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The Parent Entrapment – A Recap of Gossip Girl’s “Empire of the Son”

“So, when you get to jail, Lily, definitely tell Bernie Madoff I said ‘Hi.’  He never did pay me back that money I lent him . . .”

Well, this was a rather adult episode of Gossip Girl, right?  And no, unfortunately, I don’t mean that in a fun, NC-17 rating, kind of way.  Instead, I’m talking about the fact that LITERALLY everybody and their MOTHER got their own storyline tonight.  Heck, even BART BASS got thrown a bone from the Plotline Department . . . and he’s been dead for ALMOST TWO SEASONS!

 . . . praying that my Estate gets royalties for this . . .

Let’s review, shall we?

Happy Days are Here Again?

After a few pretty dark episodes, things actually seem to get off to a rather pleasant start, in “Empire of the Son.”  Chuck Bass, who, as you recall, was, just last week, in danger of losing Bass Industries to the odious Russell Thorpe, is now presumably “back on top.”  This, of course, is due to the deal he made with that Random Dude who agreed to buy an interest in his company, last week, so that Thorpe couldn’t destroy it. 

Now, Chuck, of all people, is being asked to ring the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange.  To me, this is pretty darn impressive, especially considering that, in four seasons, I never knew the character to wake up before Noon . . .

 . . . unless, of course, he had “special company” in his bed with him. 😉

Speaking of Blair . . . she’s doing pretty well too!  Though our Queen B was seen, just last week, getting FIRED, FAILING exams, eating PIZZA, and drowning her sorrows in old ass movies, screened in a Brookyln apartment, now our girl looks positively radiant.  She’s being nice to everybody!  She’s giving Serena advice about her Bland Boring Boyfriend Ben. 

Blair attributes this new sense of well being to a “Fast and Cleanse,” in which she has recently engaged.  On this, I call BS, from personal experience.  After all, the last time I, personally, “cleansed and fasted,” I literally almost killed about five people, out of sheer HUNGER . . . 

Yeah . . . you should really consider EATING, stat, if you care at all about your family and friends . . .

But, I’m not the only one who is doubtful as to the true source of Blair’s newfound happiness.  Blair’s sidekick, Dorota, is suspicious as well .  . .

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You know who else is doing well?  Nate.  After lord knows how many weeks just spent staring at the camera, and looking pretty, Boy Toy ACTUALLY has a sort-of storyline . . . plus, he’s getting laid . . .

Yes, boys and girls.  Things move fast in the Upper East Side.  And Raina, who was formerly Chuck’s flavor of the week, is now being slurped up by Pimp Daddy Archibald, right beneath Chuck’s nose!  Unlike Chuck and Raina, these two ACTUALLY share a modicum of chemistry.  As a result, watching this new couple interact and swap spit — while not a particularly thrilling sight — doesn’t immediately make me want to vomit.  So, that’s a start! 

“Thank you, writers, for FINALLY realizing that I am WAY TOO HOT to be perpetually celibate, on this show.  Now, if I could just get you to stop dressing me in these ridiculously dorky sweaters . . .”

Now, despite appearances, all is not necessarily rosy in the Upper East Side.  Serena is still macking with that Wet Blanket Ben . . .

But, hey!  At least this is causing her to ignore the stalkerish repeated phone calls and text messages from one ridiculously annoying,  Vanessa Abrams . . .

So, it seems the entire cast of GG (except for Vanessa) is happy, which is exactly how us fans like it.   And what’s a “happy” GG episode without a PARTY, right?  I mean what would all these disgustingly rich, and apparently alcoholic, Manhattanites, do with their lives, if they weren’t perpetually attending one of Chuck’s nightly “I Never Work, But Inexplicably Have Unlimited Income” Galas?

“And now let us call this meeting of the Upper East Side Chapter of Alcoholics Anonymous to order .  . . Cheers!”

But, of course, this is Gossip Girl.  And happy days can’t stay happy, for long . . .

You are ALL BUSTED!

“Oh, Russell . . . honey . . . we NEED to do something about your office.  Since when did it become OK for a high-powered executive to conduct business at a COFFEE TABLE?  I mean, you’re sitting so low to the ground, you might as well be on the floor!  And what exactly is that fire place doing behind you, anyway?  Is that your idea of a shredder?”  – Set Department FAIL!

Things start to take a turn for the worse, when Chuck arrives at Thorpe’s office, to gloatingly invite Russell and Raina to his Pointless Party of the Week.  It is then, that Russell accidentally / on purpose lets it slip that his daughter is currently out boning Mini Captain Archibald . . .

“Well, DAMN!  Now, I’m glad I gave her an STD!  Enjoy those crabs, Natey-poo!”

But Russell’s got even more tricks up his sleeve.  He’s recently sent one of his minions off to the dry cleaners, in order to kindly “suggest” an outfit for Lily van der Woodsen to wear to Chuck’s party . . .

“Hey Lily, I hear orange is the new black . . .”

Elsewhere, Wet Blanket Ben has suddenly stopped returning Serena’s Booty Calls . . .

Oh, the humanity!

When Serena confronts Wet Blanket Ben at Dan’s apartment (where he is currently crashing), to find out what the heck is going on, she encounters a very scary sight, indeed . . .

It’s the EVIL WENCH, WHO BROUGHT WET BLANKET BEN AND PSYCHO STALKER JULIET INTO THE WORLD!!!!

Of course, Evil Wench is LESS THAN PLEASED that her son has formed a relationship with the woman whose family pretty much singlehandedly RUINED HIS CAREER, and possibly, his life . . . They also, coincidentally, sent her daughter, Psycho Stalker Juliet off the Deep End. Oops!

Meanwhile Blair, who is clearly ashamed of the fact that she used to spend her nights attending lavish parties and having sex with Chuck in limos, but now spends them watching Netflix films, washing dishes by hand, and eating (gasp) pizza, has been hiding her friendship with Dan from the Upper East Side masses.

But even BLAIR’s deception tactics are no match for The Mighty Dorota . . .

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Dorota started to notice things were amiss, when she spied a NOVA DOCUMENTARY in Blair’s netflix queue!  (Oh, Blair . . . we REALLY need to talk!)  But then, when she found a copy of Dan Humphrey’s New Yorker magazine on Blair’s bed, things suddenly became clear to her . . .

“OH HELLLLLLL NOOOOOO!”

At this point, I should probably mention that Dorota is the BIGGEST CHAIR FAN EVER!  (She’s also, I suspect, a Derena fan.)  So, of course, the usually Happy Housekeeper is EXTREMELY UNHAPPY about this most recent turn of events.  And she vows to put a stop to it ASAP.

“I caught you, Dan Dishpan-Handed!”

“You and Lonely Boy are having an AFFAIR,” shouts Dorota, her face a hilarious mixture of triumph, shock, and horrified disgust . . .

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“We have to tell Mr. Chuck and Serena!” Dorota continues, digging the knife a little deeper into Blair’s heart.

To prove to Dorota, once and for all, that there is nothing going on between her and Dan, Blair decides to stand Lonely Boy up.  So, she fails to meet him at their appointed destination for the day, and, instead, decides to go shopping with Dorota. 

 Meanwhile, Dan, who is similarly concerned that his dad, Rufus, will find out that he and Blair have been hanging out (Yeah . . . I don’t really get why the Dad would give two craps, either), ditches Blair too, in order to hang out with his Pops . . .

So, of course the two Date Ditchers have to end up running into one another, at a completely different location than where they originally planned to meet . . .

(Gotta love those Madcap GG Hijinx!)  “I knew you would be my SOCIAL DEATH!”  Blair exclaims to Dan later. 

Deciding it would be best if they came clean to everybody about their new friendship, before ANYBODY ELSE finds out about it, Dan and Blair come up with a plan.  They decide to leak a blast to Gossip Girl about an “important announcement.”  Then, at Chuck’s party, they will reveal that the “important announcement” was actually a really LAME one, about the two of them sometimes watching movies together. 

Talk about a Bait and Switch!  I know, if I was Gossip Girl, I’d certainly want MY money back . . .

“Hey, at least the “important news” didn’t have anything to do with VANESSA!”

Baby Did a Bad, Bad Thing . . .

Back in Serena Land, Blondie is trying her hardest to win over Ben’s Evil Wench mom, by treating her to pizza.  (Seriously?  Since when did so many people eat PIZZA on Gossip Girl?)

Unfortunately, since Evil Wench is lactose intolerant (not to mention, Serena intolerant), the meal doesn’t exactly go well.  To make matters worse, Serena conveniently overhears Evil Wench telling Ben that he should sell out the van der Woodsens to save his teaching career.  This way, he can fall in love with, and possibly impregnate MORE 16 year olds  YAY!

Speaking of the whole Pedo Ben Fiasco, Serena’s mom arranges a meeting with Chuck to tell him about the “Orange Jumpsuit Affair.” 

Apparently, Lily (rightly, as it turns out) fears that Russell will try to blackmail her into ceding Bass Industries over to him, by threatening to reveal information regarding Lily’s illegal behavior, with respect to the aforementioned matter.  (Geez!  Dude just doesn’t give up, does he?)  Chuck promises to investigate (1) who leaked that information to Russell *cough Drug Dealing Damien cough;” and (2) whether the Real Estate Mogul has ACTUAL PROOF of Lily’s perjury, or is merely bluffing.

Lily, of course, suspects Wet Blanket Ben of leaking the intel.  And when ANNOYING VANESSA . . .

AGAIN . . . I REPEAT . . .

 . . . barges into La Casa de van der Woodsen, to inform Lily that Ben had Nate’s dad beat up in jail, her suspicions seem justified.  When Lily confronts Serena with this information, Blondie initially refuses to believe its true.  The problem, of course, is that the AFFIDAVIT, which is proof of Lily’s guilt in the Pedo Ben Affair, has suddenly gone missing.  And, aside from Serena, Wet Blanket Ben is the only one who knew where it was hidden .  . .

Serena vows to talk to Ben at Chuck’s party, hoping she can get him to reconsider his decision.

Elsewhere on the Upper East Side, Chuck .  . .

 . . . pretends to care that Nate and Raina are porking, when we ALL know, he only truly has eyes for one girl . . .

But, aside from this faux- confrontation, Chuck has REAL business to attend to, with Raina.  Specifically, he wants to warn her about what an ASSHAT her dad is!  When Raina refuses to believe Chuck’s statements, the latter arranges for Raina to learn of her dad’s Asshatedness on her OWN.  Chuck figures that Raina’s disapproval of Russell, might influence the Douchebag to drop his whole blackmail scheme, and simply admit defeat, like a Good Little Guest Star . . .

All is Revealed . . .

As is typical of GG episodes, everything comes to head at the Big Party of the Week.  There, Serena confronts Wet Blanket Ben . . .

“Sometimes, I even bore MYSELF  . . .”

 . . . who admits to beating up Nate’s dad (who, let’s face it, no one really likes, anway) . . .

“Hey WTF!  EVERYBODY LIKES ME!  I’m Captain Hook-ed on Drugs, for crying out loud!”

However, the Wet Blanket SWEARS on his Mama, that he didn’t steal Lily’s forged affidavit.  Oh, but he did tell his Evil Wench Mom where it was hidden . . .

“WHAT A MORON!  You’re seriously boning THAT GUY, when you could be boning ME,  Serena . . .What is WRONG WITH YOU?”

So, here’s how it all went down . . . Apparently, after Drug Dealing Damien approached Thorpe at the end of last week’s episode, about Lily’s criminal acts, Thorpe took it upon himself to contact Wet Blanket Ben’s MOM.  She then used Wet Blanket Ben to figure out how to steal the incriminating affidavit, and give it to Thorpe.  How unnecessarily convuluted interesting.

Later, as planned by Chuck, Russell blackmails Lily, with Raina listening in the next room.  To say she is not pleased with her daddy, is the UNDERSTATEMENT OF THE CENTURY . . .

“This is SO STRESSFUL!  I could really use some more weed, now!”

They were RIGHT ABOUT YOU,” Raina exclaims to Daddy Not-So-Dearest, before storming off, with Nate hot on her heels, hoping to heaven that this won’t interfere with his chances of getting boned tonight . . .

But what Chuck doesn’t count on is Russell being SUCH a big Asshat, that he DOESN’T even go after his own daughter!  He STILL wants to blackmail Lily!  The problem, however, is that he CAN’T!  Lily has already decided to turn herself in to the police, and issue a full confession. 

Though this may inevitably land her in jail, this sort-of heroic, if long overdue, act, will, not only singlehandedly save Bass Industries until the next Guest Star comes to f*ck with it, it also will inevitably prevent the company from being blackmailed for the 84,532nd time this season.  GOOD RIDDENS TO THAT!

Bart Bass-tard Strikes Again . . . and other Sort-of Cliffhangers

After Lily leaves to go turn herself in, Chuck and Russell decide to have a little heart-to-heart. 

In the lamest, most useless and least relevant biggest twist of the evening, Russell reveals that the reason he was dead set on ruining Bass Industries, was not because Bart Bass stole Lily from him, but because Bart basically KILLED RUSSELL’S FIRST WIFE!  Remember a few seasons back, how Bart was implicated in setting fire to one of his hotel buildings, for insurance money, and for killing some Security Guard, in the process.  (No?  That’s OK . . . I barely remember it myself.) 

Well, apparently, RUSSELL’S WIFE was also in the building at the time. (Wait . . . nobody finds it weird that the SECURITY GUARD’S death was publicized, but the wife of a famous hotel mogul’s was NOT?  Am I missing something here?)  Upon hearing that his dad was JUST AS BIG OF AN ASSHOLE AS HE ALWAYS THOUGHT HE WAS . . . just a slightly more murderous one, Chuck goes on an alcoholic bender . . .

YAY BOOZE!

This Bender, ironically, wakes Chuck up from the STUPOR he’s been in for at least four episodes now!  “I need to find Blair!  She’s the only one who understands what I’m going through right now,” a slightly inebriated Chuck tells Serena, before rushing off to find his lady love. 

Well, it’s about DAMN TIME! 

(Note: The fact that Chuck’s Daddy Issues are what FINALLY prompted him to remember how dear Blair is to him, is a nice bit of continuity on the writers’ part.  One can’t deny that, each time, Bart’s misdeeds (or his untimely death), have sent Chuck into a downward spiral, it was BLAIR who nursed him back to himself, with her strength, and unflagging belief in Chuck’s strength and inner goodness.

