Rory Gilmore didn’t make a lot of mistakes growing up. She was a good friend, she spent her free nights studying instead of partying, and she almost never lied to her mother. But in Gilmore Girls‘ season 4 finale, Rory made her first misstep when she decided to sleep with a married Dean.
“We didn’t want Rory to have sex in high school; that wasn’t who she was,” Gilmore creator Amy Sherman-Palladino tells EW. As to why season 4 was the right time, Sherman-Palladino says it was just something the writers felt in terms of storytelling and also from talking to people — it was time for Luke and Lorelai to kiss, and it was also time for Rory to have sex.
However, the adultery aspect of it was something star Alexis Bledel (Rory) had to come to terms with. “Over the years, I was definitely surprised by certain plot twists,” Bledel says. “That was one of the things that surprised me. I didn’t think that it was something that made a lot of sense for my character. [Amy] likes a little bit of a shock value, so it was something that I had to wrap my head around.”
For Jared Padalecki (Dean), it wasn’t quite as shocking. “I knew that the entire marriage to Lindsay was a cry for help and not a union for a lifetime,” Padalecki says. “He’s in love with somebody who he thinks he doesn’t deserve so he’s found somebody else and convinced himself he can be happy with that person.”
As far as the actors were concerned, the impact of their characters’ decision wasn’t the most difficult part of filming the scene. Rather, it was trying to fit both Bledel and Padalecki — who’s more than 6 feet tall — into Rory’s freakishly small bed.
“We brought Rory’s bed back [for the revival],” Sherman-Palladino says. “And I remember standing in that room saying, ‘There’s no f—ing way Jared and her fit in that bed.'”
Spoiler alert: They didn’t. “It was like a miniature twin,” Bledel adds. “In the outtakes I fell off that bed a couple of times.”
Once reminded of that fact, Padalecki bursts into laughter. “She did! That’s right! Oh my God, that had totally slipped my mind.” As for how he managed to stay on the bed, Padalecki says: “My feet definitely were off it. There was a shot where my waist to my head was laying on the bed but my legs were counterbalancing me on the floor so that I wouldn’t roll off.”
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But in the end, that tiny bed might’ve actually helped make the moment. “It works for the scene because it was supposed to be awkward, so maybe that’s why they bought the smallest bed on the planet,” Padalecki says with a laugh.
Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life hits Netflix on Friday, Nov. 25.