Gossip Girl Round Table: "The Backup Dan"

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Welcome to our weekly Gossip Girl Round Table discussion! Below, our panelists gather to break down Monday night's episode (see our official Gossip Girl review from last night) in even greater detail.

In a Q&A session below, TVF CEO Eric Hochberger (Gossip Guy) editor Steve Marsi (Mister Meester) and staff writers Courtney Morrison, Christina Tran and Leigh Raines discuss "The Backup Dan."

Weigh in with your take on the following topics after reading ours!

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1. What was your favorite quote from the episode?

Courtney: “You think I would be insulted by someone with a Samsonite?” Nailed it, Blair. Nailed it.

Christina: As always, there were so many choices. I’m handing this one to the airport passenger who so frankly said: "Now that I get a better look, you're not nearly as pretty as Blair Waldorf. And he's terrible!" I’ll always love Dan jabs, and the runaway bride hasn’t exactly been the B we once knew.

Leigh: Blair had a lot of good airport one liners. I'd say it's a toss up between Eleanor's face being like an emoticon and saying it was about to get like Bieber fever up in there.

Steve: Dan sarcastically telling Blair he'll be leaving "now that your real friends are here." Ouch. The truth hurts, and B responded, adding a new dimension to their relationship. Who knew D had it in him?

Eric: Blair's entire apology to Dan. Mostly because she still managed to get in a dig at the mop. Best characters ever. More on that shortly...

GG RT Logo

2. How awesome are Dan and Blair?

Courtney: They have become the two most likable characters, especially considering they used to be disliked a lot. They play well off of each other and it just shows how much more intellectual and witty they are than anyone else. Definitely a 10.

Christina: Oh, Dair. I’ve always liked their banter, and it was kind of awesome when B said that she couldn’t have survived the past month without Dan.

LeighI didn't really buy their awesomeness until Dan located his balls last night and they got into the fight in the hotel room. They are a hilarious old married couple.

Steve: As I said in my review, I'm enjoying them more and more each week, and they were the best thing about this episode. Blair's flustered comments and Dan's expressions at the airport were all priceless. I wish they had fled to the D.R. together, and hope that in the coming weeks, they continue to be a focal point.

Eric: They were already at a 12 as far as I'm concerned. I mean, you're pairing the two wittiest characters on the show. Now that Dan finally stood up to Blair forcing her to show an honest side with him? 14.

3. Which Blair excuse for rejecting Chuck is worse, the pact with God or last night's ... whatever that was?

Courtney: Whatever last night was. Like others have said, it’s an excuse to keep them apart until the end. We know they are endgame. Blair can be married to Louis; doesn’t mean she can’t have some fun with the Basshole on the side.

Christina: Blair’s pact. That was just ridiculous on all levels. I actually get that her freedom is not something to be bought. As silly as the dowry plot is, let’s face it: Chair desperately needs a real, fresh start.

Leigh: Blair's pact with God. I understand her not letting Chuck pay for her freedom. She knows it's her mistake and doesn't want to be indebted to anyone or put out the people she loves. 

Steve: Last night. The pact I can chalk up to their near-death experience and the fact that Louis hadn't done anything really wrong at that point. Now he's revealed his true colors, Chuck's offering her an instant way out and she still won't follow her heart? Who cares if you're indebted but the person is your soulmate? Ridiculous.

Eric: Whatever last night was. I'm not here to come between someone and their beliefs. I am here, however, to point out one of the most contrived reasons to keep Chair apart for one more season. Look, I'd be happy if this was about having a real love triangle and giving Dair a real shot. But we know they won't, so stop this silliness Blair. You're not earning your freedom by staying married to a different man. As Chuck said, what century is this?

Blair Post-Wedding

4. Worse idea: Trusting Rufus Humphrey with a secret or threatening Eleanor Waldorf?

Courtney: Threatening Mama Waldorf. The apple does not far from the tree. Plus, she is so much taller than everyone else (besides Serena); it’s totally intimidating.

Christina: I’m going with the latter. If there’s one thing we’ve learned from this show (who am I kidding, we’ve learned a LOT, right?!), you do NOT mess with a Waldorf or family for that matter.

LeighCan I pick both? You can't really blame Rufus at this point. He spills when it's important. And Eleanor... Well I said it last week and I'll say it again: Eleanor Waldorf MVP. Princess Sophie: Step off bitch. No one cares about your antiquated dowries. This is New York.

Steve: Trusting Rufus. You knew that phone call to dad was just a plot device to make sure Blair's whereabouts would eventually be uncovered. Should have kept it to yourself, Dan, no matter how much you love your dad and want to keep him in the loop. Dan lied so well (for him, anyway) to Serena too.

Eric: Threatening Eleanor Waldorf of course. Now we'll never have to wonder where B got it from again.

5. Georgina as not-the-real-Gossip Girl: Major letdown or major relief?

Courtney: Major Relief. The plot holes are entirely too big for her to be the real thing. Plus, I like the idea of thinking GG is someone we see creeping in the background of scenes and may have never noticed.

Christina: It’s a MAJOR relief, for sure. I know I may be in the minority when I say this, but I’ve never cared too much for Georgina. She’s always conveniently at the right place at the wrong time, and I’m hoping the real Gossip Girl shows up soon because I’m asking the same question as Chuck did last night: doesn’t she have some hole to crawl back into?

LeighMajor relief! Love Georgie, but it would have been impossible and a copout.

Steve: Major letdown. This week just cheapened the big 100th episode reveal so much. While there would be 1,000 plot holes involved in making Georgina the real G.G., it would at least be a bold writing step for the show to go there ... but we know they're diametrically opposed to such things these days.

