I would call last night’s episode of Gossip Girl a comedy of errors, but there was nothing funny about the mistakes that had been made, some of them willfully, to result in an innocent man’s imprisonment and his desperate sister’s misguided revenge fantasy, perpetrated on the wrong rich blonde. Is it just me, or has this show gotten a tad dark over the past month? Where are Blair’s color-coded minions? Serena’s spangly, inappropriately short outfits? Where was Dorota? I’d ask where Jenny and Vanessa were, but I’m afraid that if I say their names too many times, they might appear in my mirror like Bloody Mary with a bad weave.

Last night’s installment was the de facto end to the first half of the season and it tied up some loose ends, answered a few questions and endeavored to correct some of the unfairness that had plagued both Serena and poor, jail-bound Ben. We also got a new villain, one that few people probably saw coming, myself included.

The episode started in rehab, with Serena improbably wearing pants and a crewneck sweater to show us all just how contemplative and quiet therapy has already made her. Blair and Dan had set out bright and early that morning so that Blair would have plenty of time to explain Juliet’s scheme to Dan before their visit to rehab since we all know that he’s about as dense as they come when it’s time for plotting; I’m surprised that she didn’t have to draw him a picture to explain it. They eventually made it to the rehab center to pump Serena for information, but she had just started a 72-hour humanity detox or something and wasn’t allowed visitors. Just therapy. Lots of therapy.

Blair and Dan eventually realized that they could contact Gossip Girl and somehow and figure out how to find Juliet through her, and while all of that was going down, the writers were still trying to convince us that we care about Nate’s parental divorce timeline. And they failed, because I still don’t care. Some stuff was said about Nate’s dad using his mom to ensure that he’s released straight away and not into a halfway house, but honestly, I stopped listening. Nate’s parents have been missing entirely for at least two seasons, and none of us really cared about them even before they got written out, so if at all possible, I care about them even less now than I did back then. In fact, I’m not even sure that I care about their son. Nate could completely disappear and I probably wouldn’t notice for at least three our four episodes.

Once Blair and Dan had Juliet’s address in hand, we were able to abandon the Archibald family plot altogether and head with them to Cornwall, CT, Juliet’s hometown and where they would eventually find her and…pull her hair? Call her a stupid head? They hadn’t really thought that far through their plan. We know because of Serena’s therapy dream sequence that Cornwall is also where Serena went to boarding school during her tumultuous junior year, and that’s where the Juliet-Serena puzzle pieces started to come together.

When Blair and Dan arrived in their ridiculous hipster car that Dan insisted on taking (totally not believable – Blair wouldn’t have gone to Connecticut in anything but a black Towncar), they found not a middle-class home but a giant mansion with a bunch of Ferraris out front, some drunk college kids who looked suspiciously like they were at a frat party that I once attended in college, and Damian Dalgar or whatever his name was, drug dealer, Jenny almost-deflowerer and international man of mystery. As it turns out, that wasn’t Juliet’s address – it was his, and he was the person who sold her all the drugs she used on Serena. The stuff she put on her mask was ether, which Damian explained as a “turn-of-the-century roofie,” even though I don’t think ether really works like that.

What Damian did know, though, was where Dan and Blair could find Juliet – she’s a townie! The only problem, of course, was that Juliet happened to be cruising by, spotted the group setting out to find her, and literally put the car in reverse and skidded away backward. Dan, Blair and Damien went to Juliet’s house and found only her mom, who confirmed what we all had been suspecting: Juliet’s brother is in prison because he slept (or maybe not!) with Serena when she was an underage boarding school student. Damien helped us fill in the blanks about how Serena suddenly went from being a boozing party girl to a serious, studious young woman back when she met Mr. Donovan and how he saw Serena throw herself at the teacher who had set her on the right path at a hotel one night, but Serena’s therapy flashback let us know that he didn’t actually take the bait and sleep with her. So…why was he in jail?

In the time that our threesome was figuring all of this out, Juliet had driven her Mercury (do they still make those?) back into the city to find Serena and “end” things once and for all, whatever that means, and she called Ben to tell her that she was doing so just in time for Nate to waltz into jail through some random side entrance, hear Ben’s warning that his sister was on the rampage and call Dan so that he could warn Serena of some sort of lurking “danger.” Why he called Dan instead of calling Serena, Lily or the rehab center, I have no idea, which is why I probably wouldn’t even miss Nate if someone pushed him out a window.

