Determined to win the annual Stars Hollow 24-hour dance marathon, Lorelai (Lauren Graham) forces Rory (Alexis Bledel) to be her partner. While everyone in town dances around them, Rory and Jess (Milo Ventimiglia) can't seem to stop arguing with each other, a fact that is not lost on Dean (Jared Padalecki). Meanwhile, Lane (Keiko Agena) and Paris (Liza Weil) are both surprised when the boys they like drop by to see them.
- Lauren Graham as Lorelai Gilmore
- Alexis Bledel as Rory Gilmore
- Keiko Agena as Lane Kim
- Melissa McCarthy as Sookie St. James
- Scott Patterson as Luke Danes
- Liza Weil as Paris Geller
- Jared Padalecki as Dean Forester
- Milo Ventimiglia as Jess Mariano
- Sean Gunn as Kirk Gleason
- and Kelly Bishop as Emily Gilmore
- Liz Torres as Miss Patty
- Michael Winters as Taylor Doose
- Sally Struthers as Babette Dell
- Jackson Douglas as Jackson Belleville
- Emily Kuroda as Mrs. Kim
- Shelly Cole as Madeline Lynn
- Teal Redmann as Louise Grant
- Adam Brody as Dave Rygalski
- Ted Rooney as Morey Dell
- Brandon Barash as Jamie
- Jessica Kiper as Shane
- in the mood | GLENN MILLER
- sing sing sing (with a swing) | LOUIS PRIMA
- the marathon starts
- walkin' my baby back home | ROY TURK & FRED E. AHLERT
- i can't give you anything but love | JIMMY MCHUGH & DOROTHY FIELDS
- by the beautiful sea | HARRY CARROLL & HAROLD R. ATTERIDGE
- string of pearls | GLENN MILLER
- these foolish things | ERIC MASCHWITZ & JACK STRACHEY
- gonna fly now (theme from rocky) | BILL CONTI
- kirk wins, rory cries
- The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
- "They Shoot Horses, Don't They?" by Horace McCoy.
- This story is about several couples who participate in a dance marathon. There are several exchanges of partners in the story. At the end, the heroine of the story wants to kill herself with a gun, but she cannot pull the trigger. Her dance partner agrees to "help" her by taking the gun and firing. When asked why he would agree to kill her, he says, "They shoot horses, don't they?" Choosing this title for the episode has an obvious connection to the dance marathon. Also, though, Rory has wanted to break up with Dean and go out with Jess for weeks, but she can't manage to "pull the trigger." Dean decides to put her out of her misery and do the breaking up for her.
- Luke – Oh, hey, look. There goes Tommy Tune.
- Taylor – The Tennessee Williams Lookalike Contest last month put us right over the top.
- Taylor – You would kick Tiny Tim's crutch out from under him, wouldn't you?
- Lorelai – With a little encouragement, I could've been the Señor Wences of the vegetable set.
- Lorelai – Miss Patty showed his wife a picture of me and she thinks I look like Elizabeth Taylor, which makes her Debbie Reynolds and him Eddie Fisher. He's no Eddie Fisher, trust me. Fisher Stevens, maybe.
- Paris — Madeline... or may I call you Spicoli.
- Rory – Jamie must be special.
- Paris – Or Ted Bundy.
- Paris – Theoretically, yes, but the second I mention a guy they’re gonna both start singing the theme from the Trojan Man commercial, and I just can’t take that, okay?
- Rory – My mother, the Howard Roarke of Stars Hollow
- Andrew – You went out with Liam Neeson?
- Lorelai – That's sweet, Spectator Ken.
- Lorelai – Well, look who's suddenly interested in dance.
- Rory – Yeah, he's a regular Martha Graham.
- Lane – No one asked for a Tony Manero wannabe to drop by.
- Shane – Who are you, Bobby Brady? Get a life.
- Jackson – Does anyone here understand that a man has a right not to have his personal life debated in a public forum? I'm not Winona Ryder.