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Gossip Girl Round Table: "The Backup Dan"

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Welcome to our weekly Gossip Girl Round Table discussion! Below, our panelists gather to break down Monday night's episode (see our official Gossip Girl review from last night) in even greater detail.

In a Q&A session below, TVF CEO Eric Hochberger (Gossip Guy) editor Steve Marsi (Mister Meester) and staff writers Courtney Morrison, Christina Tran and Leigh Raines discuss "The Backup Dan."

Weigh in with your take on the following topics after reading ours!

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1. What was your favorite quote from the episode?

Courtney: “You think I would be insulted by someone with a Samsonite?” Nailed it, Blair. Nailed it.

Christina: As always, there were so many choices. I’m handing this one to the airport passenger who so frankly said: "Now that I get a better look, you're not nearly as pretty as Blair Waldorf. And he's terrible!" I’ll always love Dan jabs, and the runaway bride hasn’t exactly been the B we once knew.

Leigh: Blair had a lot of good airport one liners. I'd say it's a toss up between Eleanor's face being like an emoticon and saying it was about to get like Bieber fever up in there.

Steve: Dan sarcastically telling Blair he'll be leaving "now that your real friends are here." Ouch. The truth hurts, and B responded, adding a new dimension to their relationship. Who knew D had it in him?

Eric: Blair's entire apology to Dan. Mostly because she still managed to get in a dig at the mop. Best characters ever. More on that shortly...

GG RT Logo

2. How awesome are Dan and Blair?

Courtney: They have become the two most likable characters, especially considering they used to be disliked a lot. They play well off of each other and it just shows how much more intellectual and witty they are than anyone else. Definitely a 10.

Christina: Oh, Dair. I’ve always liked their banter, and it was kind of awesome when B said that she couldn’t have survived the past month without Dan.

LeighI didn't really buy their awesomeness until Dan located his balls last night and they got into the fight in the hotel room. They are a hilarious old married couple.

Steve: As I said in my review, I'm enjoying them more and more each week, and they were the best thing about this episode. Blair's flustered comments and Dan's expressions at the airport were all priceless. I wish they had fled to the D.R. together, and hope that in the coming weeks, they continue to be a focal point.

Eric: They were already at a 12 as far as I'm concerned. I mean, you're pairing the two wittiest characters on the show. Now that Dan finally stood up to Blair forcing her to show an honest side with him? 14.

3. Which Blair excuse for rejecting Chuck is worse, the pact with God or last night's ... whatever that was?

Courtney: Whatever last night was. Like others have said, it’s an excuse to keep them apart until the end. We know they are endgame. Blair can be married to Louis; doesn’t mean she can’t have some fun with the Basshole on the side.

Christina: Blair’s pact. That was just ridiculous on all levels. I actually get that her freedom is not something to be bought. As silly as the dowry plot is, let’s face it: Chair desperately needs a real, fresh start.

Leigh: Blair's pact with God. I understand her not letting Chuck pay for her freedom. She knows it's her mistake and doesn't want to be indebted to anyone or put out the people she loves. 

Steve: Last night. The pact I can chalk up to their near-death experience and the fact that Louis hadn't done anything really wrong at that point. Now he's revealed his true colors, Chuck's offering her an instant way out and she still won't follow her heart? Who cares if you're indebted but the person is your soulmate? Ridiculous.

Eric: Whatever last night was. I'm not here to come between someone and their beliefs. I am here, however, to point out one of the most contrived reasons to keep Chair apart for one more season. Look, I'd be happy if this was about having a real love triangle and giving Dair a real shot. But we know they won't, so stop this silliness Blair. You're not earning your freedom by staying married to a different man. As Chuck said, what century is this?

Blair Post-Wedding

4. Worse idea: Trusting Rufus Humphrey with a secret or threatening Eleanor Waldorf?

Courtney: Threatening Mama Waldorf. The apple does not far from the tree. Plus, she is so much taller than everyone else (besides Serena); it’s totally intimidating.

