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Gossip Girl Season 3 Episode 7: How to Succeed in Bassness

howtosucceedinbassnessThis week’s episode of Gossip Girl seemed more like exposition: not much of a story, but setting the dominos in place to fall throughout the rest of the season.  From the looks of it, it’s going to be a long, friendless season for everyone.  All in the swoop of one episode, Blair and Chuck are seriously on the outs,  Serena and Blair are more enemies than frenemies, and the worst part, Gossip Girl dashed my hopes that Jenny and Eric would become the teen version of Jack and Karen.

As if that’s not enough to make you want to sob into your Pucci handkerchief, Dan and Olivia are still together (although Olivia is starting to grow on me).  And in an utterly pointless subplot, Rufus makes like Linus waiting for the Great Pumpkin — if Linus dressed up as Joey Ramone, made KISS jack o’ lanterns, and required Lily and Vanya the Doorman to create the happy illusion that trick or treating is socially acceptable on the Upper East Side. 

The main action of this week’s episode involved Chuck Bass opening up his new club/speakeasy, Gimlet in time for a Halloween bash never to be forgotten.  The only hitch in plans is that Chuck still hasn’t got the club’s liquor license yet. 

Still not entirely trusting of Blair, Chuck dials former step-sister Serena for some help in attracting some star-power to the opening.  Little does he know that Blair is listening in on the conversation.  B gets more than she bargains for when she hears her boyfriend say he doesn’t want Blair anywhere near this opening. Ouch.

Blair asks Serena to pick a side and Serena, concerned for her career and out of pseudo-sisterly loyalty to Chuck (who, actually, has been nothing but nice to S), chooses him over Blair. This is enough to send Blair back into old, Evil Blair mode and she indulges in the mortal sin of calling Chuck’s Uncle Jack, putting the wheels in motion for her plot. Jack secures a fake liquor license and has it delivered to Chuck.  After getting a lovely bouquet from Uncle Jack congratulating him, Chuck learns it’s a fake and decides to roll with a real speakeasy theme, heading Jack off at the pass and calling the cops to bust his own star-studded party.  Genius! 

Serena, working for K.C. — Olivia (and Tyra)’s uber-bitch of a publicist — rifles through her boss’s rolodex to ensure a gaggle of stars at the club’s opening.  K.C. finds out and is none too pleased, however, she will allow Serena to keep her job if she can find a way to break up Olivia and Dan.  Non-celebrity Dan is standing in the way of the publicity power-couple that once was Olivia and her “Endless Nights” vampire movie co-star, Patrick Roberts.

Meanwhile, Dan catches a glimpse of the fabled “Endless Nights” flick thanks to Nate (reduced to background scenery again this episode.  Cheer up, Nate! It’s better than being Vanessa who was completely M.I.A. this episode!). Feeling uncomfortable after watching Olivia and her then-boyfriend engage in semi-softcore antics onscreen, Dan brings up the issue to Olivia who tells him that Patrick was only her “fake boyfriend.”  They never really dated. It was a publicity stunt concocted by K.C. to help Patrick’s career, which has been floundering since their rumored break up.  Later on, Olivia comes clean to Dan that she lied that Patrick was her “fake boyfriend.”  As it turns out, she broke the teen has- been’s heart.  Dan is a little wary (as is the case with most emo Humphreys), but it still doesn’t stop Dan and Olivia from tongue-wrestling. 

Squicked by the possibility of breaking up her ex and his current flame, Serena tells Dan and Olivia what K.C. wants and tries to arrange it so that Olivia will attend the red carpet opening of Gimlet with Patrick.  As an added bonus for this favor, she will arrange for Dan to sneak in through the back door so they can be together on Halloween night.

Dan and Olivia’s party PDA throws a wrench in Serena’s publicity plans, particularly since Patrick showed up just as Dan and Olivia made with the smooching.  (Get a room already, you two!) Serena saves the day (and her job) by offering herself up to Patrick and the two flagrantly make out in the glare of the paparazzi flashbulbs.  Problem solved!  Serena has her job, and a new boyfriend, but is hopping mad at Blair for attempting to fling her Waldorf Wrath upon her for taking Chuck’s side. 

Meanwhile, Chuck is none too pleased with his lady love, either.  Blair may be forced to team back up with Nate, who (in the words of Serena) also has “no friends left to screw over” — unless you count Dan.  This could actually make for an interesting faction with Nate and Dan as pals and the reluctant alliance between Blair and Vanessa.

Meanwhile, back at Constance, Queen J flexes on her BFF and step-brother, Eric for daring to sit higher than her on the steps of the Met… Even if the step he and boyfriend Jonathan sat on are covered in pigeon poop.  Queen Jenny sics her minions on the two of them, dumping her yogurt-with-slivered-almonds over them.

Eric tells Lily about what happened, and understanding socialite matriarch Lil realizes how heavy it really is for the head that wears the crown… Or beret… Or fedora.  (Jenny’s taken to wearing a lot of hats this season).  She gives Jenny clearance to go to the Gimlet opening, but only on the condition that Eric still wants to go with her.  Jenny apologizes to her step-brother and it seems that all is well in the VanDerHumphrey household. 

Little does Eric know that while he’s playing fly to Jenny’s spider in the Gimlet parlour, Jonathan is getting pelted with eggs by Queen J’s flapper costume-clad minions for daring to further defy the Queen of Constance.  After finding out what really happened, Eric tells Jenny he doesn’t like who she has become and there is no way they can be friends inside the school, nor especially outside at home. 

Further making her transition to the dark side, Darth Jenny tosses her brightly colored, Betsey Johnson-esque clothes of yore onto a Goodwill pile along with her sewing machine.  Hmmm….Symbolic, perhaps?  This is, what, the second time Jenny’s ditched her sewing machine throughout the course of the show? No good comes of Jenny Humphrey ditching the ol’ Singer.  None!

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