Gossip Girl, Season 1, Episode 3: Poison Ivy

Recovering Addicts and the Mothers Who Snub Them

Highlights: Blair gets ChuckSlime to stalk Serena; Nate tells off the Captain; Serena takes one for the team; Blair and Serena brawl

Gossip Girl tells us that it takes two to tangle and wonders if these girls will go down without a fight.  That makes no sense.  What a way to start an episode.  With an a capella version of Glamorous in the background, Gossip Girl voices over scenes of the rich kids getting ready with rich thing that supersuccessful parents expect their spawn to go to Ivy League schools.  As for the poor kids, they can’t let their parents down.  Dan nicks himself with his razor.  Chuck dons his scarf.  Jenny sings Glamorous with the chorus at school.  When they finish, no one claps.


The head mistress asks everyone to show sympathy to the juniors because Ivy Week is ending.  She explains that the mixer is important.  Their lives depend on it. 


Back at home, Rufus tells Dan to be happy he’s not a hemophiliac because he cut his face up.  Dan bemoans not having a trust fund.  Rufus says college is about academics, not money.  That’s how we know Rufus is poor.  Jen makes fun of Dan’s face.


Nate and Chuck whisper sweet nothings to each other.  Then Chuck moves away from Nate.  This is dumb.


Captain Crunch and Nate go running.  Boring. Boring.  Capt. wants Nate to go to Dartmouth.  Nate wants to go out west.  They had this conversation two episodes ago.  Dartmouth, law school, Blair—Capt calls that having everything.  Then he tells Nate to go green and leaves Nate to be by his boring self.


Blair trounces down her stairs, gushing about her Yale sweatshirt and thanks her nanny for not letting her get a bull dog.  Nanny makes her eat.


Blair and The Chickadees notice that Serena isn’t at school yet.  She’s rushing around the hotel suite with JudgyLily complaining that Serena shouldn’t have stayed at the institution with her brother because they should be shunning him.  She wonders if Serena has been thinking of college and how things are with Dan and what’s going on with her and Blair.  Serena complains that she wants to go away where no one knows her.  Lily tells her to take a cab.  She arrives too late to the meeting and Dan says that it’s all over. 


Blair calls Serena a slut.


Outside, the girls are playing field hockey and Blair takes out Serena with her stick.  Serena wants to believe it was an accident and Blair calls her delusional.  Blair continues to knock Serena down and Blair says it’s not enough.  Then Serena body checks Blair and they roll around fighting and screaming.  Serena asks for a truce and Blair screams that her leg hurts and Serena gets kicked out and so she hopes Blair’s leg is broken. 


Dan’s in an interview for usher for Dartmouth, screwing up and confusing himself.  Because he’s poor, he needs a scholarship and because he’s poor, he’s desperate.  He wants to go to Dartmouth and he thinks Dartmouth’s been dreaming of him.  No one finds him funny.


Nate says that he’s heard about Dartmouth from his father forever but if there’s only one position open, someone else should get it.  The interviewer falls out of his chair, passing out from boredom.


ChuckSlime wonders aloud why he should be chosen for usher (and I don’t know what that means but it has something to do with college).  His reason: he’s Chuck Bass.


The list gets posted.  Nate gets usher for Dartmouth which means that usher is a boring position.  ChuckSlime gets Yale.  I don’t see Dan’s name.  Dan says it all makes sense because Dan is second in class and Nate is last and Nate’s dad is rich and has libraries and Nate is all touchy and doesn’t know the name of the Ivy League rep or the book he wrote but Dan knows it because Dan stalks people.


Poor Dan runs into Serena who says the week is tough.  He says he didn’t get an usher position but Nate did.  Serena says he can get into Ivy League even if he’s  not an usher and her parents went to Ivy League schools and his didn’t.


The Chickadees are icing Blair’s leg as she calls ChuckSlime.  He says that women only pretend to be complicated.  She sends the Chickadees to get her a heating pad and then orders ChuckSlime to find out why Serena came back. 


