GOSSIP GIRL REVIEW: WHERE PEOPLE ACTUALLY THINK THEY CAN OUTBID CHUCK BASS
If there’s one thing we’ve learned from Gossip Girl, it’s that everyone sucks at keeping secrets. Sometimes it’s not their fault. Sometimes important pieces of the puzzle literally fall off a table into the hands of the Humphreys, who bumble and stumble their way into telling everyone in earshot that Serena got married in Spain and Blair could be pregnant with Basstard child. But mostly they can’t keep secrets because none of them know how to lie.
This was the first fun episode of the season because it finally gave us the power struggles and the schemes that we all crave. While it wasn’t exactly Chuck Bass making up a new student to unseat Blair (I still love that episode, shut up), it was good enough. That said, the wheels kind of fell off once we reached the least secure Sotheby’s auction in the history of mankind. The fact that we didn’t get just ONE punch thrown made me feel cheated. I’m getting ahead of myself.
THE LOST BOY
Georgina and Dan have now been hooking up, a fact that is thrust (See what I did there?) in Blair’s face when she doesn’t realize that an oversized sock on the door handle means occupants are gettin’ biz-ay. Blair leaves in a huff, Dan gives the first botched lie of the episode about forty seconds in, and Serena apparently didn’t hear the clopping of Blair’s heels and runs right into Dan, which sets Inexplicable Casanova up for his second lie in thirty seconds. He’s heating up!
At this point, Blair, Serena, and Vanessa (VANESSA!) feel free to judge Dan and mock the fact that he’s Humphreying the most devious, evil girl they’ve ever known. Two things: if I’m Dan Humphrey, I’m looking around at my present situation and thinking why not? There are groupies by the handful and Dan can take a crack at the conwoman who seduced him GUILT FREE! Have we ever known Dan to have standards OR discretion? NO! Secondly, and Serena headed me off on this before I could write it, there’s no WAY they can judge Dan after some of the stuff they’ve pulled…and for two out of three, it’s Chuck Bass.
Then Vanessa stumbles onto Scott’s (Poor man’s Jacob Black) lie that he’s even a student at NYU, and we immediately jump back into the time-honored tradition of treading on Vanessa. Having the plot smack Vanessa around is like laughing at videos of skateboarders getting their nuts crushed: you’d feel worse if it didn’t just feel right. Vanessa of course gets this query confirmed when a girl behind a counter tells her he’s not enrolled. Counter Girl tries to soften this blow by telling Vanessa, “I used to date a guy who told me his dad invented the battery.”
So here are some facts about NYU students that Gossip Girl has given us: they sit in their rooms and watch documentaries about community gardens and can be convinced of pretty much anything. I have NYU’s Admissions Department on line 2, they say they need a word with the producers.
more after the jump.
So what’s Rufus’ bastard child up to? He’s playing guitar with dear old dad, who still doesn’t seem to know anything about this kid, but he invites him to his home anyway. That’s where he is. Look, if this kid is supposed to be a villain, he’s doing an awful job. There’s nothing there, he’s just…blah. I like him more than Aaron Rose, mostly because I’m never quite aware that Scott exists. There’s nothing menacing, there’s nothing interesting, there’s nothing to him. He’s like an unattractive Nate.
Speaking of Nate, he’s in this episode and he says words, but you didn’t notice because you left to go to the bathroom as soon as you saw his face. Don’t worry, once again nothing happened.
Serena and Dan have a walk and talk where Serena tells Dan that if he wants to date Georgina, she won’t be offended. Dan thinks, “Thanks Serena, I really asked for your opinion there,” but expresses it with silence. Serena reminds Dan this is the same girl who told him she was Sarah from Portland, which is kind of funny when you realize the train wreck is telling Dan he’s acting unwise. I’m pretty sure that’s the best wake up call Dan could have asked for.
Serena’s now dating Carter Baizen, the guy Blair and Chuck hate. Blair tells Serena she’s making a huge mistake. Carter’s hemorrhaging cash, girls claim to have slept with him, and he hates belts. That fragile mind is having doubts and one of my roommates actually tried to touch her boobs through the TV. You judge, but what if it worked?
Chuck’s still trying to open up a club, but the club owner’s assistant tells Chuck he needs to buy a photograph to get in the guy’s good graces. This is another one of those classic, “I’d offer you several million dollars but I’d rather give you this photo,” dilemmas. I can’t tell you how many of these I’ve had.
But wait! It gets worse!
Blair needs that same photograph to get into a super secret French society that she didn’t know existed in America, but she absolutely MUST be a part of! And the photograph is only available at a Sotheby’s auction! And the auction’s tonight! And Chuck and Blair haven’t had sex in several days! Leeeeet’s get readyyyy to smolderrrrrrrr!
But before we get to the giant security failure that was the Sotheby’s auction, let’s catch up with the poor kids. Vanessa confronts Scott about his lying and Scott gives her the truth. The problem with the truth is that it’s just SO out there that you can’t believe Vanessa would buy it.
Scott’s story went from, “I’m a kid who transferred here from BU,” to, “I’m actually the love child of Rufus and Lily and I’ve used you to gain access to the father I never knew. Oh, and I changed my name,” AND VANESSA BELIEVES THIS!! She doesn’t even bat an eye!
