This week on Gossip Girl, we flash back and forth between Thanksgiving 2006 and Thanksgiving 2007, learning a little bit about some of our major characters in the process. What we don’t really get is any development on the main storylines from the last episode – Blair and Upchuck, Jenny and Nate, and the Blair versus Jenny showdown. In fact, we don’t get any Upchuck at all, which is majorly disappointing. Instead this episode focused on the old timers, but with gay lovers, possible incest, and trips to the ER, this episode still had plenty to entertain us!
Blair practices for the upcoming pie-eating contest she’s participating in.
This special Thanksgiving episode of Gossip Girl opens with a flashback to last year’s turkey day – and then-bad girl Serena drunk off her ass after spending her morning boozing it up in a local bar. The holidays bring out the best in all of us. A sober and frustrated Blair arrives to try to pull Serena together, and orders Serena to wait outside the bar while Blair runs in to find Serena’s missing bag. Serena instead stumbles off the curb and starts meandering in the middle of the street, playing chicken with cars. Dan, who just “happens” to be walking by, throws down his night vision binoculars and telephoto lens and yanks Serena out of the way before she becomes road kill couture. Dan chats with her for a moment while Serena slurs back until Blair swoops in to grab Serena and get her in a cab.
I think I would like this Serena a whole lot more…
In the present, Serena’s on the phone with lover boy, talking about how she’s excited about Thanksgiving this year, and it may be the first one she remembers. Dan laughs and agrees with that, and Serena is confused by his reaction, clearly not remembering meeting him last year. She also reveals that she’s heading over to Blair’s, where Blair’s gay dad has returned for the first time.
At Blair’s, Serena comments on Blair’s uncharacteristically perky mood, and Blair admits that nothing cheers up her like seeing her dad – not even those self-prescribed bumps in her anti-depressants. Serena says that a boy could put Blair in a good mood, and asks if she and Nate got back together. Blair denies that, so Serena casually mentions Upchuck. Immediately defensive, Blair begins hissing and spitting until Serena admits she saw the sexy time at Blair’s party.
Knowing the jig is up, Blair begins ranting about how stupid it was to have sex with Chuck twice, while Serena indignantly sputters that she can’t believe Blair had sex at all, after all her talk of wanting it to be special. I’m not sure why Serena is so surprised, given that Blair’s tried every scheme to get Nate to have sex with her short of tying him up and raping him. But you knew that was on the list, she was just working her way down. Serena asks Blair if she slept with Chuck for revenge, and Blair snaps that it wasn’t because she likes his natural musk. Who else is not surprised that Chuck smells?
Blair taunts Serena that nothing hurts more than sleeping with the best friend, and Serena jumps up to leave. But before she can get out of there, Blair accuses her of being jealous that Blair slept with the one guy on the entire UES that Serena hasn’t slept with. Which doesn’t make much sense, but the slut implication is there loud and clear. Blair’s being a complete bitch, probably upset with herself for giving it up to Chuck in a random drunken mess, hence throwing around the slut insults to try to make herself feel better. Serena finally gets out of there, announcing that her family will no longer be spending Thanksgiving with the Waldorfs. If I were Serena, I’d say this is the perfect time to kick off that holiday drinking.
Do you have a problem with my self-loathing?
After leaving Blair to sheathe her claws, Serena drags her beat-up yet evidently very popular vajayjay out to meet Lily and her fucking annoying brother. I wish he’d try to slit his wrists again so he can go back to the treatment center and off my TV screen. The family strolls along a street market in Chinatown, talking about how they’re just going to cook their own dinner, conveniently forgetting they live in a hotel room and, you know, don’t have an oven or a stove or anything. As Lily tries to figure out if she can boil water on a radiator, Dan calls and Serena admits that Blair gave her family the smell ya later. Without checking with anyone else, Dan invites the VDWs over to his place, and Serena eagerly accepts before Lily can stop her. Serena giggles over the good news while Lily tries to pretend eating Thanksgiving with her old lover isn’t the worst idea ever. And she doesn’t know that Mrs. Humps is still trolling around over there.
Flashback time again! It’s still last year, and Serena and Blair are in Blair’s kitchen. Blair’s helping Gay Dad cook, and Serena’s alternating between stuffing her face full of carbs and passing out at the table (which is a pretty excellent way to spend any holiday in my book). Eleanor strolls in and quizzes Blair on what she’s had to eat today until Gay Dad quietly tells her to let it go since Blair’s been fine for two months now. Sounds like someone may have had an eating disorder? Let’s see – Blair is obsessed with having control, with a distant, critical mother, and a boyfriend who doesn’t love her. Yeah, she’s textbook.
How did this come as a surprise?
Still in the flashback, Nate strolls in and greets everyone, particularly Serena. Blair asks Nate to take Serena upstairs to sober her up, but she probably did not bargain for him also to feel her up while he was at it. Meanwhile, Eleanor mentions that they’ll be having a male model as their dinner guest, and Gay Dad is like, how nice! You just know the male model is going to be the man Gay Dad left Eleanor for. Eleanor gives him a look and quietly says “not this one” and that they need to work together. Hmm, I wonder if that means Eleanor already knew Gay Dad was gay, and was simply warning him off this particular guy? And if that’s the case, what’s it about this particular guy that makes him off limits?