Christina: I’m going with the latter. If there’s one thing we’ve learned from this show (who am I kidding, we’ve learned a LOT, right?!), you do NOT mess with a Waldorf or family for that matter.

LeighCan I pick both? You can't really blame Rufus at this point. He spills when it's important. And Eleanor... Well I said it last week and I'll say it again: Eleanor Waldorf MVP. Princess Sophie: Step off bitch. No one cares about your antiquated dowries. This is New York.

Steve: Trusting Rufus. You knew that phone call to dad was just a plot device to make sure Blair's whereabouts would eventually be uncovered. Should have kept it to yourself, Dan, no matter how much you love your dad and want to keep him in the loop. Dan lied so well (for him, anyway) to Serena too.

Eric: Threatening Eleanor Waldorf of course. Now we'll never have to wonder where B got it from again.

5. Georgina as not-the-real-Gossip Girl: Major letdown or major relief?

Courtney: Major Relief. The plot holes are entirely too big for her to be the real thing. Plus, I like the idea of thinking GG is someone we see creeping in the background of scenes and may have never noticed.

Christina: It’s a MAJOR relief, for sure. I know I may be in the minority when I say this, but I’ve never cared too much for Georgina. She’s always conveniently at the right place at the wrong time, and I’m hoping the real Gossip Girl shows up soon because I’m asking the same question as Chuck did last night: doesn’t she have some hole to crawl back into?

LeighMajor relief! Love Georgie, but it would have been impossible and a copout.

Steve: Major letdown. This week just cheapened the big 100th episode reveal so much. While there would be 1,000 plot holes involved in making Georgina the real G.G., it would at least be a bold writing step for the show to go there ... but we know they're diametrically opposed to such things these days.

Eric: Major saw-it-coming. I for one would have loved G to actually be GG, but I knew they'd never actually reveal it. That is one secret she'll never tell. Xoxo.

Dearest Daniel

6. Did Dan send the blast? Will that come back to bite him?

Courtney: Nope. Nate would never do it, even Chuck wouldn’t. Serena would so Dan could see he has no chance but she claims she didn’t. Wouldn’t be too surprised if Queen B did it herself.

Christina: Not everything is ever what it appears… especially on Gossip Girl. What if Eleanor was the culprit? She wants nothing but happiness for Blair and a mother does whatever it takes for her daughter.

LeighI'm not sure if he did. Nothing is ever really how it seems on this show.

Steve: As Eric says, don't mistake that shot of Dan brooding during G.G.'s voiceover as proof of anything. Maybe he was just brooding? Also, when would he (or Serena for that matter) have sent it, given the role he played in the wedding? It's got to be someone else altogether who's responsible.

Eric: Oh please, if I fell for a camera pan every time a mystery was meant to be solved on Gossip Girl I'd be kicked off this Round Table.

7. What is Lola's deal?

Courtney: She is now on the radar of Nate the investigator and her aunt. P.S. Who else thought it was kinda strange that Lily called Nate in the first place?? Anyways, it looks like she is really there just for school and will be surprised these people are her family. Her mom really must have messed her up for her to call herself Lola. Personally, I would rather listen to Chivy’s raspy voice then go through this story again.

Christina: It is only a matter of time before Lily and Nate figure out who Lola really is. I also think that she might be honestly clueless and am hoping for a throwdown between her and Chivy.

LeighI think Lola might actually be clueless. I also think I might really like her as an addition to the show.

Steve: Agree with Leigh 100 percent. I'm starting to like her a lot, and if she were truly caught in the crossfire without some shady agenda, that would make her a lot more interesting.

Eric: First off, I'm glad she has a second nickname so I don't have to confuse her with Chivy. Plus, Lola trumps Charlie as a nickname for a girl any day. Nicknames aside, I welcome the real Rhodes to the UES any day. This way Nate can continue the trend of keeping it in our little incestuous family.

