“Do you remember when Chuck gave his heart to his mother?” Blair said in last night’s episode of Gossip Girl. “That was the beginning of the end. For all of us.” In fact, it was not the beginning. Through the four seasons and three years, God help our souls, that we have known him, the heart of the brooding heir to the Bass fortune has been passed from hand to hand like a White Elephant gift at Christmas — starting with Blair, to whom he first gave it in high school when she danced onstage at Victrola. Chuck eventually snatched it back, briefly bestowing it on a mysterious nanny called Elle (who caused it some damage when she tuned out to be fake). Soon after, the heart was broken by the death of his father and given back to Blair, who mended it. Then it was given to his mother, who stomped on it with high-heeled shoes, whereupon he gave it back to Blair again, who shredded it by breaking up with him after sleeping with Jenny, whereupon the remaining pulsating pieces ended up with Eva. That's a lot of wear and tear!
No wonder there’s hardly anything left. Hopefully, the kids watching at home will get the point: Hearts are delicate, slippery, and difficult to hold onto. If you’re not careful, you could end up scrambling on the floor, trying to sop up the remaining viscera and sobbing over your loss. Or worse: You might end up like Chuck at the end of this episode: coolly functional, yet entirely devoid of emotion.
Realer Than Susan Lucci Not Living in PH1:
• Okay, even though the writer of the Post article about Eva (ALL ABOUT EVA!) sounds exactly like Gossip Girl (“Looks like this Parisian beauty reeled in a Bass. A Chuck Bass, to be more specific”), we have to give a Plus 1 to the realism of the layout of the mock tabloid page. Of course that headline would be all caps, while the “Three teens jump from Williamsburg Bridge” headline would be in lowercase letters. And Nic Mevoli, whomever you are friends with, we hope they can get you a better acting gig in the future.
• Eva has convinced Chuck to become entirely altruistic, but also still give her Cartier watches. Oh, this one is good. Plus 1.
• Dorota blames Susan Lucci, in apartment 8H, for stealing the papers. Plus only 1, because we actually watch All My Children and happen to know that Erica Kane has not lifted anything weighing more than four ounces since 1999 when she finally won the daytime Emmy.
• The Cartier watch is a limited-edition Baignoire, which indeed is price-upon-request. So Gossip Girl could play a guessing game with the price. Plus 1. However, Google tells us it is between $5,000 and $30,000. “Some are speculating it’s worth more than anything he gave me!” Blair laments. Plus another 1 for Blair using “some are speculating” the same way “Page Six” uses that term. As in, “I AM SPECULATING.”
• Blair calls Dan and Vanessa “Humphrey and Dumpty.” Plus 2. Has it really taken her four years to think of that one?
• Serena’s shoulder pads are overwhelming in the first scene. And yet they are still not able to take attention away from her breasts in that sailor sweater. Plus 2.
• Serena: “It was just so easy in Paris.”
Blair: “You were just so easy in Paris.” Plus 2 that their friendship has now progressed to the “when in doubt make a joke about Serena being a whore” phase.
• The fact that Dan thinks he doesn't "need to be an adult anymore" now that Milo is gone, as well as his lashing out his first live-in girlfriend (“I’m sorry, mom, I didn’t realize when we moved in you’d be laundry monitor.”) is totally realistic for a 22-year-old. It will be a good ten years before he learns to just think these things, not say them out loud. Plus only 3, because the fact that his hair looks like Duckie’s from Pretty in Pink takes away some of the raw emotional power.
• Eva’s mantra is “Old Chuck, Bad Chuck, New Chuck, Good Chuck.” Plus 1, because the obvious follow-up is, “Red Chuck, Blue Chuck, Down Chuck, Upchuck.”
• Chuck: “I know everything about you, which is why I know that your visit probably has more to do with a scheme than a scone.” Plus only 1 for this line, because everybody knows Blair would never eat a scone anyway. Carb dust sprinkled on a carb-coated carb!
• Blair: “Once [Chuck] sold me for a hotel.”
Chuck: “She knows, we have no secrets.”
Blair: “Blackmailers must be weeping all over town.” Plus 5, because Blair would know, she employs about half of them.
• Until she wanders outside with Dan, we assume Serena is wearing a frumpy outfit. Silly us: Like any good Fembot, she is wearing a sequined miniskirt which ends just below her Commonly Used Network Terminal. Plus 4.
• In profile, Dan’s new hair has its own shape. Like it’s snap-on or something. No points, just observing.
• Even Eva does not look like she buys Blair’s line about the “cover of the Bass Industries Annual Report.” Plus only 1, because Eva then refers to how Blair ran into her outside of the Empire Hotel, even though we last saw them together inside the Empire Hotel, when Eva was making the decision of what charity to pick.
• Dan: “Not only am I manly and rugged, but I also have mad browsing skills.” Plus 2, because men have used that pickup line on both Intel Chris and Intel Jessica in their lifetimes. (Both of the men were gay.)
• Dan tells Serena he’s probably not over her when his face is eight inches away from hers, and neither of them are drunk. Plus 3, because most people could not pull this off, but nerds can.
• Perlovka really is Prague's red-light district. Plus 2
• We have to admit, Chuck did a good job of confronting Eva about being a prostitution whore right away. In an earlier episode, he might have pretended not to know about it, then acted out in some weird way that consumed the entire episode. These characters are really maturing! Plus 2
• Blair can barely describe the moment when a homeless person licked Eva’s arm. Plus 4, because we know New Yorkers who have left the city after seeing less.
• When Serena got off the phone with Dan and first revealed her side-ab-revealing dress, Intel Chris literally snarfed in his Chardonnay. Plus 2.
• Of course referencing Dan’s lost pretend baby won Vanessa back. Of course it did. Plus 3.