In the present, Blair comes downstairs to see caterers galore preparing their Thanksgiving feast, which is vastly different than the homemade meal of last year. She asks Eleanor where Gay Dad is, and Eleanor nonchalantly says that Gay Dad and Ramon the male model (I knew it!) won’t be coming after all. Blair is crushed and stomps off, and the camera lingers on a maid who has an ohnoshedidn’t! look on her round, plain face. This show does not waste time with poor or ugly people unless there’s a plot point, so my hunch is Eleanor’s lying and the maid knows something. Sure enough, as soon as plain maid gets Blair alone, she suggests through a thick, film noiry-sounding accent that Blair call Gay Dad directly to learn the “real” story.
Reasons I hate working for your mother: 1. What the fuck is on my head?
At the hotel, Serena and her fannoying brother are getting ready to head out to the ghetto, but Lily’s playing sick to get out of having to go. Serena and Eric beg and plead, but Lily insists that she doesn’t have an appetite – as the room service she ordered arrives earlier than it was scheduled to. Just as Lily gets busted, Dan arrives to drive the VDWs to his place. Serena tattles on her mother, and Dan turns on the charm – and then the threats – to convince Lily that she has to join them. She finally gives in and goes to change, and places a covert call to Rufus’s answering machine reminding him that Serena and Eric don’t know she and Rufus used to bump uglies.
This flashback picks up with Dan arriving home after saving Serena’s life. He chats with Mrs. Humps for a few minutes about how he has a thing for a crazy blonde chick who likes to get drunk on Thanksgiving and play in traffic, and Mrs. Humps smiles and says Dan’s tastes are a lot like Rufus’s. Surprised, Dan tells his mom that he didn’t know she was ever crazy, and she merely says that she wasn’t necessarily talking about herself.
In the present, Serena, Eric, and Lily have arrived in the ghetto and Mrs. Humps is not too happy to see the crazy blonde she was referring to in the flashback. Lily pretends to never have met Mrs. Humps before, and Mrs. Humps suspiciously plays along. Once the kids are out of earshot, Lily hurriedly apologizes for showing up and protests that she didn’t realize Mrs. Humps was back. This causes Mrs. Humps to bare her fangs as she demands to know just how much Rufus and Lily have been seeing each other. But before the catfight can really break out, Dan calls the threesome to dinner.
So… let’s get drunk and talk about which ones of us might actually be related!
Blair, meanwhile, is sitting at dinner and silently stewing over what her covert secret agent maid told her. She finally confronts Eleanor, accusing her of telling Gay Dad that Blair didn’t want to see him. Eleanor doesn’t really have much to say to that accurate accusation and after they hiss at each other for a few minutes, Eleanor forces Blair to select a dessert and Blair stomps into the kitchen. Once alone, Blair glares at the pie she grabbed while we’re treated to a montage of her eating like a bird while in front of others, but then vomiting while in private. Bulimia it is, then. She begins crying softly and eats the fuck out of that pie (that sentence could really be taken out of context). Dude, I like to eat and all, but watching her inhale this pie is a little nauseating.
Back at the most awkward Thanksgiving dinner ever, Lily’s trying to make the best of things despite the situation and Mrs. Hump’s catty comments and subtle insults. Despite their fight, an upset Blair calls Serena for help, and Serena announces she has to leave and apologizes profusely. Mrs. Humps tries to kick Lily’s ass out the door at the same time, but Serena blithely insists her mother stay. The conversation resumes sans Serena, and Lily mentions a horse she once had – which turns out to be the name of one of Rufus’s songs that was supposedly about Mrs. Humps. Dan and Jenny are complete idiots and babble on about the song, which is clearly about Lily instead, until Dan eventually grows a brain and puts two and two together. In shock and disgust, everyone flees the table. That’s usually how family dinners end at LoLo’s house.
In the flashback, Nate has led Serena upstairs to a bathroom sober up, where he’s quite handsy and closes the door behind them. They start play fighting with the adjustable showerhead, grabbing at each other and giggling hysterically. Blair bursts in angrily for a second until Nate grabs her and begins spraying her as well. It’s somewhat sad to see this flashback, for it shows that this group used to be somewhat normal and fun.
Dan’s hanging out with his mother, and she reveals to him that Lily was Rufus’s first great love. Dan looks a little nauseated at that, for yeah, it’s kinda creepy the way he’s been lusting after Lily’s daughter. Meanwhile, Rufus and Lily are squabbling about her presence at the dinner, and what the hell the two of them have been doing the past few episodes. Rufus takes the coward’s way out and refers to Lily as one of his oldest friends, and she sarcastically tells him she didn’t feel like his friend when he kissed her at Eleanor’s party a few weeks ago. Of course Mrs. Humps picks that exact moment to walk up and overhears that last bit, horrified. Bitch, shut up. You cheated on Rufus, you walked out on your family, go eff yourself. My dislike of that woman is doing the impossible – it’s making me interested in the parents storyline because I don’t want to see that old hag with Rufus.
