Scott Patterson Recalls Objectifying “Gilmore Girls” Scene That Made Him Feel “Really Embarrassed”
Scott Patterson has a bone to pick with “Gilmore Girls” creator Amy Sherman-Palladino. On the Aug. 24 episode of his “I Am All In” rewatch podcast, the actor recounted an objectifying scene that made him feel “really embarrassed” while filming nearly 20 years ago. The scene in question unfolds during the 19th episode of season three; while Patterson’s Luke Danes fixes a stove in the Dragonfly Inn kitchen, Lorelai (Lauren Graham) and Sookie (Melissa McCarthy) discuss his butt at length after the latter accidentally rests her hand on it. They repeatedly comment on and joke about Luke’s backside until the diner owner leaves the inn.
“I realised it wasn’t OK, and it didn’t make me feel comfortable at all,” Patterson said on his podcast. “It made me feel really embarrassed, actually. It’s infuriating to be treated that way because you’re being treated like an object. It’s disturbing, and it’s disgusting. And I had to endure that through that entire scene and many takes.” Discussion of his rear end didn’t end once the cameras stopped rolling, either. “It was all about the butt, the butt, the butt, the butt. When we weren’t filming, we were sitting down – people were still talking about the butt, the butt, the butt,” he added.
At that point in the series, Luke and Lorelai aren’t romantically involved yet – he’s dating Nicole (Tricia O’Kelley) – so the extensive discussion of his butt felt inappropriate. But it also went deeper than that for Patterson. “Put yourself in my place. Stand there in front of all those people filming, and this is how the creator of that show sees that character – that you can humiliate him and take away his dignity that entire scene, and that’s OK,” he said. “. . . It’s as disgusting for women to objectify men as it for men to objectify women, and it’s as harmful. It was the most offensive day I’ve ever spent on a set.”
“Just because it was 2003 didn’t mean it was OK.”
Patterson said he regrets not voicing his concerns about the scene back then. “Just because it was 2003 didn’t mean it was OK,” he continued. “It’s never OK. And I didn’t feel comfortable doing it, and it pissed me off. I never said anything, so I was angry at myself for never saying anything. But I had this job and I didn’t want to make waves and all that.”
Patterson portrayed flannel-wearing Luke Danes for all seven seasons of “Gilmore Girls” and reprised the role for the four-episode “A Year in the Life” revival that aired in 2016. The cast have reunited plenty of times since then, sparking major nostalgia every time they link up. Sherman-Palladino has teased the possibility of getting the gang back together and returning to Stars Hollow for another reboot in recent years. “There’s no [obstacle] behind it except for lives and people doing [other] things,” the show creator said at a film-festival panel discussion in 2020, TVLine reports. “. . . I really do believe that if the time is right and the girls are where they need to be in their lives [it could happen].”