I’m pretty sure this kind of thing happens at least once every season. Except, this time, Serena has raised the stakes, by discovering the art of camouflage. Seriously! Who else, besides Serena, would dress to match the curtains at a fashion event?
I never thought it would happen, but after four seasons of scheming, cattiness, and hijinks, our Upper East Side crew is FINALLY showing some signs of maturity . . . well, some of them are, at least. Others are . . . well . . . not.
So, without further adieu, let’s take a look back at this episode, to find out which characters are still in diapers . . .
. . . and who got to graduate to Big Boy Pants!
Gossip Girl gets an Upgrade. Serena gets Downsized.
When the episode begins, Serena and Blair are preparing for their first day at Columbia University.
Unfortuntely, their first day of school just so happens to be a very dark day on the Upper West Side. As it turns out . . . the Gossip Girl website is temporarily DOWN.
Clearly, this is a tragedy of EPIC proportions, especially for Blair, who just so happens to be one of those people . . .
. . . who is simply not happy, unless some low rent media entity is documenting her every move. As their first official order of business as new Columbia students, Blair and Serena . . . go to class. HAHA! JUST KIDDING! We don’t do actually that on this show . . .
Instead, Blair and Serena head off to the “Hamilton House” (i.e. this season’s version of the “secret society” Blair tries to join every year, whose members’ innate snobbery and elite status cause our Queen Bee to temporarily forget who her REAL friends are) . . .
It’s not just for cans and bottles any more. We do it for PLOTLINES too!
As Blair and Serena enter the insanely stuck up Hamilton House, Serena notes her very familiar surroundings, and gripes, “I thought college would be different from high school.”
“Who would want that?” Blair inquires, without an ounce of humor or irony in her voice. (You gotta love Blair!)
Speaking of high school, just moments after arriving, the girls encounter a “old friend” from “back in the day” (i.e. two years ago).
It’s Perpetual Queen Bee Runner Up, PENELOPE!
And, I am happy to report, that she is just as much of a saucy biatch, as she was in high school! After Penelope and Blair exchange a few bitter barbs for old time’s sake, the diva reveals that one of her ancestors was a founding member of the Hamilton House. This accident of birth makes Penelope a legacy at Hamilton House, and and automatic club member. Fortunately for Blair, Penelope is NOT, however, the Key Master, i.e. the person responsible for personally inviting new members to join the club.
Poor Penelope! Always a minion, never a royal!
But, you know who IS Key Master at Hamilton House? THIS GIRL . . .
It’s Crazy Potential Psycho Stalker, Juliet Sharp, of course! (Clearly, Hamilton House is a VERY classy establishment, if they are letting homicidal maniacs join.) When Blair and Serena approach Juliet for their keys to the club, Looney Tunes herself surprises EVERYBODY (well, at least everybody who didn’t see the trailer for the episode, before it aired), by offering a club key to Blair . . . and NOT SERENA!
At that very moment, Gossip Girl comes back online with a BRAND NEW FEATURE. It’s called Live Video Streaming, and it’s like Botox for websites.
The Video Stream shows Serena getting rejected by Hamilton House, as a politely reserved, but secretly smug, Blair fondles her new key to the kingdom elite Columbia society. Of course, this poses the very important question of WHO is Gossip Girl, that she was able to get such close-up footage of the girls at this elite event? You see, in the past, any onlooker could have sent Gossip Girl the pictures and intel that the site happened to be seeking at the time.
However, seeing as the GG site had been down for a period of time; and, presumably no one, except Gossip Girl herself (or himself), knew at the time that the site had video capabilities, that pretty much narrows the suspects down to someone in that room. Could it be Juliet? Penelope?
Only time will tell . . .
Outside of Hamilton House, Blair half-heartedly offers to decline membership in the club for Serena’s sake. However, Serena, who knows a fake gesture of kindness when she sees one, replies that this will not be necessary. “S” would never stand in the way of her Best-ie’s social progress. Besides, Hamilton House may just be a bit too “right wing” for a bohemian gal, like Serena.
