Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Gilmore Girls

Character Analysis: Today, we break down Gilmore Girls, this female-heavy drama of fast-paced dialog. There is a large ensemble of characters, so let's not waste time...

Meet the Characters

Lorelai Gilmore - Best Guess: ESFP; with NF Leanings - Lorelai may be perhaps the most talkative character on television (EEE!!!) and simply has a witty response for everything. Being irresponsible at a young age, and becoming pregnant with her daughter Rory at 16--while not being married--she choose to leave the proper and materialistic life of her parents behind so she can raise her daughter in a small-town atmosphere in an idealistic setting. Lorelai--whether intentionally or not--throws herself in the center of attention no matter where she is. Most conversations with her revolve around pop culture references, gossip, or other down to earth topics (S). She lives life with a carefree attitude and takes things one day at a time. There is no long-term planning with Lorelai. As long as she is (1) having fun and (2) close to her daughter, there isn't much else she needs to be happy (SFP). She does have a slight leaning towards an NF side in that she is a romantic. Strongest Letter(s): EEEFFFPPP!

Rory Gilmore - Best Guess: INFJ with SJ leanings - Rory is an extremely shy (I) and studious person (J). Being the perfect student in school (i.e. not getting into trouble; high grades), she sets out on her long journey to become a writer in the form of CNN correspondent Christiane Amanpour. In the fashion of Amanpour who travels the dangerous world for the sake of journalism, Rory has the same idealistic NF desires. Walking down a street, Rory would not be looking at what is going on around her, but dreaming inside her own fanciful world (N). That is, when she is not nose-deep in a novel. It is worth noting that Rory does have strong SJ inclinations as well; she is an obsessive rule follower. As she enters the later part of her college years--and seeing the choice of her "companion" (Logan)--she shows less signs of being an N and seems more grounded in an worldly (S) environment. Strongest Letter(s): IJ

Luke Danes - Best Guess: INTJ; with strong ISTJ leanings - Wearing his hat backwards, notorious flannel shirts, and constant 5 0'clock shadow on his beard, one might think Luke is an SP. However, he is an organized person in most other aspects; (he is an effective personal business manager to name one). His appearance is merely that of an NT who dresses for need, comfort, and utility--rather than occasion (SJ) or expression (SP & NF). Though often being grumpy when dealing with people (I), Luke likes to frustrate local rule-abiding STJ Taylor whenever possible. In going back to the theme of organization, Luke is the perfect complement to Lorelai in most ways. He balances her procrastination and even her emotional impulses with a (sometimes) calm and reasoning disposition. In a twist, Luke can have moments where he is a rigid SJ rule follower. Go figure. Strongest Letter(s): T

Emily Gilmore - Best Guess: ESTJ - Lorelai's mother is quick to tell (E) a person how to handle themselves properly (SJ) in all situations and tends to be extremely controlling (TJ) in how she does this. She has more regard for tradition than for a happy family life (T). If the family becomes strained with one another--or unhappy with Emily, this is a small price to be payed in order to maintain the "Gilmore" dignity. Additionally, the arranged Friday night dinners with Lorelai and Rory are very pleasing to Emily, even though they are completely contrived as part of a "business deal". The appearance of a traditional family setting is what she is concerned about--a close second to that of getting to know her own granddaughter. Strongest Letter(s): TJ

Richard Gilmore - Best Guess: ISTJ - Richard, the astute businessman rather be left alone from his tenacious wife in order to handle his daily affairs and conduct his investments accordingly(I). If Richard and Emily agree on one thing, it is that being proper and dignified comes before all (SJ), including affection (T). Strongest Letter(s): IJ

Christopher Hayden - Best Guess: ESTP - Rory's father Christopher has shown that he is a man who lives in the here and now (SP) and is more interested in himself than in his family in that he is extremely unreliable as a father (T). A man who will come out of the shadows spontaneously advertising his latest ideas to Lorelai and Rory (E)--and then decide to drive off back into the sunset on his motorbike from whence he came. Strongest Letter(s): ST

Dean Forester - Best Guess: ISTP - Rory's first boyfriend--and escapade--is a man of action and impulse (SP). While occasionally showing moments of emotional responses such as jealousy, he much rather take Rory for a spin in his car, as opposed to being the center of attention in a social situation (IT). When Rory spurns Dean for Jess, Dean is quick to make a rash decision (P) and marry someone else in order to prove a point. He is not one who is known for being very bright upstairs. Strongest Letter(s): TP

