My Problem With the Lorelai-Luke Shippers

Part 2 of my fall schedule review will come later, but I needed to put this exchange that I had with a good friend of mine from the atgg newsgroup into the blog for further discussion:
“Rob Jensen” <> wrote in message
Okay, I wanted to untie the gordian know of thread drift and
microarguments about April’s DNA testing and pose this:

Writers often write in shorthand because they know that they only 
have limited amount of space to write their stories.  More important
stories get more screentime and/or are written more realistically,
less important stories get less screen time and/or are written less
realistically.  It works the same way with characters — the more
important characters, like Lorelai, are three-dimensional and capable
of making even infuriating mistakes, the less important characters,
like Kirk, are more cartoonish but still capable of making mistakes
(and indeed, making mistakes is part of that kind of cartoonish
Harlequin’s function).  So my question is this:  How do we get, say,
the ‘shippers to allow the show the space to show Lorelai making a
monumental mistake — because IMO, that monumental mistake
(boinking Christopher), just minutes after her greatest triumph
(walking out on the increasingly asshatted Luke) is just a triumphant
illustration of the complexity of human nature?  I’m stumped by the
‘shippers’ inability to see past the ‘ships and see into the show’s
real strengths and meanings, such as Partings.  So what can we
do?  What can I do as a poster?  (And “Be less arrogant” isn’t 
helpful as, IMO, explaining when the other person is clearly wrong
while respecting his right to be wrong is going to be considered rude
and arrogant by the other person no matter what you do.)  I’m
talking more generally — what can we do to meet the ‘shippers head
on and have them stop attacking Lauren and David and Amy and all 
the rest — as the show certainly has several more years left in it
given what a rich foundation Amy built for it?
 — Rob

My friend Sharpe and I responded in the following exchange, his statements with the > and mine without.

>The simple answer is there is nothing you or anyone else can do to
>convince them otherwise.
>I agree with you that the Lorelai / Luke storyline is less important
>than the Lorelai / Rory story or even the Lorelai / Emily story. 
>However, others feel L/L is the core of the show and I don’t think it
>it is possible to prove them wrong, even if ASP joined the group and >said so.

Now that’s a *great* observation of the ‘shippers’ mentality.  And IMO, it’s worth pointing that it doesn’t even matter whether or not ASP joins the group, she’s always maintained in print that the show is first  and foremost about Lorelai and Rory. 

DeFacto, the interpretations of ALL Lor-Luke ‘shippers who ignore the lesser significance of the Lor-Luke ‘ship to the Lor-Rory ‘ship are therefore categorically, manifestly wrong on all levels.  It’s one of those things where it literally really is there in black and white, in many places.

>You can point to all the evidence you want and they will answer that 
>the L/Lstory is the one that they see as most important and they are
>right that it is the most important – to them.

And I could say that a lightbulb is a squid.  The blatant
misinterpretation of the show by the ‘shippers is the same exact thing, IMO — nonsense — or, if you will, surrealism, except surrealism without even its mischievous point.

>If this were a simple factual question like which story gets the most 
>screen time you could in theory add everything up and come to an
>objective answer. If the question is what story is most important,
>that is personal opinion.  Even the shows creator can only say what she views as most important.

I cannot disagree more — the show’s creator is the show’s owner in every moral and ethical sense and her intentions should not be so cavalierly disavowed, dismissed and discarded by the overly hormonal gaggle of teenage girls and the like who have baldly, willfully misinterpreted the show for the past year and a half.  And misinterpreted it at the beginning of season four.  And misinterpreted it at the end of season 2.  IMO, and I’m going to be as impolitic about it as I possibly can (and I know that sounds redundant coming from me), but they’ve got to get their heads out of their asses and accept the creator’s vision or they have no chance whatsoever of understanding the show. 

And, IMO, this is true of any movie or show that is not made in a
deliberately open-ended surrealistic mode (ie: Monty Python, The
Prisoner, Arrested Development).  We have plenty of counter-examples to show that the directors/creators’ rights to the moral and ethical intent of even *open-ended* works begins and ends with them.  Baz Luhrmann, for instance, stated outright in his commentary tracks for his Red Curtain trilogy that the purpose of these movies was NOT to tell the stories, it was show how these stories are worthy of contemporization using modern filmmaking techniques and styles.  Now, I loved the Christian and Satine Romance in Moulin Rouge!, but the Christian and Satine Romance was explicitly, by the creator’s own words, not the point of the story, not the focus of the story, even though it was the main plot.  Who am I or any fan to argue with the creator’s actual intent?  IMO, it boils down to this: the sheer arrogance by the Lor-Luke ‘shippers who think they’re entitled to reinterpret the show in violation of Amy and Dan’s intent — that, to me, is artistic perversion and artistic vandalism that’s not worth even an iota of respect.

  — Rob

Note:  I lightly edited some of my statements above for the sake of clarity and/or emphasis.

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