Famous Hamilton House Alumnis
Upon receiving Serena’s “blessing” to stay in Hamilton House, Blair responds like THIS . . .
. . . and bounces off excitedly, but not before making plans to meet Serena later for dinner and drinks.
Feeling a bit like the Stinky Kid in Elementary School, who nobody wanted to play with, Serena calls Dorky Dan, in hopes of bolstering her recently diminished self esteem . . .
. . . and he BLOWS HER OFF . . .
. . . to hang out with a guy who still POOPS IN HIS PANTS!
Then she calls Hot Pants Nate . . .
. . . and HE BLOWS HER OFF TOO!
(Apparently, Hamilton House is coed, and Nate’s a member as well. How CONVENIENT!)
Yes, Serena. Apparently, college IS just like High School. Except, now, you are the NEW Jenny Humphrey . . .
It’s not easy . . . being sleazy.
Lifestyles of the Rich and the Rapist
While the rest of his friends are stories below, pretending to matriculate at Columbia, Chuck Bass is sleeping on million-thread count sheets, in the Penthouse Suite at the Empire Hotel. He wakes up to find his new Gal Pal Eva missing. When he sees the sliding glass door to the balcony open, Chuck worries for a moment that the idea of being the most HATED new cast member of Gossip Girl got to be too much for Eva, and she threw herself out the window.
Goodbye, Cruel Fangirls!
(At the same time, Chair fans across the nation are keeping their fingers crossed for the same result. It’s nothing personal, Eva. You’re just NO Blair Waldorf!)
But, alas when Chuck arrives outside, he finds Eva simply looking out at the city skyline, with her feet planted firmly on the ground. “Your world . . . it’s magnificent,” says Eva, with all the emotion and excitement of a person saying, “I have a dentist appointment today.”
Chuck is so enamored by Eva’s innocence, that he can’t help but set out to destroy it. Immediately, he offers Eva room service, a spa day, and unlimited access to his credit card. You know, Eva, I recently saw a movie just like this. Wanna know which one?
Yes, Eva. I AM calling you a whore (but a VERY nice and well-mannered one, just like in the movie)!
“Your life is perfect,” Eva says in a dull monotone that would make Ben Stein proud.
“Bueller . . . Bueller . . . Bueller.”
“Now, so is yours,” lies Chuck through his teeth.
Meanwhile, Nate stops by Chuck’s hotel suite to return the Bass-tard’s Black Book, and lecture the hotel scion about being honest with his girlfriend about his shady past.
Riiiiight. Just like I’m sure Nate is going to be honest with HIS new girlfriend about all the STD’s he undoubtedly contracted this summer, as a result of using said “Black Book.”
Leaving Eva to her own devices, Chuck goes to visit Lily . . .
. . . the one person member of his Post-Sex with She-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named Fan Club. Chuck tells Lily that he is a changed man, who has stopped screwing raccoons . . .
. . . and has, instead, fallen in love with a character from the Harry Potter series.
Eager to make things right with her extended family, Lily invites Chuck and Eva to attend Fashion’s Night Out. There, she supposes, the van der Woodsens, Basses and Humphreys can mingle without the added pressure of a formalized dinner. Chuck agrees.
Later, Lily convinces Rufus to give the New and Improved Bass . . .
“I’m singing a Redemption Song!”
. . . a second chance at the fashion event. Rufus initially agrees to have an open mind. However, when Eric . . .
Welcome back, Buddy! We missed you! You’re the least screwed up character on THIS SHOW! (Well . . . aside from the whole “tried to commit suicide” thing.)
. . . spills the bean to Rufus about Chuck’s attempted rape of Jenny during the pilot episode her freshman year . . .
. . . Papa Humphrey radically changes his tune.
That afternoon, while Eva shops her little heart out on Chuck’s dime, she runs into Blair.
Of course, in typical Mean Girl fashion, Blair taunts Eva the Robot about her modest beginnings, plain looks, and peasant hands. With a scathing sneer and biting wit that would make Season 1 Blair proud, Queen B lets her latest competition for Chuck’s heart know, in no uncertain terms, that she is a “woman off the rack,” who does not belong in GG society. (And most Chair fans would AGREE!)