Jess Mariano - Best Guess: INTP with ever so slight SP leanings - Rory's second boyfriend, Jess, has no regard for the rules and no respect for the popular opinion. He rather just keep his nose down in whichever book he is reading and just ignore you (I). He comes off as a rebel (SP?), but really, he is just content with doing his own thing. His "thing" just happens to sometimes contradict local laws and traditional values. Strongest Letter(s): IN

Logan Huntzberger - Best Guess: ESTP - Rory's third boyfriend, Logan, is the quintessential ESTP. He talks the talk, walks the walk and delivers promises left and right. Most promises seem to be empty. Only in his early twenties and coming from a wealthy family, Logan dresses like an important man and looks down on everyone else as lesser. It seems he has been well taught by his largely ESTP father. Everywhere he goes, Logan must fit in and add his personal opinion to whatever subject is being discussed. It is all a part of his elevated level of self-importance. It almost seems there is a lack of self-esteem here? Strongest Letter(s): STP

Paris Geller - Best Guess: ENTJ with slight SJ leanings - Paris wants to have a higher GPA than you and once she achieves it, she will have no problem telling you this fact (E). Intentionally or not, Paris stirs up competition wherever she goes (T). Being a TJ girl she finds it slightly difficult to compete with her peers in finding the right boy--and when she does, it is always an odd choice. This, however, is only a secondary concern after academics--and winning. She will outdue you by any means neccasary (NT) and has a sensational desire for power (could be STJ or NTJ). In a very SJ twist, she often tries hard to fit in with her peers. Either way (NT or SJ), it is her TJ that rules all. Strongest Letter(s): ETJ

Lane Kim - Best Guess: ISFP - Lane has two central plot themes. (1) Her total rebellion from her religious and traditional ISTJ mother. (2) Her involvement and love for music and later joining a band. These two themes show me that Lane is an SP. While ISFP's are perhaps the nicest of all 16 profiles, Lane borders into N-hood. So she is not always aware of those around her as she may be known to daydream. Ultimately, however, she is an extremely pleasant and "fun" person to be around (SFP)--that is, once she allows you inside her bubble (I). Strongest Letter(s): FP

Sookie St. James - Best Guess: ESFP - Sookiee the cook loves to have fun (SFP). In fact, it's when she is cooking up her latest and elaborate meal or desert is when she is the most excited. Containing her emotions (F) or keeping her "bubbly" demeanor (E) calm--are definitely not her strong suits. Like Lorelai, entering the inn business was the right choice. There she can entertain and make people happy. Strongest Letter(s): EF

Kirk Gleason - Best Guess: ENTP - The classic entrepreneur, Kirk can be seen around town wearing many hats (TP) but specializing in none. Despite being actively involved in so many lines of work--and many requiring social interaction (E), he still lives with his mother. Kirk is slightly odd, if not outwardly eccentric. It seems he sees the world in a completely different manner than the rest of us (N), and he would be quick to argue this point. This world is Kirk's oyster and we are just living in it. Strongest Letter(s): ET

Miss Patty - Best Guess: ESFJ - This town busybody and gossip, like most EFJ's, can be intimidating. They are quick to force their emotional judgments on others so you better walk on tip-toes around Miss Patty. One mistake and the whole town will know about it. It might be safer to do what she says. It's probably not worth the effort to fight her. Strongest Letter(s): EJ

Babbette Dell - Best Guess: ESTJ - Lorelia's neighbor Babbette is loud (E), touch-skinned (T) and the only citizen who is willing to stand up to Taylor's no-nonsense attitude. I am not sure that she fits in as a typical SJ because she does not have the rule following mentality, but like fellow SJ's, Taylor and Miss Patty, she is ingrained deeply on the activities of the community. Strongest Letter(s): ET

Taylor Doose - Best Guess: ESTJ - Taylor is the entire government of the small town of Stars Hollows (SJ). He usually can be seen enforcing the rules (STJ) or leading the town meetings (E). Don't cross Taylor or you might end up in jail. Actually, is there even a jail here? Strongest Letter(s): TJ

Michel Gerard - Best Guess: ISTJ - Michel is an extreme TJ who is constantly annoyed by the two extreme FP's he works for--Lorelai and Sookie. He has no sense of humor and does not appreciate theirs. He is the king of dirty looks as he makes his unhappiness known in his arrogantly thick French accent. Strongest Letter(s): IJ

So there you have it. This might be the most balanced cast ever?


