As we have all heard by now, the excellent drama about the lives of Manhattan’s elite is back. Gossip Girl is returning to HBO Max with 10 juicy hour-long episodes, and will even feature the original eponymous narrator, Kristen Bell.
The reboot will take place eight years after the final surprising twist ending that revealed the true identity of Gossip Girl, but there are no other details known about the plot, or whether the characters will be linked to the beloved original cast in any way. Will the new series be as juicy, delicious, and insane as the original? Will it be more appropriate and not involve student-teacher relationships? Will anyone be able to replace Dorota?
As we wait for more to emerge about the reboot, we look back on the six original seasons, in all its high-society New York glory. Here are the best episodes of Gossip Girl, to catch up on while you wait for the remake.
“The Pilot,” Season 1, Episode 1
Of course, the very first episode of Gossip Girl has to be on this list. It’s the introduction to all of the characters and their basic plotlines throughout the six seasons: Serena, who bites her lower lip and falls for guys within five minutes; Blair, who pretty much hates Serena but still acts like her best friend; Daniel/Lonely Boy (imagine that being your nickname, yikes), who’s creepy, stares longingly in the background, and is low-key miserable; Nate, who doesn’t really serve much of a purpose but is beautiful; Chuck, an odd 50-year-old in a 17-year-old body (he eventually does undergo a rebrand); Jenny, who longs for nothing more than to be a Manhattan elite; and Vanessa, who...I’m not sure, but she always looks amazing.
It also introduces us to the fact that these sophomores in high school attend parties on weekdays far more than anyone else does, and that their original casting for Eleanor Waldorf was abysmal.
“Blair Waldorf Must Pie,” Season 1, Episode 9
Our introduction to the best of Gossip Girl: the Thanksgiving episodes. The introductory Thanksgiving episode has a little bit of everything: a glimpse at just how long Dan has been obsessed with his current girlfriend, Serena; flashbacks to happier times at the Waldorf family before Blair’s dad left her mom for a hot male model named Roman; the fact that Lily Van der Woodsen and Rufus Humphrey are basically the adult version of Dan/Serena and that they had a full-blown love story; and the fact that despite having a full spread of food on almost every table in this show, the characters never eat any of it.
“Never Been Marcused,” Season 2, Episode 2
Surprise! Blair Waldorf’s personality-less boyfriend is actually an English Lord. Surprise, part two! English Lord’s mom is the older, married woman that Nate is having an affair with. They met in book club, because that’s totally normal for high-school students and married women to be a part of one together.
Chuck decides to stir the pot and bring older woman/Marcus’s mom to a party as his date (again, not okay), and Kristen Bell/Gossip Girl sums up this episode and all of its absurd plotlines quite succinctly with her voiceover, questioning, “What’s this? Chuck’s date and Blair’s date are mother and son? And Nate and Blair are exes? And Nate and the mother are in a book club? Now there’s a novel plot twist.” Couldn’t have said it better myself, GG.
“Pret-a-Poor-J,” Season 2, Episode 8
This episode centers around Jenny basically calling out how unfair her unpaid internship to Eleanor Waldorf is, since she’s making most of the designs, befriending model/feminist Agnes, and going behind Lonely Boy/her brother’s back to hook up with Nate in one of his few age-appropriate relationships. So, in conclusion, we support Jenny and this episode.
“The Freshmen,” Season 3, Episode 2
We’ve made it to college. All the characters got into Ivy League schools last season, even though they are rarely seen doing schoolwork, but for show purposes, most of them decide to go to NYU. Blair Waldorf is no longer Queen B—no one at NYU cares about her headbands! Instead, they’re more interested in her roommate, Georgina, who’s back to wreak havoc. Vanessa becomes romantically involved with an awkward guy who ends up being—gasp!—Rufus and Lily’s secret love child. Finally, and most importantly, Blair and Chuck are really cute in this one.
“Dan de Fleurette,” Season 3, Episode 4
This episode has a lot of surprises. The introduction to Hillary Duff as a cast member in season three! Tyra Banks as an emotional actress who takes advice from Serena! And finally, Little J becoming the new Queen B of Constance Billard: reluctant at first, but then ending the episode by demanding her minions to “make sure a yogurt is waiting for her on the steps of the Met.”