Eric: Major saw-it-coming. I for one would have loved G to actually be GG, but I knew they'd never actually reveal it. That is one secret she'll never tell. Xoxo.

Dearest Daniel

6. Did Dan send the blast? Will that come back to bite him?

Courtney: Nope. Nate would never do it, even Chuck wouldn’t. Serena would so Dan could see he has no chance but she claims she didn’t. Wouldn’t be too surprised if Queen B did it herself.

Christina: Not everything is ever what it appears… especially on Gossip Girl. What if Eleanor was the culprit? She wants nothing but happiness for Blair and a mother does whatever it takes for her daughter.

LeighI'm not sure if he did. Nothing is ever really how it seems on this show.

Steve: As Eric says, don't mistake that shot of Dan brooding during G.G.'s voiceover as proof of anything. Maybe he was just brooding? Also, when would he (or Serena for that matter) have sent it, given the role he played in the wedding? It's got to be someone else altogether who's responsible.

Eric: Oh please, if I fell for a camera pan every time a mystery was meant to be solved on Gossip Girl I'd be kicked off this Round Table.

7. What is Lola's deal?

Courtney: She is now on the radar of Nate the investigator and her aunt. P.S. Who else thought it was kinda strange that Lily called Nate in the first place?? Anyways, it looks like she is really there just for school and will be surprised these people are her family. Her mom really must have messed her up for her to call herself Lola. Personally, I would rather listen to Chivy’s raspy voice then go through this story again.

Christina: It is only a matter of time before Lily and Nate figure out who Lola really is. I also think that she might be honestly clueless and am hoping for a throwdown between her and Chivy.

LeighI think Lola might actually be clueless. I also think I might really like her as an addition to the show.

Steve: Agree with Leigh 100 percent. I'm starting to like her a lot, and if she were truly caught in the crossfire without some shady agenda, that would make her a lot more interesting.

Eric: First off, I'm glad she has a second nickname so I don't have to confuse her with Chivy. Plus, Lola trumps Charlie as a nickname for a girl any day. Nicknames aside, I welcome the real Rhodes to the UES any day. This way Nate can continue the trend of keeping it in our little incestuous family.

What do you think? Sound off in the comments!

Steve Marsi is the Managing Editor of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Google+ or email him here.

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(cont...)Based on that and judging by how they crafted the last scene, I interepret it as Dan (somehow, I don't know yet how he would the 'secret') having the material to blackmail someone (being Louis) rather than Dan being the one being blackmailed. They also said somewhere that someone unexpected will be the inspiration to dan's new novel and i think it might be louis (as someone else had suggested) and he will be revealing the true nature of louis and his family and through that..Louis will grant blair a divorce....and that will be how she will get out of it. i don't see blair staying married to louis for an entire year...i think it will make her storyline either far to bland or way too complicated with the whole Dan/chuck entanglements.....whilst it may be gossip girl...i still don't believe it would openly condone extra-marrital affairs and be quite blatant abt it..any 'affairs' on the show have been always made to be 'discreet' until they were discovered......

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(cont..) Another reason why it wasn't Dan is that everyone except Dan was in or around that bridal room..dan was the only one who you can presume as it was not shown other wise to have been in the main church area the entire time. Serena, Blair, Chuck, Louis, his mother, Eleanor, even Rufus, Lily and Georgina all had access to the bridal room or were seen in the bridal room at some point in the episode or all had a reason to be there besides Dan.
But remember when rufus and lily caught georgina waiting for Louis, Louis was already going back to meet her (thinking it was his sister) so he would have been around the back area/bridal room the same time Chuck and Blair were havign their conversation (as with georgina) and he quite possibly have seen the whole thing unfolded - and thus manipulated everything to make him look like the innocent party... (to be cont..)

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After having watched it again. I'm taking a punt in saying that it was Louis who posted the video ( maybe on dan's phone so that no one could suspect him, and he would be the one everyone would least expect as there was no apparent motive that was shown in the entire show for why he would do it..) Every other person, besides Nate (who seems oblivious to anything that's really happening at the moment) was shown to have some sort of a 'motive' to ruin the wedding..serena-wanting to save her BFF, Chuck-wanting blair to marry him, Dan-knowing why blair was marrying louis in the first place, and Eleanor-thinking that blair wanted to be with chuck and was unsure of her choice after freakign out!!. (to be cont..)

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Let us all hope the writers/producers will dare a Dair ending :)
I just love the interraction between the two characters keep
up the good work all ppl that helps creating this superb serial.

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@ kevin: excuse me, what? Dan is a fictional character, and even if he wasn't, nobody put a gun to his head or the writers heads for that matter to force that event, as many of you like to point out regarding other issues, it was the writers decision and nobody in the fandom had a saying on it.

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Remember that Georgina is in the wedding when everyone received the blast from GG about Blair's video? So how can Georgina be the "real" Gossip Girl, when she was sitting there watching everyone's reaction receiving the blast? Just a thought... :))

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@Uncle Jackass dan did what chair fans wanted.

Uncle-jackass

@pty, Yeah I watched the Gossip Girl Producer Preview as well. Damn, my wishful thinking was smashed in seconds!!! (Philip being my no.1 culprit). Unless it really was Eleanor, Rufus, or somebody else), but at this point I seriously doubt it.

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i got this from wetpaint "TVLine has scoop that in Monday's Valentine's Day-themed episode, "Crazy, Cupid, Love," Dan Humphrey (Penn Badgley) WILL finally reveal his feelings for Blair (Leighton Meester) (TO BLAIR) and, what's more, they say Blair has "a surprising reaction to his catharsis. Or not, if you've seen the photos floating around.""

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@emi
No.

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