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Gossip Girl Review: Rhodes to Nowhere

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For a fleeting moment tonight, it looked like after six months of raspy-voiced lies, ulterior motives, convoluted story lines and plot twists, Ivy's deception would finally reach critical mass on Gossip Girl.

Not the case.

Instead of being exposed for the WT wannabe impostor she is, Charlie/Ivy (known to some TV Fanatic staffers as Chivy) somehow slithered out of her biggest jam yet, and came out smelling like roses. Ugh.

It's never a good sign when you find yourself cracking a smile at a scene meant to be deathly serious, but that's where I found myself as she defended herself against Max's "lies" with Carol's help.

I could spend hours ranting about the screen time Chivy takes up with relatively little advancement of the storyline, and surely some of you will in the comments. So I'll try to focus on the positives:

Cece and Charlie

"Rhodes to Perdition" is the night she became a Rhodes, because all the poor girl wants is a family. Sucks that she got paid to act like a member of this dysfunctional crew, but they're better than nothing.

It's hard not to feel a little bad for Chivy after what Max revealed, and so callously at that. Sure, she's a manipulative liar leading a double life and probably guilty of fraud, but she just wants to be loved!

If nothing else, all this set up the vengeance of Max, who is now infuriated and off the rails. Surely he'll be coming after Chivy again, no matter how "untouchable" she feels she is with her new surname.

No last name stops a bus from running you over, Chives. Just saying.

More significantly, there's a mystery surrounding the real Charlie Rhodes, and apparently Carol wants to keep that under wraps. So look for that character to be cast sometime this spring most likely.

All in all, not a great use of the episode's primary storyline, even if the Studio 54 theme did lead to the return of Serena's cleavage after an absence of several weeks. There's always a silver lining, right?

What also stood out about "Rhodes to Perdition", besides the fact that the bulk of the past hour was spent building up to a major confrontation that fizzled out, were the distinct B, C and D storylines.

I actually didn't mean the characters' initials, but if you read it that way, there was an N story too, and an intriguing one, as ol' Man Bangs slicked back his hair and rolled up his sleeves as Editor-in-Chief.

Whether you'd call him naive or virtuous, or something in between, Nate is a man who stays true to his convictions. He never tipped off Gossip Girl and he wouldn't bite at the first hint of a big scandal.

He has no interest in running a celebrity gossip site (his loss). Salacious stories are all well and good, as long as they're legit. Give the newly-appointed honcho credit for not being played by Trip's wife.

Unless he still is, and doesn't even know the extent of it yet.

Was the Grandfather behind it as part of his plan to rebuild Nate's reputation? What will become of the cheating scandal that wasn't? Will Maureen still try to plant the story elsewhere? This can't be over.

Regardless of what lies ahead, it was fun to see Nate at the helm and handling his role with aplomb. If only he didn't have to balance classes at Columbia with this job! Oh, wait, Gossip Girl dropped that.

A Lovely Lady in Red

While Nathaniel was digging for answers at the Spectator, Blair was doing some searching of her own. Convinced that Chuck held the key to turning Louis around, she accompanied her ex to therapy.

That led to easily the most noteworthy exchange of the entire night, as a depressed B openly wondered if she was in fact the reason Chuck - and now Louis - plunged into seemingly eternal darkness.

Chuck insists she wasn't, and he's correct. His self-destructive tendencies were caused by a fear of losing her, and only he is to blame. But their connection is one that clearly provokes intense passion.

[SIDE NOTE: What the heck happened after the closing scene last week? That was shaping up to be a pretty major Chair moment, no? Then it's just completely forgotten about ... major pet peeve.]

Together, Chair can be very combustible. We've seen them at their best and, individually, at moments they would rather forget. Now the question is whether by letting her go, Chuck lost her for good.

I'm betting not. With Louis out of the picture for two episodes and the (former?) Basshole's stock rising by the hour, there's no way she's marrying the prince. The Chuck-Blair tension will soon boil over.

Just pray that the playoff is worth it ... and don't ask me where Dan fits in.

Don't expect Humphrey to let his feelings for her go easily, based on what's been teased so far. Think there's any chance she'll reciprocate his feelings, or will she spurn him in favor of her dark knight?

One person who's been down on Dan in a different way turned out to be his agent, Alessandra, although she was only trying to help his book by generating social media buzz under a nom de plume.

This was pretty much filler, although I like that the show hasn't simply abandoned Dan's writing aspirations like they have other things ... such as the fact that the characters were in college once.

Maybe Rufus' words and Alessandra's clandestine mission will give Dan the gumption to go after what he wants in life, and I don't mean literary success. Well, I don't mean only literary success.

I'm talking about Blair, people. Don't count Humphrey out yet.

Also, give the show credit for creating a real ihatehumphrey Twitter account (and HumphreyLove ... although I don't expect Katy Perry will be re-Tweeting either to her 12,505,321 followers tonight).

Kind of a slow episode overall, but not altogether bad, and hopefully, next week will make up for it. From the looks of the promos for "Riding in Town Cars With Boys," 2011 will go out with a bang.

One that may hint at the fate of Blair's baby ...

What did you think of this week's Gossip Girl? Looking ahead to next week, will Dan and/or Chuck confess their feelings for Blair? Will she call off the wedding? Comment below!

Review

Editor Rating: 3.4 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.2 / 5.0 (325 Votes)

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

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I'm respecting Nate. WTF. More of this. MORE OF THIS. I LOVED it! I LOVED Dan's story as well, ahah! I don't know about Chair. It was funny at points, but I'm embarassed and tired of it. Blair is coming horrible out of it as well. And not in the good way she used to terrorize the cast. They are not happy with each other. They're only miserable and all of this drama? Urgh. Chuck is redeeming himself and I'm liking him again. They deserve both to be happy but not together. I did like her confession that she brought ou the worse of her man though.

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can somebody explain to me why in hell they don´t realize IVY is not her cousin... even though they don´t see her since she was a little girl.. not even her grandma! I DONT GET IT!!!!

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@Erica Cinerea they left the show. taylor momsen because she wanted to focus on her music career in hr band the little reckless and frankly because jenny's storylines were getting worse and worse!!! connor paolo - eric left because he has a new show called revenge with the emily van der camp (rebecca from brothers and sisters). Vanessa also left. Leaving Dan, more lonely than ever. That's why ivy (charlie) has been made a regular and frankly i like her, mainly because she reminds me of jenny just a little bit and i'd like to see Nivy but I'm not interested in where this show goes anymore. It's just terrible writing and not interesting anymore but i'm still addicted to the forums. sadly.

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Well, after last week episode, this one was a bit slower. But still, I was good with the Chair scenes (I'm just mad they never showed what happened after the end of last episode). I just wish they can get back together fully and be some powerful couple doing naughty things in New York. We could finally see them in an lighter mode and have a Blair which once agan focuses on what she wants to become appart from a wife. Chuck would totally support her. They are so much in love, and it's obvious, it's painfull to see them still appart. I must said I enjoyed the Ivy storyline. Although I want it to move on a little bit. Serena wasn't enough on the front this time. Nate was nice in this one. I like to see him man up without Diana dicating him when he should write or when he should have sex with her. I'm quite anxious about next episode, and well next half of the season. I just fear that once again, we'll get a tiny taste of the desert (Chuck and Blair deciding to get together again during the wonderful limo scene...) but it will all be crushed by the accident and what happens then. My fear is that second half of the season will turn into a 4x11 - 4x18 all over again, which means, that writers will feel the need to throw Dan into Blair's life again, then we'll be force to bear watching whinny boy telling is feeling to Blair and making her doubt (because she's fragile after loosing her baby, blame chuck or god knows what lame excuse will be found). Then two solutions: we finally get an good ending revolving around Blair and Chuck coming back together for good, with Nate and Serena around. Or, we have to go through a S6 (I wouldn't have wished or bet on that but apparently the writers seems confident it's going to another season. I'm still watching the show. But, please writers don't screw up. Two much confusion, dropped storylines and drama kills the drama. And too much Dair + not enough of the core characters interacting together kills the show, at least for me.

Addicted2chair3

omg um way too many spoilers in the canadian promo! "i love you" and louis being the father?! these aren't things that belong in promos....but nonetheless i'm very excited for next week! also i actually like charlie/ivy's character. i think kaylee is a great actress, and even though chivy is pretty morally questionable, who isn't on gossip girl?

Jeca

i actually liked it,this season is been kinda slow but constant, chivy was getting to much attention and turning annoying but now i see why, and kaylee delivers, i dont care what everyones says, the girl can act and does it great,the funniest thing of this episode was that the two most natefused characters are using those little pretty brains, nate discovered all that media trap from tripp's wife and serena finally got resolve the ivy-max situation.
i hope the writers dont kill cece, she's the grandma of the whole show, and chair finally click again, in a bittersweet way,but the got it.

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I love how Blair and Chuck speed off down the tunnel with the paparazzi after them - the play on Princess D's death is kinda smart!

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I thought it was a pretty good episode! The Chair scenes were great, they just break my heart every time. Serena didn't have much to do, and I hate that she's dumb enough to fall for all of Max and Ivy's lies. It's like what happened with Juliet all over again! I'm starting to kind of like Ivy, though, it sounds like she had a terrible upbringing and now she's just happy to have a family. Plus she's super schemy, so she fits right in on the show. Nate was adorable, finally having a real job and making decisions, and looking so hot in that suit! I was happy to see his cousin and grandfather back, I hope they stick around a few more episodes. Dan was kind of pathetic in this episode, but I like him with his agent, they're funny together. And I'm glad they didn't just drop the book storyline. Loved Chuck's line to the therapist about Monkey licking himself too much, LOL. Anyway, loved the Chair stuff, liked the other stuff, can't wait for next week! My poor emotions, I dunno if I can handle it if Blair loses the baby :(

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Am I the only one starting to wonder if Nate is Gossip Girl!
That his refusal to upload the e-mail list and that he has never tipped Gossip Girl off a smoke screen! I know he has been featured on Gossip Girl, however if I was wanting to remain hidden, I would then feature myself to try and hide my identity...

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no dair = incredibly boring episode

Gossip Girl Season 5 Episode 9 Quotes

Nate: You still love her, huh?
Chuck: I can't imagine the day I won't.

Charlie: I've never seen so much lamé before. Grandma actually wore this?
Lily: Yes. And looked fabulous riding in on an elephant in it. Which is why the Studio 54 anniversary party is in her honor. And Bianca Jagger's, but we won't mention that to her when she arrives.