Very, very strong episode last night. Because it was funny!

Great timing, great chemistry between (most of) the actors, and as we concluded in the end – no Vanessa = good show. Poor V. Nobody missed V.

In place of V enter Gabriel. Bland, taupe, but with a secret Poppy plotting against Serena. It’s the people around Serena who make Serena interesting. Still…she and Dan were less boring than they’ve been in the past, mostly because they were surrounded by veteran actors who made it so much more entertaining. Cyrus and Eleanor totally killed it, right?

Maybe this why I went soft for a few minutes. Blair and Nate are growing on me. And what Chuck did for her, how he understands her… well, you’ll read it below. For a minute there, I lost myself.

Attached – Chace Crawford shooting a movie called Twelve today with Zoe Kravitz directed by Joel Schumacher about a high school kid who drops out and starts dealing drugs. As you can see, Chace is trying to grow facial hair. It doesn’t work with his Zac Efron bangs.

And as usual, our weekly GG text. Thanks for your emails asking about it. Takes me forever to format which is why it’s always in the afternoon.

Cater Waiter!

Gossip Girl Weekly Chat

Lainey: Don't let chuck be with little j please

Michelle: Hells no. He'd crush her with his manboobs

Lainey: Little matchstick Blair

Duana: Aaaand Leighton's cockney is officially worse than her singing.

Michelle: Do you dream in full costume?

Lainey: I daydream in full costume

Duana: What does it mean when you wake up before the dream gets to the best part, every time?

Lainey: I would wear her night shirt on etalk!

Duana: See, I choose to believe Blair fell asleep in her top from the night before.

Michelle: I like how Blair gets soft around Cyrus.

Duana: Is it me, or is Blair's hair darker at the ends? Could Blair Waldorf be descending into laziness and roots?

Duana: Sidebar, guys, I really, really love the Eleanor and Cyrus relationship.

Michelle: Does the AGO have a junior committee?

Lainey: Did Eleanor just say she didn't raise a socialite? Oh Dina Lohan....

Michelle: You callin' Lilo a social?

Lainey: Slap me.

Michelle: consider yourself slapped.

Duana: Continuity. Blair has always believed non-Ivy college = experimental lesbianism.

Michelle: Does Chuck have a separate closet for his smoking jackets?

Duana: Serena is aware that she's boring, right? Like, Chuck just entertains her stories so he doesn't have to tell his right away?

Lainey: What happened to V?

Michelle: Leave it to blair to have flowers at someone else's wedding rehearsal.

Duana: that bad?

Michelle: So far Blair has dissed both US schools I applied to.

Lainey: You should be honoured that she dissed you. Like Anna Wintour with me and Lara.

Lainey: Zac Efron did Nate’s hair

Michelle: They should have a hair battle!

Duana: It's too short at the back. Far too short.

Michelle: Hey Tripp's fiancee wearing a headband...

Duana: This is about to be good....Is Blair being a faux-life Olivia Palermo? Also, why is Nate the exact same whether he's rich, poor, or suddenly super-rich?

Lainey: Who is Wes??? Why is he so doughy?

Michelle: Jenny's story line

Duana: Wes, huh? Wearing wardrobe from 1994?

Duana: Dear Dan, you can't help. And you wouldn't even if you could. You would say it was hard, and was stifling your creativity. Also, have you considered CUNY?

Michelle: Lily likes some meat!

Lainey: No eyeliner Jenny. She'll behave this ep.

Michelle: True. There should be a word for this. Like pathetic fallacy. Du is coveting Blair"s coat

Duana: For two scenes now. A woman who can wear chartreuse is a woman after my own heart.

Michelle: I told you Dorota and doorman would be hooking up!

Lainey: I am coveting her negotiation abilities

Duana: I know - I like that 'bridesmaid' kicks back in.

Michelle: I want her to be my frenemy. The Winona to my Gwyneth.

Duana: Guys, a galley kitchen is all you can get in NY even if you are eleanor waldorf, apparently.

Duana: Is Lily STILL pregnant?