What do you think? Sound off in the comments!

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

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@Ilovechair The writers ruined Blair's character, they turned her into a whiny, pathetic character, the writers only seem to know how to wreck characters and relationships. Trading someone for a hotel as if Blair was a piece of his property to Jack and almost punching her in Season 4 are much more serious, which is why they're being brought up. The writing is awful, they can't do a redemption storyline properly and Chuck is a prime example of that, how many times do we have to go through "Chuck has changed" before he constantly reverts back to his old self? Chuck still has Nate as a best friend, why do you think he's usually lounging around at his place, sometimes they talk, he's just not involved with this whole stupid Blair drama right now. Chuck and Blair still have the on/off crap and the excuses are getting worse. The terrible writing has ruined Chuck and other characters as well, the Louis storyline wasn't needed at all.

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@Ilovechair He lied by omission but what people doesn't know doesn't hurt. Maybe he knew Blair would not listen. Being a friend and being honest don't add up sometimes. Blair is in "magical thinking" mode. She doesn't respond to logic. As for the vows, Dan saw a subliminal way to declare his feelings. The same applies for his book. Blair is very labile. Dan and Blair have a complex representation of each other. Dan did the transfiguration of her "image" faster than Blair. This one has to be forced by Dan to get there.

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@junior I don't know if Dan did send the video or not, the preview could be misleading and there might be a twist. But the problem with sending the video is that Dan was not being honest. Why did he write Louis' vows in the first place? Why didn't he tell Blair that her fiancé isn't even capable of writing his vows? A good friend would have told her the truth. Besides if he sent the video, why did he blame Chuck? Wouldn't it be better to keep his mouth shut and not accuse another person? Dan has always been judgemental but he has always been the most moral person on GG until this season and I liked that about him. This a very ooc behaviour for Dan and I find it annoying. But it just proves my theory that Dair is too ooc for Blair and Dan and in order to make them a couple they have to change the characters completely. The gg writers admitted on twitter that Blair isn't herself this season. The same goes for Dan.

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@Amayra but georgina doesn't want to do that.

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@pty what are you talking about?

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Dan did it. Not sure. Georgina only has "sending by Dan Humpfrey". What they don't know how to use a bogus address, a proxy from Russia and trick a smtp server. That's lame !

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5x15 sneak peek: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v... Yep- Dan did it and Georgina pwns him now.

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I don't see why it's a bad thing Dan sending the video. He helped Blair against her will but he saved her from slowly deception been married to Louis. The position of Chuck and Serena is the same. By the way, if it was so bad why Blair is not furious with Serena ? The blast was just a trigger for a latent problem.
Everybody lies. Sometimes the solution is not the one making happy the beneficiary at the present moment. Of course, he has an interest but who doesn't ?

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...And Chuck has made a lot of mistakes and he didn't get away with anything. He lost his best friend after sleeping with Blair, he lost Blair after the hotel incident, he got punched by Dan twice because of Jenny, he got shot at in Prague and I could continue the list. So he has made a lot of mistakes but he has paid for every single one of them. He isn't a good person, he was at times a really horrible boyfriend for Blair but he is trying to be a better person, he wants Blair to be happy. He voted for Blair so that she could become prom queen, he got her into columbia, he let her go so she could marry Louis, he accepted Blair's baby and wanted to be there for her. I really don't understand the hate towards Chuck.

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@Anonymous You are right Serena did treat him and Nate like crap. All characters on the show are really horrible friends. But you wrote that Dan made fun of his father in his book and that they got through it. That's probably true although I did not see a scene where Dan apologized and Rufus accepted the apology but maybe I don't remember it. My point is that Blair forgave Chuck for the hotel incident and still Dair fans keep bringing that up. Blair and Chuck got over that too, so why do people keep bringing that up? I know that making fun of someone and trading someone for a hotel are two completely different things. But in both cases one person forgives the other,so why can't we just move on?