Gossip Girl Review: Building the Perfect Serena

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We didn't know Serena van der Woodsen had it in her. Getting half-naked on aircraft carriers, sure. But full-on subterfuge? Then sabotaging her half-sister-cousin when that doesn't work out? That's cold, S.

One minute, she's so against all that Gossip Girl stands for that she'll do anything to get out from under the microscope, even shepherding a (seemingly) unsuspecting Lola to take her place as It Girl.

The next minute, now that the seemingly perfectly constructed Serena 2.0 played her with her own agenda, she's going to feel the wrath. No one messes with It Girl to end all It Girls! That spotlight is HERS!

The girl clearly has no clue who she is anymore - something that could be said for Gossip Girl as a whole, but that's a topic for another time, or the comments - making for an interesting character study.

Girl spends her entire life as the center of attention. Girl often laments this but really doesn't wish for it to stop. Girl senses it slipping away and now attempts to cement her status through social media.

From a logistical standpoint, after the events of "It Girl, Interrupted," where does S go with this?

Does she possess the pure narcissism, and the brainpower, to act the part of and report on the life and times of It Girl, despite countless lies she'll have to tell and feelings she'll have to hurt along the way?

GG 3.0

That's questionable at best, but more significantly, what's Serena's deal? Emotionally, what does she hope to see come of this? Does she even know the answer to that at this point? Do the writers?

The fact that we have to ask is problematic, but such is life in Gossip Girl's fifth season. The characters we've grown to love have become confused at best, completely unrecognizable at worst.

The show is also plagued by a general lack of direction many times. There are so many plot lines unfolding concurrently, and some of them are interesting, but what are we tuning in for overall?

It's just muddled at times, even if it's hard to put your finger on why. Hopefully things build toward a more unifying story next month and heading into the final season, giving Gossip Girl the send-off it deserves.

In the nearer term, it's evident that Serena is reaching the point of no return with her G.G. site takeover, and that it can't last forever. The only question is what the consequences will be when it all unravels.

How Lola responds to S' latest salvo remains to be seen as well. Ditto her reaction to Nate's secretary telling her he's with Diana at the end. Did he really hit that? Is he so naive as to trust her again?

We'll find out, and admittedly I'm still intrigued about all things Serena, Nate and Lola, even if my patience wears thin at times. Elsewhere, plenty of other things (slowly) began to play out, namely ...

Chuck paid the dowry. What a guy. It was hard not to feel bad for him after this was initially received poorly by Blair, because it really feels like it was a selfless act, and a financially significant one at that.

If Chuck couldn't invest in the Spectator because of this dowry, that must have been some dowry! We knew it was enough to bankrupt Eleanor, but wow. Chuck taking a financial hit? Now we've seen everything.

He must really care for Blair ... not that we didn't know that 100 times over. Unfortunately for those longing for a Chair reconciliation, however, the news didn't send Blair running into his arms. Instead ...

Dan and Blair Kiss!

Blair thanked him for setting her free ... to be with Dan. After giving her Muppet the runaround, and even after learning about Chuck's monumental sacrifice, she and Dan made a public showing of their love.

The dowry wasn't even her hangup with the divorce papers at first, it was the fact that she just couldn't let go of her princess fantasy. Sigh. It's one thing to have second thoughts about Chuck, but really B?

In any case, Dan was sweet to let her live it out for one more camera-phone-filled moment. A nice moment for the Dair fan base, but Chuck made major inroads this week and remains omnipresent.

Next week comes Dan and Blair's official public debut as a couple, and you can expect fireworks ... on the show and on TV Fanatic. As for the reason Chuck sought Blair's advice in the first place ...

Elizabeth is not his mother and did not give him blood. Not a surprise at all. So who did? The smart money's still on Diana somehow, but very little happened tonight as far as this mystery advancing.

What was a bit of a shocker, on the other hand, was ...

Lily going behind Rufus' back to screw over Ivy. Maybe S' actions make more sense now, because Lily clearly has some manipulative, cold-hearted genes. Even if Ivy had it coming, that was still brutal.

Rufus was clearly left reeling by this, not just by the fact that his wife would throw Ivy out on the street, but that she lied to his face about it, after he put the wheels in motion to work out a compromise no less.

Thus, the separation has begun. There's supposedly a big breakup coming up this spring and these two look like prime candidates. It's sad, but Rufus might deserve someone better to make waffles for at this point.

Slightly less emotional, but more contentious, was for ...

Diana in a Blue Dress

The battle for the Spectator. Nate really couldn't get an investor other than Diana? Really? The plot to videotape her with Lola's useless friend was cool, as was the fact that L pulled one over on S.

Nevertheless, I'm losing interest in Diana, whose reappearance feels forced. Nate and Lola make a cute couple and it'd be nice to see them give it a go. He's also a good editor-in-chief, even if ad sales are down.

The entire Nola conflict was a bit cobbled together. They're from different worlds, we get it. But that's what they initially liked so much about one another, no? Not an impediment to their relationship?

Whatever. Diana clearly has an agenda, one we might even learn about one of these months. Truthfully, she was only there to create tension between the two lovers and draw further attention to the fact that ...

There was a really expensive lingerie party. Someone who lives in NYC and has knowledge of UES social circles, please enlighten us: Do all these crazy parties actually exist in real life, and where do I get tickets?

Not the most exciting episode overall, but it had its moments. I'm very curious to hear what you all thought and what you think about the show's overall direction (or lack thereof) these days.

