Gossip Girl Review: "The Kids Are Not All Right"

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Gossip Girl has always been unrealistic but entertaining, however, there's a thin line between that successful formula and shenanigans that seem straightforwardly ridiculous.

Personally, when the plot wasn't downright obvious - identical manila folders, come on - it felt like a bit of a bore to me, lacking the humor, sordidness and scandals we love.

To be fair, it's nice they didn't simply gloss over the issues lingering over the winter break. Everybody is battling hard and still struggling mightily for what they want.

"The Kids Are Not All Right" certainly lived up to its title.

Russell and Raina

Important, non-white Gossip Girl characters?! Awesome!

The relationship of Dair, flirtations between Chuck and Raina, reconnection of Serena and the just-freed Ben, revelation of the history between Lily and Russell Thorpe (Raina’s father), and mysterious buyer(s) of Bass Industries are all intriguing.

The problem is that relatively little was revealed on each front, while the action unfolding felt forced and dull at times. I'll give Gossip Girl a pass in that stories do take time to develop and I'm excited about these, but I wasn't a huge fan last night.

Maybe it's just that the episode revolved heavily around Lily.

Everyone's mad at her and for good reason. Stunningly, Serena couldn’t find the judge to get Ben's conviction thrown out after her mother let him rot in the slammer.

Chuck, who seemed more like a Chuck caricature with those chicks in the limo, couldn't find Jack but thinks his father’s old friend can help thwart Bart's conniving widow.

Nate is babysitting his paroled pop. Dan and Blair don't know what to make of Dan and Blair either. The first Humphrey-VDW family brunch of the year is hella awkward.

Rufus and Lily try to smooth things over with Serena, Dan and Eric, but it's not happening. Then Lily calls the judge and tells him he can come back from hiding (!?).

Chuck discovers the Bass Industries sale will be done in 24 hours and plans a major take-down of Lily at the big party thrown by Bart's old associate Russell Thorpe.

Lily admits to Chuck that the company is effed, and she HAD to broker a deal with this private bidder where she can control the sale, rather than letting it go under.

She promises Serena will see the light, too. Chuck sort of buys it. Meanwhile, Serena blows off Dan for the 378th time, and he misses his internship interview. Nice.

Chuck assumed - and Lily lied through omission - that Thorpe was the buyer. He's not, but wishes he were, so he could sell it off piece by piece. Dude hates Bart.

Meester Charles

Can Chuck win back control of the company?

Just as Chuck and S prepare to slam L into backing off the sale, the manila folder switcheroo is revealed. Forged affidavits are blackmail worthy. Dan's resume, not so much.

But, lo and behold, the buyer is scared off by this family drama (?!) and Thorpe steps in to buy Bass Industries after all - with none other than The Captain at the financial helm!

That was an interesting twist, we'll admit. Nate's dad, who seemed content to sit around, play Wii and chase skirts all day, is shaping up to be one of the crew's adversaries.

Meanwhile, Dan misses another interview because of Serena. Blair, scheming to become the right-hand woman of Indra Nooyi, is trying to con her own mom. It doesn't work.

This story line seemed designed almost to give Ms. Waldorf something to do, rather than to lead anywhere. Come on, the Queen would be way better than this. You know she would.

The episode ends with Dan and Blair going to another movie, while Serena heads to visit Ben in jail only to discover he’s been set free by the same judge. It's a little confusing.

Did Lily end up springing him after all by getting the judge to grant parole? Hard to tell, but Ben happened to be lurking outside the jail at least, so that was convenient for S.

Where do you think things are going for Dair? Will Serena and Ben forge a relationship? Will Chuck's plan to use Raina help him win back the company at last? Do you care?

What did you think of last night's Gossip Girl? Discuss!

Review

Editor Rating: 2.9 / 5.0
  • 2.9 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.4 / 5.0 (354 Votes)

Steve Marsi is the Managing Editor of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Google+ or email him here.

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NOW THAT I'VE SEEN MORE EPS OF GG, IT SEEMS THAT THE BLACK GIRL RAINA IS ONLY ON THAT SHOW TO BE A WHORE FOR WHITE MEN ! NOT ONLY WAS SHE RIDICULOUSLY WITH CHUCK BASS, IN A STORY LINE THAT HAD NO BEARING ON REALITY WHATSOEVER, THEN THE RACIST WHITE WRITERS AND PRODUCERS HAD HER WHORE HERSELF OUT TO ANOTHER PASTY-FACE WHITE BOY ! YOU CAN'T EVEN CALL THESE CLOWNS MEN. A MAN IS SUPPOSED TO BE TOUGH AND RUGGED. THESE PUNKS ON GG ARE MORE LIKE WOMEN THAN MEN. AND WHEN RAINA GETS WITH THESE WHITE PANSIES, SHE BLOWS OFF IMPORTANT BUSINESS MEETINGS JUST TO HANG OUT WITH THEM ! ON WHAT PLANET WOULD THAT TAKE PLACE ? NO GIRL WHO WAS A BUSINESS WOMAN WOULD DO SOMETHING THAT SILLY AND IRRESPONSIBLE. WHAT THESE RACIST PRODUCERS & WRITERS ARE REALLY SAYING IS THAT BLACK WOMEN ARE SO DESPERATE TO BE WITH A WHITE "MAN", THAT SHE WOULD DESTROY HER LOVING FATHER's BUSINESS AND THEREBY RUIN HER OWN FINANCIAL WEALTH AND SECURITY, JUST TO BE WITH A PUNK LIKE CHUCK BASS. A BLACK WOMAN WOULD RATHER HAVE MEANINGLESS SEX WITH A WHITE MAN THAN TO BE RICH ! THAT IS THE PICTURE THAT THE BRAIN DEAD, RACIST WHITE WRITERS ON THAT SHOW HAVE CREATED. EVEN LOOK AT THE AD FOR AFRO ROMANCE ABOVE. THEY HAVE A BEAUTIFUL BLACK WOMAN STARING INTO A WHITE FAIRY's EYES. YOU WHITE BOYS ARE DESPICABLE !