Dan arrives at the poor house and slams his door in frustration.  Rufus walks in after knocking without being invited.  Dan says he didn’t get the usher position and Rufus doesn’t understand why Nate Archibald got it.  Dude, he’s rich and you’re not.  Rockin Rufus is upset because he sacrificed to send his kids to a private school to get into a good college and now Dan’s a screw up.


Jen explains to Rockin Rufus that they’re Humphreys and not royalty.  He asks if she’s okay with it.  She says no but she’s used to it.  Way to be with the family pride.


Serena struts on over to the treatment center as ChuckSlime follows with glee.  He calls Blair who’s hanging out with Nate who’s reading a book instead of trying to get into her pants.  She’s obviously given up trying to seduce him.  The phone rings and she answers with Mom how’s Paris but really, it’s ChuckSlime bursting to tell her about Serena going into the treatment center.


ChuckSlime shows off his pictures of Serena to Blair.  He says it’s a facility for the disturbed and Blair suggests he has his own wing.  She wants total social destruction.  ChuckSlime likes her bed.  She makes him leave. 


Meanwhile, the van der Woodsens are in family therapy.  Serena bitches about her mom keeping everyone in hiding.  The therapist wants Eric to speak up.  Serena tells him not to listen to his mom.  He says he’d like to get out.  JudgyLily sighs with anger.  Then he says maybe he’s not ready.  She sighs with relief.  Serena wants him to go to the Ivy Party and Lily can’t take it since he’s going to ruin their reputation. 


Rufus the Rocker arrives at school to try to talk them into letting Dan be usher.  They tell him to talk to the committee chairwoman.  And who’s the chairwoman?  None other than Mrs. Lily I Judge People And Care More About My Reputation Than My Suicidal Son and Slutty Daughter van der Woodsen.  She’s surprised to see him and says she doesn’t have any time for him.


Rockin Rufus arrives home and tells LowlyBoyDan that he’s in the program and is on the refreshment committee.  Dan asks how he got the embarrassing position and Rufus reveals that he’s on the entertainment committee and he’s booking himself.  Rufus Unplugged.  Jen offers to be a roadie and Dan wonders if he should call his mom so the whole fam can be there.


Serena and Eric show up with Lily judging them.  LowlyDan serves punch and Rufus rocks out with a string quartet.  Serena tries to find the Yale rep even though she wants to go to Brown and Blair wants to go to Yale.  Blair introduces herself to the rep that Blair is talking to about crew.  Serena says that Blair doesn’t like getting her hair wet and takes the rep away to get a drink.  Blair seethes and asks ChuckSlime why he let Serena take him away when he’s the usher.  Chuck is trying to get into Princeton now.  Meaning he wants to bang the Princeton rep.  Blair gets introduced to Dr. Osteroff and shuffles away with him.


Boring Nate tells the Dartmouth rep that he loves his book.  The book Poor Dan told him about and the book Nate never read.  The author asks what he thought of the epilogue and thinks WarnerBrothers might change the end.  Nate asks if he wants something to drink because he has nothing smart to say.


Father Slime finds Judgy Lily and Eric.  He asks Eric how Miami was because Lily told everyone he was visiting his aunt in Florida.  Even though he’s paler than Casper, everyone believes that’s where he was.  Yet no one believes Serena was in boarding school.  Eric says Go Marlins and then excuses himself from the painfully awkward conversation.


He goes inside and finds Jenny who’s wearing the dress that Blair gave her.  They remember each other and Capt Cooke comes in and asks if he enjoyed Miami.  Jen wants to hear his real story even though it’s dark.


Outside, Serena’s explaining to Dan that she’s talking to the Yale rep to screw over Blair.  Poor Dan blows the whistle on the bitter train and says that it doesn’t matter who Serena talks to because she’s guaranteed to go anywhere she wants.  Then Nate comes over so he can ignore Serena.  Dan asks Nate what the rep is like because Dan is desperate to know anything about Dartmouth.  Nate says that they have nothing in common because Nate is boring and the rep/author isn’t.  Dan suggests talking about Dr. Suess and Nate tells Dan to just take the usher position for a while.  Which is actually pretty nice of Nate to do.  Capt accosts Nate and Nate finally says he doesn’t want to go to Dartmouth.  Finally.  Again.


