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After 19-year-old Rory Gilmore (series star ALEXIS BLEDEL) makes love with her former boyfriend, Dean (recurring guest star JARED PADALECKI)--who is married--she argues bitterly with Lorelai (series star LAUREN GRAHAM), who is disappointed by her daughter's choices. Despite her best efforts, Rory cannot resist Dean, even when she guiltily observes how hard Dean's eager young wife is working to keep their marriage together. Meanwhile, Lorelai copes with a tricky situation of her own: Eccentric resident Kirk (series star SEAN GUNN) has witnessed her kissing recently divorced coffee shop owner Luke Danes (series star SCOTT PATTERSON) after the gala opening of the new Dragonfly Inn, Lorelai's long-awaited venture with her friend Sookie St. James (series star MELISSA McCARTHY). Despite the gossip, Luke and Lorelai seem to finally be happy together. The longtime marriage of Lorelai's parents, Richard and Emily (series star KELLY BISHOP), continues to crumble.
Runtime: 60 minutes Rating: Original Air Date: 9/21/2004
While calling Lorelai from Rome, Rory admits that she complicated her relationship with Dean (recurring guest star JARED PADALECKI). Lorelai gives Dean a letter from Rory, but Dean's wife, Lindsay (recurring guest star ARIELLE KEBBEL), finds the letter and makes Dean move out of the house. Rory returns from Europe, and a terrible argument ensues when she and Lorelai encounter Lindsay and her mother. Meanwhile, Luke returns to Stars Hollow after spending several weeks helping his injured sister, Liz (recurring guest star KATHLEEN WILHOITE), on the Renaissance Fair circuit. Luke and Lorelai try to find a private spot to say hello but are interrupted by a town parade.
Runtime: 60 minutes Rating: Original Air Date: 9/28/2004
Early in the morning after Lorelai and Luke spend a romantic night together at Luke's place, Lorelai walks into the diner dressed in one of Luke's flannel shirts and discovers that the place is full of customers. Lorelai is a little offended when it appears that no one cares about their relationship--until it becomes a topic of heated discussion at the town meeting. Meanwhile, Rory verbally spars with a haughty, rich student named Logan (recurring guest star MATT CZUCHRY - "Eight Legged Freaks") after he is rude to her friend Marty (recurring guest star WAYNE WILCOX). And Paris holds a wake for her older lover Professor Asher Flemming, who died over the summer.
Runtime: 60 minutes Rating: Original Air Date: 10/5/2004
Rory and Dean have difficulty meeting alone because they live far apart and Dean (recurring guest star JARED PADALECKI) shares a car with his estranged wife. Impulsively, Rory asks Dean if he left his wife because Lindsay found Rory's letter--and she is not completely satisfied with his response. Lorelai and Sookie manage Jackson's (recurring guest star JACKSON DOUGLAS) campaign when he decides to compete against Taylor (recurring guest star MICHAEL WINTERS) for town selectman. Lane tells her band mate Zach (recurring guest star TODD LOWE) that she has feelings for him.
Runtime: 60 minutes Rating: Original Air Date: 10/12/2004
Feeling bad that her relationship with Dean (recurring guest star JARED PADALECKI) has become awkward, Lorelai suggests that she and Luke go on a double date with Rory and Dean. But Lorelai's plans go awry when Luke is unable to disguise the fact that he thinks Dean isn't good enough for Rory. Meanwhile, Emily and Richard are lonely and a little lost without each other, but neither one can take the first step toward reconciliation.
Runtime: 60 minutes Rating: Original Air Date: 10/19/2004
Lorelai and Sookie are thrilled when author NORMAN MAILER (himself) and a young reporter, Josh Davies (STEPHEN MAILER, Norman's real-life son), show up repeatedly in the dining room of the Dragonfly Inn, but Sookie's awe turns to annoyance when Mailer refuses to order any food. Working on a story for the Yale newspaper, Rory uncovers evidence of an intriguing secret society to which Logan (recurring guest star MATT CZUCHRY) belongs. Meanwhile, when Rory's father, Christopher (recurring guest star DAVID SUTCLIFFE - "I'm With Her"), appeals to Lorelai for help after his girlfriend leaves him to raise their baby daughter by himself, Rory orders him to leave Lorelai alone. Finally, Sookie realizes that she is pregnant again.
Runtime: 60 minutes Rating: Original Air Date: 10/26/2004
Rory is impressed when Logan (recurring guest star MATT CZUCHRY) takes her to an elaborate event staged by his secret society, and she participates in a thrilling--but dangerous--stunt. Meanwhile, when she discovers that Lorelai is dating Luke, Emily insists he come to dinner. Not to be outdone, Richard invites Luke to a game of golf, and Luke is overwhelmed by the strength of the elder Gilmores' personalities.
Runtime: 60 minutes Rating: Original Air Date: 11/2/2004
Rory is honored when Emily and Richard give a party to introduce her to their Yale alumni friends, but it soon becomes obvious that their ulterior motive is to find her a suitable husband. When Dean (recurring guest star JARED PADALECKI) arrives at the party to pick Rory up, he realizes he doesn't belong in her privileged world. Meanwhile, Luke cooks a romantic dinner for Lorelai, but their evening is interrupted by newlyweds Liz (KATHLEEN WILHOITE - "ER") and T.J. (MICHAEL DeLUISE - "NYPD Blue"), who are feuding.
Runtime: 60 minutes Rating: Original Air Date: 11/9/2004
Rory decides that she and Lorelai should split up at the next Friday night dinner and confront Richard and Emily separately about ending their separation. However, Emily dashes their hopes of a reconciliation by announcing that she is ready to begin dating. Meanwhile, Lorelai invites Christopher (recurring guest star DAVID SUTCLIFFE) for lunch at the inn, unaware that Rory had warned Christopher to stay away from her mother. Feeling guilty that she hadn't told Luke about seeing Christopher, Lorelai confesses that they had lunch, and Luke tries to convince himself that he isn't jealous.
Runtime: 60 minutes Rating: Original Air Date: 11/16/2004
Rory is delighted when Headmaster Hanlin Charleston (DAKIN MATTHEWS) from her old prep school asks her to host a young student, Anna (SARAH FORET), who is thinking of applying to Yale. However, Anna is much more interested in boys than academics and runs off to party, leaving Rory to deal with Logan's (recurring guest star MATT CZUCHRY) elaborate practical jokes. Meanwhile, Lorelai and Luke have their first argument when she upsets him by buying an old boat that had previously belonged to his father.
Runtime: 60 minutes Rating: Original Air Date: 11/30/2004