Vanessavvv

Ahh I’m somewhat torn about Dan and Blair. I’ve always thought Chuck and Blair belong together, but somehow I think that Dan and Blair seem quite compatible even though they are worlds apart. Serena just walks all over Dan and every other guy she’s been with. I think I’ll be alone in saying this but I actually liked Nate and Vanessa together. I love Chuck sooo much. I wish he would stop constantly doing sleezy Chuck things, like the sleeping with Reyna and arriving back in town with the stewardesses. Would love the writers showing that Chuck has grown up a bit and becoming more mature. Then Blair could see that and they’d be back together in no time. However I do want Blair and Dan to become really close friends. Ah I love Blair and Dans friendship.

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...quote # JOSEPH CARTER
January 27th, 2011 1:37 AM "HOW IS THIS NEW BLACK GIRL FLIRTING WITH THIS CLOWN CHUCK BASS A GOOD THING ? EVERY BEAUTIFUL BLACK WOMAN IN HOLLYWOOD ALWAYS HAS TO BE FOULED BY THE WHITE MAN ! WHITE MEN KEEP YOUR DISGUSTING PAWS OFF OF BLACK WOMEN ! UNLESS YOU'RE GOING TO SHOW BLACK MEN SEDUCING WHITE WOMEN, LEAVE BLACK WOMEN OUT OF THE WHITE MAN's BED. THIS STORYLINE IS SO RIDICULOUS THAT YOU CAN'T EVEN BELIEVE ADULTS CREATED IT. ON WHAT PLANET WOULD A DAUGHTER OF A RICH BLACK MAN GET WITH A FUNNY LOOKING PUNK LIKE CHUCK BASS, WHO IS A BUSINESS RIVAL OF HER FATHER ? IS CHUCK BASS SO IRRESISTIBLE THAT ANY BLACK WOMAN, NO MATTER HOW HIGH UP THE SOCIO-ECONOMIC LADDER, SHE JUST HAS TO SLEEP WITH HIM ?
AND WE KNOW FROM THE PROMOS THAT IT HAS ALREADY HAPPENED ! AND WOULD A GUY WHO TALKS AND LOOKS LIKE THIS CLOWN ACTUALLY BE ABLE TO GET ANY INTELLIGENT WOMEN ? CHUCK BASS IS NOT A REAL MAN AT ALL. AND NEITHER IS ED WESTWICK, SO THAT YOU KNOW I'M NOT CONFUSING FANTASY WITH REALITY. I SAW SIGNS ON THIS GOSSIP GIRL THAT ED WESTWICK IS REALLY GAY.
MAYBE EVERYBODY ALREADY KNOWS THAT, BUT I NEVER WATCHED GG BEFORE.
I ONLY WATCHED BECAUSE OF THOSE INSANE, INSULTING PROMOS, WHERE A BEAUTIFUL BLACK WOMAN WAS THROWING HERSELF AT THIS PIECE OF GARBAGE. A MESSAGE TO YOU WHITE TV SHOW CREATORS OUT THERE. IF YOU ARE NOT GOING TO BE BALANCED IN YOUR LOVE SCENES BETWEEN BLACKS AND WHITES,
DO NOT BRING ON BEATIFUL BLACK WOMEN TO BE WHORES FOR
THE WHITE MAN ! BRING ON SOME BLACK DON JUANS TO SEDUCE WHITE WOMEN OR LEAVE US OUT OF YOUR SILLY SHOWS ALTOGETHER ! YOU BASTARDS WILL ROT IN HELL FOR THIS !" (((Mr. Carter, you are my hero and you hit it on the nail. White
men including the KKK always trying to play beautiful black women
as easy property, whores, and hate on the black man when it comes
to putting white women with black men. Look at that show the
bachelor, you will never see a black man as the bachelor with
beautiful white girls vouching for him, but instead, they had
black women on there vouching for a white guy. Greed is in
their blood since the beginning of time. Whites just couldn't
stay on their own freaking continent, everybody else did. Black
women are just easy pickings for white guys and they brag about it, but gets jealous when they see a black man with a beautiful
black woman or white, HA!

