Blair's disappearing act from her wedding reception has left people concerned - where is she? Eleanor's convinced she's with Louis, but Sophie soon discovers that Louis has blabbed to Blair about their marriage being fake. Uh oh!
Oh, and Gossip Girl Georgina is on the case. She convinces Serena, Chuck and Nate that Blair's at the Empire - only to reveal it's just her. She claims she's there to help, but as soon as she hears word of Blair's whereabouts, she's out of there.
Speaking of Blair, Dan's taken her to the airport - she wants to fly to the Dominican Republic because you can divorce without the groom's consent there (thanks, Elizabeth Taylor, for educating us about the ways of the world).
These airport moments were the funnest parts of the episode - there are hilarious scrapes as people begin to recognise Blair and she has to pretend to be a decoy. Dan and Blair continue to be cute together (she fell asleep on him! Adorable!), and this was only increased by seeing her don skinny jeans and an I Heart NY T-shirt.
Blair's forgotten her passport, and holding up a page of the newspaper doesn't help, so Dorota's tasked with delivering it to the airport, while Dan lets Rufus in on the secret. He doesn't spill the beans to Serena, who's still waiting to hear how he feels about her, though.
But Serena finds out that Dan's lying when Blair's phone - which she has - receives a text from Louis asking where she is. Meanwhile, Sophie thinks that Eleanor must know her daughter's whereabouts, and goes to a nice post-wedding gathering at Lily's where she threatens her - if Blair doesn't return, they won't waive the insanely expensive dowry after all.
Of course Eleanor has no idea about Blair's whereabouts, so Louis calls a press conference and says Blair's missing, explaining that she had a recent "personal tragedy" and the stress of the wedding got to her. As Blair says, he's spun it so she's the crazy one. Soon cameras are flashing, so Dan bustles her out to a hotel.
Georgina hears that Dorota's at the Waldorfs', so she heads straight over there and, um, locks her in a cupboard. When Serena and Chuck arrive to release her, they find out where Blair is and take the passport to her... playing right into Georgina's hands, as she follows their car.
In another great scene, Dan and Blair arrive at the hotel, but Dan's fed up with Blair's complete lack of gratitude. They have an argument, and Blair shouts that what was supposed to be the best day of her life is just a big mess. It's a great row... interrupted by a knock on the door.
It's Chuck and Serena, but it's a bit awkward - especially when Georgina arrives for a nice group shot and drops Serena's bag, revealing the camera that filmed the Chuck-Blair video. Did she send it to Gossip Girl? Serena admits she did, so Blair's furious with her. And Serena's angry with Dan for lying to her (but really she's angry with him for not being in love with her). And Dan's still fuming at Blair. Phew.
Worse is that Sophie's tracked down Blair and reveals that the Waldorfs will have to pay the dowry (ie, Eleanor will have to sell her company) if she doesn't return. This leads to a fantastic scene, as Chuck desperately offers to pay the money and Blair replies that "when and if" they get together (!!!) she wants it to be as equals.
Sure, Chuck and Blair fans won't like this further delay in their romance, but it was a brilliant, heartfelt scene. And then Blair goes to apologise to Dan - she says she's going to need him. Will he be there for her? "Always." (And now the Dair hearts break.)
Elsewhere, Eleanor's willing to do whatever it takes to protect Blair from Louis, but Blair's made her mind up - she's going to be married for a year (she's really not, though, is she? I can't see it lasting).
So now that Blair's returned to Louis, Georgina's hotel photo is no good for Gossip Girl. But she still knows who uploaded the Chuck-Blair video... and it wasn't Serena! Serena tells Chuck she was just trying to protect him, and Chuck insists it wasn't him. And as Georgina threatens to use the information as blackmail, we see a shot of Dan... Oh, Lonelyboy, what have you done?
So this was a nicely balanced episode - we got plot developments and drama, but also a lot of lighter moments too, which were much needed after last week. Next time it's Valentine's Day... and surely nothing could go wrong there...
- Eleanor and Blair may have had their problems in the past, but Eleanor was awesome in this episode. She knew something was up from the very beginning - even if she didn't know Blair had run - and she was willing to give up everything for her daughter. Cute.
- "Why would she be on the roof?" "Maybe I've seen The Hangover too many times."
- I suppose we should mention that Nate and real-Charlie-Rhodes (aka Lola) look like they're going to be a thing. Already in this episode we got a quick break-up (Nate thought she was a liar), an apology, and then Lola admitting that actually she doesn't want to be part of Nate's world (and who can blame her?) But clearly that's not going to be the end of it. I'd rather see Lola introduced in a more interesting way, but hopefully she'll bring the drama.
- Also, what on Earth is Lily doing getting involved in Nate's love life? Have some boundaries!
- "The princess is a runaway bride and you guys are going to look for her? Yeah, I'm so in!"
- Georgina is consistently awesome. "Why do you always assume my motives are nefarious?" "If your opinion actually mattered to me, I'd be insulted."
- Also: "Cross my heart and hope to die." "Here's hoping." Nate did a funny!
- Georgina locks Dorota in a cupboard... but at least provides her with snacks.
- "Everybody's staring." "You're wearing a wedding dress." "Right. You have a point."
- I know I said it already, but Blair's airport outfit - she even wore a hoodie - was wonderful.
- "Now I get a better look you're not nearly as pretty as Blair Waldorf." Blair's face - incredible.
- I'm so glad everyone went on and on about how outdated the concept of a dowry is. I mean, really.
- I'm eternally grateful that we didn't see Rufus and Lily dancing to 'Moves Like Jagger'.
- "I think the hotel clerk recognised me. Did you notice him staring?" "You mean after your lecture about the lack of spa amenities?"
- Was anyone else rooting for Dan to punch Louis as he walked past him at the end of the episode? For a minute, I thought it might happen. Wish it had.
- Do we think Blair knows Dan's ridiculously, over-the-top, head-over-heels in love with her? She must, right?
- We found out definitively that Georgina hasn't always been Gossip Girl - only since Blair's accident. In a way, this makes total sense - in another, I kind of wish we'd just been told the real identity (though I fear that would always be an anticlimax).