Jimmy Fallon. I am always game for a good Stars Hollow discussion, and today I want to share with you some insight from one of my favorite characters, Mrs. Kim.
This may be the only way you remember her…
Mrs. Kim was obviously written as an archetypal character in this series. But one of the things that I love about Gilmore Girls is that every character gets their fair share of storylines and growth. These characters’ stories invite the viewer deeper into the community, gossiping with Babette, joining town meetings at Ms. Patty’s, interacting with Kirk in each one of his 20,000 jobs, and of course watching the craziness and joy that is the Kim family.
As the series moves forward these peripheral characters teach us and the Gilmore Girls some silly and real lessons. We learn that Lane and Mrs. Kim aren’t too dissimilar from one another and that although their relationship looks very different from Rory and Lorelai’s, it too is based in love. Here are a few lessons from the delightfully rigid Mrs. Kim.
Develop a family culture
There is no denying that the Kim’s have their own family culture, whether it is their gluten-free food, the Korean Thanksgiving, or Sing-Your-Favorite-Hymn night. Mrs. Kim boldly steps out from the surrounding culture to create the atmosphere she desires for her household. She shows us how to proudly do things the way you are convicted.
Respect your parents
Mrs. Kim’s goal is to teach her child to respect and listen to her elders, even when they are asking apparently crazy things of you, like resisting the salty goodness of french fries. (You have to omit, Mrs. Kim is pretty creative, the devil’s starchy fingers and a little machine on the tv). I am convinced Lane, despite her occasional disobedience, has every bit of respect for her mama.
How to motivate and push others
Whether in running a tough bargain at her antique shop, fitting 20 tambourine players in a van, or pushing Zack to write a hit song, Mrs. Kim knows how to motivate and push past any barriers.
Protect what matters to you
Maybe helldogs and sludge is coming on strong, but Ms. Kim’s zeal and creative vocabulary make clear that her intentions are to protect and care for her daughter. She knows what is important and is willing to stop a moving train to protect it. I believe Mrs. Kim could stop a moving train.
Take baby steps
A lot of things are hard for Mrs. Kim to accept, but her care for her daughter outweighs the walls and boundaries that she comes up against. She displays courage and love as she takes baby steps to accept things she can’t change.
How to move on
Lane and Zack have broken up and Lane is obviously upset. After some sassy talk, Mrs. Kim covers all the windows, sits Lane down, and reveals a hidden bottle of sake. In a direct voice Mrs. Kim says, “Lane, it’s been six weeks since you came home. You’ve grieved and now we move on,” She is stern, but there is no malice behind her words. She wants Lane to be happy again and wants to help her move on.
How to celebrate
Mrs. Kim knows how to party. Through out the seasons we see event after event hosted at her home, numerous weddings, thanksgivings, and lunar new year celebrations. When she sees a cause worthy of rejoicing she puts her determination to work and celebrates with the best of them. When good things come to her family like the arrival of a new baby or a great sale she relishes the news and smiles.
This post is part of a series called My Gilmore’d Life. Discussing how we can relate to our favorite Stars Hollow characters. Learning alongside the Gilmore Girls as we handle life’s triumphs, tribulations, and sillies. To see more check out It’s okay if you are scared to have a baby and When you feel like you are failing.