TV Fanatic here, taking you into the intriguing, scandalous and sexy world of Gossip Girl, which sadly launches into its final season tonight. The soapy CW drama has kept us laughing, crying and, more importantly, on the edge of our collective seats waiting to see what our favorite Upper East Siders are going to do next.
Will Blair clear up the status of her relationship with Chuck (and Dan)? Will Serena find her happily ever after? What is Georgina up to and how long will she be around? How is Dan going to change this year?
And, most importantly, will we get a satisfying ending with Gossip Girl her-or his-self?
TV Fanatic’s Jim Halterman worked hard to get answers out of executive producer and show-runner Sara Goodman earlier this week. Did he break her to give up some scoop? Read on ...
TV Fanatic: Can you say there’s an overall arc for the season? I mean, maybe it’s just getting everybody do a happily ever after or what is an arc, I guess, for these final episodes?
Sara Goodman: It’s Gossip Girl! Happily ever after-what?
TVF: I know!
SG: I think we have a couple of themes this season. The first of which is, in the pilot, Nate and Chuck had this scene where they talked about are they just going to turn into their parents and so that is absolutely, kind of, dramatically one of things that we’re talking about. We’ve taken these kids from high school and they’re adults now, and so, who are they going to be? Where are they going to be? Who can survive on the Upper East Side and who doesn’t belong here at all? Those kinds of things are absolutely where we are going this season.
TVF: It seems like you guys were in between a rock and a hard place with either Chair or Dair because it seems like somebody’s going to be upset whichever way that goes. How do you even approach that?
SG: Maybe the three of them will live together?
TVF: Oh, my God. Well, I don’t know about that…
SG: That would be horrible.
TVF: That’d be horrible, but how do you even that approach that knowing there’s such a divided camp between the two?
SG: Knowing how much the fans care about it and that we care about it that much too, and there were huge debates, and alternately, we had to do what we felt like the characters would do and what was right for the characters. I think that we built it in an organic way that will make…that hopefully most people will go for. There’s certain obviously diehard one-wayers, the other people who will never get on board, but yeah, I hope that everybody finds somebody.
TVF: I’m personally Team Dair, just so you know. [laughs]
SG: What I will say is that I feel that when all the writers got together at the beginning of the season and we really, really talked about where we felt that everybody should be. I think we absolutely dealt with the relationships because that’s what defines these characters, but we also talked about who each of the characters were and what they really want and what their journey was and how the best way to end that was.
TVF: I’ve seen Serena with so many different suitors over the years but I kind of like her with Barry Watson. I really was surprised that was kind of a nice thing, at least in the first two episodes. Can you kind of talk a little bit about that relationship and if it’s going to be a good one for Serena.
SG: We tried to give [Serena] an adult love interest and Barry Watson, he’s an adult, he doesn’t play games. He’s not in that world, and he has no interest in it either, and he’s divorced, he’s a real grown up and so Serena is going to have a chance to be in a real grown up relationship, and I think that we’ll see if that works or not for her.
TVF: Do you kind of feel like everybody has to be romantically paired up by the end of the series? Is that like a mandate or can our characters be left on their own?
SG: No, I mean, was everyone paired up by the time they’re twenty-something? No. I don’t think it is. I think that if it makes sense in the mythology of our show and where the characters are, then that’s where we went, but I think we also had other things that we were trying to achieve.
For Dan, with the book, in terms of this book and using people’s real names… Dan’s really stepping into a different kind of power this year on the Upper East Side and if that has to do with the love relationship or not, I guess we’ll have to see, but that’s a different journey. The same thing with Blair stepping into Waldorf Designs and Chuck really needing his father once and for all. What we really tried to focus on is who they’re going to become as well the relationships that there should be.
TVF: How long is Georgina sticking around? Because I know when she’s there things always stir up.
SG: For the rest of the season.
TVF: Any other guest stars? We have Barry Watson coming in, but any other kind of big names coming in that we haven’t seen before on the show?
SG: No, like we’ve a lot of cameos this season with Blair’s fashion stuff, we have some really good cameos, but we really tried not to bring in a lot of guest stars. We really wanted to focus these last season on core characters and do the multi-generational stories again that we did in the first season, and so we really tried to keep it within our family.
TVF: I think the fashion world is going to miss Gossip Girl more than anything. Have you heard anything from those people just saying that they’re going to miss the show?
SG: It’s so funny because I think they’ll start to, but I think that they’re going to and I think that this year especially because not only do we have just fantastic fashions, but Blair has to figure out her line and it’s going to be like triple the fashion, triple the fun this year for that.
TVF: Now, Gossip Girl, I’m going to say herself, even though it’s still a mystery for all we know, is there going to be any big reveal there? Are we going to get a happy ending or a crazy ending for Gossip Girl?
SG: You know, I’m not allowed to tell what we’re doing, yet, about Gossip Girl, but I will say that I think that everyone will be very satisfied.
TVF: Talk to me just in general about spoilers because I know I’ve already seen stuff online, that if I was a viewer, I wouldn’t really want to see, but it’s out there. What do you think about spoilers?
SG: Actually, we do worry about it and I think for us, especially this season, it’s really upsetting mostly because we’ve spent so much time with these characters and with these stories, developing them, that we want everyone to be able to find them out and so when people are stealing stuff and talking, I think it’s upsetting.
TVF: Talk to me about the next project. I know you’re doing Taboo with [CSI creator] Anthony Zuiker and it sounds like a mix of the Gossip Girl world with more of a procedural world of sorts.
SG: I’m writing a pilot, in fact I’m turning the outline in today, but I am writing that pilot and I’m also writing a pilot for NBC, which is a different kind of show that was dysfunctional family drama. Taboo is kind of sexual obsession with…I’m not sure it’s procedural as much as it is with legal intrigue.
TVF: Is calling it a soap a bad thing?
SG: It’s absolutely a soap. I don’t want to do anything that’s not a soap.
Gossip Girl's final 10 episodes begin Monday at 9 p.m. on the CW.
Jim Halterman is the West Coast Editor of TV Fanatic and the owner of JimHalterman.com. Follow him on Twitter.