Gossip Girl

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: A+ | 1 USERS: A+
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Pictures From an Institution, Or: The Bulls of Bendy Law
ant, I mean relentless, fucking around in their relationship causes Anne to pick parties, and miss out on the Rhinebeck romance altogether, which Nate then "fixes" by inviting the Captain to come live at the Empire. A place where he himself lives rent-free, thanks to Chuck. I want to get this all out of the way because it's inconsequential and -- despite Nate previously being a huge part of the Juliet storyline and the express reason she lost her remaining marbles -- has nothing to do with anything else: Nate finds yet one more way to sabotage his parents' marriage and then whine about it, while occasionally popping up as a sort of featured extra in the other stories. The end.

Blair's wigging because three days is a long time for anybody to scurry, especially a rat like Juliet and especially-especially considering she already emptied her apartment and cut ties with her entire family. Why this is stressful is that they honestly believe that by talking to Serena, they will get some clues or something. Because talking to Serena always clarifies so many situations. Dan wants to go to Rufus and Lily and also the police, which plan Blair condescends to acknowledge, and then starts talking about wearing a wig and trying to sneak past the Ostroff receptionist. To what end, I still don't know. "Hey Serena, remember how you don't remember anything about that night? Well let me ask you this: Is there anything you remember about that night? No? Well, good luck getting treated for your drug problems and suicide attempt that don't exist, and we'll see you in three days."

Dan decides that Eric is right and that Serena should glean whatever she can from this process, and they should just move on to finding Juliet by themselves. Look how good he did tracking down Fleur that time, and he did that with Serena there, distracting him with her boobs and pawing at the screen in lieu of using the mouse. They think about their other connections: Beautiful Colin is out, Nate is busy getting existential with Anne Archibald, and the Columbia minions knew her through Hamhocks for a whole year before Ben activated her sleeper-assassin personality. Dan's like, "Let's ask Gossip Girl! She likes you and Serena, and she'll hate Juliet for faking her out with the coke picture!"

While Juliet wistfully walks the streets of Cornwall, CT, bags in hand, happy to be home, stinking of the Greyhound Bus and performance fleece, GG sends Dan and Blair a mysterious thing that is not the information but somehow a clue that will take them to ... an unrelated person whom she could not possibly know is the person they need to talk to. Far be it from me to question this show or the august person of Gossip Girl herself, but seriously: How did any of this go down. She's like, "Oh, they want to find Juliet? Well, it would be a more compelling narrative if I sent them to this party where this drug dealer might be so that he can tell them all his absinthe flashbacks and then eventually take them to her mom's house and then they can eventually go home empty-handed without ever actually interacting with her in any way." Gossip Girl is so helpful sometimes. Now is not one of those times.

The talking cure: "Serena, help me understand. Are you upset because of what you did, or because you can't remember it?" Both and neither! Serena asks doctor lady if she'd be weirded out by seeing herself on the internet doing sudden coke, to illustrate her point that she's not that weirded out by it. It is within the realm of possibility that she would betray her best friend, get with multiple guys, and end up doing coke. We all remember the Night Of The Shepherd Wedding, yes? When she did all of those things and closed it out by killing a man? Serena does. (Sorta.) Which is why she ran away to Cornwall, CT and enrolled herself in boarding school. Presumably she put on pants before arriving, but it's Serena. Perhaps she did, perhaps she did not, perhaps she thought they were pants but really it was a cookie sheet or the Magna Carta.

Magnificently, the road trip involves not only outrageously cute outfits -- and Blair's wonderful curls -- but a tiny vintage car from Brittania (for which Rufus once traded a '69 Les Paul) in which one could only ever "motor." We're motoring to Connecticut, dressed like Nick and Nora Charles, to find the girl that gave Serena van der Woodsen an ether roofie. If you weren't already in love with this season, I really feel this bit might do it: It's right up there with the Yale Admissions guy's chamber strings Muse song, and the entirety of "Age Of Dissonance," in terms of overall aesthetic value: First step in solving a Gatsby crime is your Gatsby getup.

"It was either this or the Lincoln Hawk van which, all I'm saying, has graphics," is a particularly nice Dan line, and then Blair's reading of this part is also genius, sliding from snotty to awesome in a single ellipsis: "Let me just consult the GPS. Oh wait, that's me... No, but for real, Cornice should be just up here." Like you can actually hear her excuse herself for being a bitch and go back to being Dan's friend. It might be my favorite moment in the whole episode, if not for the hilarious smash-cut to Lily in a minute.