• Never has anyone said, "I feel terrible" in a less genuine way than Serena says it about trying to break up Dan and Vanessa. Plus 2.
• We literally had to rewind this four times to make out Chuck’s ominous last phrase: “This means war, Blair. Me versus you. No limits.” It was worth it. Plus 5.
Faker Than a Shared Bathroom Door Closing by Itself. Or Worse, a Ghost Hand. Or Even Worse, Dorota Who Is Spying on Two Girls Snuggling in Evening Wear:
• As realistic as the pretend Post page was, we have to dole out a Minus 1 for the Journal page — even though they have been doing that whole “society reporting” thing lately. The font is right on the header, but the paper color is all wrong. (Kudos, costumer Jessica Chaney, though, for getting a plug!)
• Sorry, but while we may believe that Chuck Bass would hand over a jumbo-size check to the “Gulf Coast Fisherman’s Relief Fund,” we do not believe he would authorize the use of Comic Sans. Minus 3.
• Blair is “guessing” Eva’s motivation is Chuck’s money? What, are we watching some junior-varsity version of Blair now? Minus 3.
• Vanessa cooks Dan pancakes because she notices he’s not been eating. He makes a bitchy reply without noting that she clearly hasn’t eaten in three weeks. Minus 4.
• As plot-inducing as it is, the idea that you would announce a $5 million dollar charitable campaign in the evening without knowing what it is going to be in the morning is just stupid. Minus 10. If he really loved Eva, he would have dedicated it to the Rectification of Poorly Dyed Roots, International.
&38226; There is literally a manservant in the room, and Nate and Chuck both have to go away to open the Champagne? Minus only 1, because we don’t want to get caught red-faced if the secret all along is that those two are constantly sneaking off to have sex.
• Dan watches Wild Hogs? No points either way, because we’ll admit, nobody on the entire Intel/Vulture team even knows what that is.
ₐ Sorry, but the Gossip Girl live-streaming is way too much. That clip outside Cartier was taken from four feet away. Blair would have not only spotted that girl, but she would have clawed the iPhone (which is not a corporate sponsor of the CW, obviously) out of that bitch’s hand and shattered it onto the pavement of Fifth Avenue. Minus 4.
• Blair would not have smashed her Cartier watch. There was no point to that. Minus 3. And a man in white gloves would not sit in a little desk in the corner of Cartier and count out fifties for a customer. That is just ridiculous and déclassé. Minus 3. Has no one ever heard of stuffing cash in a red velvet box any more?
• Cindy Adams has thoughts about Chuck and Eva? No. Cindy Adams never thinks about anybody younger than 65. Ever. Minus 5.
• Blair does not press the ambulance issue nearly enough. Seriously. If you can clean someone’s wounds with vodka, you can’t figure out how to call a hospital from your home phone? Minus 4.
• How hilarious is the “SEARCH” engine they use, instead of Google? Minus only 1, because, we get it, Google is annoying with that whole instant search thing, and “Perlovka” is totes hard to spell.
• Why does Juliet always wear grays and beiges? She’s meant to be a vampy villain — even she would know she needs to get some fire-engine red in there. Minus 1.
• No one in the history of time has ever sneaked up on a person at a laptop and not looked at what was on their screen. Especially not someone who is in the midst of a complicated scheme to bring down a whole group of friends, using the Internet. Minus 5 for Juliet’s lack of sleuthiness.
• Serena's rib-revealing dress was clearly the wrong choice for her particular mission. Why on this of all nights would you hide the girls? Minus 2.
• Okay, we don’t know a lot, lot about prostitutes, but our general experience is that they don’t put their actual names on their websites. Hopefully we’re not revealing too much here — we learned it all from Ashley Dupré! — but seriously. Minus 3
• “You’re about to lose me to CSI: Williamsburg,” Dan says. Hello, it’s been two seasons now where we recognize that he lives in Dumbo! Minus only 1, because CSI: Williamsburg does have a certain ring to it. We would love to do autopsies on at least half of that neighborhood.
• Everyone knows Chuck’s history with prostitutes — they are his best friends and confidantes! Why would they think he would be mad that Eva was one? Minus 10.
• Honestly, Rufus’ Botox is making him look younger than Dan. Minus 1, because while we believe Rufus would eventually get work done, we honestly think it would have taken him at least two more years and one more midlife crisis.
• If there is one person on this whole show who seems to remember what happened in the previous episode (let’s be honest, almost no one remembers what happened two episodes ago), it’s Vanessa. And her last interaction with Juliet was when Juliet lied about Dan liking her. That’s what got Vanessa into this whole mess. Why would she be wandering around Fifth Avenue at Rockefeller Center with her after all that? And why would she be wandering around Fifth Avenue at Rockefeller Center at all?? Minus 4.
• Wait, also: How is it possible that Dan and Vanessa don’t speak to or see each other after their respective afternoons, and only run into each other at the Empire? Aside from the fact that in real life, Vanessa would have called Dan about him lying to her, where did they go to change for the gala? They live in the same house! Minus 3.
• Eva can lie to Chuck about being a prostitute and receive a check for $5 million twenty minutes later, but Chuck can’t doubt her for ten minutes? Minus 5.
• Also, how is she getting back to France if she doesn't have any money? Oh. No points.
• Sorry, but nobody’s passport photo is a candid photo of them in formalwear. There’s literally a law against it. Minus 5.
• Chuck lives in the penthouse, allegedly. And he goes to catch Eva by running up the stairs? No. Minus 3.
This episode may not have been realistic, but it did accomplish two important things: the dismissal of Eva, who we knew wasn't going to stick around that long, and the reinstatement of the Blair/Chuck tension. Next week: Maybe we'll finally find out why some guy in prison cares so much about a bunch of 20-year-olds.