Meanwhile, Nate’s Thanksgiving isn’t going much better. At dinner it’s just Nate, Cappy McDouche and his useless wife because Blair disinivited the family after the breakup. Nate’s mom is passive aggressively taunting Cappy for ruining her entire social life until Nate interjects and tells her that being a huge bitch isn’t going to help anything. But Cappy isn’t too thrilled with his son’s defense, and asks Nate to let him fight his own battles. Disgusted with the both of them, Nate storms off, and goes to a nearby park to pout and debate calling either Blair or Serena. This would have been a perfect opportunity to get Chuck in this episode, but no. Realizing that neither one girl will be too happy to hear from him, he gives up and just walks home. When he arrives, his mother bitches at him for a moment about him walking out on dinner, but Nate cuts her off when he sees Cappy sprawled on the ground, unconscious. Anyone else hoping he’s dead?
I don’t care that it’s Thanksgiving, Jim. I need an 8-ball now!
Well, he’s not. Nate and his mother are at the hospital and we learn that Cappy took a bunch of painkillers and chased them down with some whiskey. Mother and son begin fighting, with mom insisting that it’s not her fault Cappy’s a crazed workaholic since her daddy has lots of money and gave her and Cappy everything – the house, the boat, the cars, etc. Hmm, maybe that’s exactly the problem, you idiot.
Serena by this point has gone over to Blair’s, dealt with Blair’s tears, and convinced her to get out of her apartment and away from her controlling mother. Serena takes her back to Dan’s, and they walk in on the threesome fighting about the alleged makeout session between Lily and Rufus. Serena accurately notes that there’s a weird vibe in the room, and takes Blair with her to find the kids, who are sitting around in a bedroom debating if any of them could be related in ways they didn’t know of before. They fill Serena and Blair in on what’s going on, and Serena is grossed out while Blair is cheered up that someone’s Thanksgiving is worse than hers. No one mentions that Blair and Jenny are supposed to hate each other – yet another plot thread dropped for this Very Special episode. The group decides to sneak out to a diner so they can finish eating.
Who else has business before his majesty, King Dan the Gay?
Back to the parents, Mrs. Humps is insisting that Rufus make a choice between her nasty protruding cheekbones and Lily. She tells him that if he wants a chance of making it work between them, he can’t talk or see Lily in any way. Yes, that’s the best way to keep your man – cheat on him, then show flagrant insecurity masked behind ultimatums and threats. We don’t see Rufus’s decision, but rather we see Lily arriving alone at the diner. Dan, Jenny, and Blair excuse themselves, but as Blair’s leaving, she quietly thanks Serena and mentions that she’s going to talk to her doctor. So it sounds like Blair did tell Serena that she’s bulimic and that she had a binge today, even though we never heard that conversation. Strange. Lily sits down and it looks like this dirty little secret won’t hurt her relationship with her kids – instead it may just make her Cool Mom.
Blair’s back home and she finds Eleanor standing alone in the kitchen. Eleanor apologizes for lying about Gay Dad, and admits that she lied because he had sent her divorce papers that she can’t bring herself to sign. Eleanor finally shows some emotion (bitchy does not count) by beginning to cry a little bit about the destruction of her marriage, and Blair reaches up and wraps her in a hug. But Blair has to jump away when the tears leak into Eleanor’s circuitry and start making little frying sounds.
Nate goes to Cappy’s hospital room, and gently confronts his father on the fact that a Dartmouth man would not be stupid enough to “accidentally” take a whiskey-Vicodin cocktail. Cappy somewhat admits that he did attempt to kill himself, because he feels so useless. With a spoiled, rich wife with a generous daddy, it does somewhat emasculate the husband and make it hard for him to get the self-worth that many men get from providing for their family. At least that’s my crackpot psychiatry musings for the day. And now he can add “botched suicide attempt” to his list of failures, right under “being a good dad” and “being a good person.”
And that’s about it for this episode guys – the last few minutes merely show what everyone was doing last year on Thanksgiving compared to this year. Serena was wasted, now she’s happy and sober (oh, and Eric’s hair was a normal brown and not trailer-trash streaked). Blair was happy with both her parents, now she’s trying to salvage any relationship with her mother. Nate was happy, and is now in a hospital room with a suicidal father. Dan was pining for Serena, now he has her and a reunited family. We end on some extended shots of the Humphreys playing football, and then falling into a laughing heap on top of each other like they’re on the opening credits of “Full House” or some shit. That was… odd.
Jenny does have the weird alien Olsen twin look…
Next week we do have a new episode, and it looks like it’s sexy time for everyone, plus Chuck is back! Hopefully the parents will move to the background, because I can’t take two parent-focused episodes in a row. So what do you think? Should Rufus have picked Lily? Will Cappy live? Did you see Blair’s eating disorder coming? And who annoys you the most – Vanessa, Eric, or Mrs. Humps?