Speaking of BAD DAD’S and GOOD “SHIPS”, Russell Thorpe FINALLY decides to leave town, and go back to the Windy City from whence he came . . .

SAYONAR,  SUCKA!

But it’s Nate — who is no stranger to the many ways in which BAD DADS can disappoint you, and f*&k you up for life, himself  — who ultimately convinces Raina to wish her Papa farewell, and forgive him for being such an Evil Asshat and Annoying Special Guest Star .  . .

The Hills are Alive, with the Sound of Natey-pooooooo!

Nate and Raina may still be going strong.  But you know who isn’t?  Serena and Wet Blanket Ben.

This DOOFUS also FINALLY leaves town (Well, would you look at that?  We killed two birds with one stone . . . now if we could only get Manessa to leave, for good).

Wet Blanket’s reasons for departing NYC are as follows: (1) Lily demanded, as a condition of her confession, that all charges against him be expunged; and (2) he’s become a VERY BAD MAN . . . at least as far as he is concerned.  Serena is momentarily devastated by the loss of her Flavor of the Week.  So, she tells him she truly believes that he is the same pedophile man she fell in love with.  She also hopes that Ben will call her again, once he gets some of that nonexistent confidence back.

Umm . . . Ben, don’t call us, we’ll call you . . . Mmmmm Kay?

So, that’s two people who left town.  You know who came BACK to the Upper East Side though?   THIS GUY . . .

Watch out RUFUS!  With Lily awaiting trial for her crimes, her Bad Ass Mo Fo criminal of an ex-husband (He made her believe she had CANCER, just to get into her pants, for crying out loud!) might be JUST WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED!

But the real cliffhanger of the episode comes in the final moments.  If you recall, Dan and Blair planned to “come out” as friends at Chuck’s party.  But then, all this Lily and Russell and Ben Crap happened.  So, they decided it probably wasn’t the right time to reveal this not-all-that-important information to “Manhattan’s Elite” . . .

Ultimately, the pair decide to sacrifice their newfound friendship, and focus, instead, on their friends’ impending crises and emotional needs. 

But that night, Dan refuses to return to Brooklyn.  Apparently, he is having second thoughts about his and Blair’s mutual decision to “break up their friendship.”  And so, he arrives at Blair’s house, with questions looming in his mind, as to why the two have felt the need to hide their movie-going, pizza-eating, and dish-washing “thing,” for so long.  He wonders whether something more is there between them.  He wants to kiss Blair just once to find out.

Blair tentatively agrees to the kiss.  Then, Dan, being the general slow-starter / wishy washy and Charlie Brown-like person he can sometimes be, hesitates, before going in for the Big Slobber.  So, Blair, wanting to get this over with, grabs her Brookyln Bud, and pulls him in for a smooch.  The screen then freeze frames like THIS . . .

And, before you know it, we have Gossip Girl saying “XOXO” for the last time, before the show goes into a SIX WEEK HIATUS . . .

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!”

Man, this sucks!  I really thought we’d get to see Chuck make a play for Blair’s heart, before the Final XOXO.  Unfortunately, this did not happen . . . yet.  The show’s upcoming promos offer some promise, however . . .

See you in April, Upper East Siders!  Until then, XOXO!

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Roses are Red, Tulips are Coke-y : A Recap of Gossip Girl’s “While You Weren’t Sleeping”

WARNING:  Sleep Deprivation and lots of pot can make you do TERRIBLE things, like wear an unflattering robe on your first date, and dance VERY badly to songs by Ke$ha .  . .

Who said Gossip Girl couldn’t make you a better person?  I mean, just think about all the life lessons we learned from this week’s episode of Gossip Girl!   Here are just some of them: (1) Get a good night sleep . . .

(2) Don’t do drugs (unless, they are provided by Chuck Bass).

(3) In life, sometimes, it is important to stop and smell the roses . . . or . . . the tulips . . . to see if they contain coke.

(4) Other times, it is MORE important to smell YOURSELF.  (Personal hygiene is VERY important, PEOPLE!)

(5) Friends are SUPER important.  (Even those sort of dorky friends, who you don’t like to admit are your actual friends, but they totally ARE!)

(6) Oh, and above all?  Never, EVER, be ANYTHING like . . . HER!

Any questions?

Now, that we’ve gotten all those pesky “morals” out of the way, let’s get on with the recap.  Shall we?

Eric’s Turning Legal (and Serena Plays Scrabble?!) – ALERT THE MEDIA!

When the episode opens, Serena an Ben are sharing breakfast in Brooklyn.  Currently, they are engaging in a fascinating conversation about whether the toast they are eating is sufficiently “toasty.”  (I wish I was making this up.  But I’m not.)  Enter, a very pissy looking Dan . . .

Apparently, this “toasty” couple kept Dan up all night, with their . . . playing Scrabble.  (I wish that was a euphemism for something more exciting.  It’s not.) 

Dan expresses some surprise that Serena suddenly knows how to read enjoys playing Scrabble.  But, really, he should not be so surprised.  After all, Serena is one of those girls who pretends to like EVERYTHING her Boyfriend of the Month likes.  For example, when Serena dated Dan, she pretended to like flannel shirts, emo music, old movies, and raccoon zombies named Little J . . .

Much like the rest of us, Dan gets tired of watching Serena and Ben pretend to be a Hot Couple, and leaves. 

Once Dan is out of the picture, Serena flutters her eyelashes, and begs Boring Boyfriend Ben to attend her brother’s 18th Birthday Party, despite the fact that it’s being thrown by the woman who was solely responsible for him spending two years in the pokey for a pedophillic crime he didn’t commit even though he REALLY, REALLY wanted to.

Ben refuses to go to the party, which makes his new girlfriend “very disappointed in him.”  In fact, Serena is more disappointed in Ben now, than she was, back when he hired his sister to try to ruin her life, and ended up almost killing her.  It’s always nice to know that people on this show have their priorities straight . . .

Speaking of ruined lives, and messed up priorities, Eric, a.k.a. Mini vDW, has been pretending to be sick with the flu, so that he can skip his own Barely Legal Birthday Bash, and instead, act as Drug Dealing Damien’s Coke Mule.  (I think I saw a movie like this once . . .).  But, of course, Serena catches Mini vDW in the act, and is, you guessed it, “very disappointed in him.”

Eric explains to Serena how Drug Dealing Damien is blackmailing Eric to deliver kilos of coke, hidden inside pink tulips, or else he will release information, regarding how Lily committed perjury to get Ben thrown in jail all those years ago.  In response, Serena tells him that “she will take care of it.”  This way, Eric can enjoy his Big Stinkin’ Rich, but Still Incredibly Lame, Birthday Party, without the fear of having to spent his first few “legal” years behind bars.  (Golly gee, I wish MY siblings would deal drugs and commit felonies for ME!)

“You know, now that I think about it, this is exactly what I did on MY 18th birthday except I carried all the coke in my ginormous bra!  Ahhhh . . . memories!”

Speaking of folks who could use a good snort of coke . . .

Blair Needs Dan’s Help – ALERT THE MEDIA!

Poor Broken-hearted Blair!  Like the rest of us, she remembers that fateful (*sniffle, sniffle*) speech she made to Chuck a few episodes back, in which she told him that she needed to be successful in her own right, before she could be “Chuck Bass’ Girlfriend.”  So, of course, Blair is trying to become “successful in her own right” as quickly as humanly possible.  This way, she can stop going to the damn movies all the time, and START having mindblowing sex in limosines, AGAIN!

The problem, of course, is that there aren’t enough hours in the day for Blair to be a full-time student,  RUN W Magazine (HAHA!), annoy all the women on the Forbes list, and help Serena with her Problem of the Week.  Oh, did I mention that all her interns QUIT? 

So, Blair has been foregoing sleep, and has hired her minions to do her coursework / errands for her . . .

 She is also letting Dorota DRESS HER.  No wonder Blair ended up wearing a French Maid Halloween Costume to work, yesterday!

When a SUPER SELFISH SERENA comes barging into Blair’s office, demanding that the latter help her come up with a scheme to bring down Drug Dealing Damien (Seriously?  Is Serena not the WORST, MOST SELFISH, FRIEND EVER?  Did she NOT watch what happened to Blair, during last week’s episode?  Has she NO HEART?). Blair is forced to beg for help from the very last person she wanted to ask . . .  THIS GUY.

Dan agrees to help relieve Blair of some of the tremendous burden she is under, provided she admit that he is “a friend” of hers, and not a “minion or underling.”  Blair’s EXTREMELY reluctant, mumbled admittance of this fact, was probably the funniest part of the episode for me. 

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(By the way, kudos to the GG makeup department, for successfully making Blair look bleary-eyed, frazzled, and unrested, yet still TOTALLY fabulous, this week.)

Speaking of Dan, has anybody else started to wonder if he EVER attends classes, downtown, at NYU?  Because, lately, it seems like the guy spends ALL his time (1) hanging around the W offices, where he is NO LONGER EMPLOYED; and (2) following Blair and/or Serena around the Upper East Side, like a little lost puppy dog.  Just sayin’.

Usually a champ at bossing around others, Blair fails to properly direct Dan in how to best serve her.  And so, the poor guy ends up taking on the Drug Mule Duties Blair had originally assigned Minion Penelope.  Oops!  As if that wasn’t bad enough, she told Dan to pick up the WRONG COLOR tulips. As a result, the ones Dan ended up bringing to Eric’s party, though very pretty (Purple is my favorite color!), were disappointingly DRUG FREE . . .

(By the way, I loved how, when the miscolored tulips arrived, the SUPPOSELY non-druggie Eric tested whether they were the right tulips, by SNORTING THEM ALL!)

We are SO on to YOU, Mini vDW!  Get thee to rehab!  GO!

Other things Blair screwed up this week include:

(1) Dictating the WRONG test information to her minion;

(2) Mixing up Eric’s birthday gift, with a gift she bought for her mother; and WORST OF ALL . . .

(3) wearing two MISMATCHED shoes to Eric’s party (They were both REALLY ugly too) where . . .surprise, surprise . . . she was trying to impress some random Special Guest Star influential business figure . . .

Hey Blair, you know what I hear is a really great substitute for sleep, in terms of invigorating the mind, and preventing mishaps like this?  LIMO SEX .   . .

Speaking of Chuck Bass 😉 . . .

Please LORD let this Boring Ass Corporate Takedown Story BE OVER!

We open with Chuck “hiring” Nate as his “wingman” to keep Raina occupied / try to win her back for him, while the Big Bass tried to take down his Girlfriend of the Minute’s daddy, once and for all . . .

Now, normally, I’d say that having your INSANELY HOT best friend babysit your ex-girlfriend for you is a TERRIBLE IDEA.  However, since I (1) DESPISE Chuck and Raina as a couple; (2) NEED Chuck to be single again for OBVIOUS reasons (*cough Chair cough*); (3) and actually don’t mind Raina and Nate as a prospective couple (more on THEM later), I say BRING IT ON!

“Pretend to be ‘in love’ with Random Guest Stars all you want.  But I saw next week’s promos.  And by this time next week, you will absolutely be chasing after ME again, Chuck Bass!”

Next up, we follow Chuck to a “Meeting” with Lily.  During this “Meeting,” Chuck tries to apologize to Lily for getting her fired from Bass Industries, last week.  Lily says she doesn’t forgive him. 

Chuck then accuses Lily of wanting to pork Russell Thorpe, despite being married to Rufus (just like she porked Rufus, back when she was married to Chuck’s dad).  Upon being more or less called a hobag by her adopted son, Lily bitchslaps Chuck.  It’s kind of awesome.

Serves you right for putting me through all this Raina Sh*t, lately!

Then, the camera pans back to THIS image.  And I am suddenly starting to wonder whether I am watching a really bad sitcom . . .

OMG!  Thorpe heard everything from behind his carefully placed newspaper!  – [Insert laughtrack here]

We then, of course, cut to this scene, which illustrates that the scene before it was a TOTAL act by Chuck and Lily, put on entirely for Thorpe’s benefit . . .

Chuck’s ridiculous facial expression here = the REASON screencaps were invented

Apparently, the grand plan is for Lily to go out on a Secret Date with Russell and pretend to want his hot bod . . .

Meanwhile, Chuck will use the key cards he got from Nate’s dad last week, to break into Russell’s office, and find evidence that will ultimately save his company from inevitable destruction. 

(How convenient that Mr. Big Real Estate Tycoon’s office is never locked or guarded.  I also like how underling employees / Ex-Cons with Known Drug Problems, like Nate’s dad, are, not only given keys to the CEO’s office, but also, apparently, the personal passwords to his laptop computer, and all Secret Files included therein.  Donald Trump to Russell Thorpe:  “YOU’RE FIRED . .  . Moron!”)

“Oh look, there’s a file on here named: The Key to Chuck Bass Saving His Company.  I wonder if it’s relevant.”

Earlier, I stated that the part of the episode where Blair asked Dan for help was the funniest moment in the hour.  I lied.  It was the second funniest.  The FUNNIEST moment was when we got a look at Russell Thorpe’s e-mail and saw THIS . . .

COME ON, Gossip Girl!  This Russell guy is planning a Super Secret, Possibly Illegal corporate takeover, and his ENTIRE inbox is filled with e-mails that are OBVIOUSLY related to said takeover.  That’s just not realistic!  I mean, at least throw some PORN in there, or something . . .

This dude is CLEARLY into some kinky sh*t!

In addition to lots of e-mails with his last name conveniently included in the subject line (and no porn), Chuck also finds THIS letter . . .

Apparently, Russell has been bargaining with “Mr. Kidd,” regarding the destruction of Bass Industries.  Chuck figures out that Russell is just doing all this to get back at the Dead Bart Bass for boinking Lily, when HE wanted to bone her himself. (Yeah, because THAT’S a solid reason for a business decision!  Between this, and his company’s lax security measures, I honestly don’t know how Thorpe makes any money at all!). 