Charles and Lily wind down post-Post interview, having smiled so much Chuck's face hurts (heh) and driving them both to drink even though it's like barely the afternoon. They are a great team, these two, and it's always nice to see them together. I hope something horrible doesn't happen to ruin it! They've complimented each other sufficiently -- she on Chuck's success with the Empire, he on Lily's success with the Bass Ind. board -- that he feels empowered to ask about one sticky moment: When they asked about Chuck's sometime return to heading Bass Ind.

Which I found confusing, because I thought Chuck gave up his interest in the company to buy the Empire in the first place, which is why Jack and Elizabeth's scheme was so scary, but whatever. It's juicy: Lily acts very Lily about it and tosses him a bunch of lines -- "I didn't see that it was any of her business! It's a long ways away, and it was off topic!" There's more, but we don't know about it yet; she says she's only a custodian, they clink, Chuck leaves, and girlfriend pours herself another huge drink, so Rufus can arrive and whine about it. Or as Sylvia Plath says:

The queen in the mulberry arbor stared
Stiff as a queen on a playing card.
The king fingered his beard.

The address GG sent Blumphrey for no reason is a gorgeous estate with about a million bad-ass cars outside, which sets off Blair's insanity meter in a way the rest of her schemes did not: "If this is Juliet's house, then she is even freakier than we thought. Who pretends to be poor?" Besides the long list of European royalty you keep accidentally dating, you mean? Dan's confused as to why the full-frontal attack -- "We're just gonna march up to her and pull her hair?" -- but Blair says that's a good place to start. Dan, after all this time, doesn't realize that Blair, like his sister, is all about creating chaos and only then scheming to control it.

Inside it is a Nelly-fueled Four Loko trustie party of outrageous proportion. Not the kind of party Anne Archibald likes, and possibly at this point not even one she could get into. There are rich white youth up to all kinds of highjinks, from dancing dirty to passing out to taking monster bong hits to shirtless capering to drawing on the passed-out people. ("At least he's owning it," Blair mutters after they pass one dude sleeping with I ♥ BALLS scrawled across his face.) It's the stark difference between a Vampire Weekend song and the truth about things; I would agree with Vanessa Abrams that it is hell on earth but probably for vastly different reasons. "Juliet wouldn't be at a party like this, let alone host it," Dan -- an expert on Juliet, whom he has never once met -- shrugs, and that's when they spot the greasy-haired awfulness of Damien Dalgaard.

The Captain, who looks better every week he spends in the clink, would like to live in a halfway house when he gets out of there. Those are his options: A mansion in Rhinebeck bought with Vanderbilt money, or a halfway house. Because being in this minimum-security jail for white collar crimes and the occasional statutory, it changes you. He got shanked that one time, remember. Of course, on the outside he was a huge criminal and constantly getting his ass beat by his delicately filigreed boy-man of a son, but now it's a whole new ballgame. I still don't trust him. They keep pulling back the layers of his sincerity and I have noticed with this show that the more times somebody turns out to be trustworthy despite all evidence, the more likely that they will eventually heel-turn for no reason and end up like Vanessa, just firing bullets into the crowd.

"How's your sister?" Damien asks, which is inappropriate to the extreme considering he used her as a drug mule and then attacked her personally on the ickiest possible sexual level, but Dan answers his question like it was appropriate. Blair chirps brightly, "I banished her!" Dan agrees that the banishing of Jenny has been a good thing, despite the fact that it has failed thrice and each time has caused Jenny to commit worse crimes against nature, but whatever: She's gone. And as if Damien cares anyway. He's all about the smooth drug-dealing action: College kids coming home for the break, and of course there is the reliable Knightley School. Which is where Damien met Serena, when she ran away to boarding school after killing a man. The murkiness begins to unmurk.

Does Damien know Juliet Sharp? Yes, and the mere mention of her nearly sends our skittish drug-dealing friend packing until they say it's about Serena and specifically the drugs that Damien sold Juliet that she then pumped into Serena for just days and days in Queens. For the youngsters Damien explains that ether is "like a turn-of-the-century roofie," okay, and then he comes up with the bright idea of going to Juliet's house in order to find Juliet. "She's a town

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Gossip Girl

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