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US TV Recap

'Gossip Girl' recap: 'Dirty Rotten Scandals'

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Season 6, episode 3

Last week, we complained that the Gossip Girl writers had forgotten their promise to focus on core characters for the final season. But now it all makes sense! As it turns out, the writers' cunning strategy is to make each and every one of their core characters so absolutely terrible, pathetic and unbearable to watch that viewers won't even be slightly sad to say goodbye.

Gossip Girl S06E03: 'Dirty Rotten Scandals'

© The CW



Let's start with Dan Humphrey. Dear. God. There is now nobody in the world that this creep hasn't screwed over, and yet he still seems to think he's on some kind of moral high ground because he's "telling the truth". Rufus/Ivy is super creepy, but selling out your dad who has been nothing but good to you in the name of fame and fortune is infinitely, infinitely worse. I'm amazed Rufus even let Dan in the apartment, let alone made him tea. Possibly the cruellest part of this episode was when Nate said twice that he was going to hit Dan, but didn't follow through on the threat.

At this point, every single person in the show (possibly excluding Blair) should pretty much be lining up to cause Dan pain. It still makes no sense that Nate ever went along with the publishing plan in the first place, since the serial was about his friends too, but whatever. Dan is a douche, and hopefully the series will end with his suffering the fate he gave Chuck in Inside - alone, embittered, and dead.

But Serena isn't far behind Dan in the douche stakes this week. Telling Blair that Sage and Steven are her family now? Really? At least back in the pilot, Serena was racked with guilt over sleeping with Blair's boyfriend - this time she's not only without remorse, but is acting almost as self-righteous as Humphrey. Newsflash, S - latching onto the first guy who comes along and offers to take care of you isn't growing up, and lying to him so that he prioritises you over his troubled teenage daughter is pretty much the opposite.

Gossip Girl S06E03: 'Dirty Rotten Scandals'

© The CW



Serena should pretty much have been grovelling on her knees apologising to Blair, whose show was ruined because she agreed to help Serena out by using a bratty high-schooler as a runway model. And this even after Serena had rejected her and told her they weren't family. Their friendship used to be the show's emotional core, and presumably the writers are working their way up to a reunion, but the relationship is just so sour and destructive on both sides now that it's hard to root for them.

Speaking of people who it's hard to root for... come on, Blair. It's great that she was working so hard (we're told, although all we see her do is walk around looking immaculate and shouting at people), but in what universe does anything she does in this episode constitute being "a powerful young businesswoman"? Basically, she passed out because her poor little brain couldn't handle the combined duties of running a business, sleeping and drinking water, and was relegated to a fainting couch for most of the episode so that her big, strong man was forced to swoop in and do the work for her. Sigh.

Gossip Girl S06E03: 'Dirty Rotten Scandals'

© The CW

Gossip Girl S06E03: 'Dirty Rotten Scandals'

© The CW



Okay, we'll admit it - we had a tiny "aww" moment when Blair said: "I just someone who can read my mind," and Chuck appeared. But their whole 'we need to grow apart before we can grow together' thing would have a lot more impact if Chuck didn't have to keep dropping everything to step in and save Blair from her own incompetence. The writers have thrown so many stupid obstacles in this couple's path - remember the God pact last season? – that they've lost all their spark and all their spontaneity. Chuck's refusal to have sex with Blair is frankly weird, and puts her in the position where she's yet again having to beg and chase him, when she should be focusing on her future. Why can't these two just be together, have awesome sex and then go off and do their own awesome things?

Awesome things, by the way, don't include endless mysterious plot threads about Bart Bass and bodyguards and shady history. Chuck was the only character who wasn't objectionable this week, although his dialogue all sort of sounds like it's been lifted from the first page of a porno script, and his relationship with Blair no longer makes any real sense. But we'll give them the spooning scene at the end. That was sweet.

Otherwise, just another horrendous week of a show that seems to have forgotten everything that ever made it good.

Gossip:
- Setting aside Nate's dumbness for a second… does Spectator not have an in-house lawyer? This libel plot was so stupid on so many levels.
- Monkey is back! The only good thing in this episode, especially because he looked like he might have been about to bite Dan.
- Sage is just such an enormous brat. We kept being told that she's just like Serena and Blair at 17, but those characters were enjoyable to watch and had genuine vulnerabilities and redeeming qualities. As far as we can tell, Sage's only redeeming quality is that she's sometimes off-screen.
- Nate and Serena honestly just need to get together again. They keep having all these sweet, natural scenes together, plus they're the couple that set the whole show in motion, and they're both equally pretty and equally dumb. It's a match made in Upper East Side heaven.
- Not even going to dignify Rufus and Ivy with a response. Vom.

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