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I always love every episode that comes along. But not this, I actually didn't like it at all. Come on! You can do better!

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Loving dair!! Finally something fresh and different.. can we please serena get crazy jealous over it when she finally realises shes not allllllways number one... i like dair because its like they are both alays the underdog (ie blair in serena limelight and dan in, well everybodys shadow) and so they are kinda cute and modest around each other their flirting leaves me full of anticipation!! and lets also see chuck get hella jealous when he realises blair isnt waiting round for him... and then chair eventually get back together oneeee day down the track after her and dan give it a crack

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HOW IS THIS NEW BLACK GIRL FLIRTING WITH THIS CLOWN CHUCK BASS A GOOD THING ? EVERY BEAUTIFUL BLACK WOMAN IN HOLLYWOOD ALWAYS HAS TO BE FOULED BY THE WHITE MAN ! WHITE MEN KEEP YOUR DISGUSTING PAWS OFF OF BLACK WOMEN ! UNLESS YOU'RE GOING TO SHOW BLACK MEN SEDUCING WHITE WOMEN, LEAVE BLACK WOMEN OUT OF THE WHITE MAN's BED. THIS STORYLINE IS SO RIDICULOUS THAT YOU CAN'T EVEN BELIEVE ADULTS CREATED IT. ON WHAT PLANET WOULD A DAUGHTER OF A RICH BLACK MAN GET WITH A FUNNY LOOKING PUNK LIKE CHUCK BASS, WHO IS A BUSINESS RIVAL OF HER FATHER ? IS CHUCK BASS SO IRRESISTIBLE THAT ANY BLACK WOMAN, NO MATTER HOW HIGH UP THE SOCIO-ECONOMIC LADDER, SHE JUST HAS TO SLEEP WITH HIM ?
AND WE KNOW FROM THE PROMOS THAT IT HAS ALREADY HAPPENED ! AND WOULD A GUY WHO TALKS AND LOOKS LIKE THIS CLOWN ACTUALLY BE ABLE TO GET ANY INTELLIGENT WOMEN ? CHUCK BASS IS NOT A REAL MAN AT ALL. AND NEITHER IS ED WESTWICK, SO THAT YOU KNOW I'M NOT CONFUSING FANTASY WITH REALITY. I SAW SIGNS ON THIS GOSSIP GIRL THAT ED WESTWICK IS REALLY GAY.
MAYBE EVERYBODY ALREADY KNOWS THAT, BUT I NEVER WATCHED GG BEFORE.
I ONLY WATCHED BECAUSE OF THOSE INSANE, INSULTING PROMOS, WHERE A BEAUTIFUL BLACK WOMAN WAS THROWING HERSELF AT THIS PIECE OF GARBAGE. A MESSAGE TO YOU WHITE TV SHOW CREATORS OUT THERE. IF YOU ARE NOT GOING TO BE BALANCED IN YOUR LOVE SCENES BETWEEN BLACKS AND WHITES,
DO NOT BRING ON BEATIFUL BLACK WOMEN TO BE WHORES FOR
THE WHITE MAN ! BRING ON SOME BLACK DON JUANS TO SEDUCE WHITE WOMEN OR LEAVE US OUT OF YOUR SILLY SHOWS ALTOGETHER ! YOU BASTARDS WILL ROT IN HELL FOR THIS !

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Dan and Blair are so cute. You know: the thing, where they pretend that they don't like each other, but honestly they are so happy to have each other right now, so they can enjoy art and movies together. They really saved the last episode :) Hope they continue this, what ware you doing this winter, "Nothing. What did you hear?!" Blair-Dan relationship :)

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Did anyone else think it was strange that Ben happened to be waiting for a bus to take him home. I mean after all that his sister did to try to get revenge for him, don't you think he would've called someone and they would've been happy to pick him up? And boy that bus station was really close to the jail. LOL.
I like Dair. Granted in the end I know Chair will be together for for now I really hope something happens with Dair. An actual relationship maybe would be nice. I don't want Serena with Nate though. And when the itme does come for Chair, he had better be the one doing the chasing.

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"forced and dull"
Exactly right. Dair saved this episode. I have high hopes for next week, though. We'll have more with Chuck and Chick, less with Lily (I hope), and some crisis of realization for Dan (and/or Blair) that Serena is completely fickle and has moved on to Ben.

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The ep was ok. I like the fact that GG is in proggress every season, maybe it isn't to much of a "hook" like 3 years ago, but it is dealing with some interesting adult matters, even if it isn't too realistic (at the end of the day it's gossip girl). This kids are growing up, they don't care so much about cheating, boyfriends, frenemies or that stuff anymore... Best of the episode: Dan and Blair. I was a little worried but Leighton and Penn's chemistry is as perfect as Leighton and Westick's. Besides, couldn't care less about Serena and Dan, they are just boring.

Gossip Girl Season 4 Episode 12 Quotes

Here's my advice. Have a little faith, and if that doesn't work, have a lot of mimosas.

Blair

Serena: Just take me away from my problems, please. Tell me, what did you do over the break?
Blair: Why? What did you hear?

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