“Double Identity,” Season 4, Episode 2
So much has happened in such a short amount of time. Chuck was shot and mugged in Paris and is now being taken care of by Fleur Delacour from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Dan thinks he has a baby with Georgina, Blair and Chuck reunite for a fleeting moment before she realizes she must let him go, and then Blair meets a member of the royal family of Monaco at a museum while staring at a painting. She then gives him one of her Roger Vivier heels to find her with. How can you not love this show?
“Juliet Doesn’t Live Here Anymore,” Season 4, Episode 8
In this episode, we come to learn that Nate’s new romantic interest, Juliet, is actually obsessed with taking down Serena, thanks to a very interesting backstory. She’s also the cousin of Serena’s professor/love interest, Colin (again with the not-okay-whatsoever relationships), and is lying about being rich and lives in a studio in an “unsafe neighborhood,” according to Vanessa, so it’s probably a really nice neighborhood in Manhattan. Before Juliet and Vanessa can expose Serena’s affair with her professor—which probably should have been exposed—Team Constance Billard defend Serena and kick Juliet out of Manhattan, because they own the city.
“Yes, then Zero,” Season 5, Episode 1
Upper East Side meets 90210. In this juicy episode, Serena is interning on a movie set: a full-blown working gal. Nate and Chuck come to visit her on set, where Chuck explains he has a new philosophy on life, which involves him saying “yes” to everything. (Inspiring.) Nate pretty much does nothing in this episode but look beautiful, as usual, until he meets a very hot older woman (how did they get Elizabeth Hurley on this show?) and suddenly has a purpose again. And 19-year-old Blair has her wedding dress fitting with Prince Louis, where another bombshell drops: She’s pregnant. Again, how could you not love this show?
“Rhodes to Perdition,” Season 5, Episode 9
In this episode, Serena is into Max, who’s Serena’s cousin Charlie’s ex-boyfriend. They’ve all gathered together to celebrate their dear old grandmother Cece at a fabulous Studio 54 party, where Fake Cousin Charlie is trying to get her trust fund money from Cece to share with her fake mom, Carol, Serena’s aunt. Max exposes the entire lie, explaining that Charlie is in fact a broke actress named Ivy, but CeCe defends her, saying, “I know in my bones that this is my granddaughter,” who up until a few months ago, she’d never met, even though she’s the same age as Serena. The episode ends with Fake Charlie/Ivy securing her status as a Rhodes, and saying bye-bye to one of the only somewhat honest characters on this show, Max, explaining, “I’m a Rhodes now.” Delicious!
“Dirty Rotten Scandals,” Season 6, Episode 3
So much has happened since season five. Serena is dating Matt from 7th Heaven. His daughter, who is in high school, is dating Nate (again, why was this okay?), and is basically a mini Queen B. Fake Cousin Charlie/Ivy is now dating Rufus, and the iconic Nelly Yuki returns as a Women’s Wear Daily editor who trashes Blair’s fashion show, which Blair blames on Serena because, as everyone knows, Blair hates Serena. As usual, Dorota and Chuck and Blair’s relationship are the highlights of this episode, and it ends on a high note, with Dorota giving Blair some words of wisdom and strength: “You will make Miss Eleanor proud.”
“New York, I Love You,” Season 6, Episode 10
Bart Bass (who died in a previous season but is revealed to be very much alive) actually dies after trying to attack Chuck. Then we find out that Lonely Boy is Gossip Girl (possibly the most disappointing ending of a show until season eight of Game of Thrones), and Serena backs him up because all Serena cares about is the fact that he’s obsessed with her. Chuck and Blair get married in Central Park, and the episode ends with a flash-forward several years to their cute son, and the whole crew getting ready for Serena and Dan’s wedding in an apartment. The ending cuts to a montage of Gossip Girl saying she will always be around, and that the constant need for gossip is what keeps her going.
Originally Appeared on Vogue