Since Bass Industries is worth more “alive” than “dead,” Chuck assumes that “Mr. Kidd” might be interested in this type of information.  And, so, Chuck arranges to meet the man, awkwardly enough, at his stepbrother’s 18th Birthday Party.  (Can you say CREEPY?)  But before this meeting can happen, we have to endure this awkward and, let’s face it, ENTIRELY POINTLESS, scene, in which Rufus pretends to be MAD at Thorpe for stealing his honey bunny, Lily, away from him . . .

“Don’t even THINK about becoming van der Woodsen Husband Number 6, or I will CUT YOU!”

After this uselessness, Chuck finally gets to meet with Kidd, who, realizing Thorpe has been dishonest with him, agrees to hear Chuck out, and possibly cut some sort of a deal with him regarding Bass Industries . . .

“Hey, now that we’ve decided the fate of my company, what do you say we go out to the limo and have a three way slap around some Pinatas?  I hear Lily’s so loaded that she put $100 bills inside, instead of candy.”

Meanwhile, over in the “D” storyline of this evening, Nate is keeping Raina busy, by inviting her to do things that she has never done before.  Such “new and unusual” things, apparently, include WALKING . . .

“Left foot, right foot, left foot, right foot .  . . I think I got it!  Gosh, when I was with Chuck I spent all my time f*&king LAYING DOWN!  This is so EXCITING!” 

 . . . ice skating, getting cider spilled down her pants, ugly robe wearing, weed smoking . . .

. . . eating (gasp) ICE CREAM that wasn’t even personally prepared by pastry chefs .  . .

 . . . and, of course, playing Wii . . .

In fact, Raina enjoys all this “Poor Person Stuff” so much, that she decides to kick Chuck to the curb for good, in favor of the Nate-ster!

Raina is TOTALLY done with “Business in Bed!”  She’d much prefer Sex on Soiled Couch with Nate to the tune of Ke$ha’s Tik Tok!  (Judging by how UNSEXY her and Chuck’s sex scenes actually were, I can’t say I blame her. . . )

Of course, despite his earlier saying their relationship was “sacred,” news of Raina’s breakup via phone barely phases Chuck.  In fact, his NON-reaction to this, is the first genuine thing we’ve seen his character do in about three episodes.  What can I say?  The heart wants what it wants.  And, deep down, Chuck Bass’s heart knows that it wants THIS .   . .

Oh, did I mention that Vanessa is back?  (BOO!)  Or that she is trying to return to her so-called rightful place in Dan Humphrey’s boxer shorts, despite almost killing his once-girlfriend / possible soulmate?

Don’t care?  Neither does DAN!  In fact, he TOTALLY blows Vanessa off, which is SPECTACULAR!  Who knew Humpty Dumpty could be so Righteously Bad Ass?  It’s about DAMN TIME!

In other news .   . .

Mo Money, Mo Problems . . .

Meanwhile, Sad Birthday Boy, Eric has NO COKE TULIPS, and now owes Damien $100 grand!  Though I DID feel bad for Eric (I’m not ENTIRELY heartless, after all) I’ll admit, I snorted, when Damien came to the party for the cash, and Eric wrote him a check for the full sum from his “Rhodes Trust Fund,” like it was no big deal . . .

Gotta love the Obnoxiously Rich!

Even better,was when Lily walked in on the exchange, learned that it was being done to save HER ass from incarceration, and wrote the check herself . . . get this . . . from her PERSONAL CHECKING ACCOUNT.  Now, that’s just bad money management!  Way to earn interest on your “G’s,” Lily!

After Drug Dealing Damien leaves the party, Boring Ben (who, this WHOLE TIME, has been telling Serena that she and Eric shouldn’t stick up for their mother, because she deserves to go to jail for doing what she did to him), surprises everyone by shaking down Damien for Lily’s check . . .

Ben does this, by basically threatening to hire some of his prison buddies to KILL Damien (quite possibly the same guys that he hired to BEAT UP NATE’S DAD, back when he was in the slammer).  After peeing and pooping in his pants, Drug Dealing Damien hands a Significantly-Less-Boring-Now-Ben the check, and scampers away. 

(Honestly, I can’t decide whether this scene makes Ben even creepier than he was before, or just more awesome).

Of course, as luck would have it,Vanessa is watching this exchange.  And, even though (1) it’s a crowded city street; (2) she is standing about a half-a-mile AWAY; and (3) the guys are talking in hushed tones, she conveniently hears THE ENTIRE CONVERSATION .  . .

UGHHHHH! WHY CAN’T YOU JUST GO AWAY, AND STAY AWAY FOR ONCE?!

Later, Vanessa tries to call Serena (who, I remind you, she almost got KILLED) to warn her that her boyfriend is quite possibly a Sadistic Psycho Killer.  However, Serena is too busy porking the Sadistic Psycho Killer to notice that her phone is ringing . . . Oh well!

Toward the end of the episode, Drug Dealing Damien approaches Russell Thorpe, so that the two could take down the entire rest of the Gossip Girl cast together. 

(So, Thorpe conspires with DRUG DEALERS, now?  Who does he think he is, Lex Luthor?  Apparently, when I said earlier that this Corporate Takeover Storyline was finally over, I spoke too soon . . . Zzzzzzzzzzzz)

HELP!  Somebody Freaky Friday-ed Blair Waldorf!

Back in his Brooklyn apartment, Dan Humphrey greets a sleepy, Blair, who has ventured out of the Upper East Side (and WAY out of her comfort zone) to thank “Lonely Boy” for anonymously writing her W magazine blog entry, on her behalf.  Of course, she ended up getting fired from the job anyway.  But it was still a nice gesture!

“I lost my job.  I failed a test.  I almost got my best friend’s mother arrested.  And I’m in Brooklyn, talking about it with Dan Humphrey.  Someone must have Freaky Friday’ed me!  This can’t be my life,” gripes Blair. 

(Some fans are inclined to agree with her, on that one.)

Dan tries to comfort Blair, who’s had pretty much the WORST LUCK EVER, these past two episodes, with pizza (?)  (Does Blair even eat carbs?) and . . . SURPRISE  .  . . more old movies!  Not surprisingly, given the day they both have had, the two are asleep on the couch, within seconds of popping in the first film .  . .

(WOW!  Someone really likes pizza!  Do you think that was a large pie?)

Next week on Gossip Girl, Dan tries to escalate his friendship with Blair to the next level.  Meanwhile, Chuck, after having his head stuck up his ass for the past few episodes, FINALLY returns to true form, and works to win back the woman of his dreams.  It’s the episode ALL OF US have been waiting for:  Chair Fans versus Dair Fans!  Let’s GET READY TO RUMBLE!

XOXO!

[www.juliekushner.com]

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A Midwinter Night’s Dream – A Recap of Gossip Girl’s “It Girl Happened One Night”

BLAIR:  Is that my soulmate acting like he’s madly in love with the personality-free Special Guest Star?

DAN: I’m afraid so . . . Is that MY soulmate, acting like she’s totally cool with spending Valentine’s Day drinking cheap beer at a sleazy bar, with the ex-con waiter, who very well may be a sociopath?

BLAIR:  Sure is!

DAN:  I feel like locking myself in my room, and watching a horror movie.

BLAIR:   I think we’re already watching one . . .

Did you read Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream?  You know, the one where there’s a big party in the forest.  And the evil King makes the Big Gay Fairy put spells on all the couples, so that they fall madly in love with all the WRONG people, for all the wrong reasons.  If I recall correctly, someone even falls in love with a DONKEY’S ASS . . .

“Hee-Haw!”

Yeah, that’s kind of how I felt about this week’s Gossip Girl Valentine’s Day Addition.  (Don’t worry, Dair fans.  I’m not here to attack your ship, today.  My wrath, instead, is directed at two new so-called couples that I think we ALL can agree SUCK ROYALLY.)  Specifically, I’m referring to the BIZARRO pairings of Serena/Ben and Chuck/Raina, and how each of the aforementioned Gruesome Twosomes behaved, during this wild and wacky hour. 

Seriously, GG writers, I haven’t been this confused by two members of the Non-Judging Breakfast Club, since Chuck boned the Raccoon Zombie . . .

 . . . and Serena dated the odious Aaron Rose . .  .

Remember THIS douchebag? 

Because, here’s the thing.  As teen drama fans, we inherently accept the notion that the couples we worship can’t ALWAYS be together.  TV watching probably wouldn’t be much fun, if they were.  After all, sometimes the “getting together” and “getting BACK together” of our favorites ships is the best part of the show! 

And, for that reason, we put up with the random Special Guest Star, who plays the Love Interest, for three or four episodes, before going back into the Anonymous Hole from which he or she came.  Correction, we put up with it . . . WHEN IT’S CONSISTENT WITH CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT. 

Here’s looking at YOU, Miss Duff!

So, for Serena, we accepted her dalliances with Carter, Trip, Professor Hotpants, and yes, even the odious Adam Rose.  Because these were individuals who had things in common with Serena, and reflected the life path she was on, at the point during which she dated them.  And we (sort of) accepted Chuck’s relationship with the BLAND Eva, because we knew he was in pain, after all that happened with Blair, and being shot in Prague.  We knew that Chuck chose Eva, dull as she was, in attempt to shun everything about his life that had caused him such heartache, during the prior season.

But I CANNOT, for the life of me, understand what would possess Serena to fall in love with CREEPY BEN, who’s CREEPY SISTER, ruined Serena’s life, and nearly killed her, AT HIS BEHEST.  And I CANNOT fathom how Chuck (a guy who took SEASONS to finally tell Blair he loved her) could fall SO completely head-over-heels for the lackluster Raina Thorpe within TWO episodes, that he would be willing to build her a Creepy Loveshack Room in one of his party halls, or betray his entire family, to try and please her Evil Dick of a Dad.

But like the strange happenings in Midsummer Night’s Dream, I chose to chalk all this weirdness up to a Big Gay Fairy, and some Black Valentine’s Day Magic . . .

So, with that being said, let’s get on with the recap, shall we?

Damn the Man!  Save the Empire!

When the episode begins, Chuck has scheduled a meeting with the Eeeevil Russell Thorpe.  He wishes to make one last valiant attempt to save Bass Industries by . . . you guessed it . . .  THROWING A BIG PARTY.  Coincidentally, here are some other problems Chuck Bass would likely solve by Throwing a Big Party:  (1) He had a bad day.  (2) He had a good day.  (3) He lost his favorite shoe.  (4) He lost his favorite bathrobe.   (5) He lost his favorite bong.  (6)  He lost his favorite Blair.

*clears throat*

Chuck feel that the Bass name has equity.  And he somehow believes that throwing yet ANOTHER big party (cause he hasn’t done THAT in about a week!) will show Russell that this is true.  Chuck also REALLY wants to get laid on Valentine’s Day.  So, Eeevill Russell (who likes to boogie, as much as any mid 40-something Hotel Tycoon) agrees to refrain from killing Chuck’s company for 36 hours, while the latter plans the Best Valentine’s Day Bash EVER!  *insert Cupid eyeroll*

Meanwhile, over at the offices for W Magazine . . .

Have It-Girl, Will Travel

Blair, who has VERY REALISTICALLY risen from stapler-grabbing intern to Second-in-Command at W Magazine in about TWO days, is brainstorming with her “staff” as to which “It Girl” the magazine should follow around on Valentine’s Day for an “Expose Article.”  Since the Hiltons, the Kardashians, and every other socialite with a sextape is busy that day, someone suggests Serena van der Woodsen.  But Blair has an even more boring better idea.   Why doesn’t the magazine cover Raina Thorpe?

I mean this girl is SO THRILLING to watch on television!  So you can imagine how RIVETING she would be on paper! Zzzzzzzzzzz

Of course, as per usual, Blair has ulterior motives for selecting Raina as the subject of the magazine piece.  After all, she knows that Chuck has been wooing Raina, as part of his Master Plan to save Bass Industries. And, seeing as she still luuuuuuves him, doing this piece will conveniently allow Blair to keep tabs on her man, during Valentine’s Day. 

In a classic game of Telephone, Blair mentions her devious plan to Serena, who inexplicably tells Chuck.  Chuck then tells Serena that he actually does LOVE Raina, and as of five minutes ago is no longer “faking it,” as Blair had initially suspected.  *cough bullsh*t cough*

So, of course, rather than immediately confronting her bestie, BLAIR, about this recent development, Serena makes the incredibly stupid wise move of telling Raina, who had already agreed to do the publicity piece, that she should back out of it.   Violating EVERY GIRL CODE IN THE BOOK, Serena blabs to Raina about how much Blair still loves Chuck, and how seeing Raina and Chuck together on Valentine’s Day would break Queen B’s heart . . .

With that Stupid Love Stuffout of the way, Serena and Raina can talk about more important matters . . . like which Overpriced Dress they should each wear to Chuck’s party

“Does this dress make me look like a Total Slut?”

“Isn’t that what all clothing dresses are for?”

When Raina calls Blair up to cancel the Expose, just moments after she has just finished hanging out with Serena, Blair puts two and two together, and realizes that she’s been sabotaged by her bestie.  You know what that means right?  It’s time for the Blair Waldorf Weekly Revenge Special!

Meanwhile, back in Brooklyn . . .

Dan the Man to the Rescue!

“This is my ‘I’m Hitting on You’ Face .  . . Coincidentally, it is also my ‘I Just Sucked on a Lemon’ Face”

Wanna know the definition of awkward?  How about being forced to be roommates with your ex-girlfriend’s Creepy Ex Con Boyfriend, and having to listen to him yammer on about his LAME-O (i.e. nonexistent) Valentine’s Day plans with the girl who’s supposed to be YOUR Valentine?  And yet, Dan still manages to be a pal to Creepo Ben.  When he finds out the dude is unemployed, Dan refers him to a catering job that HE used to have.  (You know . . . before his dad started boning Lily van der Woodsen, and he became filthy rich . . . like everybody else on this show.) 

Now, of course, Ben LIES to Serena about how he plans to spend Valentine’s Day, telling her that he is “tutoring” a student that night (because that’s what we call a “Convenient Plot Device”).  Now, personally, if I was Serena, I would feel better about my former teacher boyfriend, who had a crush on ME, back when I was underage, catering on Valentine’s Day, than “TUTORING,” if you catch my drift.  But no one ever said Serena was the sharpest tool in the shed . . .

“I did NOT have sexual relations with that student (but I thought about doing it A LOT).”