Also, very fortuitous that Vanessa got the one single in the hallway. How odd do you think THAT conversation would have been with a roommate in there?
Meanwhile, twenty feet away…
Chuck shows up at Blair’s door with a bottle of champagne and yet more proof that there are no RAs at NYU. He says neither of them should bid on the picture and Blair brings Chuck in for spankings with her bid paddle. Problem is, they’re both lying about not bidding and Blair storms off with Chuck’s shoes in one hand and her bid paddle in the other. She slams the door on Chuck, who’s left with the bemused thought of Blair Waldorf trying to outbid the CEO of Bass Industries. He takes a few of Georgina’s panties and takes off for the auction.
Dan is trying to figure out what’s the deal with this Scott kid who kinda looks like that guy from “New Moon.” He’s putting together clues, and all they have are a computer, “Scott Adler,” “Soccer,” and no high school name. Dan suddenly snaps his fingers and says, “Lions! I have no idea how I remember that,” and everyone watching TV bursts out laughing. The search comes back with,
“Did you mean, ‘Scott, the guy who’s actually your father’s love child?’” and a perfect picture of Jacob Black with a trophy.
Dan scratches his head, mutters, “No no no, something doesn’t add up here at all…these names are completely different, but the faces are the same!” And they get in the Mystery Van and head to the auction.
By the way, I took the liberty of searching those terms to see if it would be at all possible to find a character like that. Let’s just put it this way: there’s no effing way.
At this point the stage is set for season three’s first battle royale. All the characters are going to the same place (we don’t ask why Nate and Bree are going because we don’t care and it doesn’t matter), there’s several secrets, a disputed photo, and if there’s a smart producer, a reflecting pool for someone to get punched into.
There’s no reflecting pool, but there are incompetent guards who let Scott and his real mom (who discovered hyperspace a few minutes ago) into the auction, along with half the world.
Rufus admires some photographs and Roommate Ryan quips: “I can’t afford any of these!” I snarf a little bit (Look it up).
Chuck confronts Blair with the knowledge she can’t outbid him, but it doesn’t matter: Serena outbids them both while wearing a spectacular tight red dress that is ruined with a cleavage-obscuring divider that instead makes her look kind of like a sexy Vulcan from “Star Trek.” Nevertheless, drool is pooling around my roommates.
Chuck and Blair are all, “WTF?” And Serena’s all like, “I figured out that you manipulated things around Carter to make me break up with him,” and Chuck and Blair sit there speechless for fifteen minutes because that’s the first critical thinking that Serena’s done all season.
Scott, when faced with Rufus and told that he needs to come clean, decides to lie. Of course. He says he’s Rufus’ son’s brother, and that makes everyone happy except Vanessa, but we’ve already established that Vanessa’s happiness makes us sad, so it’s all good. Insult to injury, Scotty boy is going back to Boston. Your three episodes are up, thank you for your time.
Serena feels bad and gives Blair the photograph, which would make an awesome “Curb Your Enthusiasm” episode when Serena wants Blair to pay her back for the picture.
Serena: It was over nine thousand dollars!
Blair: You gave it to me! It was a gift! I’m not paying for it!
Serena: F*** you, Blair Waldorf! That’s some bulls**t!
Serena, now on a roll, looks at Blair’s secret society invite (Which is, like all evidence, just left around in plain sight for characters to discover) and recognizes the handwriting. Georgina sent the fake invite AND used the club owner assistant to put Blair and Chuck in competition and mutually assured destruction. Serena informs Dan with not a small amount of “I told you so” looks, and Dan pulls the plug on Georgina.
Georgina, on her way to boil a rabbit in Dan’s Brooklyn kitchen, overhears Vanessa and Scott talking in the hallway about how Scott should have told Rufus he’s his son. Georgina puts the rabbit back in the cage and gets ready to drop some brand new bombs from her secret base in Boston.
The next morning, Serena asks Carter for forgiveness and tells him to stay for breakfast. Carter takes a quick glance at Serena’s boobs and decides yes, yes he will stay for breakfast. On his way out he runs into Bree, who informs Carter that her family is looking for him, making her probably the weirdest bounty hunter I’ve ever seen. I look forward to the two of them destroying each other and vanishing almost completely from the plot.
OH GOD! I forgot the ending! Chuck gives away all his shares of Bass Industries stock because he was turned down by several businessmen, got frustrated, and decided to atom bomb someone with cash SO HE COULD BUY A HOTEL. So now he owns a hotel (and apparently a magic tree infested with halflings who give him champagne bottles) and Blair rightfully thinks this might be risky. Chuck thinks everything will be fine. Blair asks him why.
“Because you believe in me,” he responds, and instantly follows that up with the mental note of, “and you’re loaded, too.”
Secrets secrets are no fun. That’s all for me this week, I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised that Gossip Girl did not do their traditional “Three and out,” where they advance the plot to a certain point and then suddenly punt the plot right back to where they started and force themselves to make the ground up again.
Poor, sweet Vanessa. Can the show’s one minority ever catch a break?
Until next week!
You know you bid on me,
Filed under: Gossip Girl Review | Tagged: blair waldorf, bree buckley, chuck bass, college, dan humphrey, georgina sparks, Gossip Girl Review, headbands, nate archibald, NYU, serena van der woodsen, the freshmen, the lost boy, vanessa abrams, woody tondorf |