In Gilmore Girls Season 4, Dean married his girlfriend Lindsay Lister (Arielle Kebbel) after high school. During this time, Rory confides in Dean about her difficulties at Yale, while Dean shares his feelings of stress at home. This, in turn, leads to a close friendship that eventually turns romantic. In the season finale, the duo secretly begin an affair that sets off a chain reaction with devastating consequences.
In a Gilmore Girls Reddit thread, many viewers stepped in to defend Lindsay, who they believe has been unfairly portrayed as a villain in Rory and Dean’s relationship. As u/Queen-Lexopedia noted, Dean often portrayed Lindsay as a selfish partner who pushed him to work day and night. Stressing the unfairness of this perspective, the user argued, “When we see Lindsay after Dean cheated, she’s not a selfish person… She was waiting for him… She didn’t do anything wrong, but she apologizes and makes him roast beef… .”
Other Redditors concurred with this assessment, noting that Dean snapped at Lindsay unnecessarily to make her feel worse, rather than acknowledging his wrongdoing. U/cursedbythegods said: “The scene where Dean yells at Lindsay for practically no reason after he cheated on her makes me so angry. She deserved better.” U/SouthGirl1992 agreed, adding, “He manipulated her into thinking she was difficult.”
U/CelestialBing succinctly summed up the mood of the thread, writing, “Lindsay was a victim of Dean’s toxicity. She may not have been perfect, but who is?” Many users slammed the questionable things we ignore in Gilmore Girls and wished Rory had moved on instead of reconciling with him.