Having successfully set Ben’s and Serena’s moronic plotline into motion, Dan dashes off to W Magazine.  If you recall, a couple weeks back, the now-LONG GONE Epperley had promised Dan that SHE would pass his article on to Details magazine.  Now that she’s left the building, Dan wishes to seek the same treatment from the “new Epperley.”  And I bet you all can’t guess who THAT is? 

It’s Blair.  SURPRISE!

At least, initially, Blair doesn’t seem all that interested in helping Dan get his article published.  After all, she’s still a tad pissed at him for initially getting her fired from her internship, before he, ultimately, got her rehired.  She’s also pretty insistent on the fact that her and Dan are “not friends.”  And yet, considering that her “friend” Serena has just ROYALLY screwed her over, Blair may want to start rethinking who earns that title.

Speaking of Serena, Dan casually mentions to Blair that he gave Ben his catering job.  You can almost see the wheels turning in Blair’s head, as she calls up the catering company to make certain that Ben will be working Chuck’s Valentine’s Day Bash.  She then slyly convinces Serena to attend the party as well.  (As if we believed, for a SECOND, that Serena would EVER be capable of staying home on Valentine’s Day!)

“I was thinking of wearing THIS to the party?  Do you like it?”

Back in Boring Corporate Storyline Land . . .

All Hail the Captain (Well . . . maybe not)

Nate’s Less Than Proud Papa sort of redeemed himself, by telling Chuck that (1) even though he continued to work for Thorpe, he ethically recused himself from all matters relating to the takeover of Bass Industries; and (2) despite this, he had “accidentally” become privy to information about the company.  According to the Captain, Bass Industries would be worth more if it were kept whole, than if it were broken down, and sold for parts.  So, WHY was Russell Thorpe intent on destroying it?  And WHY had he lied about giving Chuck a 36 hour reprieve before takeover proceedings were to begin, when that was clearly not the case?

It had a little something to do with this Little Tartlet . . .

My LORD!  Lily slept with RUSSELL THORPE TOO?  And she left him for BART BASS?  But wasn’t she boinking RUFUS right before she started dating Bart?  Geez!  I feel like I need an Excel spreadsheet to keep track of  all of Lily’s conquests . . . Like mother, like daughter, I guess!

Without pausing for a single second to ponder how all this information so conveniently landed in his lap RIGHT when he needed it, the normally much more clever, Chuck Bass calls an impromptu board meeting Valentine’s Day morning to fire Lily from the Board of Bass Industries, due to a “Conflict of Interest.”  Upon hearing this, Lily is understandably pissed, and vows to give Chuck a piece of her mind at . . . you guessed it, the Bass Valentine’s Day Bash . . .

Smile, Serena!  You’re on Date-a-Waiter Camera

At the party, a vengeful Blair accosts her new It-girl Serena, flanked by reporters, to interview her for her W Magazine piece.  “Who’s your Valentine?”  Blair inquires, in a voice that is sickeningly sweet.

“Ummm .  . . hummun . .. uh . . .” Serena responds eloquently.

That’s when Blair lets the other shoe drop, by pointing Serena toward Ben, in his waiter outfit, and joyously announcing his EX-CON status to the world, as the cameras catch every cringe-inducing moment of this Valentine’s Day Couple’s reunion.  Ben, of course, runs out of the party, crying like a b*tch, as he is wont to do.  Serena, meanwhile, angrily confronts Blair for her vindictiveness, FINALLY explaining to her, why she “sabotaged” the Raina Interview, in the first place.  “Chuck really loves [Raina].  It’s not just about the business,” Serena admits to a disbelieving Blair .  . .

But Blair refuses to believe Serena.  After all, it is so utterly unbelievable that Chuck could start loving this random Guest Star, after only having boned her for a week.  Right?  RIGHT?

So, Blair stalks off, with a dogged Dan on her heels, whose still trying to get her to publish his damn story in the magazine.  Dude is nothing, if not persistent . . .

Voyeurism at it Most Heartbreaking .  . .

Wandering the party, Blair and Dan come upon the Creepy Love Den, Chuck has supposedly “built for Raina.”  (Those architects must work FAST!) Fortunately, Blair missed THIS “lovely” sight.  (Dan saw it THOUGH!)

I’ve never even DATED Chuck Bass, and this image had me vomiting in my mouth.

What Blair did witness, however, was far worse.  Lily storms in to call Chuck out on firing her from the company, after all she had done for him, by adopting him, and helping to save Bass Industries with him.  Upon hearing what Chuck has done to his step mother, Raina stalks out in disgust.  Enter Russell Thorpe, to glibly tell Chuck that, without Lily on the board, nothing stands in the way of him dismantling Bass Industries.  “Now you have nothing.  No family.   No company.  And, from the looks of it, no girl.   I think you know how much family means to Raina.  And now she knows how LITTLE it means to you,” monologues Russell, before letting out a maniacal laugh.

“I’ll get you, My Pretty, and you’re Creepy Little Love Shack too!”

(Well, this guy ended up being a real two-dimensional villain, didn’t he?  Thorpe makes Mr. Burns look like Maggie Simpson.)

“If it were me, I would have least let him finish screwing my daughter one last time, BEFORE, I ruined his life.”

It should surprise precisely NO ONE that Thorpe had TOTALLY planned for the Captain to find that information about Bass Industries and leak it to Chuck, so that the latter could dig his own grave . . .

As Blair watches sadly, Chuck chases after Raina, and tries in vain to salvage their relationship . . .

Chuck really starts laying it on thick here, telling Raina how SACRED she is to him (barf), how much he luuuuuuuuves her (gag), and how their relationship has changed him for the better (puke).   But Raina ain’t buying what he’s selling.  So she leaves his ass at his own party. 

Still, Dan is impressed by the drama of it all.  “Oh he’s goooooood,” Lonely Boy notes with amusement.

But Blair sees some bad plot devices truth behind Chuck’s words.  And she can’t deny the pain in Chuck’s eyes over the loss of his of-the-minute “true love,” Raina.  And so, she dashes off to a nearby couch to sob, over what will likely go down in history as her WORST VALENTINE’S DAY EVER!

Sympathizing with the intense pain his friend is obviously suffering, having gone through the same thing with Serena just a week prior, Dan gently grabs for a distraught Blair’s hand.  But Blair is not yet ready to accept his sympathies.  So, she yanks her hand away, and staunchly refuses to look at his Puppy Dog Eyes . . .

Good Riddens to Valentine’s Day!

Back at La Casa de Waldorf, Blair attempts to apologize to Serena, who, after all was “worried about [her] heart, not [her] job” (and rightly so), by giving her a box of chocolates.  (Really Blair?  Does Serena look like the kind of girl who eats chocolates . . . or any food besides lettuce and liquor, for that matter?)  The “Besties” then kiss and make up.  

So of course, rather than stay and comfort her CLEARLY depressed supposed-best friend, who is OBVIOUSLY suffering from a broken heart, Serena rushes off to send the last few moments of her LAME Valentine’s Day at a LAME Bar, with her LAME boyfriend, Creepo Ben.

As for Blair, she gets a text from Dan, that he plans to keep sending her drafts of his article, until she agrees to submit it to Details.  But, wonder of wonders, Blair has actually ALREADY read it . . . and submitted it to Vanity Fair.  She calls him, to inform him of the good news.

“Yippee . . . I’m the NEXT Hemingway!  Well . . . except for all that suicide stuff.” 

Then, in a sweet, if slightly uncharacteristic (for Blair, at least) final scene, the newfound pair of lonely, Type-A personality, buddies decide to watch the decidedly UN-Valentinesy film, Rosemary’s Baby, on their laptops, in their respective beds, as they cleverly snark about the film, over the phone.

Source

Do these two actually have the SAME bed sheets?  Or is it just me?

In other news . . .

Drug Dealing Damien (who was looking FRIGHTENINGLY orange this week, by the way) is manipulating Mini VDW (a.k.a. Eric)  to do his dirty work again.  His weapon of choice, this time?   BLACKMAIL.

Also, the Captain, before being unceremoniously fired from Thorpe’s company, managed to retain all his key cards to the office.  I smell WATERGATE 2011!

I’m going to be GREAT at Breaking and Entering.  I got the high score in Grant Theft Auto TWICE!”

And that’s all I’ve got for this week’s installment of Gossip Girl.  Next week, things really get intense when Blair . . . FAILS TO MATCH HER WARDROBE!

The HORROR!

You can check out the promo for next week’s episode of Gossip Girl, “While You Weren’t Sleeping,” right here:

Until then!  XOXO!

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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The Not-So-Suite Life – A Recap of Gossip Girl’s “Panic Roommate”

Chuck:  “It was nice to FINALLY get scenes with you again this week, Blair.  For a while there, I was worried that the writers were AFRAID to have us interact, out of fear of showing the world just how much our CURRENT so-called relationships PALE in comparison to what you and I have together.”

Blair:  “Tell me about it!  You have about as much romantic chemistry with that Raina chick, as I have with Raccoon Zombie, Little J!”

Chuck:  “Good point . . . but what about Dan?  Do you think YOU have romantic chemistry with him?”

Blair:  “Who?”

Chuck:  “Exactly.”

 I like to think of this week’s installment of Gossip Girl as the “Special Guest Episode.”  Now, I’m not saying that the episode was particularly “special” or even all that good, for that matter.  I’m simply referring to the fact that, during this episode, our favorite Upper East Siders spent the majority of the hour interacting with and talking about special guests characters, most of whom we all KNOW won’t be around in about three or four episodes, anyway.  In fact, TWO of these special guest characters “peaced out,” even before the final XOXO . . .

Screw Little J!  If Gossip Girl ever does go off the air, I, personally think THIS guy has the most spinoff potential.  In fact, I can picture the title of his new series now:  “High Times with Drug-Dealing Damien.”  (Zac Efron would co-star, as his younger, straight-edge brother, Troy Bolton Ramien!)

So, what are we waiting for?  Let’s go find out what the characters we do care about are saying about those we don’t.

Good Vibrations (or the lack thereof)

Is it just me, or does EVERY single Chuck / Raina sex scene on Gossip Girl look exactly the same (i.e. dull and colorless)?  In fact, not only do Chuck/Raina sex scenes not titillate me, they actually have the adverse effect of making me incredibly depressed. 

Why?  You ask . . .

Well, you see, everytime I watch Chuck and Raina power through one of their Five-Minute Missionary Position Lunch Break Lays, I can’t help but think of what I could be watching instead . . .

When Chuck and Blair have sex it’s a Contact Sport, one in which the competitors get extra points for creativity.  When Chuck and Raina do it, it’s an item on the To Do List, right underneath “Confirm Client Meeting” and “Make Sure the Maid Washes My Underwear.”

Anywhoo . . . the episode opens with Chuck and Raina doing it zzzzzzzzzzz.  Don’t feel bad if they are boring you, because Chuck’s bored too.  So, bored in fact, that when Raina’s cell phone vibrates, Chuck suggests she bring it into bed with her to up Arousal Factor.  (Note:  If this were Chuck and Blair in bed, they’d be going at it so aggressively, that not only would no one PICK UP the cell phone, it would probably get literally crushed beneath the sheer magnitude of the couple’s grinding backsides love.)

Raina, however, ignores Chuck’s advice, opting to pick up her phone, rather than use it as a Sex Toy.  In hindsight, that was probably a good decision, especially considering that the person calling Raina was HER FATHER . . .

The Awkward Moment when you are using your cell phone as a vibrator, and your DAD’S FACE appears on its screen . . .

Speaking of Chuck and Raina . . .  zzzzzzzzzzzz . . . 

(OK, I’m up!  I’m up!) 

What’s their ship name, anyway?  Ruck?  Chaina?  Is it even worth the effort of making one up?  Do any fans ACTUALLY ship these two as a couple?  I didn’t think so . . .

Always at Daddy’s beck and call, Raina exits the premises, leaving Chuck to nurse THESE . . .

Meanwhile, elsewhere on the Upper East Side . . .

Epperley Needs a Date (Wait . . . who the f*&k is Epperley?)

At W Magazine, Blair is finding herself in a very unique situation, one she has NEVER experienced in all her time on Gossip Girl:  She has to work . . . hard.

“Surely, this is the first sign of Show Cancellation Shark Jumping the Apocalypse!”

As luck would have it, Blair’s new boss, Epperley, is completely stressed out about the Plot Device Party Upcoming W Magazine event, and is working Poor Blair’s little french manicured fingers to the bone, as a result.  This, of course, is completely unacceptable to Blair.  No self-respecting woman should willingly busy herself with menial office tasks (That’s what DOROTA is for!).  In fact, according to Blair, any woman who DOES work hard in a career setting, MUST be hard up for loving! 

Sorry . . . I just couldn’t help myself . . .

Fear not, Upper East Siders.  Blair Waldorf has A PLAN!

Blair and Chuck Put their Heads Together (Unfortunately, no other body parts touch, in the process.)

After work (or before . . . or during . . . Annoying and inconsequential things like TIME, never seem to matter all that much to the ridiculously rich.), Blair (with Epperley in tow) heads over to La Casa de Chuck and Nate to screw Chuck’s brains out request a favor of her soulmate former beau.

Isn’t this picture SO much better, when taken completely out of the lame context of this episode?

The stated reason for the visit is that Blair wants to host the W Magazine function on Chuck’s property.  Of course, we all KNOW that Chuck could have probably agreed to host Blair’s event over the phone, thereby saving her and her boss the commute.  I SMELL A SCHEME!

Of course, we are not at all surprised, when Blair requests that Nate give Epperley a tour of the place, leaving Blair and Chuck alone to screw like bunny rabbits talk. 

As it turns out, both Blair and Chuck have favors to ask one another.  Chuck goes first.  He wants Blair to tell him how he can win Raina’s heart (blech!), so that she can convince her father not to sell Bass Industries out from under him.  (Ummm yeah . . . because asking your EX girlfriend, who you are CLEARLY still in love with, how to seduce your current one is not inappropriate AT ALL!) 

Improprieties aside, Blair actually offers Chuck some pretty helpful advice.  Contrary to what Chuck might think, hours and hours of sex (particularly the boring kind of sex he has with Raina) do not make a woman fall in love with a man.  Rather, Chuck will probably have to find some commonality between him and Raina that he can exploit, in order to make her feel connected to him.

“You mean I actually have to TALK to her?  I’m bored already . . .”