Lainey: I wanted those jimmy choos

Michelle: I want to go through the rest of her bags!

Duana: Why doesn't Lily just cough up the hundred grand for Dan's tuition? She must have it...

Lainey: Reem acra seems inappropriate for b.

Duana: Note Serena in the sad hair of apologetic teenager. Gone are the curls of exuberant youth.

Michelle: Not classic enough?

Duana: My recording just paused right after Blair blinked 75,000 times. Honestly - is it a new tic?

Duana: Heh. Bassian desert.

Lainey: Who are these people I've never seen before????

Michelle: Like Dan's new love interest? I like her. She's making him less annoying.

Lainey: But who is she? Have we met her before?

Michelle: Nope. But she's rocking a tie and vest.

Duana: 'You look familiar'. I love Eleanor. But what a clunky line about Hadassah.

Lainey: Are B and N living together now?

Michelle: I don't think so.

Michelle: I LOVE B's dress.

Duana: You do? Really?

Michelle: And the headband is back. I smell touble.

Lainey: Headband pathetic fallacy

Duana: I'd worry more about Serena if I didn't know from the promos that hilarity was going to ensue.

Michelle: This is actually the best Serena and Dan scene ever.

Lainey: Totally. It's funny. I can’t believe I just wrote that.

Lainey: Wait, wait. Dan just spoiled it.

Michelle: I think he did good!

Duana: I agree, I'm laughing. Not at his sideburns, but yes.

Duana: Who is Jewish in this scenario? Other than cyrus, why is Serena talking about 'our' seder?

Lainey: When did nate grow a spine? Why is he all about manly man integrity? It doesn't match his hair

Michelle: Well if Zac can open the weekend box office, Nate can grow a backbone.

Michelle: Ok this episode is actually intentionally funny.

Duana: Wait a second, rufus is afraid of high-end people?

Duana: I like that Rufus is encouraging Dan to be passive-aggressive.

Lainey: I like this three's company thing going on

Lainey: Wes suuuuuuucks.

Lainey: Like little j actually eats all that food!!!! There are onion rings!

Michelle: Mmmm

Duana: Wait now, is Jenny living at Serena's?

Lainey: He was born to be eleanor's bitch boy

Michelle: Dan as servant = not annoying

Duana: Dan as servant = not entitled, which is nice.

Duana: Tripp 1) Is five years old. 2) Looks like Topher Grace.

Michelle: Gabrielle over pronunciates Serena to compensate for Serena's mumbling?

Lainey: It makes my life that you spelled his name the girl way

Lainey: Gabriel is all one colour. And he belongs on the Bold and the Beautiful

Michelle: It's like he's too soapy for nighttime.

Duana: Did we really need Gossip girl to speak mangled hebrew?

Lainey: Dan and S are funny!!! My life is changing…

Duana: Eleanor is SO funny in this relationship.

Michelle: If J grows on us too, we are in trouble.

Duana: WHAT has to happen for Serena to raise her voice? I hate the smoke-addled same-pacedness of her.

Lainey: This episode is amazing

Lainey: Spoke too soon

Duana: Are they playing Flo Rida right now? Blair and Flo don't mix.

Lainey: They just ripped off SATC

Michelle: When?

Lainey: Chuck's recycle

Michelle: Really? I didn't relaize.

Lainey: Um yeah the way chuck's looking at little j is hot. He has great skin and I won't hear a word against him

Michelle: I'm just making faces then.

Duana: 'The Kiss on the lips party'? Can you PLEASE remind us, ya'll? And really, Jenny? With all that's happened to you, you still remember a little amateur assault?

Duana: I KID I KID

Lainey: Grandpa is going to sell out B

Michelle: Mos def

Duana: "And I'd do it again" - best line ever.

Duana: Blair wearing the same coat twice in one episode - chiconomic?

Lainey: I want to send channing tatum a case of lipbalm. What is this Fighting movie all about? Like Step Up but about boxing? Ugh.

