XOXO, Gossip Girl

Megan R.

Senior Editor

Running from 2007 to 2012, the TV hit series Gossip Girl took the world by storm. Watching the “scandalous lives of Manhattan’s elite” is almost a rite of passage for most teenage girls. Stories of girls, whose obsession with the show has led them to the brink of addiction, fill the halls at school. Some stay up all night to watch a season, while others sneak in an episode during class. However, with a story line as cliché as Romeo and Juliet about over-privileged, narcissistic teens, how is this the show of choice for teenage girls?

Hey Upper East Siders. Gossip Girl here. And I have the biggest news ever. One of my many sources, Melanie91, sends us this: “Spotted at Grand Central, bags in hand: Serena van der Woodsen.” Was it only a year ago our It Girl mysteriously disappeared for “boarding school”? And just as suddenly, she’s back. Don’t believe me? See for yourselves. Lucky for us, Melanie91 sent proof. Thanks for the photo, Mel.

Enter Gossip Girl, an anonymous blogger whose sole purpose is to narrate the lives of “Manhattan’s Elite,” or four rich students, at the Constance Billiard School, and anyone they may encounter. She enlightens her followers by sending out text message blasts with the latest gossip, usually obtained through tips from other students.

As the first season unfolds, a bitter Blair Waldorf (Leighton Meester) ignores her long-time best friend Serena van der Woodsen (Blake Lively) as Serena returns from a mystgossip girl MRerious leave of absence. Rather than discussing their problems, like normal girls, Blair prefers to hold a grudge until it turns into a master scheme for revenge. Sure they have a little heart-to-heart over martinis before the storm, but these two girls can never get past even their smallest quarrels without attempting to ruin each other’s lives first.

Then there is Nate Archibald (Chase Crawford) and Chuck Bass (Ed Westwick). These two are best friends, though they will go behind each other’s backs from time to time to get a girl. Both come from ridiculously rich families with overbearing fathers. Basically coming from American royalty, Nate Archibald and Blair Waldorf are in an arranged relationship that their parents hope will lead to marriage. Yet, at a mere seventeen years old, both teens long for more adventure before settling down.

Blair, Serena, Nate and Chuck are practically inseparable, ruling the streets of Manhattan with a devious hand. But what would this show be without an outsider to flip things upside down? Dan Humphrey plays that pauper in this tale of New York royalty. His long-time crush on It Girl Serena pulled him, and unfortunately his sister Jenny too, right into the whirlwind lives of these entitled rich kids. Although Dan finally realizes his dream and dates Serena, pulling little Jenny Humphrey into the mix was fatal. Blair and Jenny clash from day one, competing for the top spot of the social pyramid at school. While Blair uses underhanded schemes to win each battle, Jenny prefers a more dramatic approach. Fans watch as the innocent, optimistic freshman transforms into a dark, vengeful, and rebellious sophomore. By the end of season three, she is shipped off to live with her mom.

Once the first season plot has set in, the rest of the series hardly deviates. Netflix sums it up best: “Rich, unreasonably attractive private school students do horrible, scandalous things to each other. Repeatedly.” The absolute absurdity of this show provides the main draw for fans. Certainly no one aspires to have friends who are constantly lying, or parents who are entirely oblivious. The lifestyle, set in New York City, where anything is possible- according to media, is more than attractive. Although it is ludicrous for a seventeen year old to spend the day shopping for Louboutins, drinking martinis, and stalking powerful people- all in preparation for an Ivy League education- it is nice to imagine.

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