Previously on Gossip Girl
, Blair's (Leighton Meester
) dad left her mom for another man, Alison Humphrey was away having an affair, Rufus (Matthew Settle
) and Lily (Kelly Rutherford
) have a complicated romantic history, Blair and Nate (Chace Crawford
) broke up, and Serena (Blake Lively
) caught Blair and Chuck (Ed Westwick
) making out.
You know you love me. XOXO, Gossip Girl
It's Thanksgiving tonight on Gossip Girl
. The episode goes back and forth between present day Thanksgiving, and Thanksgiving from a year ago.
Here's what happened on Thanksgiving one year ago:
Blair and Serena went out drinking and Serena got completely hammered. She stumbled out into the street and almost got hit by a cab, but Dan, who happened to have been in the neighborhood getting a pumpkin pie, ran out to save her. He introduced himself, and was clearly in the midst of new love, but she was too drunk to even notice him. Afterwards, Dan went home to report that he lost the pie to a cab because of a drunk blonde girl. Alison said that Rufus used to have a thing for crazy blonde girls. See where this is going? The crazy blonde girl she was talking about was Lily van der Woodsen. The Humphreys jovially teased him as they ate their dinner.
One year ago, Blair's father was still around because it was before he ran off to Europe with another man. Thanksgiving was a father-daughter ritual for him and Blair, but papa seemed to have had more of an interest in the male model Eleanor invited more than anything else. Serena and Nate were guests at the Waldorf dinner, but Serena was so drunk and smelled like the floor of a bar, so Nate took her upstairs to get her cleaned up. They got into a water fight, and when Blair busted them for their horseplay, they doused her with water as well. It was all in good fun, and they enjoyed themselves. During dinner, Nate's Dartmouth dad was distracted through the whole meal by working on a Dutch business deal, but the dinner went well. Lily came over after dinner to collect Serena who has passed out, and after they leave, Blair and her parents sat down for more quality family bonding time.
What a difference a year makes.
This year, Blair is excited to have her dad coming back home for the holiday, but Serena ruins her good mood by confronting her about kissing Chuck. Blair admits that she slept with Chuck twice. Serena and Blair's friendship quickly dissolves as they exchange barbs about having sex and betraying best friends and being sluts. The van der Woodsens were supposed to have Thanksgiving with the Waldorfs, but because of their tiff, Blair uninvites Serena and her family. Therefore, Dan invites them over to the Williamsburg loft for the Humphrey family (including Alison) feast so that they won't have to starve on Thanksgiving. Yeah, I'm not buying that they would starve. Can't they have the Palace kitchen staff make them up a feast?
Dan goes to pick up the van der Woodsens. Why does he need to pick them up? Can't they hire a car service like they usually do? Lily tries to get out of going to dinner, but everyone insists. She calls Rufus and leaves a message to remind him that she doesn't want the kids to know about their history. When they all arrive at the loft, Lily and Alison are not pleased with the other's presence, but they pretend not to know each other. This is going to be one awkward meal! Indeed, Lily, Alison and Rufus have a secret meeting in the corner of their apartment. Lily apologizes, saying she didn't know that Alison was back, and asks them both to keep her past as a groupie a secret from the children.
Blair is upset to see that Eleanor has hired caterers to make the meal instead of cooking it herself. She's even more upset when Eleanor tells her that her father is staying in Paris this year. Eleanor, it seems, called and uninvited him, using the excuse that Blair didn't want to see him. Blair takes one of the desserts provided by the caterer, takes it to the kitchen and eats the whole thing, and then throw it all up. Ignoring the fight she had with Serena, and she calls her for help. Serena immediately leaves the Humphreys' party to attend to her friend, leaving much awkwardness between the grownups in her wake. Lily says that she used to have a horse named Rosewood, and the kids pipe up that Rufus wrote a song called Rosewood dedicated to Alison. Alison realizes that the song was really about Lily and leaves the table as everyone figures out that Lily and Rufus are old flames.
Dan and Alison take a walk on the Brooklyn Heights Promenade. Did they walk there? Don't they live kind of far from the Promenade? Alison admits that Lily was Rufus' first great love, and Lily likes to rub it in her face every chance she gets. Back at the loft, Lily bitches Rufus out for letting her find out that Alison is back in his life. Because they live in imaginary New York, Alison and Rufus and are already back from Brooklyn Heights, just in time to overhear Lily talk to Rufus about their kiss at Eleanor's party. Alison gives Rufus an ultimatum: either cut Lily out of his life, or don't expect Alison to stick around.
Serena brings Blair back to Williamsburg, and they find Dan, Jenny (Taylor Momsen
) and Eric (Connor Paolo) wondering if they are half-siblings. Blair is in awe of the garage door that separates Dan's and Jenny's rooms. Serena and Blair are filled in on their parents' love lives—that Lily was a groupie and Rufus was almost famous—and they all decide to skip out through the fire escape.
The kids go out to a diner, where Lily tracks them down. She sits down and orders fries. Everyone whose last name doesn't have three words in it scatters so that the ex-groupie-turned-socialite can make up with her kids.
The Humphreys find themselves together again for some good old-fashioned football. Rufus reports to Dan that they won't be expecting Lily over for dinner anytime soon.
Blair goes home, and Eleanor has a rare emotional moment. She reveals that Blair's father has served her with divorce papers, but Eleanor can't find it in herself to sign them, and she certainly couldn't face him during the holidays because it used to be their happiest times together.
Nate and his parents sit down to an austere Thanksgiving dinner. Things are not going well for Nate's mother these days. She lost her seat on some party planning committee and the Archibalds were uninvited from the Waldorf's Thanksgiving dinner, which means that her place in Upper East Side society is really sinking fast. Nate gets fed up with his parents and abruptly leaves the table. Way to go! He used to be so mild-mannered, and now look at him. He sits alone on a park bench, wondering whether he should call Blair or Serena, but ends up calling neither. Instead, he goes back home and finds his dad passed out. Dartmouth dad has taken a whole bunch of painkillers. Nate and his mother are at the hospital with Dartmouth dad. Nate's mother is in denial about Dartmought dad. She thinks that all she's ever done was make Dartmouth dad's life easy—her father set him up with his job, house, house in the Hamptons, boat, you get the idea—and all Dartmouth dad was supposed to do was sit behind a desk and not get arrested. At the hospital, Nate tells him that he knows his drug overdose wasn't an accident, and pleads with him to hang on to his will to live because they need him.
The van der Woodsens talk and laugh over fries as Lily tells regales them with tales from her groupie days. Blair bonds with her mother, and the four Humphreys have a rousing game of football that ends with them falling over each other, laughing. The moral of the story is that no matter the circumstances, happy Thanksgivings are always possible. Except if you're Nate's dad.
-Debbie Chang, BuddyTV Staff Writer
(Image courtesy of The CW)