Anonymous said...

Why do you label Rory F? There's no discussion of F vs. T, and I think she's an INTJ. She makes decisions based on her infamous "pro/con" lists- logic. The only times she deviates from this and we see her emotional decision-making, or really outbursts of bottled up emotions at all, is when she's under stress, and at those time she has no idea how to deal with those emotions. For example in the choice between Dean and Jess, she was frozen for weeks because she couldn't understand her own feelings.

Anonymous said...

also she refers to dating as "this pointless societal ritual" and often chooses to stay in reading instead of attend parties. very intj.

Anonymous said...

the pro/con list is really more of a 'J' manifestation than F vs. T.

If you look at Keirsey's temperaments, she is clearly an idealist and not a rational.

Kicking Lettuce said...

I agree, Rory has some very T moments of clarity, but come on. It's Gilmore Girls! She is an F. No question whatsoever!

The Diaz Family said...

Not only the BEST show ever with the best mixture of the cast, but the best review my friend :) Thoroughly enjoyed!!!!

Hugo said...

logan is an ENTP.

Wide knowledge in pop culture, journalism skills, being action oriented are all within the ENTP's domain.

Anonymous said...

I love this so much! A lot of it is really spot-on. I'm the same type as Luke, which doesn't really surprise me ;) I also highly identified with Rory (especially in the beginning) and the fact that she's an INFJ helps me understand our subtle differences. The one thing I would argue though is that Lane is most definitely an extrovert. She actually really loves being around people and unlike Rory is quite smooth in social situations (other than that time with Rich...) and she IS good at sales :)

Anonymous said...

Sookie is an FJ. Outwardly expressing emotions in that way is FJ quality. If you want to see ouwardly focused FP look at Lorelai or watch Jenna "f*cking" Marbles on YouTube.
Those "sookies" are plenty in our society they don't go against traditions at all.
ESFJ or ISFJ it is hard to tell sometimes. They can come out as funny. Mel Brooks is also a good example of funny xSFJ.

Anonymous said...

Rory is definitely an INTJ. I, as an INTJ have never identified with a character as much as her. Even the way she asked Dean if he was her boyfriend is the same way I have approached multiple relationships. Her random outbursts of rage are very much an INTJ thing as well.

Anonymous said...

Lorelai - ENFP - Bursting with Ne. Random, wacky, referential, intelligent Ne humor in every sentence. Manic pixie dream girl persona. Definite Si-inferior fascination with old-timey things. No Se-dominant interest in sports or any kind of physical, hands-on activity such as cooking, which is sensor Sookie's domain.

Rory - INFJ - With well-developed tertiary Ti that makes some people think she's T. Reserved and whip-smart like many INFJs but has Fe-auxiliary people skills. INTJs probably relate to her because they identify with her dom. Ni / inf. Se combo. But Rory definitely has Fe aux. Though shy, she's comfortable in the realm of emotional communication. Check her out when she's counseling Lane, resolving conflicts with Paris, or trying to get Richard and Emily back together. This girl tries to avoid hurting people, is diplomatic and sensitive to their feelings, expresses her own emotion easily for an introvert, and likes to get involved in others' relationship issues in a way that many INTJs wouldn't.

Luke - ISTP - Ti-dom. self-reliant, crabby persona with Se-aux. sensibilities. Hobbies and talents are typical of Ti-Se types--home and vehicle repairs and renovations, cooking, fishing, running a small business. Typical Ti-Se deadpan humor. Fe-inf. difficulty expressing emotion. Ti-Se expression of emotion through action.

Emily - ESTJ - Agreed.

Richard - ISTJ - Agreed.

Christopher - ESTP - Dom.-Se distaste for routine and commitment. Takes a long time to "find himself." Typical dom.-Se charming, lighthearted persona. Doesn't seem comfortable enough with emotion or sensitive enough to people to be Fi aux., so probably Ti aux. and Fe tert.