Inside, Eric tells Jen the whole story of his suicide.  Jen promises not to say anything.  She asks if Eric wants to go to the party again and he says that everyone is going to keep asking him about Florida.  She says that she can answer for him because she’s been to Florida. 


Blair calls the crowd to attention and explains that their school is honoring the Ostroff Center as they praise a program every year.  This year it’s personal because one of their students is being helped by the Ostroff Center and is clean and sober for now.  Blair calls Serena up to the stage and Eric tries to go up.  Serena says that Eric can’t go up and JudgyLily tells her to think about who’s in the room with them.  Serena goes up and thanks Blair for recognizing the Ostroff center.  Thanks, Blair.  She says that everyone learns forgiveness at the center.


Poor Dan asks Poor Jen if Serena is in rehab.  Jen says no, it’s her brother who is.  Didn’t she just promise Eric less than a minute ago that she wouldn’t say anything?  She tells Dan to keep it to himself.  Serena talks about forgiving people and asking for forgiveness and forgiveness and forgiveness and she says it a whole lot.  Blair cuts her short with a loud thank you!  Gossip Girl says that I Was A Teenaged Drug Addict isn’t a good college essay.  Sure it is.  At least it would be interesting.


Lily van der Judgment Day Woodsen drags Serena inside to ask why Blair was outing her for a drug problem she didn’t have and tells Serena that they’re a family.  Serena says that that’s why she did what she did.  Then she goes to end it all with Blair.


She asks Blair what the hell was that and asks if they’re square.  Blair says that nothing she does will be as bad as Serena sleeping with Nate and that Serena will keep losing. Unlike Serena, she has a future to get back to and walks away. 


Dan goes after Serena to tell her that what she did for her brother is cool.  He says that no one will hear it from him and offers to listen to her if she wants to talk.  He apologizes for saying things about her and her world and he knows nothing about it because he’s poor.  She says she needs to leave and thanks him and says that maybe they can get together and not talk. 


Judgy Lily wants to take Eric back to the center but Eric needs to talk to Blair first.  He tells her that Serena’s not a patient at the center.  She says that he’s not a drinker.  He shows her his scars and says that Serena protected him today.  She has no words.  Eric says it must be a shock for someone who thinks she knows everything and storms off.  Nice one, Eric.


Rufus is glowing that Dan got a signed book from the Dartmouth guy.  Dan says that he wasn’t appreciative enough about Rufus getting him the ladle the drinks job at the party.  Rufus says that nothing will keep Dan from getting what he deserves.  Then he says he may apply to Dartmouth for their music program and they can get Jenny to go early.  Dan doesn’t see the humor.


Over at Nate’s place, he’s sleeping and his phone is ringing.  He’s got no shirt on which is a plus.  ChuckSlime asks where he needs to be so early and says that girls from Jersey are tigers.  Nate gets dressed and he’s boring.  He meets his dad for a run and sees that the rep from the college is with them and Capt lies that Nate had food poisoning the night before but he didn’t because that would make him interesting.


Jenny arrives at the institute to visit Eric and Eric says his mom needs a massage.  The Brown rep sent Serena flowers at the center because his cousin was a druggie.


Serena and Blair meet up in the rain where Serena is reading with a big floofy hat on.  Serena asks if Blair is there for a catfight.  Blair shows Serena a letter she wrote when Serena was away.  It says that her world is falling apart and her dad left her mom for a 31 year old male model and only Serena would understand and she’s not there and Nate is acting weird.  Meaning boring.  Blair cries.  She missed Serena.


Serena gets a little teary and asks why Blair didn’t send the letter. Blair says that Serena knew and didn’t even call.  Serena didn’t know what to say or how to be her friend after what she did but she’s so sorry.  Blair says that Eric told her what happened and guesses that Serena slept with Nate because her brother was suicidal.  Which is a perfectly valid reason to sleep with your best friend’s boyfriend so they should be BFF once again!


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