For Blair’s part, she wants Chuck to seduce Epperley, so that she doesn’t make Blair work so hard.  (Ummmm yeah . . . because asking your EX Boyfriend, who you are CLEARLY still in love with to have sex with your boss, so that he can sleep YOUR way to the top, is not inappropriate AT ALL!)  Unfortunately for Blair, Chuck declines her request.  Don’t get him wrong, it’s not that Chuck is AVERSE to having multiple sex partners at one time . . .

. . . it’s just that this whole “talking to Raina” thing is going to be using up all his excess mental energy, not to mention his patience.  So, there is simply not enough Chuck left over for Epperley. 

No bother!  If Blair can’t have Chuck, she’ll take the Next Best Thing . . .

Source

OMG!  It’s Gossip Girl, Season 1, all over again!

So, Blair wants NATE to seduce Epperley now.   But she wants him to be a more “generous” lover with Epperley than he was with HER.  (Who knew Little Nate Archibald was such a glutton in the sack?)  Slutty as he may be, however, Nate is going to need a bit of convincing, before he lets Blair pimp him out. 

And so, when Chuck calls, while Blair is still with Nate, Blair pretends he’s Epperley, and starts talking to “her” about how “she” [Epperley] thinks Nate is a majorly Hot Piece of Ass, who she desperately wants to bone at the W party.

“Epperley” and I can agree on this point.

You’re overselling.  Wrap it up,” Chuck kindly advices his Lady Love, immediately understanding EXACTLY what she is trying to do.

Then, when Chuck notices Raina and her RIDICULOUS hat looming in the distance,  he starts playing the SAME game — casually telling Blair what a DEEP connection he and Raina share together . . .

“Legend has it, if you look at my hat for too long, you can turn to stone . . .”

Chuck and Raina Play Hotel Hide and Seek

Knowing that Raina’s dad’s company will vote on the buyout of Bass Industries in just a few short hours,  Chuck really turns on the charm.  He takes Raina out to lunch at his hotel, and sweet talks every busboy or waiter that passes him by.  When Raina notes that all this “Kindness for the Poor” stuff Chuck is doing seems like a Big Ole Crock of Sh&t, Chuck starts waxing poetic about his young days growing up on the Disney Show the Suite Life of Zack and Cody and Chuck on hotel property. And, wouldn’t you know it?  RAINA GREW UP in a hotel TOO!

You mean to tell me kids who’s Fathers Own HOTELS spend a lot of time in HOTELS?  I’M SHOCKED!

The two Children of Hotel Barons even shared the same Childhood Hiding Place!  This must be Lame True Love, right?  Recognizing that he has Raina in his clutches, Chuck allows the other shoe to drop, by inviting Raina to attend Blair’s W party event, thereby missing  the vote to take over Bass Industries, which, conveniently enough, must be unanimous in order to pass.  Raina accepts!

“I am SO GOOD!”

And yet, neither Chuck, nor Raina counted on Raina’s Kill Joy Dad crashing the party.  Thorpe quickly informs Raina that the Little Bass-tard knew all about the timing of the vote, and was only using her to save his company.  Raina asks Chuck if this is true.  He admits that it is, but assures her that, in the process of manipulating Raina, he eventually grew to “really care about her” and blah, blah, blah *cough . . . bullsh*t . . . cough*

“Nothing can make me trust you again,” pouts Raina, before stalking off.

“I’m MAD AS HELL.   And I’m not going to take it . . . for the next five minutes, at least!”

Apparently, when Raina said that “nothing” would make her trust Chuck again, she might have been exaggerating just a little bit.  Because all it takes is an itty bitty phone call from Blair telling her how much Chuck REALLY cares about her, for Raina to wind herself right back into Chuck’s bed.  (Wow!  She must REALLY like Boring Missionary Sex!)

Blair to Shark:  “Consider yourself JUMPED.”

Speaking of Meaningless Sex, Blair has finally managed to convince Epperley to attend the W event, so that she can screw Nate there, and, hopefully, start being nicer to Blair, as a result.  On the night of the event, when Nate starts getting cold feet about essentially being Blair’s Man Whore, our Queen B gets a little handsy . . .

Source

Later that night,  W Magazine enters into a bit of a crisis situation (Apparently, it had something to do with gift bags, or something else equally unimportant).  Unfortunately, for Blair, her boss, Epperley, is nowhere to be found.  Nate is there, however . . .

Nate explains to Blair that he struck out in his manwhoring with Epperley, when some dude with a British accent hit on her, causing her to go off with him.  Blair then commandeers Nate to help her fix the Gift Bag Crisis, by threatening him to reveal his favorite musical to everyone, if he doesn’t help.   Apparently, Nate thinks that The Sound of Music is the Bees Knees, because it has “guns and Nazis, and Julie Andrews was hot.”

Who knew?

With the help of the apparently Nazi-loving Nate, Blair does manage to singlehandedly SAVE W Magazine from the horror that is having a party with NO gift bags.  So, when Blair arrives at the office the next morning, she is surprised to learn that Epperley has been in the Editor’s office for OVER AN HOUR.  (“What could they POSSIBLY be talking about?”  She wonders.)

When Epperley emerges from the office, she gives Blair the news.  Apparently, Epperley’s British One-Night Stand ended up being a LONG TIME ex-beau, who wanted to take her to Bali so the pair could do yoga together, or something.  So, Epperley decided to QUIT her much coveted, insanely prestigious, job.

“You are leaving the magazine for ‘Eat, Pray, Love’?”  Blair inquires, confused by Epperley’s plot device change of heart.

As it turns out, not only did Epperley quit the magazine, but she has requested that Blair, an INTERN and COLLEGE SOPHOMORE / FULL TIME STUDENT, who she knew for MAYBE A WEEK, and who, during that time, GOT INTO A WRESTLING MATCH AT A HIGH PROFILE COMPANY EVENT, to be her replacement . . .

“Well . . . on a positive note . . . this will make me feel successful enough in my own right to start dating Chuck again!”

In other news . . .

He’s Baaaaack!

Ugh!  Ben . . . again!  When is this guy going to GO AWAY, already?  Isn’t it bad enough we had to cope with HIS EVIL PSYCHO SISTER for half a season? 

Now, I know Drug Dealing Damien is a “Bad Guy” who “Tried to Date Rape Raccoon Zombie” and “Hurt Eric’s Feelings,” but still . . . was any one else, besides me, actually ROOTING FOR HIM, this week?

Did I mention he’s REALLY hot?

Anyway, as you might recall from last week, Rufus took Serena advice (at the SECRET behest of Lily), and offered Ben the opportunity to live out the remainder of his parole at DAN’S APARTMENT.  He did this, mind you, without asking DAN whether it would be OK. 

“W . . . T . . . F!”

To make matters worse, Ben is an AWFUL ROOMMATE.  For starters, he PUTS THE SALAD BOWLS BACK ON THE WRONG SHELF!  (The horror!)  Ben also constantly eyef*&ks Dan’s ex girlfriend, EATS her out SUSHI with her, and agrees to attend W Magazine events with her . . .

NOT COOL, BRO!

Fortunately for Dan, help is on the way, in the form of Drug Dealing Damien, and Friendless Eric.  Honestly, I had to laugh when Damien started going into that ridiculously fake sob story, about how Ben threatened to tell his parents on him for DEALING DRUGS, and how Damien is SO VERY SCARED of Ben, and Eric ACTUALLY BELIEVED HIM! 

(Seriously, Eric?  Have years and years of being FRIENDS with Raccoon Zombie Little J, a step-sibling to Chuck Bass, and a son to your Lying Manipulative B*tch of a Mother taught you NOTHING?)

“So, I come off as gullible and mentally deficient in this episode.   So, what?  At least they gave me a PLOTLINE, for a change!”

Together, Damien and Eric come to Dan for help with Operation Make Ben Look Crazy so his Parole Officer will Cart him Back to Jail.  At the W party, Damien tries to provoke Ben into a fight, but fails.

Not willing to give up, Damien then has ERIC punch him in the face.  He then has Dan invite Ben’s parole officer to the party, so that the latter can see Damien’s smushed face, and think Ben did it.  (That’s A LOT of trouble to go through for some guy you just “don’t like very much.”  Isn’t it, Damien?)

When Serena arrives at the party, to find Ben being dragged away by his parole officer, she is not a Happy Camper . . .

“I am NOT a Happy Camper.”

Serena does not believe for ONE SECOND that Ben would willingly hurt Drug Dealing Damien at a public event.   And yet, when she confronts Ben about it, he doesn’t deny it, or try to defend himself because he is such a Boring Loser.   Later, Eric tries hitting on his “new friend” Drug Dealing Damien again.  However, this time, the latter admits to, more or less, just using him to get back at Ben, and wants nothing more to do with him.  As a result of this rejection, a heartbroken, and incredibly guilty-feeling, Baby VDW comes clean to Rufus, about what he and Drug Dealing Damien did (with Dan’s help, of course).  Then, Dan and Eric rat Drug Dealing Damien out to his Mommy and Daddy for being a drug dealer, and make him cry . . .

Ultimately, Ben is cleared of all charges.  He is also eventually allowed to move back into Dan’s place . . . and Serena’s pants.

“Welcome Ben, prepare to boldly go where every male (and some inanimate objects) on this show have already been . . .”

And that was “Panic Roommate” in a nutshell, Upper East Siders!   Until next time . . .XOXO!

[www.juliekushner.com] [Fangirls Forever]

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People Can Surprise You – A Recap of Gossip Girl’s “Damien Darko”

A WORD OF WARNING, BEFORE WE BEGIN:  I’m a Chair Fan . . . BIG TIME!  Dair Fans, some of this recap might annoy the heck out of you.  Please enter with caution.  And don’t say you weren’t warned . . .

BLAIR:  “Wait a minute!  Why am I FIGHTING with you over a stapler?  I have never stapled anything in my life!  Dorota stapled everything for me from the day I was born until middle school.  After that, my minions took over the job.”

DAN:  “Honestly, I’m not quite sure.  Just like I don’t understand how YOU ended up being the one who ‘worked hard to earn’ this internship, and I got it as a result of my ‘vast connections.’  Not to mention, the silver spoon Lily van der Woodsen has apparently, lodged up my ass, ever since she started boning my father.”

BLAIR:  “Ughhh, does this mean I’m still in that weird Nightmare World, where I suddenly know how to do thinks like ‘wash dishes,’ and rarely ever get to interact with Chuck?

DAN:  “I’m afraid so, Miss Waldorf.   I’m afraid so . . .”

BLAIR:  *closes her eyes and starts clicking her heels together repeatedly*  “There’s no place like home.  There’s no place like home.  There’s no . . .”

Just when you THINK you know a person, he or she can start doing things that are *ahem* COMPLETELY OUT OF CHARACTER.  If there was any theme at all to Gossip Girl’s “Damien Darko” episode, I would say that would be it.  And yet, toward the end of the episode, people returned to acting JUST how you would expect them to act.  Thus, proving that, at the end of even the darkest of tunnels, a bright light will ultimately shine through . . .

“Chuck Bass . . . and no guest.  You may enter my dress.

Let’s review, shall we?

Blair plays nice(?), while Dan plays . .  . with himself

“Ak . . .  and now I’m sitting on a DIRTY FLOOR .  . . IN MY DESIGNER DRESS?  What the heck is WITH this episode?”

When the episode begins, Blair and her roomie Serena are preparing for the day ahead. 

In a rare turn of events, Serena is extremely chatty about her plans for the upcoming week (i.e. “To give my Ex-Con Teacher Friend an “I’m sorry my family TOTALLY ruined your life, but, as it turns out, you kind of deserved it, because you and your sister are ABSOLUTE NUTBAGS, who almost got me killed” F*&k, by Friday.”).  Blair, on the other hand, is alarmingly secretive about her To Do List. 

(OK, since when has Blair EVER kept quiet about her career, and / or plans for Eventual World Domination?  The only time Blair is supposed to be keeping secrets, is when she’s having Mindblowing Sex with Chuck, and doesn’t want anyone else to know about it . . . because they’d be way too jealous.)

“You know you love us  . . . together.  XOXO!”

And yet, it is absolutely essential for this Bizarro Plot of the Week that positively NO ONE, save Blair herself, know about the internship she supposedly worked so hard to secure, sometime between this week’s episode and last.  “I feel like I’m living with Don Draper,” remarks Serena.

No, Serena.   You WISH you were living with Don Draper.  I hear he “Likey The Blondes,” particularly ones that are young, extremely promiscuous, and have low self-esteem, like yourself.

Blair leaves the apartment, and meets up with her New Movie Buddy Dan, who, apparently, she’s been seeing quite a bit of, since their first Holiday Dalliance, during the mid-season finale.  (Somehow, I find it difficult to imagine Blair enjoying herself in a place where Popcorn and Soda in a Plastic Cup are the choicest items on the menu.)  It seems, based on the pair’s exchange, that these two have had plenty to talk about, during their nights out.  Everything from movies, to books, to art is discussed, analyzed, and promptly disagreed upon, in a matter of two minutes. 

And yet, during all this time, NEITHER Blair, nor Dan, has mentioned where he or she is planning to INTERN.  This is despite the fact that these two are SO scholarly and ambitious, that obtaining said internship SHOULD have been the PRIMARY thing on BOTH of their minds, ever since winter break concluded.  (I mean, it’s not like EITHER of them has been getting laid!)  But hey, Plot Devices . . . they are important, right?  So, Blair and Dan part ways, only to find themselves together again, just moments later, in the Copy Room of W Magazine.

“You want me to WHAT?  Collate?  What the hell is that supposed to mean?  You, over there, in the unfashionable suit, get Dorota on the phone and ask her to tell me what ‘collate’ means?”

Now, I find it a bit hard to believe that Blair — a girl, who just last week, memorized the entire biography of a woman on the Forbes list, and literally made a life-sized CHART of her day-to-day schedule, in order to secure an internship with her — wouldn’t even THINK to inquire as to whether there might be OTHER interns working with her at a company as large as the W Magazine.  In fact, the Blair WE know and love, would have probably collected a full dosseir on EACH of the other interns (Dan included), complete with their Deepest Darkest Secrets, and already begun the process of bringing each and every one of them down.  But, like I said, Plot Devices are important . . .