What keeps you watching? What was your favorite part of tonight, and your least favorite part? Before we turn it over to your comments, here's next week's promo for "Salon of the Dead" ...

What did you think of tonight's Gossip Girl? Discuss below!

Review

Editor Rating: 3.3 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.4 / 5.0 (806 Votes)

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

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The fact that the majority of comments here seem to think Blair is Chuck's property and must run back to adhere to his every whim, and then call her "disgusting", "slut", "bitch" when she occasionally stands up for herself (which isn't that often, considering how frequently she's treated appallingly), is beyond me. Chuck has, for the majority of the time, treated Blair horribly over the last 5 years. His occasional declarations of love to Blair does not redeem the emotional and physical abusive behaviour he's done throughout the relationship. Dislike Dair all you want, just stop portraying Chuck as some selfless martyr.

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@Kookakicha, Blair certainly isn't a whore (and I think the people who actually wrote it aren't Gossip Girl fans at all), but she quite lost her brain. If she was herself, she wouldn't ever, and I say ever, date Dan Humphrey, and so would Dan. They are way too different, even though they love the same movies and stuff, that's why they should be just friends. I admit that as friends they make sense, but as a couple not at all. Simply because they always looked down on each other and it was way too rushed up. I mean, Blair saying that Chuck is the love of her life and after a few
episodes, she realises that have "feelings" for Dan? Not realistic at all.
I know Chuck hasn't been a saint, but can't he just change? Or only Blair can do that in order to be with Dan? And I hate the fact that now Dan is described as a White Knight with a shining aromour. Hell, no. Dan has been pretty shady in order to win Blair's heart, hasn't he? And if you can't realise that, it means that even you have your Dan glasses on.
Finally, call me weird and crazy, but I haven't started watching GG to see a "healthy relationship, where they dealt with issues so healthily." (just reported what you said). If I wanted that, I would have watched Glee or something else... But what can you do about it, I'm just a Chair fan...

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@ Kookakicha
Calm down, I thought you were not so sensitive. But this is a rare opportunity in recently to the other party gets a little battle. This is our five minutes, and when they will be back who knows. Or better to say - Safran know!

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@ Kookakicha
But why would Blair reacted badly to the a good deed of Chuck. Chuck is not looking for anything in return. This act of his talks that he is so in love with Blair that he was willing to throw $ Milone that she be happy. Whether she will be returned to him or not. As for Dan and Blair are free to do whatever they want, but sex in a barrel of vodka or whiskey, is not a good start to a healthy relationship. I repeat, this episode belongs to Chuck for his selfless good deed!

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meh those pig jews dont get it!
stop repeating the same repetitive lame scenes!
>> lola is the new dan
>>>> chuck looking again for his mom sorry for blood donor
we need to send those writers to the oven asap!

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@Zoran, yeah, I agree with you, those were amazing scenes! But the ones that I loved the most were the first limo sex scene, when Chuck finally told Blair he loved him, and when they were running away in 5x10. There were also some cute scenes of Derena, but I just liked the fact that Serena looked happy.
I also agree with you about that Diana is Chuck's sister or one of his relatives anyway. I don't see it possible that she is his mother... But that's GG, so who knows!

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@Zoran
And seriously? You tell me to shut up. Woah, I thought Chair fans were disrespectful but Derena's may be just as bad.I honestly thought you were one of the respectful ones.
Again, where did I say that he has done something bad in the episode? I only remembered people that Blair's reaction is not disproportionate considering their past together. I think you're not very good at interpreting my words.
And the way you are acting, "your enemies are my enemies", my God, I can't take you seriously.This is childish. If it weren't for your Derena agenda, you would probably not be defending Chuck right now.

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@ PaigeR
You have a good idea, and on the right track. The idea that Chuck becomes a nobleman or prince is great and I thought about. What do you think that all this talk about who is Chuck's mother, in fact, a story about that, by his mother, Chuck may be a nobleman, or even a prince (for example - I dare say might be hereditary Prince of the Royal House of Scotland. Sorry Scots if I have offended you, I had no intention). Can you imagine what would Blair made a face when she found out about something. That the prince whom she so eagerly looking was beside her all the time (this looks like a Serena sentence). It would be really incredible.

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@Zoran
Where did I try to display poor of Chuck's good work? I never denied that what he did was good so don't put words into my mouth.
All I am saying is that Blair is not wrong to react the way she did because she has lived bad experiences with Chuck. It does not make her a "whore or slut" to assume the worst in him, especially since he has proven so many times that he was bad and manipulative in the past. It is hard to believe that he is good all of a sudden.
And no, to me this episode belonged to Dan and Blair. It belonged to a healthy relationship, where they dealt with issues so healthily.
Also, I noticed, people put their Derena/Chair/Chuck glasses on and are unable to see that Dair is not as bad as what is being said. It's sad. Give it a chance.

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@Elisa
The truth is, we are on the same page. I like a lot of scenes between Chuck and Blair. As for example - their epic conversation in a train station in Paris, or breaking the peace agreement with sex as an extension, or a scene from a party with masks in season 4, or the scene when Blair and Chuck in bed and Serena comes and sits on the bed. I must admit that this last is my favorite, but it is most romantic in Paris. For me, the love between Serena and Dan is modern fairy tale. An ordinary guy from Brooklyn and a beautiful girl from Manhattan are in love. The rights of a fairy tale, this is what I liked from the beginning of the series!

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