Blair embodies her school-play role as a downtrodden woman in a way she never imagined, while Dan's days as teacher's pet are numbered

By Tim Stack
Updated March 17, 2009 at 04:00 PM EDT
Credit: Giovanni Rufino/The CW
S2 E18
  • TV Show

‘Gossip Girl’ recap: Oh, the drama

Crying. Drinking alone. Staring at a darkened television screen. These are just a few of things I’ve been doing on Mondays since Gossip Girl’s last new episode in February. It clearly hasn’t been easy. I’m sure there those of you out there who also had a difficult GG hiatus. Feel free to share tales of your own personal struggles during the GG-free 8-9 p.m. hour. Now that our show has returned, can I just say, Thank Gucci! Although, I’m not sure this was one of the best outings. It felt a little like the TV equivalent of the Barneys Warehouse sale: There were some choice pieces but a lot of it was fugly and didn’t fit.

Let’s start with what I did like and that was the school production of The Age of Innocence. First of all, their costume budget had to rival that of Australia. Hello, couture! Blair could wear that black ballgown in every single episode and I would be happy. Same for Serena and her feathery ensemble. Normally, I have an almost allergic reaction to feather-adorned outfits (see Paula Abdul’s crazy look on last Tuesday’s American Idol) but I’m totally on board with Serena’s costume. Also, Josh Schwartz had told me that Nelly Yuki in a fat suit was not to be missed and the wise Mr. Schwartz was right again. Watching the crew roll her onstage while relaxing on the chaise lounge was pretty damn hysterical. The lesson learned in all of this? More fat suits on Gossip Girl.

Much of the antics offstage mirrored what was happening onstage, particularly Blair Waldorf’s breakdown. I do like seeing her taken down a notch. It’s always most fun to see Blair claw her way back up. Plus, she’s done so many bad things that it’s inevitable that there would be some backlash. I still think she’ll find a way to get into Yale, don’t you TV Watchers? Blair and Dan’s scene together on stage in the carriage was sorta great. I love that she was basically attacking him when they were supposed to be kissing. Speaking of Miz Blair, I’m feeling like we’re in serious jeopardy of having TOO much Dorota. The best part about her was that she would just appear for a quick scene, utter something hilarious, and then be gone. She’s getting more screen time now than Jenny! I did love though when Dorota and Penelope both sized each other up in their maid costumes.

Vanessa finally didn’t dress like a crazy person! In fact, she was fairly elegant. Looooved that dress she wore to opening night of the play and her neon yellow clutch. Plus, she was actually cool and helpful with Serena and her crush on that big ole gay theater director. But her whole story line with Nate was disappointing. Nate walking in on her coaching Serena through the date and thinking that she was actually flirting with the director was tired. Plus, they broke up but then got back together in the course of like five minutes. Just break up! And Vanessa, please stop filming things like that creepy guy in American Beauty. It is not sexy.

NEXT: Roxanne, Roxanne

I may be alone in this but I DO NOT remember Carter Baizen at all. But even his reappearance did nothing to enhance this snoozy Chuck Bass story line. I still don’t really understand all the details. Basically, Elle is a high-class call girl? Okay, big whoop. Why am I supposed to care about her? Peace out, Elle. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out. It felt too much like filler story line and not something that actually advanced anything else. Chuck is way more fun when he’s interacting with his peers and not stodgy old businessman with a jones for hookers. He needs to get back to school pronto and spend less time dealing with Bass Industries. It was good to see him realizing his love for Blair by the end of the episode. I like the idea of Blair dating a new bad boy (also the in joke that Leighton Meester and Sebastian Stan are a real-life couple) but his character just doesn’t do it for me.

I think I can safely say that I never want to see a Cyrano de Bergerac-inspired story line ever again. It’s as old as dirt. And it’s been done better. Also, I do not believe for a second that Serena has read Cyrano. She probably just caught Roxanne rerunning on Comedy Central some Saturday afternoon. And the big reveal that he was gay? Um, duh. He’s a cute theater director who likes to wear scarves. Also, Charles Isherwood should probably not be critiquing theater if he’s that bad of an actor, himself.

The worst story line though had to be the one that followed Dan and the increasingly annoying Rachel. First of all, I don’t think she should be hanging out at play rehearsals starring a student she was rumored to be romancing. Secondly, Dan passing notes? Really? You couldn’t just text Rachel something? This show features basically the most technologically advanced teens but just because he’s doing an Edith Wharton play, Dan gets all 19th century? I’m surprised he didn’t use a quill. I don’t think so. Also, Rufus then finding the note because Jenny dropped it felt like something out of Saved By the Bell. I don’t buy it. Rachel’s transformation from corn-fed cutie into hyper-texting crazy felt a little forced too. And Blair definitely doesn’t have detective in her future given that she never even considered Rachel as a suspect in all of this.

Confession: I have actually already seen next week’s Gossip Girl, TV Watchers. I’m not going to spoil anything but I can say that it is a less scattered episode. There’ll be some fairly major plot developments, especially in regards to a budding relationship between two main characters.

What did you think of this week’s Gossip Girl? Will Nate and Vanessa last? Will Blair figure out a way to get into Yale? Will Nelly Yuki wear a fat suit again?

Episode Recaps

Gossip Girl

Spotted: Serena, Dan, Blair, Chuck, Vanessa, and Nate — hooking up, breaking up, and freaking out. You know you love it! Xoxo!
  • TV Show
  • 6
  • Off Air
  • Josh Schwartz
stream service