Gossip Girl Review: A Dair Affair

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Now that's what I'm talking about.

This was one heck of an episode of Gossip Girl, with tension slowly built throughout the winter boiling over on all fronts, and leaving us with even more intrigue as we head into a mid-mid-season hiatus. "Empire of the Son" lived up to the hype.

The real reason for Russell's vendetta against Chuck was revealed (in the opening "previously on Gossip Girl" montage, and then later). Lily finally prepared to face the music. Rufus remembered he's on the show. Ben was vindicated.

And, lastly, there was the kiss heard 'round the Upper East Side and Brooklyn.

Dair Moment

You could sense a Dair kiss was coming whether you're a Gossip Girl spoiler junkie or not. From the opening moments, Blair was still stalking Chuck but is in a really good mood.

Blair does not walk around in good moods, people.

Meanwhile, Serena got a call from Vanessa for some reason, but is confused and upset that Ben is blowing her off. Nate? He's being Nate, and exploring his feelings for Raina.

Chuck learns about Nate and Raina from Russell, who also hints (so subtly, with that orange outfit) that he knows Lily's secret. Lily and Chuck try to find out what he knows.

Try as they might to do their thing, which they don't really understand or want to admit, Blair and Dan are handcuffed by sneaking around. It's Dorota who catches her on it.

Soon we learn that Ben has been ignoring Serena because his mom is in town, while Lily thinks Ben revealed the secret (Vanessa hinted this) and that's how Russell knows.

The affidavit is also missing from Serena’s drawer. There's no mention of Eric or Damien, both MIA this week, and their role in outing Lily. It all leads up to Chuck's big party.

After Serena accuses Ben of outing her mom, she learns that it was Ben's mother who rifled through her stuff and gave the affidavit to Thorpe so that he can clear his name.

Russell tells Chuck to hand over Bass Industries or else. Raina was hiding and overhears, devastated that her father, her idol, would resort to such an underhanded tactic.

Lily is ready to turn herself in. But there's more to it than that.

A Lily and Serena Photo

The major secret revealed last night was a bit odd, as it was a reference to a blink-and-you-miss-it Season 2 scandal, but it did help explain Russell's hatred of Chuck a little.

Russell Thorpe reveals that his wife died because of Bart and that’s why he’s seeking revenge. This would have been more shocking had it not been given away earlier, but still.

Serena's father, William, returns and tells Rufus they're going to form a united front. Rufus is just excited to form any sort of dialogue at this point. Stay tuned on this front.

Rufus' other contribution last night, along with Dorota, was to convince Dan and Blair to stop fighting it. Why the plausible deniability? Why not embrace their true feelings?

Embrace them they did, as Dan made the first move - refusing to back away - and insisting that they kiss, just once, to ensure their relationship wasn't more than platonic.

We have a feeling it's a lot more than platonic.

"For crying out loud, Humphrey!" Blair said, before kissing Dan as the screen froze and the credits rolled. She surely spoke for many fans across the country ... but what next?

The Dair cliffhanger was vintage Gossip Girl, leaving us wondering whether Chuck and Serena will bust them, where Louis the Prince fits into this love rectangle, and more.

Here's our first look at where things pick up April 18 ...

Terrific stuff last night, and plenty to keep us guessing as we suffer through another long break. A handful of final thoughts before we turn it over to your comments ...

  • Apologies to those who like him with Serena, but does anybody else think Ben and Vanessa would make an awesome, irrelevant couple? Anyone?
  • This was not a good night to be Chuck. Not only did Russell throw him for a loop, TWO exes are in the arms of friends. Well, one friend and Dan.
  • Nate's streak of being involved with every girl is legendary.
  • Who do you think will find out about Dan and Blair first?

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

Review

Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (363 Votes)

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

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Gossip Girl Season 4 Episode 17 Quotes

Rufus: We'll get through this.
Lily: You sound so sure I almost believe you.
Lawyer: They're ready for us.
Rufus: I'll be waiting.
Lawyer: Lily, this is Assistant District Attorney Vincent. He's going to be taking your statement.
ADA: Whenever you're ready, Mrs. Humphrey.

You didn't. (Pause) You did.

Blair