'Gossip Girl' recap: The Futility Of Peace In The Upper East

gossip-girl-leighton-meester-blake-lively-s4-320.jpgOn "Gossip Girl": Even in a season of more hits than misses, that was overwhelmingly awesome. Everybody spent the entire episode being fantastic, there were more twists and turns and double-crosses and schemes than you can shake a stick at, Dan and Vanessa finally admitted they are worthless a**holes, and even that part was adorable. Lushly directed, powerfully written, beautiful acted... Rachel Zoë got fondued! The troubling "powerful women" theme got lampshaded and debunked! Even Dorota was great!

Serena's war of attrition against the Code of Student Conduct continues, with some seriously hot Colin flirtation and some even hotter self-control. Turns out Colin is Ben and Juliet's cousin, but it's more interesting than that: Colin has no idea about Operation Smile, and in fact Colin and Ben hate each other. So now, it's not only about Juliet's loyalty to Nate, but her duty to jailbird Ben, and her benefactor Colin, as well. Big J's like the most conflicted person, considering we still don't even know her deal.

Serena and Nate get a court stenographer to come in and draw up a formal peace treaty between Chuck and Blair, which is fantastic, but the only person who sees the two parties' secret provisions is sneaky Dan, because he is slime. He tries to convince Eric to help him f*** everything up for Blair -- thereby restarting the war, gaining Chuck's allegiance, and getting asylum for Jenny -- but when Eric finally remembers he's not awful, he drops the fight. Then he gets all his little outfits even more intensely tailored, because his new power is wearing clothes better than Chuck and Nate put together.

Blair's twentieth birthday party is also Lily and Rufus's first anniversary party, which is why everybody is there except Vanessa, because she's sucking in DUMBO and taking up space in Dan's house. Also because she hates fun. In order to keep her s*** together and not run off to f*** Colin at the first sign of a lull, Serena brings both Juliet and her ex, Nate, as her dates. This causes some good drama, but not the kind that goes anywhere. Eventually Juliet gets some spycam (!) of Serena kissing Colin. Things don't go further, and it's awesome, but you see that once again Serena is going to get screwed by not having sex, which is why you should always have the sex.

Dan gets a big ol' case of the hypocrites and invites Swedish pop star Robyn, who in addition to looking like a wizened space elf also has an adorably damning video of Blair drunkenly singing "Stand By Your Man" to Chuck last year. Blair flips, and even though everything turns out fine -- including a very sweet, very necessary conversation with Eleanor -- she kills the treaty, so of course she and Chuck end the episode with the best hate f*** ever perpetrated on top of a baby grand.

Next week: Chuck and Blair have more sex in more locations, Operation Smile gets twistier and thornier, and Nate teaches Dan to play naked Australian-rules football.

Photo credit: The CW