Gossip Girl Rewatch (2007)- S2 Pt 4

Happy #GGThursday, babes! We’re almost done with season 2, and high school is quickly coming to a close for the NJBC. What wild shenanigans are in store for us? Let’s find out!

But first:

  1. All photos are courtesy of Home of the Nutty unless otherwise specified.
  2. Shout out to TV Tropes and the GG Wiki for the always helpful trivia.
  3. There are spoilers throughout. Read at your own risk.

Episode 16- You’ve Got Yale!

“Dan Humphrey? He’s like a cafeteria lady who won the lottery. You couldn’t pry that acceptance from him with the jaws of life.”

-Blair

Random thoughts

  • Oh, Rachel Carr. It may have been a while since I’ve rewatched, but I haven’t forgotten how this story goes.
  • Lily should have known better than to take Rufus’s phone call in front of Chuck. He is still very vulnerable after his father’s death and had yet to even begin to get over her betrayal.

Commentary

Watching Serena struggling with her acceptance to Yale shows just how much she struggles to know who she is. Caring about what others think isn’t uncommon among teenage girls, especially when the “others” in question are people you consider to be your friends. But when something great happens to you that you didn’t scheme your way into, you should want to celebrate it.

People like Blair make a field day out of dangling their lavish lives in the faces of people like Rachel, operating in the mindset that everyone wants a taste of the “good life” and exploiting that to exact revenge and get what they want. I feel bad for Rachel here. She’s a long way from Iowa, that’s for sure.

I don’t believe Blair when she told Rachel she was trying to not act out at people. Maybe she really meant it, but it’s so deeply ingrained in her that she just can’t help herself. Look what happened when Rachel informed the Headmistress of Blair’s shenanigans. She immediately went on the defensive. It is the one character trait she (and many other characters) possess that truly gets under my skin. Life doesn’t work that way; you can’t have a temper tantrum every time something doesn’t go your way.

Jack is sick, and if the calvary hadn’t stepped in when they did, we all know what would have happened in that powder room. I would have loved for Lily to have had a discreet weapon in her clutch to take him by surprise with. Chuck definitely doesn’t have the best track record in this department, but kudos to him for having the intuition to know something was wrong.

Episode 17- Carrnal Knowledge

“Is a scandal still a scandal if you can’t text about it?”

-Hazel

Random thoughts

  • I would have loved for the story of Bart’s secret society to be explored more throughout the series.

Commentary

I don’t like how cozy Rachel and Dan are at the beginning of the episode. It’s clear that she’s interested in him, and she should know how important it is to set clear boundaries with her students, especially given how close in age she is to them.

How long did Headmistress Queller really think she was going to be able to keep up the “no cell phone” policy? These students are the offspring of wealthy and powerful people. The school administration doesn’t stand a chance.

Say what you want about Blair’s scheming methods, but there is almost always some small ounce of truth behind her accusations. Even though nothing happened between Rachel and Dan (yet), their attraction to one another was evident from the beginning.

The fact that the school has been aware of Gossip Girl but didn’t choose to step in until a teacher’s reputation was on the line is pretty careless. There have been some nasty rumors (both true and false) being spread around about these kids and it’s doing a number on their social and mental health. Letting it go unpunished for years has done nothing but make everyone think that they can get away with whatever they want forever.

Serena is just as bad as Blair here. No one thinks before they act; they just lash out and don’t think twice about the damage their actions will cause. Blair’s dad was rightfully disappointed, but I can’t help but think how much of who Blair has become is directly attributed to her upbringing. Maybe if her dad had been around, she would have turned out differently.

Episode 18- The Age of Dissonance

“People aren’t jealous of you, Blair. They hate you.”

-Nelly Yuki

Random thoughts

  • For a best friend, Blair takes an awful lot of jabs at Serena’s expense.
  • Following Chuck on his hunt for his dad’s secret society could have been its own spinoff.
  • Watching the play unravel on stage is so cathartic.
  • Gay or not, was Julian really that great of a guy to resort to getting lines fed to you by Vanessa? Methinks not.