You can take the girl out of Constance Billard Prep . . . but you can’t take Constance Billard Prep out of the girl.
The bitter exchange upsets Eva enough (to the extent that she is capable of expressing human emotion) to cause her to confront Chuck about it, as the two prepare for Fashion’s Night Out. In an admittedly sweet moment, Chuck tells Eva that he loves that she doesn’t fit in to his snooty world. He truly believes that, once given a chance to meet her, the Upper East Siders will love Eva just as much as HE does . . .
Oh, Chuck! You Sweet, but Ignorant, Slut! How willingly you overestimate the kindness of your friends and family.
As we watch Eva childishly recite the GG cast members’ names, like a child trying to remember a nursery rhyme, we just KNOW this girl is in for some seriously bad sh*t, in the weeks to come. It almost makes me feel bad for her . . . almost.
Who’s Your Daddy, Baby Milo?
Meanwhile, Dan is still playing proud papa to Georgina’s spawn, Baby Milo . . .
. . . when he receives a Gossip Girl blast that Georgina is living it up in St. Barts, while he is cleaning spit up off his unlimited collection of ugly flannel shirts. To make matters worse, Busy Body Rufus rushes over to tell Dan that, based on his own expert opinion (Read: complete lamens’, not to mention, LAME MAN’S opinion), Baby Milo CANNOT be Dan’s son.
Cue the entrance of Vanessa “Never Met a Plotline She Couldn’t Make Boring” Abrams.
Together her and Dan enter into a positively snooze-worthy discussion about Dan’s options regarding the care of Baby Milo. Unfortunately for Dan, he has gone and fallen in love with the little Demon Baby, and can’t imagine giving it up for adoption or putting it in foster care. Dan wants to raise Milo himself. However, he fears that his student lifestyle will provide him with neither the time nor sufficient income to get the job done.
Then Vanessa, saves the day, by offering to move in with Dan, and help him to raise Baby Milo.
(This is the point in the recap where I would insert a “YIPPEE” . . . if I cared enough about this storyline to do so, which I don’t . . .)
Dan initially cautions his girlfriend against this idea. He fears he is asking too much of Vanessa, and will ultimately end up jeopardizing their relationship as a result.
Well . . . that got a response from me!
Even though she was CLEARLY not born yet when the film in question came out, Vanessa argues that if Tom Selleck and Ted Danson from Three Men and a Baby could raise a kid, so could Dan and Vanessa . . .
“As long as that doesn’t make me Guttenberg,” quips Dan.
Ummm . . . I hate to break it to you Dan . . . but you are TOTALLY Guttenberg. And Vanessa is Tom Selleck’s mustache . . .
Dan agrees to let Vanessa move in and help him raise Baby Milo. However, before she can return to the apartment with all her hippie skirts, mismatched scarfs, incense, and patchouli . . . GEORGINA RETURNS!
In what was undoubtedly the most interesting and hilarious part of this lame and second rate B-plot storyline, Georgina explains that Milo’s father is some Russian businessman who she met and screwed on an airplane.
“Now, I’m a super villain AND a member of the Mile High Club. I RULE!”
Unfortunately, for Georgina, the Russian businessman’s wife found out about the tryst, and when she heard Georgina was pregnant, she put a hit out on the dimunitve vixen. By doctoring Milo’s birth certificates to say that Dan was his father (as opposed to the 100’s of other men Trampy Georgina undoubtedly was banging during that time), Georgina got the killers off her tail. Now, however, she’s finally decided to grow up and be a real mother to Milo.
Dan tries to protest. However, he has no REAL claim to the Baby, so Georgina ultimately takes the child with her. At the end of the episode, Vanessa and Dan decide to move in together, anyway.
And they all lived Boringly Ever After . . .
(Honestly, I was kind of hoping for more Georgina Hijinks and Histrionics here. Weren’t you? Like, for example, watching her be chased by a bunch of Russian Mafioso would be absolutely HILARIOUS, in my opinion!
