‘Gilmore Girls’: 1 of Kelly Bishop’s Favorite Scenes Is a Classic Emily Gilmore Meltdown

First and foremost, Gilmore Girls is about Rory and Lorelai Gilmore. But the TV show also explores the complex relationship between Lorelai and her mother, Emily Gilmore. For Kelly Bishop, the actor who portrayed Emily, one scene stands out among the rest.

Emily Gilmore is always put together on ‘Gilmore Girls’

Yanic Truesdale, Lauren Graham, Kelly Bishop, Alexis Bledel, Keiko Agena and Scott Patterson at the TCA Awards
Yanic Truesdale, Lauren Graham, Kelly Bishop, Alexis Bledel, Keiko Agena and Scott Patterson at the TCA Awards | Kevin Winter/Getty Images

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From the start of Gilmore Girls, Emily is all about manners and rules. She knows the proper height for a taper and attends charity functions and galas with her husband, Richard Gilmore (Edward Herrmann). 

For seven seasons, Emily is the picture of decorum. That is except for the few times she loses her temper or has a full-on meltdown. It just so happens that one of those scenes is Bishop’s favorite. 

Kelly Bishop loves Emily Gilmore’s ‘crazy shopping trip’ at the mall

As the title says, in Gilmore Girls Season 4 Episode 15: “Scene in a Mall,” something happens at the mall. What is it? Emily goes on an extravagant shopping spree before having a meltdown. 

Asked by Glamour at the 2015 ATX Television Festival to share a favorite scene or episode, Bishop chose “my shopping, when I went on that crazy shopping trip with the girls and had them all over the mall.”

Calling the scene “a good one,” Bishop recalled her character “trying to eat a hamburger with a knife and fork.” 

Emily Gilmore shops to cope with Richard not needing her

The scene Bishop is referring to is the one where Lorelai and Rory see Emily at the mall. Emily insists her daughter and granddaughter come shopping with her. Right away, Rory and Lorelai sense something’s up because Emily is particularly “aggressive.” 

Kelly Bishop, Alexis Bledel, and Lauren Graham at the premiere of 'Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life'
Kelly Bishop, Alexis Bledel, and Lauren Graham at the premiere of Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life | Amanda Edwards/WireImage

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Walking through a department store, Emily proceeds to buy jewelry for Richard, Italian loafers, a designer wedding gown for Lorelai, and other pricy items. In the shoe department, Emily causes a scene when Lorelai suggests she slow down on the spending. 

During her meltdown, it becomes clear Emily’s shopping spree is because of Richard and his new life. From there, Rory and Lorelai take Emily to the food court. 

Although the shopping spree stood out to her as a favorite, Bishop admitted she probably has a lot more favorites than she realizes. 

Emily Gilmore goes shopping to cope later on ‘Gilmore Girls’

Emily’s moment at the mall isn’t the only time she goes on a lavish spending spree. Later in the series, Emily turns to shopping yet again as a way to cope with her feelings.

In Gilmore Girls Season 6 Episode 9: “The Prodigal Daughter Returns,” Richard calls Lorelai in a panic that Emily is nowhere to be found. Meanwhile, Rory’s abruptly moves out of her grandparents’ house.

It’s discovered by Lorelai that Emily has decided to buy a plane, or as Emily says, “timeshare” a plane. When she finds her mom browsing the cabin of a private plane, Emily breaks down in tears about losing her and Rory.

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