Commentary

I’m not sure who’s more of an idiot: Dan or Rachel. In the age of modern technology, passing around notes that could get intercepted by a fellow faculty member, or, I don’t know, your dad, isn’t a good look. You thought they were giving Rachel strange looks before? Think again.

Why was Chuck so attached to this El character? Was it some convoluted way to feel connected to his dad? Or does he have a soft spot for damsels in distress?

The reason why gossip affects the characters like it does is because they’re too self-righteous to admit failure. I love when Dan approaches Blair to let her know it was Rachel who sent the blasts before he proceeds to air out his dirty laundry in the process. The truth really will set you free, boys and girls.

Episode 19- The Grandfather

“I’ve learned the hard way — I can’t control everything, plan everything. Now, with Carter’s help, I’m trying something different. In fact, if I’m somewhere and I can say ‘Blair Waldorf would never do that’, guess what? I’ll do it.”

-Blair

Random thoughts

  • Are Eleanor and Cyrus still on a honeymoon or something? They’ve been missing for quite some time.
  • Speaking of absent parents, where was Anne in this episode? The Vanderbilts are her family — you would think she would have shown up at some point.
  • Playing flag football in jeans is wild.
  • No Chuck didn’t try to play the hero card with Blair, especially when the tables were turned just a few episodes ago. They truly are made for each other.

Commentary

I’m not surprised that Nate would be so easily persuaded into politics; he’s never shown any interest or passion for anything except for getting high with Chuck and kicking a ball around with Dan. After his talk with Blair, though, it seems as if he’s making an attempt to figure out who he’s meant to be.

Lily should have just been honest with Rufus. In fact, the whole list debacle shouldn’t even cause as much tension as it did for a couple with their history. It almost seems as if they are looking for ways to sabotage their relationship instead of giving it a fighting chance.

Remember when I said I don’t buy Nate and Vanessa’s relationship? Episodes like these are why. Nate is usually pretty dimwitted, but I would like to believe that he’d be enough of a standup guy to reject Blair, if not for Vanessa then definitely for his best chum Chuck. As the next episode will tell us, nothing happened in her bedroom, but he should have known being seen with or around her would raise eyebrows.

Episode 20- Remains of the J

“I liked my social grave. I dug it myself, and I was happy to lie in it.”

-Jenny

Random thoughts

  • I’m a student affairs professional by day (albeit not for an Ivy.) I’m surprised Yale couldn’t offer any kind of financial aid to Dan.
  • Chuck and Vanessa make for fantastic unlikely allies.
  • Of course Dan is a fan of The Jeffersons. LOL.
  • How many people read Gossip Girl? The entire state of New York was banging down the doors at the VDWs.
  • Armie Hammer as Gabriel looks an awful lot like Prince Charming in Shrek 2.

Commentary

What’s interesting about Serena is that she, unlike Blair, swears she isn’t like the other girls. Yet she reacts to rejection the same way Blair does, by getting even. The party she was throwing for Jenny is obviously more about her than the birthday girl. And while her intentions seem pure on the outside, it’s clear that she cares just as much about image and reputation as any of Blair’s minions. Who can blame her? It’s all she knows.

I don’t like Poppy gaslighting Serena into throwing an overly extravagant party for Jenny after she made it clear that she wanted something lowkey and intimate. Why does no one listen to kids when they tell people what they want or don’t want? Serves her right to have her penthouse crashed by ragers.

When Jenny tells Dan he should stop watching old sitcoms on Hulu, I had to do some research to see exactly when the streaming service came out because I didn’t even know it existed in 2009. Apparently it did, and was originally a free, ad-supported service that could only be watched on select devices in the U.S. and Japan. It had been out for about a year and a half at the time of airing.

I’d like to highlight a second Jenny quote that I love: “I know that it’s hard for you guys to understand, but I like being me. And as crazy as it may seem, I choose not to be a Park Avenue princess on my birthday or any other day… no matter what my address might be.” If there is a quote in all of Gossip Girl that I could actually relate to, it’s this one. YGG.


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XOXO 💋

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