'Gossip Girl': He's Chuck Bass, and Nobody Cares

Edwestwick8_gossipgirl_s1_240 OMFG it's been so long I don't even know who these people are anymore! Just kidding. You know I watch all the Gossip Girl reruns. Tonight, Chuck loses his mind and attempts to swan-dive off the roof of the Palace, and Jenny loses her mind and attempts to reenroll at Constance Billard.

Dan wishes his (pink-petticoated) sister well on her first day back at Constance while looking at pictures of Serena tangoing, suspiciously solitarily, in Argentina. Eric walks Lil J to class as she tells him that she wants to be 15 again; he tells her that Uncle Jack (he better be hot!) is looking for the errant Chuck, who is literally smoking opium. Oh my god Chuck Bass is literally smoking opium. In a kimono. Kisses, show.  Rufus searches for a sculptor and/or painter who may or may not be female, or maybe not. Blair attempts to make her way into the exclusive women's social society the Colony Club, practicing her speeches for Dorota, when she gets a text from Uncle Jack that he has found Chuck. Dorota races after Blair with coat in hand. The Headbands appear, all in matching winter white coats, to reprimand Nelly Yuki (NELLY YUKI!) for daring speak to Jenny. Eric points out that Nelly Yuki is "the new old Jenny Humphrey."

Blakelively8_gossipgirl_s1_240 Serena greets Dan with the news that she dumped Aaron on the flight to Buenos Aires, and Dan's immediate reaction is to reprimand her for not telling him sooner. Oh, Dan. You're an ass. He kisses her, and all is briefly right with the world. Uncle Jack is, as expected, hot enough, and bears Chuck home from his Bangkok den of iniquity. Rufus gets a call from child services and oh, he's not looking for a sculptor, he's trying to find Lily's Love Child.   Blair and S shriek and play with each others' hair as Blair admits to Serena that she said the words to Chuck. (Serena's reaction? The same as Cyrus Rose's: "yay that's great!" People who love unquestioningly, on this show, are in very sparse company.) Lily arrives at Rufus' gallery and she tells him that she gave up the right to search for her son (son!) when she gave him up.

Pinkberry location shoot! How 2007! The Headbands are wearing red, white and blue under their eggshell coats, and Penelope demands that Nelly Yuki polish her yellow patent pump. Jenny steps up and steals Nelly Yuki right outta that Pinkberry. Blair confronts a dead-eyed Chuck in the quad, smoking a joint. Headmistress Queller pulls Chuck in for a suspension; although Blair tries to "represent" Chuck, Uncle Jack swoops in and pretty much proves that there is a genetic component to all the Chuckness. Blair gives a stirring speech in Chuck's defense that is pretty much rendered null when Chuck begins smoking hash at the conference table. Rufus is angry when he walks in on Serena and Dan kissing, and tells Serena that she has to go home. He tells Dan that he doesn't want the two of them dating anymore.

Taylormomsen8_gossipgirl_s1_240 The next morning Jenny eats cereal which is remarkable for two reasons: 1. it's not waffles and 2. JENNY. Is EATING. Dan and Rufus are mean to each other, Jenny is confused, and Rufus tells his children to leave for school. Jenny and Penelope both present their cases in re Nelly Yuki to Blair, who rolls her eyes and tells the girls that now that she's hosting a party for the Colony Club selection committee tonight, she no longer has time for high school crap. Blair approaches Serena and asks her if Chuck ever came home last night; she's worried that Chuck lost himself when he disappeared, this time. That he never came back, really, from Bangkok. Pinkberry part deux, as Nelly Yuki, Jenny, and Eric snag the Headbands' table. Penelope calls her daddy and tells him that he needs to tell Headmistress Queller that a girl at school is bullying her. Oh, snap. At Constance, Nelly Yuki accidentally lets slip to Eric and Jenny that Penelope is sleeping with her dad's junior partner. Blair goes to Victrola to find Chuck watching rehearsal and tasting some of the talent. (He bought the club back last night.) He tells her that he's throwing a party at Victrola tonight and throws her striptease of last year back in her face; then concludes, "now is that it, or are you going to tell me you love me again?" Oh. God. That's terrible. Serena and Dan sneak into the loft to look for clues to Lily and Rufus' fight, but she runs off when Blair texts her. Dan goes through Rufus' hideous oilcloth bag and finds a number for the South Boston adoption agency.

Leightonmeester4_gossipgirl_240 Blair runs upstairs, minutes before her party starts, to quickly and controlledly sob in front of her mirror, the way good girls do, before greeting the guests. Then, in a cashmere cloche and a vintage dress with a rhinestone collar, she tells Serena that she's saving herself from Chuck, brings the ladies in from out of the foyer. Dan confronts Chuck at Victrola and Chuck, owing him from the quashing of the NY Magazine article about Bart, tells him about the baby. Chuck thinks that this will drive something of a wedge between Dan and Serena. Well. Yes, Chuck. The horrible women of the Colony Club insist that Blair renounce her friendship with Serena (who they have seen so much of on Page Six) and that Bart Bass' death was a "mercy killing", and that she swear she has nothing to do with Chuck Bass. Blair leaves after telling the women that Dorota will give them their coats at the door.

"Ricochet" by the Shiny Toy Guns is playing at Victrola, which can't be a good sign, as Chuck moves stonefacedly through the writhing bodies and forced come-ons, the feathers and the absinthe and the repurposed nostalgia towards the stage where once he saw something real. Eric quietly comes up behind him and asks him to come home; Chuck responds by grabbing a bottle of booze and heading for the roof. Outside Victrola, Jenny lays the Headbands' indiscretions at their feet, threatening gg.net exposure if they don't back off Nelly Yuki. The girls retreat, offering Jenny Queen status; when they learn that this was just a good deed, Penelope is nearly felled by a vicious attack of boredom. Hilariously, Nelly Yuki was preying on Jenny's sympathies to move up in the ranks, and runs after the Headbands into the party.
Matthewsettle8_gossipgirl_s1_240 Rufus appears Chez Van Der Bass to tell Lily that Dan either knows or will know soon, and will be telling Serena, certainly. Lily asks what she should do, if everyone in her life hates her. She tells Rufus that she was heartbroken over losing Rufus, and not ready to have a child. Rufus tells Lily that it's going to take him and the kids some time to process this. Dan tries to pull Serena out of Victrola, while Blair runs in the door, hears that Chuck is "upstairs", and pulls Jack upstairs with her. Chuck drunkenly staggers on the rooftop while Blair and Jack attempt to talk him away from the ledge. He screams that he's Chuck Bass, and then realizes that nobody cares. Blair, once again, forcefully reminds him that she cares, and reaches her little hand out to him. He climbs down from the ledge and buries his face in her shoulder. He tells her he's sorry, but he means that he loves her. Rufus interrupts Dan before he can tell Serena and tells him that he and Lily are going to go look for their child, and that Lily needs to tell Serena herself. Jack pours Chuck into a limo, and Blair warns Jack that she doesn't trust him; he reassures her that he won't tell Chuck about what happened on New Year's Eve. Whoops.

Next week: Chuck Bass IS Gordon Gekko.

Well, that was certainly a lot of episode for one episode. As tacked-on as the Constance Billard subplot felt, it's nice to get a little bit of humor back on a show that has been awfully dark lately, don't you think? Also, I challenge each of you to get through your commentary without mentioning Ed Westwick's hair. And...go!