Alternate and truly dreadful theory: I am exactly the same kind of asshole as Vanessa Abrams, which is why I hate her.
Scott points out that the Humphrey Woodsens are basically good people, with complicated lives, and she agrees. "And you and Dan have been friends for so long, maybe you shouldn't write that off because of one argument." Like she was actually going to, dude. They do some close-talking about nothing, and then she kisses him and notifies him, in a very Vanessa way, that she has made the first move. Then they kiss more. This is basically incest. If Dan and Serena were incest, this is like double-cest, plus the even worse identity secrets and total loss of dignity that it's going to represent once Vanessa finds out how it all went down. Awesome.
"Growing up means one thing: Independence." Rufus brings the kids through the prolapse of paparazzi outside. "We all want it..." Nate kisses Bree in the free car and the light turns green just like on West Egg: "Sometimes we use other people to try to get it for ourselves." Blair sits in Chuck's dining room, pretending to be a dissatisfied customer while he stands there looking hot and smarmy in a dotted bowtie, and then they make out. "Sometimes we find it in each other..."
S sits in the car before going upstairs, and leaves the following voicemail for Carmen Sandiego: "Hey, it's Serena again. I don't know if you're getting these messages or if you even check this number, but I just want you to know that I'm not gonna stop trying to get your attention. I'm gonna do whatever it takes, for however long. Bye." Ugh, that phrasing is just too much. I really hope this plot takes an unexpected corner next week, because the way it's written here, it distorts Serena's persona and backstory in a really gross, retroactive way. Having an absent father doesn't make you gay, or a stripper. (If you were already going to be one of those things, sure: It helps.) But this isn't just about sex and being sexy -- it's not just about "what/whom" Gossip Girl said lit the "fuse" of Serena's "exploding" "supernova" -- it's also about celebrity, the need for celebrity, and it's about the It Girl thing that Serena's always about. And in this instance they all seem painted with the same broad brush.