‘Gilmore Girls’: There Is Problem When It Comes to Trix Gilmore

During the original run of Gilmore Girls, fans learned very little about Richard and Emily Gilmore’s extended family. In the course of seven seasons, Amy Sherman-Palladino only ever introduced fans to Richard Gilmore’s mother, Trix Gilmore, and Richard’s cousin, Marilyn. The writing team only offered tidbits of information about other family members. While there shouldn’t have been a ton of family lineage to keep straight, fans have noticed a serious plot hole when it comes to Richard’s mother.

Richard and Emily Gilmore spoke about Trix Gilmore as if she was dead early on in Gilmore Girls

The very first mention of Richard’s mother, Trix, occurred early on in Gilmore Girls. Richard mentioned her in the third episode of the series. While he had nothing but wonderful things to say about her, he and Emily both made it sound like Trix was dead.

Alexis Bledel as Rory Gilmore, Lauren Graham as Lorelai Gilmore
Alexis Bledel as Rory Gilmore, Lauren Graham as Lorelai Gilmore | Mitchell Haddad/CBS Photo Archive via Getty Images

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Trix was spoken about exclusively in the past tense, and Richard explicitly says, “she was quite a woman, my mother.” Emily seems to verify that she is dead by speaking about her in the past tense, too. It wouldn’t seem out of the ordinary for Richard’s mother to be no longer with us, so fans found it interesting that she clearly was alive. 

Trix Gilmore, however, showed up very much alive late in season 1 

Fifteen episodes later, Trix made her first appearance on Gilmore Girls. In the episode, “The Third Lorelai,” Trix returns from London to set up her home base close to where Richard and Emily live. Emily promptly freaks out and makes quick work of pulling out every gift Trix had ever sent to the house. She made her first appearance about halfway through the episode.

Trix appeared three more times in Gilmore Girls before she died suddenly at her home. The actor who portrayed Trix, Marion Ross, returned in two more episodes as Richard’s cousin, Marilyn. Ross is best known for her portrayal of Marion Cunningham in Happy Days.

What happened to Richard Gilmore’s father?

While Trix lived to a ripe old age, that same was not true for Richard’s father. Fans learn very little about him, but it seems as though he died when Richard was relatively young. At Trix’s funeral, Richard mentions to Rory that he wore his first custom suit at his father’s funeral. He later told his mother that it no longer fit, so he didn’t need to wear it again.

Emily Gilmore appears in 'Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life'
Emily Gilmore | Netflix

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Given that information, fans can assume that Richard’s father, Charles Gilmore, died before Richard graduated from Yale. In the letter that Trix wrote to Richard regarding his marriage to Emily Gilmore, Charles is never mentioned, so it can be assumed he died before their engagement, too. How he died is never said.