This week’s was the best episode of Gossip Girl since Bart died. It’s the first episode in a while that I didn’t spend half the episode hating half the characters. Plus, it brought the funny in a big way, from that beginning Audrey Hepburn sequence that featured a double-dose-of-Blaire-Waldorf to the Schmutz Happens apron Cyrus was wearing in the kitchen. This week followed the exploits surrounding the Waldorf-Rose Seder and the Vanderbilt wedding. Nate and Blaire attended a cousin’s wedding, where Blaire, attempting to rebound from the Yale disaster decided to become the ultimate socialite, found that Grandpa Vanderbilt was willing to make all her Upper East Sider dreams come true in return for a little Nate-centered manipulation. Well, that, of course, went well. Blaire’s attempts to be “Jackie O” when she’s clearly more of a Hilary (Blaire: Except I would have won!) were amusing, as long as they’re impermanent, and they led to a great Eleanor Waldorf line: Waldorf women are not socialites!
At first, the Nate and Blaire histrionics were annoying me. We all know she’s meant to be with Chuck, so watching them play seriously at the other relationship felt weird. And then my Gossip Girl compadre, Tim, pointed out something: It’s like Dawson and Joey. Not quite as epic or as adorable, but Nate and Blaire have something. It’s not the fireworks of Chuck, but there’s a comfort and a sweetness and a genuine affection. Therefore, since I know Chuck and Blaire are working their way back to each other, I’m actually kind of excited to see Blaire and Nate in the meanwhile. Plus, it’s effect on Chuck has been adorable.
Chuck meanwhile hasn’t been doing much of anything, or at least not anything that requires removing his scarf (Chuck: That was one time. It was cold.). Since his escapades with “a boho barrista,” he’s been entertaining a never ending parade of flexible ladies. Which in and of itself was a pretty decent holding story for Chuck while he simmers in Blaire-less miserableness. But the Jenny subplot was actually a lovely side story. As long as Jenny and Chuck remain just platonic, I think it’s awesome that she confronted him about what a jerk he was in the pilot (first time anyone’s mentioned his date-raping?), and his apology to her was genuinely moving, and once again proof that Ed Westwick can do a lot more than just glower sexily.
Which leaves us with our A-story, the Waldorf-Rose Seder and Serena’s mysterious Spanish exploits. Let’s summarize, shall we? Cyrus Rose and Eleanor Waldorf are throwing a Seder to impress Cyrus’s Jewish mother. They hire “cater waiters.” Meanwhile. Rufus and Dan wonder how to pay for college. Dan wants to get a job (what a good kid he’s turned into), but Daddy Humphrey wants him to concentrate on being a kid a bit longer. Dan, because this is Gossip Girl, ignores this and gets a job. As a cater waiter. At Eleanor Waldorf’s Seder. Which, it turns out, Daddy Humphrey and uber-pregnant Lily are attending to try and woo some high end art dealers (to help pay for Yale). Meanwhile, Serena and Lily are barely talking thanks to her Mile-high hi jinks, and Serena has some deep dark secret from her fiesta, which requires her talking to a lawyer (Cyrus). So she shows up at the Waldorf-Rose home, where we find out that she (may have) gotten married in Spain to Poppy Lifton’s boyfriend, Gabreel. When discovered by Lily, Serena pretends she came to enjoy Jewish culture. Dan is also pretending to be a guest, while simultaneously attempting to keep his tip by serving the party. By the time Gabreel shows up to reclaim his lost love, and Dan and Serena have to fake being back together to throw him off, the farce has reached a fever pitch of giggles and fun.
The best thing about this storyline is the way that it allowed every single character involved to have fun. Serena and Dan faking it simultaneously highlighted just how over these two are as a couple, and showed how cool it is that they’re becoming real friends. Serena’s never as likable as when she’s being buddies with Dan. Rufus and Lily, attempting to figure out what’s going on with their respective offspring, were befuddled perfection, and their genuine annoyance when they thought the two were back together was wonderful. Cyrus and Eleanor are great together, and have this wonderful odd couple chemistry that just lights up the stage (plus, I think Blaire’s world is better defined when she has parents to bounce off of, and her episode ending moment with Cyrus was way sweeter than anything with Nate). Plus, Gabreel is actually hot and can act, so the Serena stuff was more interesting than it ever was.
On top of that, next week’s episode (even with the return of Georgina) looks awesome, with it’s Gabreel and Poppy plotting and Chuck and Blaire scheming (and, dare I say it? But Reformed Georgina looks like… fun! And how much fun would a little Chuck and Georgine reunion be? Remember, he lost his virginity to her. When he was like 12.)