Dean - ISFP - Fi-dom. sensitivity. Makes his relationship his main interest in life. Shy at first but seems comfortable being emotionally expressive with Rory. Se-aux. interests in hands-on jobs and hobbies--construction, auto repair. Fi-dom. mellow vibe mostly but doesn't back off from a fight (Se aux.).

Jess - ISTP - Just like Uncle Luke, but they were raised very differently and so have very different outlooks on life. Same Ti-dom. self-reliant, crabby persona, same Ti-Se deadpan humor. Same Fe-inf. difficulty expressing emotions and interacting with people. Too aggressive and spontaneous in his approach to conflict, the opposite sex, and life in general for an INTP (Se aux.) and has none of the Ne-aux. nerdy / goofy persona. Ti-dom. intelligence but no interest in education and happy with low-skilled odd jobs that most intuitives would find intolerable, further suggesting Se.

Anonymous said...

Logan - ESTP - No arguments.

Paris - INTJ - ENTJs tend to be friendlier and more diplomatic than Paris. Paris has a hard time getting along with people and is often very insensitive to them. She also lacks the suave charisma that gives ENTJs their reputation as politicians and business leaders and is instead quite awkward much of the time. However, she's very confident in herself, probably because she was raised in an achievement-oriented environment that supported whatever she undertook, so she comes across as extroverted because she's assertive. Still, she's definitely Fi inf.

Lane - INFP - Typical artsy INFP. Shows a lot of the same random, wacky, spacey tendencies as Lorelai with fast-paced referential humor due to her aux. Ne. Probably not ISFP because of said random, wacky, spacey tendencies with fast-paced referential humor. Aux. Se is more grounded and less hyper.

Sookie - ESFJ - She seems far too nosy and judgmental to be Se dom. These traits point to dom. Fe. She can also be very fussy and exacting, suggesting aux. Si rather than the Se go-with-the-flow persona. Has a tendency to Ne-tert. silly / goofy humor.

Kirk - INTP - He's more of a talker than most INTPs, but true ENTPs tend to have better people skills (Fe tert.) than Kirk does. Kirk likes to talk, but he's terrible with people, having no clue how to interact with them in a normal way (Fe inf.), and has the Ti-Ne nerdy, helpless persona and fear of the world (lives at home with his mom, never had a girlfriend before Lulu, nervous and anxious about everything). He also has a blank Ti-dom. expression and monotone much of the time. Contrast this with Lorelai and her true Ne-dom.'s constant outpouring of Ne zaniness.

Babbette - ESTJ / ESFJ - Never paid enough attention to her to decide.

Taylor - ESTJ - Sounds right.

Michel - ISTJ - Sounds right.

Anonymous said...

Other points to note:

Much of Lorelai's conflict with her parents stems from the fact that she's an intuitive perceiver while they're sensor judgers.

Lorelai and Sookie have a good friendship because Sookie's tert. Ne really appreciates Lorelai's dom. Ne. Lorelai, Sookie, and Michel have a good business relationship because Lorelai provides intuitive creative direction, and Michel and Sookie provide the detail-oriented, hands-on sensor support.

Rory and Lane are best friends because they're both introverted intuitive feelers. Rory and Paris have a more conflicted friendship because they're both INJs. They relate to each other's Ni dominance, but Paris's Te approach and Rory's Fe approach often clash.

Rory's inf. Se consistently attracts her to SP guys. But it also makes her find some of their Se behavior repellent.

Lorelai dates a variety of men, but the love of her life is Luke in an "opposites attract" way; they don't have any cognitive functions in common.

Lorelai and Rory have such a close relationship because they're both intuitive feelers. They play off each other so well because Lorelai's dom. Ne makes her a natural comedian, while Rory's dom. Ni makes her more of a straight woman but still quick-witted enough to follow Lorelai's crazy train of thought and sometimes beat her to the punchline. Lorelai is better than Rory at confronting situations head-on because of her dom. Ne, but Rory is better at understanding people's inner motivations because of her dom. Ni. Lorelai is also more spontaneous than Rory (Ne), whereas Rory is a planner (Ni).

It's remarkable how well this show depicts Myers-Briggs personality types without even trying, isn't it?

Trümmerhaufen said...

That's interesting, because as an INTJ, I find much of her behavior poorly planned, irrational, and distasteful. I identify with Paris and Luke much more than Rory.