Even if Nate had actually called the correct people, it was too late – Juliet was waiting in Serena’s room when she returned from her conveniently expository therapy session. Luckily for our sad blonde protagonist, Juliet didn’t have a gun or a knife or even a pair of fuzzy handcuffs with which to settle her score. She just had some swear words and a revelation about Serena’s past, but as it turns out, that was enough. Serena apparently hadn’t been privy to the fact that Mr. Donovan got sent up the river for “sleeping” with her – Lily had kept it quiet and Juliet’s brother had copped a plea. No trial, no testimony, no nothing, just a forged signature and an innocent man in jail. All that time, Juliet had been out to ruin the wrong Van Der Woodsen.

Instead of waiting to have the conversation with her mother in private like a normal person (Juliet’s brother is in jail, it’s not like he’s about to be executed or something, what’s the rush?), Serena and Juliet joined forces to bust out of rehab and interrupt a very convenient party that Lily had been holding to tell everyone present that she was in rehab because she has a terrible mother. Lily did the only thing that a socialite with an out-of-control daughter can do and smiled and excused her daughter to all of her guests, and once the whole gang showed up, they isolated Serena in a separate room and threatened to turn Juliet in to the police.

Once Serena explained the story to everyone, though, Blair and Dan but down their pitchforks and torches and tried to regroup and figure out where they should point their rage next. Luckily for them, Lily then walked into the room and her version of events started to unravel. She had strong-armed the plea deal so that no one would hear about Serena’s, uh, “incident,” and she didn’t even bother to tell Serena that she had known anything about it. Lily found out about the professor from some girls gossiping on the boarding school’s campus when she went up to try and pressure the school’s dean into cleaning up Serena’s record so that she could get into a decent school in the city.

When the dean wouldn’t clean up the record out of the goodness of his or her heart, Lily used the rumor she had heard to blackmail the school into altering Serena’s record and ensuring that her future would be bright. It apparently didn’t even enter Lily’s mind that Serena might not have managed to sleep with him, or that a single man on Earth might be able to turn down her advances, but that’s how it happened. Lily had sent an innocent man to jail in order to keep her family name out of the papers, and she didn’t even look particularly sorry that she had done it. Oh, and also, Rufus chimed in to tell Chuck that Lily was going to sell Bass Industries instead of relinquishing control to him. Just in case you needed more reasons to hate her.

It hadn’t occurred to me so far that Lily might be the real villain in this series, but as it turns out, she is. Her concerns, first and foremost, are always for her own public image and social status. Serena wasn’t having a tough time, she was merely at Ostroff because Canyon Ranch was booked. Serena didn’t just publicly declare a very real hatred for her in front of dozens of guests, she was just pissed that Lily wouldn’t let her use the family jet. These weren’t just half-truths, they were outright lies, just like the one she had told Chuck about returning control of the family business to him. One by one, every turned to abandon Lily, including Rufus, although I think we all know he’ll never leave her entirely. She has hidden his balls inside of one of her Hermes bags, and he doesn’t know where they are.

At least we went into the season’s hiatus on a high note – the entire gang, minus Vanessa and Jenny who are apparently gone for quite a while (thank you baby Jesus), got together to eat turkey and bond and generally get along with each other. I’m not sure why they were eating turkey since I was under the impression that Thanksgiving was last week, but perhaps they were merely making up for all of last week’s upheaval by sharing a meal with the only people who that can still stand. Note: no parents were present! Afterward, Blair and Dan even made nice for a few minutes, which I sincerely hope doesn’t foretell an awkward hookup while Serena is freeing innocent sex offenders and Blair is trying to regain control of the family business. Don’t do that to us, Gossip Girl writers. It really wouldn’t be fair.

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Share Your Thoughts With Us

  • Fallon

    Great recap Amanda. I was a bit let down at the end of the episode with Juliet getting off scott free for everything. Making Lily the villain, well I guess somebody had to be the villain. I just don’t think it was enough build up for the 2nd part of the season. And they can’t stay mad at Lily forever bc eventually Lily and Rufus’s son will enter the picture again.

    PS I think you mean Chuck in the 2nd to last sentence of your recap.

  • AshleyG

    LMBO! I live for these recaps- I even send my mom the link to the ATL Housewives recap every week. You are HILARIOUS!!!!!

  • JJ

    Another great recap! Thank you Amanda!

    Yes, sending an innocent man to prison is wrong; but in all honesty, how many of parents would choose a stranger’s future over their own child’s when it comes down to it? Lily does care about her social status a lot, but I feel by protecting her status, she’s probably kept Serena out of legal trouble all her life. I don’t exactly like how they made Lily the villain and a bad mother, but I do like how complex her character is, you never know how many secrets that woman is hiding! Kelly Rutherford does such a good job playing this role. I am interested to see what was the reason behind Lily selling Bass Industries, her character doesn’t strike me as someone who would just up and sell her dead ex’s fortune, which he left for his son.

  • Camille

    Lily is awful – but it really didn’t surprise me. She’s always been such a liar.

