Gossip Girl's Series Finale: We Are All Gossip Girl

By Cory Barker

Dec 18, 2012

Gossip Girl S6E10: “New York, I Love You, XOXO”

Folks, we made it. I don’t know how, but we made it. After six years and 121 episodes—more than half of which were truly awful—Gossip Girl is over. It’s been a real pleasure writing about the show in its final season because few shows have derailed to such a hilarious degree at the end (and because I apparently love 10-week stretches of misery). The series finale delivered exactly what so many of us thought it would, which is a whole bunch of belly laughs. One final time, let’s run it back.

1. Gossip Girl revealed

Welp. Dan Humphrey a.k.a. Lonely Boy a.k.a. Bart Bass’s Last Best Friend is—and has always been—Gossip Girl. When he realized that he could never get “inside” the Upper East Side’s elite teen circles, he decided to blog about it. Of course, it really all goes back to his undying, never-wavering, absolutely full-proof true love of Serena. The big plan that Dan kept referring to all season apparently just had two steps: 1.) Make everyone hate him, and 2.) Reveal that he’s Gossip Girl so they’ll just forgive him. I love it when a plan comes together.

I’d love to say that this finale was full of surprises, but that simply isn’t true—and that definitely applies to Gossip Girl's identity, too. Dan’s been our key target for the role of Gossip Girl for a while now, even if it doesn’t totally hold up logic-wise (I can’t believe I just wrote that; as if anything on the show does). I guess Dan’s plan itself makes some sense using the warped logic of this world, but it’s tough not to look back and think about all the things that don’t necessarily track with Dan’s real identity. The finale shooed us away from doing that thinking by focusing on the big, obvious moments like the fact that GG went away after Chuck and Blair’s accident and Dan showed up to Serena’s big call-out, but it was still somewhat of a stretch.

The reactions from the rest of the core characters were more amusing than the actual reveal. Serena was elated because she’s brain dead. Nate didn’t actually care because hey, Dan had just saved his terrible news publication and helped him avoid defaulting on a loan. Chuck pretty much knew it all along. And Blair. Oh sweet, sweet Blair. The show couldn’t help but give her one more chance to be a petulant, irrational child. Her recent pure hatred for Dan was so out of character that I cringed every time they were on the same city block in this episode. Get over it, B.

Ultimately, I appreciate the real attempt to make Gossip Girl’s identity an important part of the narrative. Although I always knew that the series would reveal GG's identity in the finale, I imagined it would just be a throwaway bit of fan service (you know, like the rest of the show). In that regard, it does seem like the writers at least thought it through when crafting the final season of the show. At the time I’m writing this review, it’s yet to be known whether Schwartz, Savage and company had this idea in mind for a while. I don’t especially care if they didn’t because this is all a big joke anyway, but I am curious to hear what they have to say.

2. Consequences, LOL

It’s like this episode was written in two parts by two completely different people and then Frankenstein’d together at the halfway mark. In the first portion, we were led to believe that what happened at the end of last week’s unbelievably dramatic penultimate episode meant big trouble for Chuck and Blair. The stupid show even went as far as to play a song that repeatedly references Bonnie and Clyde just in case we weren’t paying attention to the terrible writing. So much of the first 25ish minutes of the finale were dedicated to C and B trying to avoid the police just for questioning, mind you, because these are OUR HEROES—and planning a sham wedding on the fly with the help of Uncle Jack Bass (and raise your hand if you thought Desmond Harrington would get more screen time than like half of the longtime series regulars).

But then, once the wedding happened and both of them went to jail, none of that truly mattered. Within literal minutes, Chuck and Blair returned from the police station, shrugged their shoulders, claimed everything was okay, and let’s just move on because OMG Dan is totes GG WTF. Remember: This entire season was about Chuck’s competition/war/deep voice-off with Bart. Then Bart died. And the whole thing was just shimmied away. There was no funeral. No one said anything substantive about what happened to Bart, what it means for Chuck as a man, how it will shape his relationship with Blair, nothing. In fact, to add insult to injury, Blair at one point said, in celebratory fashion, that Chuck accomplished his goals. By letting his own father fall off a skyscraper, then becoming a fugitive and then marrying to avoid any real trial because the New York Department of Correction just doesn’t have the time to worry about the death of a global icon.

