Nate stares longingly at his family box and makes snotty comments asking Vanessa for binoculars, or "those cool little spy glasses," or a telescope. And -- much like Serena's line from the beginning of the episode where she told Dan "forget you" -- it's not that it's blatantly out of character, which it is, so much as the fact that parts of this episode seems to be written with a snideness, or a smallness of spirit, that we don't usually run into with this show. Like, you could say, "What's with Nate being a condescending fuck in this scene?" and half the people watching it would just say, "It was a funny line, don't overthink it." Proving you don't know me either, but ... Everybody just seems a bit cartoony. The closing scene, it works, because it's a cartoony moment, but some of this just seems sitcommy and like ... It would be easy to turn this into an episode of almost any show, with a few character changes and moving some scenes around. The jokes are all-purpose and not that organic. This whole episode is just sort of boring. And it's the first of this set of three, as GG will explain for about thirty minutes at the end of the episode, so I get that part, but generally there's a bit more sparkle and a bit more grounding of the characters. Which is essential, given the unicorny rules of this show's universe, because otherwise it all so easily turns into Rich People Saying Money Words & Raping Each Other On Cocaine, into the cliché of what people who have never seen this show think this show is, which this episode in some ways ... is.
Anyway, Vanessa's like, "I get it, okay! You like things that are good more than things that aren't! You are elitist and you think just because you have a better seat that nobody's using, we should just automatically avail ourselves of it. Fine." I don't know. This is all very Ugly Betty-style problems-that-are-not-problems kind of stuff. But instead of throwing herself off the balcony and blaming Nate, like Dan would, she shuts up and then these two little old weird ladies sit down and offer them candy and start making strange noises, and she cracks up, giggling uncontrollably, because A) rich people actually do have more fun but B) you're already at the opera, idiot. Moral victory doesn't apply, because there's no way to enjoy the opera from a proletarian perspective.