I've come to the conclusion that GG doesn't really get going until the characters go back to school. There is something about the lazy days of summer, where the next party is only a few hours away and a butler is waiting to take your drink order, that limits the writers' imaginations and gives us a slow season premiere like last night's "Reversals of Fortune.
Serena is just back from Europe and as usual the subject of intense tabloid coverage after a summer of partying. Jenny and Eric have managed to keep all the gossip away a distracted Rufus, who's thinking about actually having to parent since Lily is away taking care of her mother. As usual Dan is so thoroughly in his own head that everything going on with Serena comes as a surprise. I'm pretty much over the Dan and Serena relationship but I'm sure the writers aren't; on the other hand without Serena to drool over we'll be treated to a story arc in which Dan tries to become editor of the NYU literary magazine.
In the season 2 finale we were treated to the "outing" of Dan as an guy with just as many skeletons and indiscretions as anyone else in the GG world. That theme is developed further this week when Dan lies to Vanessa about his use of a limo to meet up for a coffee date and then ignores her at a charity polo match. Let's be honest: Dan likes this life but he doesn't belong in it. Will that prove to be his downfall this season? Too early to tell, but perhaps he'll flourish in the more egalitarian world of NYU. The fact that Vanessa is now dating Dan and Serena's unknown half-brother Scott will clearly come up again, but for now let's just say that the GG casting department made a rare mistake. I can't imagine seeing the actor who plays Scott on the cover of Teen Vogue or singing with Cobra Starship.
The website Gossip Girl Insider has dubbed the Blair/Chuck coupling "Chair," but I prefer "Bluck." One thing I'm sure of is that fall semester will see the end of Bluck's role-playing sex games, who can pick up models when you've got to study for an econ final? But seriously, Blair is as insecure as ever in the relationship. After all last season's ups and downs I think Chuck will be relatively stable for a time, and maybe that will allow Blair to actually discover she's good at something? We can dream....Jenny and Nate wandered around the fringes of this episode as did James Naughton as Nate's manipulative grandfather. Political intrigue seems to be on the menu for Nate this season, though perhaps Bree Buckley (great name for a conservative political family) is a con artist whose true agenda has yet to be revealed. Oh wait, they've already done that....
And why did Serena traipse around Europe with Carter? Her father. Does anyone think this is the last we'll hear of him?