If you’re a Chuck and Blair fan, you’re happy right now. And I’m happy for you. Your couple ended up together, just like the show wanted. But I will never, ever understand the kind of truly warped rationale that the writers used to keep bringing these two characters back together and the especially horrid things both of them did in the final season as we were asked to root for them the most. They let someone die, got married to cover it up, had a baby, and OKAY HAPPY ENDING. The people who write this show do know that Bonnie and Clyde were actually terrible people, right?


Honestly, this episode was pretty innocuous until the last few minutes. Gossip Girl the kind of bad show that thinks we need to see five years into the future of these ingrates’ lives, but somehow, the series managed to make it even worse than I could have guessed. The kitchen sink-style happy ending never appeals to me. Nate has a private jet! And he’s going to be the youngest mayor in the history of New York City! Chuck and Blair have birthed their own future sex offender into the world! Rufus is with Lisa Loeb! Lily’s back with William! Jenny is indeed alive and looks like a fancy Suicide Girl! Decl— I mean Eric is alive and back from the Hamptons! Uncle Jack and Georgina are probably together because they sarcastically flirted five years ago and we all know that equals TV True Love! And wouldn’t you know it, Dan and Serena got their magical, opulent wedding as well!

You guys know I wish they all would have ended up in prison. At least half of them belong there. But this sort of slapdash, rose-colored ending makes me a little sick. They might as well have just held up a big cue card that said “...AND ALL WAS WELL,” J.K. Rowling-style. The only good part about it was Rufus’s glasses. He aged well.

Though, I do like to imagine that Dan and Serena broke up 429 times in the five years between the finale and the flashforward. Maybe this was even their second wedding.


The only thing that truly matters here. Though, you’d think Schwartz and Savage wouldn’t have wanted to bring her on for that little winking moment with Kristen Bell—seriously, Bell literally winked at the camera because subtlety is dead and so is my spirit—because all it hopefully did was remind people that they worked on a much better teen drama about pretty rich people in the middle part of the last decade.

Still, between the Bilson-Bell scene and the admittedly entertaining conversation with the characters suggesting who they thought might have been Gossip Girl all along, the finale managed to work in a few nice self-serving-but-charming moments.

5. The end

There’s no good way to say goodbye to Gossip Girl. Well, no good way that doesn’t involve pictures of troll faces or YouTube clips of funny tuba songs on repeat. I’ve been thinking a lot about Gossip Girl’s legacy over the past few days and I don’t really know what to make of it. The show went off the rails so substantially early on and never truly recovered, so it’s not as if it fits into any conversation about the best teen dramas in history (or even in the last decade). It’s probably the Josh Schwartz's worst work, and that includes the 62 pilots he’s been attached to that haven’t gotten picked up. Unfortunately, it’s probably still the defining show of The CW, which makes this an end of an era of failure and misguided niche hype.

I can’t say I’ll be sorry to see any of these characters go, especially in their final forms. The last season was a train wreck from start to finish and, while I think the finale didn’t hit the same kind of nadirs as the previous two episodes, it certainly didn’t revitalize anything either. Gossip Girl lost its way a long time ago and went out as tone deaf and dull as it was during much of its run.

What'd you think of the series finale?

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  • sophiemariemadisonmillard May 21, 2014

    I think anyone who watched or is starting to watch gossip girl has probably had the urge to ask google who exactly is gossip girl but that aside i'm just sad to have finished the last episode of the last season what was a long six years for the cast and crew was a short 3 months of me and netflix .

  • cristinasmith336 Oct 24, 2013

    I never watched the show while it was on TV. I got hooked on it by watching Netflix while I was sick one day. Then I had to wait what seems like forever for the final season to come on Netflix.. What a disappointment.

  • darcicomplex Jan 10, 2013

    OK, so there were enough hints in the final season to conclude that Dan was Gossip Girl, so this wasn't a huge surprise. So no, I didn't really tune in for the suspense, but more just because of how much time i've invested in the show over the years, and I had to watch the end. The series highlights montage was nice,

    Oh and since this series has always had really strong music, I thought it was fitting that they had two great standout uses of music in this episode...first, I loved the hilarious 1960's Batman-esque campy music that played during Bart's death scene. I literally couldn't stop laughing at it. Then, I also thought it was great that they had a cover of Serge Gainsbourg's classic "Bonnie & Clyde" sung in English by Great Northern. I've always loved that song and it's many various covers, but this is the first English one I've heard and I love it.

