(I love this episode greatly, but it hinges on two things: 1) Dan's weird recall of meaningless facts, and 2) Serena figuring out shit that the audience can't even figure out. As a Team Serena diehard, I enjoy the episode because it says out loud what the show usually says quietly -- that Serena is a grown-ass woman who happens to be really good at pretending to be a brainless forest fairy, because that's where her power is located -- but the clues themselves, for us, range from poorly expressed to straight-up Orient Express Machina. Also, 3) everybody in New York apparently prefaces every sentence with, "Piece of advice?" And 4) it's possible to make Blair Waldorf look fucking hideous.)
Anyway, Vanessa gets all cagey and she's like, "I'll catch up with you guys, I just remembered I have like five more necklaces I could be wearing right now on top of the fifty-six necklaces I'm already wearing right now. Plus, I have to dig into some people's private business, because that's my only active character trait." D gives an actual literal peace out sign, and Serena smiles at Vanessa without mentioning she wasn't invited in the first place, and they leave her to be murdered by the Georgina lying in wait in every closet.
She calls Scott, who lies that Comp Theory was "Nonstop excitement, lots of theories," which is pretty funny. She immediately tells him that Dan said that Georgina's friend said that Comp Theory seminar is in the afternoons, and Scott ripostes that he's not at the seminar, he's at the study group. (These conversations are totally freshman-realistic, which I love: You can tell because they are totally boring and contain basically an unending question mark of need at all times.) So then why doesn't V swing by study group and they can "grab coffee."
Which, I can't recall a single conversation that Vanessa Abrams has ever had that didn't contain coffee, the procuring or the baristing of said, or the -- often -- missed appointments for the getting of the coffee. But since Vanessa as long as we've known her has basically lived at one or more coffee shops, it's sort of like saying something more profound. Scott gets off the phone more rudely than I've ever seen somebody do, which is how you know he's a Humphrey.
(You may already know how much I love Thomas Wolfe, and hopefully you know how much you should like Thomas Wolfe. But the story "The Lost Boy," (which connects to Look Homeward, Angel the same way everything always comes back to Franny & Zooey), I will tell you, is a pretty great short story about a boy: The boy himself, his mother, his sister, and then the brother years later. My favorite is the first part, because it's all about shame and adults being dicks, and the second part is crazy mom talk, but you figure out how the boy died in the third part, and the last part is the one that this episode is about. But it's awesome because Scott's only pretending to be playing out the brother's part in the story; in this story, he's both brothers, and he slips back and forth across the line over and over. He changes shape, just to hide: