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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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And by the way....so they get Blair and Chuck back together. Ok...so what will be the conflict next season? They never let them be happily together. It's stupid writing in my opinion. It's the same crap every season with them. The writers are just lazy with this storyline in my opinion.

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Can the writers please give Dan a girl that is actually good, and returns his affections? I think that Blair loves Dan, but is not in love with him.
The preview looks like they are going to pull a princess Diana type scene with the car crash.

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Guys calm down Chuck was in the 100th episode :) so his not dead unless he became a ghost but this is gossip girl not vampire diaries which i love too ;) anyways I think Blair will lose her baby and chuck might get a few broken bones and Blair crying because she lose her baby and will be like her old self in season 2 when she went wild and crazy because she didn't get into Yale now she'll do the same because she lose the baby maybe it's just a guess but Chuck won't die , they need chuck it's gossip girl without him it's just hmmmmm lol

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Chuck won't die, don't worry. If you have kept up with spoiler pics, both Chuck and Dan look on as something funny happens to Blair at her Bachelorette party. Which means that our Bass boy is alive, well, and still sporting bow ties in the second part of the season.
The car accident will definitely pull them apart again, as Chuck will probably blame himself for whatever might happen (SPOILER ............ I bet it is here that she loses the baby). Or maybe B will feel so guilty of running away and now losing Louis' child that she can't bear to leave him (again). On a side-note: can anyone else see something coming up between Dan and his editor or whatever she is??? I could see it from the moment they met. If she's sticking around I get a feeling that she will be having a storyline with Dan soon enough. Maybe a heartbroken Dan? Time will tell. @Dexter Idolizer: we already saw Lily going to court (or standing on its steps) last season. The verdict came in and she was on house arrest. But Rufus got her sentence shortened so by the start of this season it was like nothing happened. It was a bad storyline but luckily the Lily drama is not why we watch the show.

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Maybe Louis even sets up the crash to injure Chuck but doesn't know Blair is in the car?
Evil I know, but this is Gossip Girl.

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Chuck's not going to die in the car crash, it's more likely that Blair will lose the baby because of it :(

Tvjunkie

I didn't enjoy this episode very much. Aside from those moments between Chuck and Blair, I felt like there were no significant contributions to the over-all storyline of the show. All I look forward to now is seeing Chuck and Blair together again. The Ivy/Charlie storyline brought in some intrigue and temporary nerves on whether or not she'll be outed. But when you look at it from a logistical point of view, it's kind of hard to out this character and her deceptions seeing as how the actress is signed on for the rest of the season. And I couldn't imagine her still being a regular despite being outed. So, the story is pretty intriguing to watch but you kind of know where it goes. Nate and Dan were a bore for me. It felt like their individual storylines were just for the sake of showing their characters and filling in time.

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if they kill chuck i think the chair fans will murder the writers - @ Ana Michel that would be seriously stupid. plus they already tried that at the end of season 3. in saying that - i really hope this is the last season.

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@Jordana
What kind of message do you expect from Gossip Girl. I mean lets look at the Serena and Blair dynamic, how unhealthy and wrong is that. And I don't meant the way they treat each other but the whole idea that no matter how hard Blair works she will never succeed but Serena will walk down a street and get what she wants? There are a lot of things about the show that are not good for young girls to see but they do it anyways.

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hello guys, I have seen the spolier of 5x10, and I think they will kill chuck. In the car accident, that's why Lily was crying. If you look at the episodes 11,12,13, are not in any scene chuck and blair. omg, do you believe that something will make to chuck? I can not believe it, as well, I stopped watching the show.

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.