 “Epperly” Blair’s and Dan’s modelesque, but obviously business-minded, boss informs the group that they are all fighting for the same job — which appears to be an “assistant to the editor’s assistant” — sort of deal.  (Lesson to you future employers out there:  If you want to GUARANTEE a toxic environment within your workplace, THIS is how you do it.)  That being said, I actually saw a lot of promise in this storyline . . . intially. 

I pictured Dan and Blair banding together (They are members of the SAME Scooby Gang after all), to cleverly and hilariously weed out the other interns, only to engage one another in heated battle, during the final moments of the episode.  Unfortunately, that didn’t happen . . .

“W . . . T . . . F!”

I also expected for a place like W Magazine to engage its potential employees in a series of meaningful, Project Runway for Fashion Writers-esque competitions.  This way,  the “competitors” could truly showcase, which of them was the Best of the Best for the position.  What I got instead was Dan and Blair pretty much ignoring the rest of their competition (to their peril, I might add) and engaging in fundamentally idiotic battles over who made the best lattes, and who got to “handle the stapler.”  (Unfortunately, this is NOT a Euphemism for Sexual Activity).

All complaints aside, one part of GG’s take on The Devil Wears Prada 2:  Electric Boogaloo that I did enjoy, was when Blair distracted Dan from one of his menial office tasks, by shouting to him, “Oh, look!  It’s Georgina’s Baby!”

Do you remember that storyline?  Because Dan Humphrey probably wishes that you would forget it.

But when the interns actually are assigned a GENUINELY competitive task:  Who can get the most prestigious guest to attend Gossip Girl’s Fancy Party of the Week W Magazine’s promotional event?   . . .  well, that’s when things get REALLY bizarre.  As Convenient Plot Devices Luck would have it, both Dan and Blair somehow manage to get a hold of one another’s proposed guest lists.  Yet while Blair stupidly politely throws Dan’s list in the trash, determined to play fairly for once, DAN sabotages her, by preventing her prized guest from attending the event.

On the night of the party, Blair finds herself working the door, when, who should enter, but Chuck Bass.  Thus, begins, what, OF COURSE, was my favorite scene of the entire episode . . .

Source

BLAIR:  “Chuck Bass . . . and no guest.   You may enter.”

CHUCK:  Blair Waldorf . . . working the door.

BLAIR:  “I got an internship at W Magazine.”

CHUCK:  “Knowing you, you’ll be Editor and my wife by May.  Your plan is working.

BLAIR:  “So, it seems to be.”

And in that one small scene — surrounded, as it was, by abyss of woeful Chair-lessness – I found HOPE, for the couple I’ve grown to love over four seasons.  Though admittedly short, the interaction was pulsating with chemistry, sexual tension, longing looks, and above all, an unmatched sweetness.  This unique flavor of sweetness is one that Chuck and Blair reserve exclusively for one another.  Though, on occasion, they can be KIND to others (generous, and self-sacrificing even), never are these two driven, extremely serious, individuals EVER “sweet.”  Unless, of course, they are together, sharing a moment like this one.

Watching this scene, I couldn’t help but be reminded of Chuck’s words to Blair, during their painful breakup, back in “The Witches of Bushwick” episode,  “When two people are meant to be together, eventually they will find their way back.”

That, of course, is “The Plan” to which Chuck refers in the scene.  And that plan IS working.  Because as Blair mentioned during “The Witches of Bushwick,” she needs to chart her own path in life, before she can build a true and everlasting future with Chuck.  Succeeding at this internship, is her first step down that Golden Path . . .

So, of course, Dan has to go and screw it up, by sabatoging Blair’s party list, and, thereby, causing THIS to happen . . .

Source

And then this happens to both Dan and Blair . . .

Blair is NOT amused . . .

 (I would like to note, at this point, that I was searching for a picspam on the Dair tumblr page to insert into this recap.  And the mere act of doing so NEARLY gave me a virus.  My computer started doing all these weird scary things, and I had to unplug it quickly, before any more damage can be done.  I suspect this is either the result of Dair fans wanting revenge against me for my undying devotion to Chair, or the universe trying to tell me something . . .)

Anyway . . .

Back at the W offices, Blair and Dan are packing their things, when Blair reveals to Dan just how big of an ass he REALLY is.  As it turns out, Blair’s mom DIDN’T secure Blair this internship, as Dan (and most of us) assumed.  Instead, she stalked the office, like a crazy person, to get the job . . . creepily bombarding every fax machine in the office with her resume.

Then she KILLED the intern who was ACTUALLY supposed to get the position . . . just kidding!

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m loving this “New and Improved” Blair, who’s willing to actually work hard to get what she wants, as opposed to getting there through manipulation and nepotism.   And yet, I find it VERY hard to believe that Eleanor, one of New York’s Premier Designers, couldn’t get Blair an internship at W, by . . . say . . . offering its editor an exclusive peek at her Spring Line.  Nevertheless, I agree with Blair, that, Dan’s career aspirations and talents would be better suited with him working for an enterprise like The New Yorker.  (For the record, Lily got Dan HIS job . . . probably by paying off Epperley, or screwing the director of Human Resources, knowing her.)

“You wanted an internship.  I wanted THIS one,” argues Blair.

Dan then wondered out loud (as most of US wondered) why Blair didn’t sabotage Dan’s efforts to secure a guest for the party.  “Guess I must have an undiagnosed brain injury, because I stupidly thought this fake friendship might be real!”  Blair admits.

“Well, don’t I feel like a Douche!”

Ultimately, Dan redeems himself, by calling Epperley, and admitting that HE was the one who sabatoged Blair’s internship efforts, not the other way around.  He goes one step further, by fibbing that it was BLAIR, and not Dan, who got Dan’s famous guest to arrive at the party.  He even goes as far as to tell his former boss that HE started the knockdown, drag out, fight with Blair, just to make her look bad. 

It WAS a genuinely nice gesture on Dan’s part, I must admit — one that shows that Blair was right.  Her FRIENDSHIP with Dan is a real one.  And yet, I can’t help but notice that, having lost HIS internship already, Dan really had nothing to lose, by calling Epperley, and taking the blame for what had happened at the party.  Now, had only BLAIR been fired, thereby, forcing Dan to GIVE UP the position . . . so that she could have it, in his place . . . THAT would have been a special sacrificial act, indeed. 

(A missed opportunity, Gossip Girl writers!  If you want us Chair Fans to support a Dan and Blair hookup . . . even if it’s only a temporary one, which ultimately ends in a lasting friendship for the pair . . . you are going to have to work WAY harder than that!)

The next morning, Blair is sulking in bed with Serena, when Epperley calls her, to tell her she has her job back.  Blair has 15 minutes to get her butt to the office.  (You can’t get ANYWHERE in 15 minutes, in Manhattan!)  This probably would explain why Blair showed up at work looking like THIS . . .

Looks like SOMEONE raided SERENA’s closet, by accident . . . FISHNET STOCKINGS?  PINK SHORTS?  A GRANNY SWEATER?  SERIOUSLY, B?

In other news . . .

Strange (and boring) bedfellows

Chuck’s been doing the Horizontal Mambo with Raina, in hopes that she will fall so desperately in love with him, that she will convince her father not to buy out Bass Industries.  Riiiiight . . . because THAT always works.  (And by “always,” I mean “never.”)  Chuck, I’m disappointed in you.  Clearly, you need Blair on your side to help you come up with better Diabolical Plans.

Chuck’s eyes are closed, because he’s sleeping through this scene . . . as are most fans.

Chuck’s duller than dishwater scheme hits a bit of a snag, when he learns that Russell Thorpe has hired Nate’s ex-con dad to do his dirty work for him.  So, Chuck stupidly requests that Raina fire him.  Insulted that Chuck would have the GALL to mix business with pleasure (Clearly, this chick has never watched Gossip Girl before.)  Raina kicks Chuck out of her bed . . . for about an hour.  Then she takes him back.  *Yawn*

Speaking of Nate’s Coke addicted loser of a Papa . . . The Captain of Douchebaggery . . .

 . . . he’s positively SHOCKED that his son would even THINK that he, of all people, would sabotage Chuck’s business interests, while working for his corporate enemy.  So, the morally outraged Captain moves out of Nate’s house.  And then . . . wait for it . . . he tells Russell Thorpe that he is willing to sabotage Chuck’s business interests.  SURPRISE!

Eric Finally Gets His Own Plotline!  (YAY!) Too Bad its One That Makes Him Look Like a Gullible Moron (BOO!)

The Awkward Moment when you come home, to find your Ex-Boyfriend and your Mom engaged in an in-depth conversation about your Love Life, or lack thereof . . .

This week, we learn that, even though Eric CLAIMS to have been spending time with his boyfriend, Elliot, they actually broke up weeks ago.  (Way to spill the beans to Mom, LAME-O Ex Beau, Jonathan!)  Instead, Eric has been spending his time filling up on sleeping pills, and hanging out with Drug Dealing Damien — the same guy who (1) almost KILLED Serena, by dealing the drugs Juliet used to knock the poor girl unconscious; AND (2) almost date raped his former bestie, Little J a.k.a. Raccoon Zombie.

He’s still hot though . . . which, come to think of it, may be why Eric likes him so much.

Eric eventually comes clean to his family about what he’s been doing, these past few weeks.  But, alas, Mini van der Woodsen is SO very lonely, that when Drug Dealing Damien calls him, in the last few moments of the episode, with offers to “be his friend,” Eric accepts the invitation without a single moment of questioning or hesitation.  Well, this certainly doesn’t look good . . .

Speaking of Drug Dealing Damien, his Call of Friendship to Eric seems to be in response to a recent threat he received from Ex Con,  Ben (or, as I like to call him, Professor Pedophile) who warned the Triple D to stay away from Serena’s family, even thoughProfessor Pedo claimed earlier in the episode that he had “no romantic feelings for Serena, AT ALL.”

“That’s not really true, Serena.  I dreamed about you in prison . .  .  every single time I dropped the soap.”

Regarding the Happily Now-Of-Age Sort-of / Kind of Couple . . .

Serena is in love AGAIN!  (It must be a Monday!)

It appears that Eric isn’t the only van der Woodsen that’s a Glutton for Punishment.  No matter that Ben had Nate’s dad beat up in prison, and hired his own sister to basically ruin Serena’s life for the entire first half of the season, Serena is positively smitten with Professor Pedo.  And when he tells her that he’s leaving town in a few days to start an Organic Farm in Ithaca (?)  (Oh, Professor, you are SO on the wrong show!), Serena is positively heartbroken.  She’s even more shocked to learn that Professor Pedo isn’t living on his friend’s couch, as he mentioned, but at a Super Seedy Halfway House  . . .

It should, perhaps, be noted that Serena defines a “Super Seedy Halfway House” as anything below 80th street  . . .

At the Gossip Girl Fancy Party of the Week, Serena’s affection for Professor Pedo grows, when he offers some “fatherly” (hint, hint, wink, wink) advice to Eric about staying away from drug dealers like Damien (and ex cons, like himself, and the Captain of Douchebaggery).  Then, Ben actually goes so far as to REJECT Serena’s romantic advances.  This nearly sends the Masochistic, Serial Dumping, S to her knees, with orgasmic pleasure. 

“Yes . . . yes . . . yes!  Reject me!  Say you hate me!  Treat me like crap, and try to have me murdered!  MORE!  MORE!  MORE!”

So, of course, Serena is flabbergasted, though not exactly surprised, to find that Evil Mommy Dearest Lily (who redeemed herself in fans eyes for precisely two seconds, by getting Ben released from jail) had tried, once again, to use her money and influence to keep Professor Pedo out of the van der Woodsen’s lives for good. 

Ben refuses the money, however.  And this prompts Rufus to take him on as a tenant.  Serena is POSITIVELY THRILLED with this new development.  But it just makes me nervous . . . really nervous. 

And that’s all I’ve got on Damien Darko.  But, of course, I’d love to hear YOUR thoughts on the episode!

Until next time . . . XOXO!

[www.juliekushner.com]

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It’s All “Relative” – A Recap of Gossip Girl’s “The Kids Are Not All Right”

Welcome Back, GGers!  I’ve MISSED you!  Heck, I’ve missed ALL my favorite Upper East Siders!  It’s definitely been a long and dark December, without a hint of gossip, a dollop of scandal, or a heaping helping of Limosine Sex, to keep me warm . . .

And, honestly, I think it’s BECAUSE I missed this show, and these characters, so much, that I had such a great deal of trouble sitting down to write this recap.  You see, I really, REALLY wanted to kick off the second half of the fourth season of Gossip Girl, by writing an energetic, fun, and, above all, extremely positive, recap, of which I could truly be proud.  But then, I watched this episode . . . and . . . well . . .

 . . . Suffice it to say, I had some “less than positive” things to say about it.

OK . . . I know what you’re thinking!  I can practically feel you rolling your eyes at me from your computer screen . . .

Your thinking to yourself, of course SHE didn’t like the episode!  SHE is a crazed, unapologetically biased, Chair Fan.  And “The Kids Are Not All Right,” not only featured virtually NO interaction between Chuck and Blair whatsoever, it also depicted both characters getting “friendly” with other members of the opposite sex, from OTHER “Ships.”

Good point!  But it’s not ALL about that!  REALLY!  I mean, surely, I’ve enjoyed at least SOME GG episodes that didn’t feature solid Chuck and Blair scenes in them. 

I mean . . . I can’t really think of any right now.  But I’m willing to bet they exist! 🙂

In all seriousness, it was the STORYLINES of “The Kids Are Not All Right” that really bugged me:  Another “Battle for Bass Industries” . . . 

 

 . . . another situation, where Blair schemes to get some “prestigious” internship with some fancy One-Week-Wonder Guest Star, only to have it ultimately blow up in her face . . .

 .  .  another storyline where Dan fumbles a “great” opportunity, because he’s too busy following Serena around like a puppy dog to care about his own life . . .  

 . . . another Nate’s Deadbeat Dad storyline . . . COME ON, Gossip Girl!  These aren’t the fun, sexy, and uniquely scandalous storylines that have kept us coming back, week after week, for FOUR YEARS NOW!

That being said . . . I thought a lot about how I could write this recap, and keep it “positive.”  I explored a lot of options.  I even considered MAKING UP STUFF, and pretending that it happened in the episode — thereby, turning this “recap” into what would essentially be a glorified Chair fanfiction . . .

