TV: Gossip Girl Returns to Form as it Takes Inspiration from its First Season.

Finally, Gossip Girl is slowly but surely returning to its so-bad-its-good dramatic roots, taking inspiration from its first season as the show did in its fifth season finale: Blair struggling to stay on top, Rufus and Lily at loggerheads, and Dan and Serena rekindling their flame on a Vespa!

Nelly Yuki is finally getting the last laugh against her high school nemesis Blair who, try as she might, can’t seem to find a way to revive her mother’s struggling clothing line. Eleanor Waldorf returns to make sense of the mess Blair has left, what with Sage Spence’s penchant for stripping off Blair’s designs, and shames her daughter for being a sexual deviant. While I’m not a fan of the slut-shaming, Eleanor makes a good point when brings up that the plotting and scheming that we all know and love Blair for is so high school, and urges Blair to embrace her “Grace Kelly side”, not her “Grace Jones side” in order to save Waldorf designs.

Enter Nelly, who is now a Women’s Wear Daily reporter, much to Blair’s chagrin. Reverting to their high school selves, Nelly finds Blair contemplating her navel on the Met steps, a location GG die hards will know from the early days of the show that Blair and her minions frequented. When Nelly insinuates that Blair—wearing a headband to boot—is essentially still stuck in high school, she has an epiphany: Blair needs to embrace her striking-fear-in-the-hearts-of-teens attitude in order to be a tastemaker for the 12-25 set of young fashionistas. Ahh, the Met steps: inspiring people everywhere.

Just like in the inaugural episode of the show, Lily and Rufus are fighting in an art gallery. Rufus’ gallery opening is all set, but when Ivy checks the RSVPs, it turns out everyone’s going to a charity art benefit that Lily’s hosting. Ivy, using CeCe’s money gifted to her by Lola, buys all of Lily’s art and replaces it with the artwork from Rufus’ gallery. Meanwhile, Chuck is trying to prevent the sale of one of the works Lily has donated as he thinks Bart has hidden evidence of his illegal oil dealings in it. He has, but Ivy buys the painting off Lily and intercepts Bart’s documents before Chuck can get a hold of them. Phew! Got that?

Finally, it seems the love between former step-siblings Dan and Serena has reignited, after Serena offers to take Dan apartment hunting. Conveniently, Dan has bought a Vespa after his summer in Italy, and, his and Serena’s first date five long years ago. From the photos leaked from the set of the final episode (wedding!), it looks like this time around their relationship is for keeps…

Related: Gossip Girl Season 5 Finale—What Goes Around Comes Around…

Alexa Chung, It Girls & Gossip Girl.

Images via Sockshare, Hello Giggles, Gossip Girl Screencaps, Internet Movie Cars Database.

TV: Gossip Girl Season 4 Final.

Last week’s episode, where Russell Thorpe lured Blair to the roof of Chuck’s hotel in a payback attempt at Chuck, was a better storyline than the finale’s with Chuck saving Blair, them sleeping together, Blair trying to tell her prince of Monaco fiancé that she can’t be with him because she still loves Chuck, and Chuck butting in to tell Louis that he and Blair have his blessing, as he realises Blair’s a better person with Louis.

Or Charlie faking a psychotic break, attempting to jump from the top floor window of the GG brat pack’s former “stomping ground” in Serena’s cotillion dress, being talked down by Serena, who says it’s not as easy being her as people think, Georgina accosting Charlie, whom she believes isn’t really on medication for a psychological disorder, and giving Charlie her phone number to use if she’s ever back in the city. Turns out Georgina was right, and Charlie is actually revealed to be Ivy, who posed as Serena’s cousin to extort money from her trust fund, at the request of Lily’s sister, Carol.

Or Vanessa stumbling across Dan’s manuscript, which she thinks is the best exposé “on the Upper East Side since Bonfire of the Vanities”. When Dan tells her to leave his stuff alone and get out of his life, I’m not sure he meant for Vanessa to steal the manuscript, pitch it to a publishing house, and hightail it to Barcelona.

Or Darota cleaning Blair and Serena’s adjoining bathroom, in which a positive pregnancy test has been discarded.

Now the latter three story arcs are intriguing, I’ll give them that, but the writers did a piss-poor job in making the audience actually care about them. The Charlie thing was really hard to follow, and the fact that her character is almost as infuriating as Vanessa’s doesn’t lend itself to viewer satisfaction.

It’s pretty easy to see that Charlie/Ivy’s going to return to the Upper East Side to wreak havoc with fellow bad girl Georgina. Blair’s the one who’s pregnant, probably to Chuck. And so their relationship is dragged on for another season. Dan will flail around while Vanessa milks him for all he’s worth and Serena will give up her potential screenwriting job (more on that later) on the West Coast to return to the city where she left her heart. Or something.

Related: The Devil Works at W: Gossip Girl “Damien Darko” Review.

Come Together Right Now… Over Gossip Girl: “Gaslit” Review.

Let Them Eat Cake… And Wear Headbands.

Gossip Girl Proves There’s No Such Thing as Wonder Woman.

Sexual Healing: Gossip Girl Takes a Page Out of John Irving’s Book.

Pretty But Dumb: Serena’s Tertiary Education Predicament.

Surfing the Third Wave: Second Wave VS. Third Wave Feminism on Gossip Girl.

The Last Tango… For the Season: Gossip Girl Season 3 Final.

Images via MegaVideo.

TV: The Devil Works at W—Gossip Girl “Damien Darko” Review.

 

With Blair well on her path to becoming a magazine power woman, she nabs an internship at W. It just so happens that her frenemie Dan has been hooked up by Lily for an internship at the same magazine. Hijinx ensue.

The feel of the episode is very The Devil Wears Prada, and editor Stefano Tonchi’s assistant, Epperly Lawrence, brings this up when Blair fantasises over the fashion closet:

“I saw that movie too, but this is real life, not some Hollywood chick flick, where a girl with a scrunchie gets a makeover and triumphs in the end.”

But back to Dan VS. Blair, which includes a Chanel No. 5-spiked coffee, a dangerously close stapler incident, and culminates in Dan sabotaging Blair’s attempt to save the day by inviting her own author to W’s launch party for their blog. Phew! The softening of Blair’s heart is evident in the fact that she didn’t try to scheme Dan out of accompanying his own author to the event, and the hardening of Dan’s means that perhaps he’s spending too much time with the Queen of the Upper East Side.

The two end up getting fired from the magazine, but Dan takes pity on Blair, who won the internship on her own, without any help from her meddling mother, and calls Epperly to tell her the stunt (a full on brawl between Dan and Blair!) at the party was all his fault and she should hire Blair back, despite it being “easier to get a guy paroled than it is to get an internship in this town,” a reference to Ben’s release from prison.

On a side note, I do love Blair’s pink short ensemble, but it’s the middle of winter! Put some clothes on, girl!

Related: Come Together Right Now… Over Gossip Girl: “Gaslit” Review.

Gossip Girl Proves There’s No Such Thing As Wonder Woman.

Sexual Healing: Gossip Girl Takes a Page Out of John Irving’s Book.

Pretty But Dumb: Serena’s Tertiary Education Predicament.

Surfing the Third Wave: Second Wave VS. Third Wave Feminism on Gossip Girl.

The Last Tango… For the Season. Gossip Girl Season 3 Final.

Images via OVFile.