But, perhaps, not everyone agrees with me . . .)
Rufus Humphrey Cock Block Extraordinaire
“As the Lord is my Witness, Chuck Bass will NEVER GET LAID AGAIN! Mwahhahaha!”
At Fashion’s Night Out, Chuck approaches Lily, Rufus and Eric to make his apologies, and hopefully, to introduce them to Eva.
Unfortunately for Chuck, Rufus is not too keen on forgiving his daughter’s Date Rapist. In fact, he doesn’t want the Bass-tard anywhere NEAR HIS FAMILY. And yet, Rufus the Doofus takes his Chuck-sized hatred one step further. He wants Chuck to become a re-virginized MONK!
“Whatcha you talkin’ about, Rufus?”
When Eva enters the fray, Chuck, fearing that Rufus will spill the beans about his pervy past to the woman he is passing the time until Blair takes him back with loves, throws himself on the sword saying, “That’s just another social climber making a play for Chuck Bass. She is not with me.”
Oh no you, didn’t!
Eva dashes off in tears. And Chuck, after another heart-to-heart with surrogate Mommy Lily, finally finds the courage to rush after her, come clean about his sordid past. At first, Eva is disgusted, and leaves him. Almost immediately, a tail between his legs Chuck confronts Blair.
And the Queen B is so smug and self-satisfied about Chuck’s failure and Eva’s resultant departure, that she practically does a dance of joy, right in front of him.
But then Eva returns.
“It was hard for me to learn what kind of man you were. But I’ve seen the kind of man you can be. And I choose to be with that man,” announces Eva.
Her and Chuck then kiss (BARF!), as Blair looks on disgusted.
“Once lips have tasted caviar, it baffles me how they can return to catfish,” Blair notes wryly, toward the end of the episode.
Well said, Miss Waldorf! Because it sure beats the heck out of me . . .
Secret Society Hijinks Ensue . . .
I wanted to save the most intriguing plotline for last, so allow me to backtrack a bit, and tell you what happened after Blair was admitted into Hamilton House, and Serena wasn’t. Well, first the Slimy Seductive Juliet took Blair aside, and poured a little metaphorical poison in her ear, when the latter inquired as to why Serena wasn’t admitted into their little club.
“Isn’t it better to have something at this school that is just yours,” Juliet suggests casually, with all the finesse of a snake in the Garden of Eden.
Boy! Juliet sure has Blair’s number! Little Miss “I’ll take the West Bank, you take the East,” is no one if not a person who is constantly seeking out her own fame and recognition. Juliet then takes things one step further, insisting that Blair attend a Martini Event thrown by Hamilton House, instead of keep her dinner plans with Serena. Then, when Serena calls to find out where Blair is, Juliet instructs her to LIE about her whereabouts, so as not to “hurt Serena’s feelings.”
Blair stupidly takes the bait.
Moments later, in a move that surprised precisely NO ONE, Gossip Girl streamed the Martini Event live, allowing Serena to catch Blair in her fib. (It was at this moment, Boys and Girls, that I became pretty certain that Juliet was Gossip Girl. Little did I know that something would happen later to prove me wrong . . .)
The next day, an angry Serena confronted a very flowery-dressed Blair about her deception, suggesting that Juliet sabotaged Serena’s ability to get into Hamilton House. Blair, as per usual, gets defensive, “There’s no conspiracy. Hamilton House just doesn’t want YOU!” Blair yelps.
Blair then walks off in a huff.
Later, Serena sees other girls getting keys to Hamilton House, even after Juliet suspiciously claimed there were none left. So, “S” decides to confront the BIATCH.
Turning the tables on Serena, Juliet asserts that it was BLAIR who kept Serena from getting into Hamilton House, by revealing to the alumni the existence of a sex tape involving Serena and Pete Hammond. . . as in THAT GUY SHE “KILLED.”