Not that there’s anything wrong with that!

And that’s when it hit me .  . .

I don’t NEED to insert any fake Chair scenes into this episode, because this episode is ALREADY ALL about Chair . . . and (unfortunately, for me, because I’m a Serenate fan) Derena.  Specifically, “The Kids Are All Right” is about how these two seemingly volatile couples are both essentially DESTINED to be the “Endgame” in Gossip Girl world! 

(Suddenly, I’m liking this episode a WHOLE lot better . . .)

Confused?  Allow me to help you examine “The Kids Are Not All Right” from what I’d like to call the “Chair Perspective.”  (Oh, and for those of you who aren’t Chair fans, you may want to skip down to the words THE END at the bottom of this VERY Chair-full recap section.  I don’t want to make you any madder at me, than you probably already are. ;))

The Chair Perspective – Blair’s Path to Greatness

Remember “The Witches of Bushwick” episode?  If so, then you probably recall how Chuck and Blair FINALLY mutually confessed their love for one another, only to break up outside the Empire Hotel, moments later, so that Blair could try and “find herself.”  Here are some of the “highlights” of that heartbreaking scene:

BLAIR:  “I followed my heart all last year, and it got me no where.  Now I need to follow my head . . . I have to be Blair Waldorf, before I can be Chuck Bass’ Girlfriend.

CHUCK:  “I love you.”

BLAIR:  “I love you too . . . I don’t expect you to wait.”

CHUCK: “If two people are meant to be together, eventually they will find their way back.”

A pointless breakup of two soulmates, you say?  ABSOLUTELY!  🙂  And yet, the above scene is very meaningful, in terms of this episode!  You see, Blair always knew she didn’t want to simply follow in her mother’s footsteps, or live off her family’s wealth. 

Blair wants to chart her own path, and be a successful, powerful woman, in her own right.  But, up until this point, she had NO CLUE what that path was!  That’s why she always got her ideas for internships and extracurriculars activity ideas out of Forbes Magazine, as opposed to by picking her own brain.  Yet, this week, with the help of her new buddy, Dan (Yes, I said Dan . . . and “buddy,” of course) as well as the support of her mother, Blair, for lack of a better term, finally figured out what she “wants to be when she grows up.” 

Chair Fans, Blair Waldorf is destined to be the next Anna Wintour!   

She’s the editor of Vogue, in case you were wondering.

And once Blair is confident that she can successfully achieve that goal, she will be ready to begin the lifelong relationship with Chuck that we all know she is destined to have.  In real life, “finding yourself” can take years, maybe even a lifetime!  But in TV land, it takes approximately “four episodes” . . . 

“If two people are meant to be together, they will find their way back [to eachother],” says Chuck Bass. 

And, if my predictions are correct, Blair should be “back” to Chuck in four-to-six episodes . . .  Sound good?

But What About Chuck?

Chuck may not have been as adamant about it as Blair was, but he also needs to find himself, before he can enter into a livelong relationship with Blair.  Unlike his soulmate, who has spent her whole life striving for success, Chuck merely allowed it to be handed to him.  The Chuck Bass we met during Seasons 1 and 2, cared little about academics, and only slightly more about his father’s business and finances.  He was much more interested in booze and sex. 

Chuck inherited Bass Industries.  He never had to work for it.  And in the first few months of his ownership of the company, he squandered his wealth and the company’s good name.  So, his stepmother, Lily had to step in, and take the reigns for him. 

Now Chuck is at risk to lose Bass Industries once again.  And this time, Lily can’t help him.  This time, Chuck must prove to himself, (and to rest of New York City) that HE is not just the slacker son of a Real Estate Magnate, but a force to be reckoned with — an adult, who is capable of running a successful Empire (and Empire Hotel, of course).  Only when Chuck has accomplished this, will he feel truly worthy of Blair, or at least, of the strong powerful business woman that she is destined to become.

This is why this whole (admittedly snoozy) Bass Industries storyline, is essential to the Chair Endgame.  It is forcing Chuck to prove himself, in a professional way, and on his own merits, without his parents, step-parents, or his slimy older brother to lift him up, if he falls.

So what’s the deal with Dair?  (And why are Chuck and Serena getting so pal-y all the sudden?  Because, that’s just creepy!)

Watching Dan interact with Serena this week, proved to me that he and Blair are in effectively the same place, in terms of their respective relationships.  Both Dan and Blair are more studious, and hardworking than their counterparts.  And yet, they also tend to sacrifice more of their own success and happiness for that of their significant others, due to their generally giving (albeit, slightly judgmental) natures.  Blair mentioned in “The Witches of Bushwick” that she followed her heart for a year, and it got her nowhere.  Dan might have said the same thing, if he had more lines, during that episode . . .

No less than THREE times, during this episode, Dan gave up his own plans, and even a JOB INTERVIEW, to cater to Serena’s whim.  And each time, she DITCHED HIS ass!  To echo Blair’s now-iconic words, Dan REALLY needs to become Dan Humphrey, before he can become Serena van der Woodsen’s boyfriend!  And who better to help him chart that path (platonically, I hope!), than the one woman who wants to achieve the exact same thing, for herself?

We know that Dan helped Blair out this week, by letting her know that she was a “Dictator of Taste,” someone who let people know, in no uncertain terms, that “tights are NOT pants” (Nice Season 1 reference, Humphrey!)  This, of course, helped Blair to figure out that she wanted to one day become the Editor (Editrix?) of a Fashion Magazine

But Blair helped Dan too!   She told Serena, that she couldn’t keep stringing her poor dopey dog of a boyfriend on such a short leash, and just expect him to roll over and play dead for her, forever.  And it was this conversation between the two besties, that ultimately allowed Serena to see the sh*tty way she was treating Dan.  Basically, it convinced her to break things off with him now, so the pair could get back together, later.  (Sound familiar?)

In essence, Serena’s breakup with Dan this week, almost perfectly mirrored Chuck’s with Blair, in “The Witches of Bushwick,” in that both pairs needed to find themselves, individually, in the short term, to salvage their relationships, in the long term.  “We either sink or swim.  We won’t get another chance,” Serena tells Dan.  “So, when we try again, we better be ready.”

This brings us to Serena and Chuck.  (YES!  They are related . . . in more ways than one. :))

Like Chuck, Serena has never been exactly what you would call, “ambitious.”  Both Upper East Siders have reputations for being hard partiers, and more than a bit slutty . . . *cough the Raccoon Zombie Sex Incident cough*  Up to this point, both Chuck and Serena have gotten where they are in life, through a mix of good luck, and unadulterated nepotism. 

So, while Chuck needs to break free from Lily, to prove to himself he can run Bass Industries on his own, Serena needs to break free from her mother too, to prove to herself that she’s more than just the van der Woodsen heiress getting wasted on page 6 of the Post, she’s her own Slutty  Person!  So, Chuck and Serena can help one another achieve their goals, in the same way that Dan and Blair can help one another achieve their’s.

And when that’s all said and done (hopefully, in approximately four episodes), . . .

 .  . . everything will be exactly how it’s supposed to be.  (Well, unless you prefer Serena with Nate, like I do.  But we can’t have EVERYTHING we want, can we?)

THE END(GAME)!

And now, for those other storylines I mentioned earlier. . .

Nate’s Dad is The Captain (of a Sinking Ship)

This question is specifically directed to those of you who have spent time in prison.  (Don’t worry, I won’t ask for names!)  Remember when Nate’s dad, “The Captain” looked like THIS?

Well, what the heck HAPPENED to him in the pokey, that he now looks like Uncle Fester, from the Addams Family?

You might have just assumed that the ACTOR (Sam Robards) who plays “The Captain” has merely lost his hair, and put on a few pounds, since we last saw him.  But, really, FOUR YEARS is NOT THAT LONG!  I think the costume department suggested this “new look” for Howard Archibald.  My question is, “Why?” 

I always thought folks in TOUGH High Security Prisons (where “wrongly accused” teachers got other inmates to beat the crap out of you, just to “teach their baby sister a lesson)” did nothing all day, but lift weights, do push ups, run laps around the track, and try not to drop the soap in the communal shower.  But apparently, I was mistaken.  Is prison food really THAT good?  Just saying . . .

So, anyway, The Captain is living with Nate, and has basically become a total leech, and waste of life.  Rather than abide by the conditions of his parole, and get a job, “The Captain” prefers instead to boink the help (who are helpfully clad in French Maid Halloween costumes, just in case we couldn’t figure out what they did for a living), and play Nate’s Wii in his hotel apartment. 

The Captain later tells Nate that this is because he’s “too good” for janitor work.  Nate, understandably doesn’t buy it.

 

And yet, “The Captain” seems to catch a TOTALLY undeserved career break, when the EEEEEVVVILL Russell Thorpe hires him to do . . . well . . .  heck if I KNOW!  Whatever it is, I strongly suspect that “The Captain’s” undoubtedly job description will end up making janitors look like Mother Theresa, by comparison . . .  (I don’t buy for a second, that Russell didn’t know about The Captain’s incarceration, just because he used to live in Chicago, instead of NYC.  Do you?)

Speaking of Bass Industries (and Russell Thorpe) . . .

Upon learning that Lily has designs on selling his company out from under Chuck’s nose, Chuck seeks out the help of a man who used to be business associates with his father, a Chicago Tycoon, named Russell Thorpe.

What Chuck doesn’t know, at least, until the end of the episode, is that Lily was actually selling the business to a benevolent third party, who would keep the Bass name in tact, and prevent the now-financially destitute company from going up on the auction block.  Oh, and that “friend” of Bart Bass, Russell Thorpe?  He actually HATED Chuck’s dad with a passion!  (Who didn’t, right?)  So, of course, upon learning from Chuck that Bass Industries is being sold, Thorpe blocks the sale, so that HE can buy the company at auction price, and sell it for parts, as a form of revenge against the dearly departed (Debarted?) Bart.

How does Chuck respond to this total threat to his financial health, and good name, you ask?  Well, by SCREWING Russell’s daughter, Raina, of course! 

Screwing people, after all, IS what Chuck Bass does best!  (Just ask Blair!)

But Chuck Bass isn’t the only one, who has seemingly misread Lily van der Woodsen’s intentions.   Serena screwed up as well.  With Chuck’s help (and armed with Lily’s Glamour Shots-looking passport) . . .

(Seriously, who’s passport photo actually LOOKS like this?  Mine is so scary looking, it actually breaks MIRRORS, when I leave it to close to them!)

  . . . Serena somehow convinces a clearly BLIND bank manager that she is her 40-something year old mother, and that Chuck is her SON!

Way to keep the storylines plausible, Writers!

This allows Serena and Chuck to go digging through Lily’s safety deposit box at the bank.   And, lo and behold, in there they find the fake affidavit that Lily signed on Serena’s behalf,  to put Juliet’s brother Professor Ben away for a sex act he didn’t commit.  (Actually, Professor Ben may be the ONLY man on the East coast who HASN’T slept with Serena . . .)

Chuck and Serena plan to show this affidavit to the judge who originally signed off on it, and prove to him that it’s a fraud, thereby ensuring Ben’s release.  And yet, the Judge seems to have flown the coop .  . . or has he?  With Little Eric van der Woodsen’s help, Serena learns that the Judge had been staying at the Empire at Lily’s behest, but has now left town.  Could Lily have been paying the judge off, to stay hidden, so that her daughter couldn’t FIND HIM?

THE HORROR!

When Serena confronts Lily with the incriminating affidavit, at the episode’s Fancy Party of the Week, Lily balks at the idea that she has done anything wrong.  And yet the argument, causes a stir among the partygoers, illustrating publicly the unrest that exists between the Bass-van der Woodsen families.  And it is this unrest that Russell Thorpe is ultimately able to capitalize on, when he is making a play for Bass Industries . . .

And yet, as it turns out, Lily ends up not being as BIG of an A**HOLE as we once thought she was!  Because, at the end of the episode, when Serena goes back to the jail to visit Ben, she learns that Judge in question has already released him from jail, thanks to the presumably well-intentioned efforts of Lily, herself.

But, you know, Serena!  This girl is absolutely incapable of ending an episode, without doing something self-destructive and stupid.  And so, she meets up with former-convict Ben (who is creepily waiting for her outside the jail, even though he was released HOURS ago), and invites him for sex coffee.  Need I remind you that this is the same guy who “hired” his baby sister to ruin Serena’s life, not to mention, the same guy who had The Captain ground to a pulp, by his fellow inmates, just to keep that same baby sister in line, when she started to develop a conscience?

Oh, Serena!  You SURE know how to pick ’em! 

Until next time, folks . . . XOXO!

[www.juliekushner.com]

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Adventures in REALLY Bad Parenting – A Recap of Gossip Girl’s “The Townie”

“OK . . . when MY family looks like the most functional one on the show . . . something is VERY wrong.”

Remember, back in the old days, of television teen dramas, when parents were seen, and not heard?

“Jim, it’s 9:53 p.m.  Time to sit on Brandon’s bed, and teach him the Moral of the Episode.”

I mean, sure.  They had their own lives.  Sometimes, they even had their own usually boring storylines!  But, aside from giving the kids their regularly scheduled groundings, and offering some “sage advice” toward the end of the episode, when it came to teen dramas, TV Parents’ and TV Kids’ lives rarely intertwined. 

Well, boys and girls, those days are over.  It’s 2010 (almost 2011).  And, that means your TV Parents can ruin your lives, just as easily as your ex-boyfriends and frenemies can . . .

Be afraid . . . be very afraid.

Let’s recap, shall we?

A Very Dair Roadtrip

“So, this is what Middle Class Suburbs look like!  I’ve read about them in books, but didn’t believe they actually existed.”

When we last left Blair, she had just found herself an unlikely co-star to act alongside of her in The Rescue Serena Saga, Part 542.  That ally was . . . wait for it . . . Dan.

“Yeah, I’m as confused as you are.”

The first stop on the pair’s Random Couple World Tour was the Ostroff Center, where Serena had voluntarily committed herself for a drug binge she didn’t commit . . . well . . . at least not on purpose.  The two hope to spring Serena from the pokey, so that the three of them can work together to bring Juliet down for drugging “S,” and making her look like the female version of Charlie Sheen . . .

