On The 22nd Anniversary Of “Gilmore Girls,” Some People Are Learning That Español Is Alexis Bledel’s First Language
“Gilmore Girls,” which ran from 2000 to 2007 before it was revived by Netflix as a four-part miniseries in 2016, continues to be one of the most popular and acclaimed TV shows of all time.
Thanks to the quick-witted dialogue from creator Amy Sherman-Palladino and two excellent performances from Lauren Graham and Alexis Bledel, “Gilmore Girls” continues to be an eminently watchable show more than 20 years after its debut.
But there’s something a lot of people don’t know about Alexis Bledel, who played the precocious Rory Gilmore: she is not only a fluent Spanish speaker, but has Argentine and Mexican descent and didn’t learn English until she started going to school.
Bledel, who turned 41 in September of this year, was born in Houston, Texas to Nanette and Martín Bledel, the latter being Argentine and of German and Danish descent. As for her mother, Nanette moved to Mexico City from Phoenix, Arizona when she was just two years old and lived there for years before meeting Martín in Houston and eventually raising a family there.
In an interview with Latina Magazine, Bledel said, “It’s the only culture my mom knows from life, and my father as well, and they made the decision to raise their children within the context they had been raised in.” Bledel, who was exposed to her parent’s LatAm upbringing early on, considers herself to be Latina.
Netflix recently posted a video on Twitter from the Con Todo account, which highlights Latino-led content featured on the streaming service. To commemorate the anniversary of the show’s debut, Netflix posted a “Gilmore Girls” clip of Rory Gilmore speaking to one of her grandmother’s maids in less-than-stellar Spanish.
Bledel actually had to pretend she wasn’t fluent for this scene, which saw Rory making an attempt to reach out to her grandmother Emily’s overworked house staff. As fans of the show will remember, Emily has a tendency to replace her employees whenever they commit even the slightest infraction and this interaction with Rory led to the maid in question being cast out of the Gilmore estate.
The famously private actress was also profiled in a rare interview with “Watch Back Home” where she opens up about her family history and her experience being raised in a Spanish-speaking household. “I’m not completely American and I’m not completely Hispanic,” she says in the interview. “I’m really right in the middle.”
The 22-minute episode is a great way to learn more about Bledel’s Latin American roots and her experience learning English little by little as she went to school in Houston and eventually graduated from Saint Agnes Academy in Houston, which is described as an all-girls, Dominican college-preparatory school.
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