At Fashion’s Night Out, we see an angry-looking Serena stalk into the building in search of Blair. The next thing we know, Gossip Girl is live-streaming footage of a hair pulling, name-calling argument between the frenemies, in which Blair awkwardly notes that Serena’s dad couldn’t raise herproperly, because he was busy giving her mother, FAKE CANCER!
(OUCH! That had to hurt!)
Meanwhile, a smug Juliet, who, along with her new Hamilton House minions, is watching the whole fight on her iPhone, decides to put the whole altercation on wide-screen television, for all the Fashion’s Night Out attendees to enjoy.
Eventually Juliet tells her minions that it is time to “step in and save ‘her sister’ [Blair] from that b*tch [Serena].” However, when Juliet rips back the curtain, all she finds is Blair and Serena sitting calmly on the sofa, watching the same pre-recorded broadcast, the rest of the party is enjoying. As it turns out, they had leaked the fake fight footage to Gossip Girl, in order to catch Juliet in the act of trying to ruin both of their reputations.
(This turn of events just made it very unlikely that Juliet is actually Gossip Girl.)
“Your little plan might have worked on us in High School, but not now,” lectures Blair maturely (before sticking her tongue out, and singing “Nah-Nah, Nah-Nah, Nah-Nah.”)
She’s right. Juliet’s plan probably WOULD have worked on Blair and Serena, back when they were in High School. In fact, it DID work. If I recall, Georgina Sparks, herself, had done this exact sort of thing, once or twice, in earlier seasons, to break the besties apart.)
Lily van der Woodsen, who, OF COURSE, just so happens to be on the alumni board at Hamilton House, immediately dethrones Juliet, and offers her own daughter a “much-deserved” key to to the house. Juliet skulks off. And Nate, who has witnessed the whole ordeal, begins to run after her. However, Serena stops him first.
Never exactly the “sharpest tool in the shed,” Nate surprises everybody, by siding with PSYCHO STALKER JULIET in this little battle of wits. And why not? After all, Serena cheated on him with Dorky Dan Humphrey last year, and then just automatically expected him to take her back. And Nate DID want to take her back . . . at least, at first.
But now, all the sudden, Nate has decided that he’s MAD at Serena (an emotion he should have experienced MONTHS ago . . . and probably would have, if he wasn’t so busy porking all those whores in Chuck’s Black Book). Now, given all Nate’s “MAD-ness,” no matter what Serena does, she’s going to be a Big Fat Poopy Head in Nate’s eyes.
After leaving Serena to comprehend the concept of a boy actually NOT wanting to bone her, Nate rushes to Psycho Stalker Juliet. Crazy Train tells him that she only schemed against Serena, because she didn’t want Nate around her all the time at Hamilton House. In short, Juliet claims that she acted out of jealousy.
Sure, it’s obvious to everyone that Juliet is lying. But not to Moronic Nate, who’s just arrogant enough to believe her. So, while Serena is moving in to La Casa de Waldorf with Blair and Dorota; Nate and Juliet are making out, and sealing their fate as the most effed up couple in Gossip Girl history (well, aside from Chuck and Jenny of course — but they don’t count.)
It all ends in a fairly commonplace way, until the last scene. There, we see Juliet visiting some guy in prison. Upon listening to their conversation we can conclude that (1) HE’S the one who’s hired Psycho Stalker Girl to screw with Serena and the rest of the Upper East Side Crew; and (2) the prison-bound pair are romantically involved in some way — thus, making Juliet’s romantic advances toward Nate (for now, at least) completely phony.
But who IS this guy? My first thought was that he was Carter Baizen. After all, Carter’s criminal dealings and grudges against most of the GG cast, would make him a likely candidate for something like this. The problem, of course, was that this guy didn’t look like Sebastian Stan (the actor who plays Carter).
My second guess was that this Prisoner Dude is somehow related to Pete, the guy Serena “killed.” After all, Juliet made a point to mention Pete’s name, when making an excuse as to why Serena wasn’t admitted to Hamilton House. How else would she know all that information, if not from a connected outside source?
Well, I’m all out of ideas. What about you guys? Any suggestions as to who this orange-jumpsuited man might be, or why he hates Serena so much?