TV Recap: Gossip Girl - Remains Of The J

Okay, Gossip Girl is back. I haven't exactly been thrilled with this show over the course of the last several episodes, but this one was pretty much amazing. I hate the whole “Nate and Blair getting back together” thing, but I love everything that surrounds it. Does that make sense? Allow me to explain.

Since the beginning of this series, I've thought Leighton Meester was a great actress. I was reminded of this fact while watching this episode. I love the fact that when she's talking to Dorota about Nate, both in the beginning and the end of the episode, it's really the only time Blair Waldorf actually seems like a real, honest-to-God teenager. The characters on this show lead the lives of glamorous thirty-somethings, so it's nice to actually see one act her age, if only for a brief period of time.

The deal is, despite where they seemed to have been headed last week, nothing has happened between Blair and Nate. She brings him breakfast, but he still considers he and Vanessa to be together. After a week of hanging out with Blair and not talking to her though, he decides that maybe the best thing to do would be to just end it with Vanessa.

Nate ends his relationship with Vanessa with a very smug, “I don't think you're going to like what I'm going to say,” which just makes me want to smack those freakishly well-groomed eyebrows right off his face. It also makes Vanessa's upcoming revenge, which is already awesome, that much more amazing.

It's no big surprise that Chuck has been following Blair ever since he saw Nate's jacket in her entryway. Since he's still in love with her in his own twisted, Chuck Bass way, he naturally devises a plan to break them up. This basically involves recruiting Vanessa to come to Jenny's sweet 16 party as his date and making Nate and Blair jealous. It works, but perhaps a bit too well.

Nate's kind of disgusted with her attempts to become more like Blair, and while Blair doesn't enjoy seeing Chuck kiss Vanessa, she still remains focused on Nate. Realizing that their plan has failed, Vanessa and Chuck do what any reasonable people in that situation would do: they have sex. Repeatedly. I officially can't wait for next week, just to see how this plays out.

So about that sweet 16 party... it's kind of a giant mess. Serena and Lily try to throw Jenny a nice party, but when she tells them she'd rather just have a night of board games and chili, Serena doesn't stand for it. Her friend Poppy comes into town and makes Serena realize that she's stuck in a rut and has been acting too “high school.” So to fix this, she throws Jenny an elegant soiree that she would never want.

Jenny is pissed that Serena has hijacked her birthday so she can feel better about herself, so she retaliates by posting the party on Gossip Girl. The whole thing quickly devolves into a teenage rager, complete with people having sex in Serena's bed. Rufus and Lily of course come home right as the cops are arriving, which leads to an awkward family confrontation.

Since Rufus seems to be a little short on Dan's college tuition (Dan hasn't gotten any scholarships?), Lily suggests that he sell the loft and move in with her. Rufus isn't 100% on the idea, but he calls an appraiser just to see how much he could theoretically get for it.

After the whole party fiasco, Lily blames Serena, but eventually Jenny steps up and takes the blame. Unfortunately, she doesn't do it before Serena storms off and heads to Spain with Poppy for a week. Rufus and Lily decide that maybe now isn't the best time to shove their family together and Rufus will just figure out another way to pay for Dan's college.

The other big thing that happens, comes at the very end of the episode: Dan has been bragging about how he actually got a fan letter; it's from a guy about his age who wants to talk to him about writing. Dan, not wanting to let down his one fan, gives him a call. It turns out that he's calling the secret Rufus/Lily spawn. The one who his parents said was dead but totally isn't.

Unfortunately, said parents intercept the call and delete it. They also know that Dan is Rufus' son, and it looks like they're going to go into hyper-protective mode. What's not clear is if their son calling Dan was a coincidence, or if he knows. Yet another reason I'm looking forward to the next episode.