  • NJLiz Jan 07, 2013

    I tried to watch this show when it started. But it was a program filled with both truly horrible characters and extremely dull & dumb ones. Most people I know watched only because of the fashion & style, not the narrative. I watched the last ten minutes of the series finale and, after reading your recap, I'm glad that I didn't waste hours watching this show about spoiled rich kids over the past few years.

  • jdshaver83 Dec 29, 2012

    The main reason is sucked b/c they ended Dair (Dan and Blair). I know a lot of people that were upset they broke them up in favor of that abusive @sshat Chuck. Serena and Nate was also a pairing people wanted to happen but didnt. Kristen Bell talents being wasted (for obvious reasons), and Barry Watson (tho love him) was just cannon fodder. That's why everyone stopped watching this crappy show, and the ratings suffered because of it. And Dan as GG? Really?! As someone that was originally fan of the show, I think fans deserved better than what was given. The writing was just stupid and ridiculous. It had a chance to redeem themselves but missed out on so many possible opportunities that it eventually became predictable. All I thought about while watching this trainwreck is that Kevin Williamson should have written the script...lol (Dawson Creek will always be my all-time favorite series finale on the network.) Oh well, good riddance.

  • emeraldgodess82 Dec 29, 2012

    Im not surprised it was Dan. I dont care much for Dan and Serena cause I never liked them so much anyway. Im glad about Chuck and Blair.
    I wish this review was written by someone who liked the show and had a little more respect for it rather than some ass writing about how terrible it is and spreading your negative attitude. One thing thats worse than the finale was your review of it.

  • jtgreat_20 Dec 29, 2012

    i am fine with the season finale.but who Nate ended up with. its better if Nate and Serena ended up together. instead of Dan, who look terrible next to Serena. although i imagine if Blair and Dan ended. it is okey

  • PhoenixTremayne Dec 26, 2012

    I agree with the previous comments, if you don't like Gossip Girl why review it? It's like a movie critic that doesn't like horror movies trying to review horror movies, I'd rather read a review by a disgruntled fan than someone that just wants to make fun of it, The finale was rushed, but yes I'm like many others I wanted Chuck and Blair together and thought the reasons for them not being together was really just stretching and reaching to make it to this point, I was fine with the ending for C & B because of the limited time in which to wrap things up, I'm not a fan of Dan and Serena but I was ok with them finally getting it right too, Rufus and Lily should have been together or at least a moment when she finds out about Williams deception would have been cool, Georgina could have been used better but all in all I was happy with the way things ended, no real cliffhangers and the characters getting their happy endings, we can all fantasize about how many times they get remarried and divorced.

  • ltfs Mar 15, 2013

    okay, I know this is an old topic, but I just had to respond to that, I even got and account on this stupid site specially for this occasion.
    I'm sorry, but these reviews are fantastic, and every time after I watched any episode of the final season the first thing I did was to check this site for review, 'cause it made me laugh so hard, and it also perfectly summed up what I thought myself. And first of all, I think everyone has the right to voice their own opinion, hands everyone has the right to write a review. And second of all, yeah, maybe it would be stupid if someone who just generally hates gossip girl was writing these reviews, but I don't think that's what was happening here. I think this Cory guy didn't generally hate gossip girl, he just hated the last season, and frankly, I can relate to that. I think the show was pretty well to some point, and then it just... didn't. Especially final season, I mean, come on, it was ridiculous. So, I watched every season of gossip girl, you can call me a fan, but that doesn't mean that I didn't hate the last season, 'cause I did, I sincerely hated it, it was the stupidest thing I've ever seen when it comes to TV shows. So, summing it up, I think these reviews are great. Peace.

  • charmed05 Dec 26, 2012

    I don't agree with any of your comments. Your so judgmental. How are you even watching gossip girl? You do know what kind of a show you were watching right? How did u even start in the first place. I don't get people like you.

  • brandydan Dec 23, 2012

    I actually liked the finale a lot, Darena,Chair with a son,Jenny works for WD,Eric,Jenny,Juliet returned,The KB & RB cameo, the reveal of GG yet they also kept GG going and the identity of the new one a secret,I was shocked it was Dan but in a lot of ways it makes sense.I actually liked seasons four and five, seasons three and six are the worst ones IMO.

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