S and CS:  Separated at birth?

Blair and Dan are shocked to learn that Serena isn’t accepting ANY visitors at the center for 72 hours, not even best friends, or sort-of boyfriends (who she feigns deep attraction for, when the script requires it).  And so, our Upper East Side Scooby Gang’s resident Daphne and Velma . . .

Bet you can’t guess which one I think is Velma! 😉

 . . . decide to bring down Juliet, all by their lonesome.  But where can she be? 

In a moment of stupefying plot convenience, Blair and Dan turn directly to THE Gossip Girl for help.  And, because:

 (1) without the Upper East Side Scooby Gang, Gossip Girl wouldn’t have her SAG card;

(2) Gossip Girl hates Juliet as much as the fans do, ever since that biatch hooked up with Dullnessa and the Raccoon Zombie; and

(3) in addition to her vast network of snoopers around NYC, the Hamptons, and Paris, Gossip Girl also, apparently, is friends with some random Mail Guy in suburban Connecticut . . .

 . . . the show’s narrator quickly responds to Dan’s inquiry with Juliet’s current location, as well as a special request: “Find the b*tch!”

No one messes with Veronica Mars Gossip Girl, and lives to tell the tale . . .

So, off Blair and Dan head on their first official roadtrip together.  While en route to Connecticut, the unlikely pair bicker like an old married couple (and I don’t necessarily mean that in a good way) . . .

Sexy!

Blair acts like the quintessential backseat driver, cleverly noting that, if she put her feet through the floor of Dan’s ancient car, and started running, they would arrive at their destination faster than with Dan’s turtle-esque driving . . .

Yabba, Dabba, Don’t!

Dan responds back that at least he knows how to drive, which is more than can be said for Blair.

Why drive yourself, when you can take a limo AND get laid at the same time?

Blair also astutely notes that Lonely Boy — a supposed “Brilliant Writer” — hasn’t exactly been Mr. Prolific Novelist of late, having spent all his spare time pining over Serena and Dullnessa and/or screwing  playing video games with his Ambiguously Gay Duo partner, Nate. 

Even I must admit that the fact that Blair, in her snide way, encourages Dan to nurture his passion for writing (something NOBODY else on this show, not even his parents, has cared enough to do yet), supports their compatibility as friends.  I repeat . . . FRIENDS!  (Can’t anybody have a platonic relationship with someone of the opposite sex on this show, anymore?)

Yeah  . . . you and the Raccoon Zombie don’t really count because she’s not really human.  Sorry, Buddy! 

Drugs = BAD!  Drug Dealing Damien = GOOD!

When Blair and Dan arrive at Juliet’s last known whereabouts, they are SHOCKED to walk into a HOUSE PARTY, where teens wear NON-DESIGNER CLOTHES . . . and listen to NELLY . . . and play POOL . . . and smoke GANJA . . . and drink CHEAP BEER.

SHE HAS A PIERCING!  OH, THE HORROR!

“We’re not in the Upper East Side anymore, Toto.”

 Although Blair and Dan are unable to locate Juliet at the party, they do find someone WAY BETTER (at least, in my opinion).

It’s Drug Dealing Damien!  Or, as I like to call him, Triple D-light!

You might remember Damien from his guest-starring role in The Only Storyline Where Raccoon Zombie was Mildly Likeable and/or Interesting.  Blair and Dan approach Damien, and the threesome decide to take a little stroll outside . . .  (Was I the only one who was kind of hoping they’d all smoke some weed together?  If any two people on this show need to loosen up, its Dan and Blair.)

“I beg to differ, TV Recapper.  Blair can be VERY loose, when she wants to be . . .”

Anyway  . . .

Through Damien (and some very goofy flashbacks) we learn that when Serena left town, after screwing Nate and accidentally sort of killing that Pete Guy, she briefly attended the Nightly School (Now, if that’s not a school name straight out of a porno, I don’t know what is), when Triple D-light was also matriculating there.  Apparently, before Drug Dealing Damien dropped out of school, and became the cool badass Jared Leto-lookalike he is now . . .

 . . . he was a surprisingly geeky Troy Bolton from High School Musical type (a.k.a. Zac Efron) . . .

Seriously, I can’t tell them apart!

 . . . who used to pine over Serena, and do her homework for her, while she drank absinthe, and badly danced around her dorm, like a hippy on LSD, or the lead in a straight-to-video sequel to Moulin Rouge . . .

Unfortunately, I was unable to locate a GIF of Serena dancing like a drugged out dork, from this week’s episode.  So, just imagine her doing exactly what she’s doing in the GIF above . . . only BY HERSELF!

Absinthe:  Making people dance like drugged out dorks, since WAY before anyone from the cast of Gossip Girl was born!

In addition to knowing Serena in her pre – Gossip Girl days, Damien also knew Juliet, who was, as Damien described her, a Townie.  When Damien last saw Juliet, she made a MAJOR drug purchase from him — one which included some hardcore rufies.  Damien seems SHOCKED to learn that Juliet bought the drugs to gaslight, and almost, kill Serena. 

“I thought she was just throwing a party,” exclaims Damien.  (Ummmm . . . a Rufie Party?  Nice try, Damien.) 

If you weren’t so gosh darn attractive, I’d totally hate you, right now. 

Nevertheless, Damien seems genuinely concerned with Serena’s welfare.  In fact, Triple D-light feels guilty enough about his part in what happened to his former luuuuve, that he agrees to help Blair and Dan locate Juliet’s house.  As the threesome pile into Dan’s Clown Car, Juliet spots them, and hides under her steering wheel, like the cowardly b*tch she is.

“Awwww, CRAP!”

Once they are safely out of sight, Juliet calls Jailhouse Ben, and tells him that she plans to return to NYC to “finish this herself.”  Ben, who was the same psychopath who GOT NATE’S DAD BEAT UP IN PRISON, JUST SO JULIET WOULDN”T SLEEP WITH NATE (Seriously, writers, what were you thinking when you wrote that scene?), once again, has a crisis of conscience.  He warns Juliet not to hurt Serena AGAIN.  And then, when his baby sister hangs up on his ass  . . .

“You HUNG UP ON ME, Lil Sis?  Oh, I am so pulling your hair and giving you a wedgie, when I get home!”

 .  . . Ben yells to Nate (who has conveniently entered the jail to see his father, at that EXACT moment) that he has to go protect Serena from Juliet.  Unfortunately, Nate is genetically incapable of doing anything on his own . . .

“Individuality is HARD!  Where’s the other half of my Ambiguously Gay Duo when I need him?”

And, therefore, puts in a call to Dan and Blair, at Juliet’s house . . . so that they can change his diaper do the dirty work for him. 

Meanwhile . . .

The Scooby Gang Makes a Discovery . . .

“Don’t hate me, because I spawned Juliet.  It could have been worse.  I could have spawned Raccoon Zombie.”

“Hey!  I resemble that remark!”

 Moments after Dair and Triple D-light arrive at La Casa de Juliet, Juliet’s mom inexplicably, and conveniently, drops a bombshell on them.  As it turns out, Juliet’s brother Ben, who’s last name is “Donovan” taught at the Nightly School.  Then, he was fired and incarcerated for engaging in sexual relations with a young student named . . . you guessed it . . . Serena van der Woodsen.

DUH! SURPRISE!

I smell a flashback coming on . . .

Serena and Teacher Sitting in a Tree, F-U-C . . . (Well . . . you know the rest.)

The more things change, the more they stay the same.  Apparently, four years ago, Serena was the same slutty, hard-drinking, lousy student that she is today.  And yet, also like today (well, more like yesterday, or last week, or whenever those Professor Hotpants Colin episodes aired) . . .

Just refreshing your memory . . .

 . . . Serena soon found a reason to reform and become a “good girl.”  That reason was that she was Hot for Teacher.  And that teacher was Professor Hotpants Colin Mr. Donovan.  Suddenly, Serena and Ben were spending A LOT of time together, talking about books, and frolicking in the rain.

But things went south fast, when Mr. Donovan and Serena entered a hotel to seek shelter from the rain one night, and Serena propositioned Ben to get a room with her.  Ben, more or less, admitted that he shared Serena’s romantic feelings, but did not want to cross the line with her, due to her student status.  In a chat with her therapist at the Ostroff Center, Serena admits that this was her FIRST (and, possibly, only) romantic rejection EVER.  (Must be nice.)  After the encounter, Mr. Donovan and Serena basically broke contact with one another. 

So, basically, Ben and Serena never SCREWED.  And yet, Ben Donovan ended up in jail . . . with his crazy sister plotting revenge on his behalf.  Why?

Evil has a new name: Mom

Back in the Upper East Side, Juliet has magically beamed herself from Connecticut to New York in a matter of SECONDS!  She’s also instantly appeared in the bedroom of Serena’s high security rehab center.  (Juliet is clearly a vampire, ghost, or an extra from the cast of Star Trek.)  When Serena returns to her room, after her therapy session, and finds Juliet there, I get REALLY excited about the AWESOME Cat Fight, I just KNOW is going to break out. 

Then, I remember this is SERENA, and not Blair . . .

So, of course, nothing fun happens.  Juliet explains to Serena how, four years ago, a lawyer showed Ben an affidavit, supposedly signed by then-minor Serena, stating that Teacher Ben crossed state lines, and “statutorily raped” her. 

Serena’s “family” didn’t want news of the occurrence in the papers, so they struck a deal with Ben’s attorney.  Ben would get minimal jailtime, if he didn’t contest the charge.  He also wouldn’t appear on the Child Sex Offender Registry.  (You’ve got to love Gossip Girl writers, and their COMPLETE lack of knowledge, regarding anything relating the legal system.)  So, now, Ben is in jail for a crime he didn’t commit, and Juliet is out for revenge.  But, who signed Serena’s name on the affidavit, if not Serena, herself?

*Insert scary music here*

By the time Blair, Dan, and Drug Dealing Damien arrive back at the Upper East Side, Serena is home and hanging out, bizarrely enough, with Juliet, who she invites to her mother’s Snooty Party.

Ummmm, Serena.  What the heck is wrong with you?  Have you even watched this past season of Gossip Girl?  Do you have any idea how much crap this evil biatch has done to you?

And yet, Serena is determined to confront her mother, about what she did to Ben, and by extension, to Serena.  So, the crew heads down to the party.  There, they encounter Eric, who hilariously confronts Drug Dealing Damien for the first time since that whole “Make Jenny into a Drug Dealer” Incident.

“Are you looking for another virgin to be your drug mule?”  Eric asks Triple D-light conversationally.

“I was going to say, ‘Why?  Are YOU available?’ but I won’t, because I’m leaving,” snarks Damien, before exiting stage left. 

(Man, I love that guy!)

Serena confronts her mother, and tries to talk to her privately about the Statutory Rape Affidavit.  But Lily blows her off, trying desperately to keep up the appearance that she comes from a loving and happy family.  So, Serena gets her mother’s attention the only way she knows how, by publicly humiliating her. 

Then, the entire Non Judging Breakfast Club (and Juliet and Rufus) confront Lily about what she has done.  B*tchface has NO QUALMS whatsoever about admitting that she brought charges against Ben — based on rumor alone — so that the private schools back in NYC would take pity on Serena, despite her crap grades and generalized sluttiness.

“This is incredibly stressful for me.  I need a drink.  Anyone got some absinthe?”

At this point, everyone is looking at Lily, as though, they want to tie her to a chair and force her to watch weeks and weeks of  Jersey Shore marathons on television.  And yet, Lily finds an unlikely ally in, who else, but THE Chuck Bass . . .

“I RULE!”

Chuck (stupidly) argues that it is TOTALLY OK that Lily sent an innocent man to prison, so her daughter can get into private school, because, “Everyone does things to protect the people they love.”

“Watch Chuck wear protection, while inside the woman he loves.”

But then RUFUS, of all people, pops Chuck’s “I Heart Lily” bubble, by spilling the beans that his Darling Wife plans to sell The Empire Hotel out from right under Chuck’s nose!

This is despite the fact that Chuck DEEDED the Hotel to Lily TEMPORARILY because she was “family,” and he TRUSTED her to manage it, during the short time in which he was unable to do so.  Chuck, of course, is disgusted.  Rufus is disgusted.  Everyone is disgusted.  (That’s a lot of disgust for single scene!)

As for Juliet, she agrees to leave Serena alone, after “S” promises to get her brother out of jail.

SAYONARA, SUCKA!

Cut to . . .

ONE WEEK LATER  .  . .

It is during these last few moments of the episode, when the most shocking events of the hour occur . ..

(1) The Non Judging Breakfast Club COOKS a CHRISTMAS DINNER, WITHOUT MAIDS . . . or DOROTA!

“Prepare for the end.  The apocalypse has clearly arrived.”

(2) To take the Empire back from Lily, Chuck decides to form an alliance with . . . JACK BASS!

“I’m BAAAAACK!”

(By the way, before Chuck left the dinner, he said what, in my opinion, was the funniest line of the ENTIRE episode, “Goodbye Friends . . . and Dan.”)

Apparently, Blair thought it was funny too . . .

(3) Serena visited the Much-Less-Creepy-Than-We-Originally-Thought (except for the whole Getting Nate’s Dad Beat Up Thing) Ben.  She did so by herself, after Dan turned down her roadtrip invitation (which, in and of itself, is kind of shocking, when you think about it).

“Rejected twice in a single episode.  Oh, the humanity!”

(4) Nate made the HUGE mistake of allowing his drug addict felon father move in with him, upon being released from jail.

Yeah, that’s not going to end well . . .

And, finally . . . the most SHOCKING of all . . .

(5) Dan and Blair admit that they have the same taste in DOCUMENTARIES!

They also WASH DISHES . . . BY HAND . . . TOGETHER!

“You’re telling me that Blair knows how to wash dishes?  BULLSH*T!”

Is there nothing sacred in the Upper East Side, anymore?

And, since, there won’t be any new Gossip Girl episodes until January 24th . . .

We feel your pain, Blair!

 . . . and since this episode was all about flashbacks, I invite you to take a trip down Memory Lane — and whet your whistle for next year’s Gossip Girl episodes — by watching this very well-done fan video (created by theunwrittenpast), which features memorable clips from the show’s groundbreaking first season . . .

Until next year . . . xoxo!

[www.juliekushner.com]

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