    I really cannot deal with Dan/Blair and I do NOT want them to go in that direction. Their current relationship and interaction is cute; I hope they keep it the way it is.

    Great recap! I always look forward to reading your reviews!

    • I got a tinge of the Dan/Blair possible upcoming flirting feel from the last scene and I didn’t like it one bit. I truly hope the writers do not go there. I can take every other plot twist they throw at us, but please not that!

      • Camille

        I’m hoping that they manage to exert some restraint and not make that happen. But knowing the nature of the show…I am resigning myself to it.

      • Jelita78

        oh u are soooo GOOD !! (ipad)

  • ==

    well apparently GG writers said they would actually do Dair. Damn them.

    • CG

      NOOOO!!!! Blair and Dan’s relationship is perfectly fine the way it is. Leave that be!

  • jen

    …that is only logical. It’s like the one hook-up that hasn’t happened yet, and why shouldn’t it. That’s how this show works, and there will be plenty of room for drama once Chuck and Serena find out about the new lovers.

  • ingrid

    i love kelly rutherford. it’s so natural for her. seriously? dan and blair?

  • Julia

    Another great recap Amanda!

    Blair would/could never ever stoop to Humphrey’s level!! I know the show seemed to be hinting at it but it can’t happen.

    After putting up with the bad writing, Jenny’s awful hair and makeup, and some lackluster outfits this season a Blair/Dan hook up might cause me to finally, after many threats, stop watching the show.

    Lily being the villain was a nice surprise though but, I’m sure the show will screw that up too.

    Oh, I loved the handbag Blair was carrying last night. Champagne with a bow…who designs that?

  • Melissa

    Agh! NO Dan & Blair!!

    I read that Jenny will be gone for quite a while as Taylor was kicked off set for behavior. Yay!!

    Also, you’re right – they do not make Mercury brand cars anymore..

    Thanks for the great recap, Amanda!

  • meesh

    Nice recap Amanda! I’m still confused though…if Blair and Dan asked Gossip Girl where Juliet was and she gave them Damien’s address, GG must already have known that this Damien guy was in on it, ie he had sold the drugs to Juliet, and if GG knew this already why wasn’t it broadcast anywhere? Thus leading to them sussing it allll out?
    Continuity errors in the set and costume I can deal with, but the story just doesn’t add up sometimes.
    And yet I can’t Not watch it :D I need my weekly fix.

  • lilobubbletea

    I hope that blair and dan don’t hook up either.

    Also, “She has hidden his balls inside of one of her Hermes bags, and he doesn’t know where they are.” is just hilarious! lol.

    I honestly would rather see vanessa and jenny go before nate. I also look forward to some happy scenes of ben and serina. ben is quite cute now that we know more about his history! :)

  • anne

    I wouldn’t mind a Blair/Dan hook-up – so much drama would ensue! I loved last night’s episode. It reminded me of the first season (even though half of it didn’t really make sense…but a GG episode without discontinuity and major plot holes just wouldn’t seem right). I just can’t believe we have to wait until January 24 for new episodes!

  • MizzJ

    The “reveal” of Lily as the ultimate villain was shocking and kind of a cop-out imo. Lily, seriously? It just didn’t feel right. And the much anticipated take-down of Juliet the bitch that never was? How could you do this to us GG. You built it up and didn’t perform.


  • belle@ectomorph

    Im against DAN & BLAIR hooking up too! It just simply doesn’t make sense hooking up every character in the show if the writer will to. Shallow plots isn’t it?

    Anyway, Lily is still a liar with class.

  • sohini

    So now we are suppose to believe 2 men didn’t sleep with serena??? Collin and Ben?? No way!

    Lilly’s evil dilemma will be easy to solve. Bart told her back in the day that if chuck started to love the company more then his personal relationships, she should sell and not let chuck make the same mistakes Bart did, or something like that.
    I love the cloths, but the story line is getting so annoying. But, I do love your recap!

  • Es

    Hell yeah, I want DAIR
    This show can’t get any crazier

  • AD

    Haha, so funny!
    Blair & Dan = please no!! That would destroy the show.
    But for some reason I would not mind Serena & Chuck…maybe a hook up??

  • CL

    so, can the show come back now?! (ipad)


    love gossip girl (ipad)


    cant wait for it to come back on (ipad)

  • Tiffany

    Can’t wait for Gossip Girl to come back! XOXO (ipad)

  • Jen

    I have yet to see an episode of Gossip Girl (ipad)

  • Julia

    haha love the recap! i think you’ve done the episode justice (ipad)

  • Alison J.

    Never really got into GG. (ipad)

  • helen

    Can’t wait for Gossip Girl to return. (ipad)