Michelle: I think he'd get beat up for carrying lipbalm

Duana: OK, I got my wish! She modulated her voice! She whispered, but still!

Lainey: Cater waiter is my new favourite expression

Michelle: Let's try in use it in an email tomorrow.

Duana: What else do you think, Rufus? He's doing it for fun?

Michelle: Ouch picture in the Style section. Nate doesn't usually have these good lines.

Duana: They don't talk like teens. But Blair's "Gahd, I did!" makes me think of Party of Five. So occasional, but so great.

Lainey: Let's just randomly shout it out. Cater Waiter!

Michelle: For sure. Hey maybe the lack of Vanessa is making this episode good?


Lainey: A few boys from the lacrosse team?!?? I want the old S back.

Michelle: High school lacrosse team - no wonder you perked up.

Duana: HAH! As opposed to high school hockey team?

Lainey: I resent that. And James Franco is over 30.

Michelle: And where's Eric?

Duana: Seriously, writers - we forgot about him.

Lainey: Did you apply to Brown?

Michelle: No too hippy.

Duana: I want pics of you two from your pastoral college days. E says her hair was SHORT!

Duana: I only applied to NYU in the US, as going to a university without concrete made me feel frantic.

Lainey: I haaaaate Gabriel's voice.

Michelle: Gabriel is like Zac Morris

Duana: Just a minute, now. So they're not really married, and so this was all for nothing? WHO CARES then?

Duana: Serena's falling in love? REally?

Lainey: gabriel should date emmy rossum

Michelle: Is rioja wine sponsoring this episode?

Lainey: V is in a commercial!

Michelle: Which one?

Lainey: Dove girl

Michelle: Humpty Dumpty sat on a chest of drawers...

Lainey: With his feet turned out

Duana: At least it's equal-opportunity sizism, right?

Michelle: Ew

Duana: The sight of Nate thinking is traumatic to watch.

Lainey: This is actually really sweet what chuck just did for blair. It’s true love girls. It’s pure.

Duana: WTF? WHO are you?

Lainey: I just made myself sick

Duana: As you should've done.

Michelle: Again with the cater waiter!

Lainey: Did I just dance like there's no one watching?

Duana: Honestly. Next you're going to start wearing butterfly barrettes.

Lainey: I just missed that. What did Ru decide?

Michelle: To sell the gallery

Duana: So now Rufus is free to be Lily's full time shopping-bag-carrier? Or do we think she'll have him knock her up and have a baby in May?

Michelle: I like this sweet girl moment. It's like they're actually 17.

Duana: If I were 17, Blair's? bed linens would depress me. They look like 1989.

Michelle: What song is this? I like

Lainey: I don't have an iPhone

Michelle: Du help!

Duana: "Runaway", by Yeah Yeah Yeahs. You're welcome.

Lainey: Lonely Chuck's theme song

Michelle: the pengin just walked back to his room.

Duana: Wait, didn't Eleanor say 'someone here who wants to speak to you?' Isn't Cyrus always here?

Duana: Aaah, I see. I was busy Shazam-ing.

Michelle: Wait was that Poppy?

Lainey: Poppy yes. And Poppy makes Georgina look like Rossum

Duana: Poppy looks different every single week. It confuses the hell out of me.

Lainey: Are you hopping on itunes?

Michelle: See they played that on SNL and it sounded like ass. I'm oddly indifferent about Karen O.

Duana: I'm into her - or I was into her outfit on SNL. Amy tells me she gets super drunk before every performance to deal with the nerves.

Michelle: My conclusion about this episode - less Vanessa means better GG

Lainey: Yes. V drags. And why am I rooting for Nate and B?

Michelle: Because it means the tension between B and C will play out longer.

Lainey: You're so wise.

Duana: Vanessa needs to be at school.

Lainey: By the way - is Chuck going to college?

Michelle: I don't think so. Won't he just "run" the company when he turns 18?

Duana: Like he does now? Also, these kids have been 17 for EVER and yet no birthday parties. Sad for me.

Photos from Lawrence Schwartzwald/