Oh no she didn’t. Oh yes she did. Blair threw her purse at the back of Serena’s head and all heaven broke loose! Come on, we all know the best part about a good fight is the making up afterward. This episode might have been titled, “New Haven Can Wait,” but I sure couldn’t! Wait, that is.
It’s college visit weekend and the gang heads north to New Haven, Conn., home of Yale University. They each have their own motivation for going. Chuck wants a secret society invitation, Dan wants someone to think his writing is Yale-worthy rather than yawn-worthy, Nate wants to think he’s anybody other than the son of a notorious embezzling loser, Blair genuinely wants her dream of gaining early admission as a legacy and Serena wants to make sure that Blair’s dream turns into a nightmare. The good news is most everyone got what he or she wanted! But as the saying goes, be careful of what you ask for.
Blair, still smarting over Serena’s declaration that she’s not going to play second fiddle to Blair’s insecurities anymore, snidely tells Serena all the reasons why Serena was not Yale material. What Blair doesn’t know is that Serena, who had planned to visit Brown for the weekend, has already been invited by Yale’s Dean of Admissions to attend the weekend event there. In deference to Blair, though, Serena was not going to accept the invitation. But after Blair’s insinuation that Serena was simply too stupid for Yale, Serena smartly decides to skip Brown and charm Yale.
At Yale, as Blair waits outside the dean’s office (how cute was she in her green cardigan and tie?) surprise! out walks a laughing, enchanting Serena and an obviously celebrity-smitten dean. Oh no: Blair’s Eliza Doolittle nightmare where she remains the clumsy Cockney lass as Serena emerges as My Fair Lady seems to be coming true.
Blair then meets with the dean hoping to get an invitation to a private gathering he holds for standout students. But when he asks Blair to tell him something fun about herself that was not already written in her bio, the always meticulously prepared Blair freezes worse than Chuck did when Blair asked him to say the magic words.
Blair catches up to Serena and tells her that she will take Serena down if she keeps pursuing Yale because Serena knows how important this is to Blair. Oops, during Blair’s adorable threat Serena gets a call inviting her to the dean’s private party and Blair isn’t invited. Blair bribes her way into the party anyway through the dean’s secretary.
In other developments, Dan learns that all those writers who said they wouldn’t recommend him really didn’t. He seems surprised. Why? I sure believed them. The dean tells Dan that he better get an English Department faculty member on campus to read his tripe or his chances for admission would go from already waaaay slim to none.
Dan gets the name of a female student who can act as a liaison to get his stuff read by a professor. One problem: When Dan gets to her room she’s snuggled up with a guy she thinks is Dan Humphrey but who is actually Nate Archibald. Nate is persona non grata this weekend because his dad swindled a ton of money from the parents of some of the rich Yalies.
Chuck gets his wish of being kidnapped by the infamous secret society, Skull and Bones. He quickly arranges for some hot blindfolded women to appear at an event as entertainment for the Bonesmen. But they want a bigger prize: embezzler spawn Nate.
Chuck arranges for them to meet Nate, guaranteeing Chuck’s place in the society if he chooses to attend Yale. Unfortunately for Dan, Chuck’s Nate was actually Dan. So a mostly naked, skivvy-wearing Dan is tied to some post in the middle of campus. Ultimately, he’s rescued by the real Nate and the cute girl. Darn.
The big climax (yeah, I said it) occurs when Blair shows up to the dean’s party. Every year he asks his guests to name one person living or dead they would like to have dinner with. Once Serena sees Blair has crashed the party and is in uber-mean-girl mode, Serena decides to use Blair’s answer (a tip from Chuck). She tells Blair she’s going to use Blair’s answer, and since the dean goes in alphabetical order, van der Woodsen will get a chance to give her answer before Waldorf. When it’s Serena’s turn, Blair has shockingly switched the name of Serena’s selection to Peter Fairman, the dude Serena thought she had killed. It was a totally OMG-to-the-highest-order low blow!
The two go outside, where mayhem erupts and hair goes flying and outfits are torn, and purses replace brass knuckles and Ivy League porches become the mean streets and there’s lots of heavy breathing and squeals and whoa what a brawl!
After they calm down and compose themselves, they sadly agree to not be friends anymore, but their hearts aren’t in it. It’s just that neither could pledge her undying love and affection for the other right then. The fight left their emotions too raw, and their hair too imperfect.
The next day as Serena approaches the Dean’s building, she sees Blair leaving the same building. Blair asks if Serena is going to rat her out as the troublemaker and the ruination of the party. Serena says she’s going to tell the dean how important Yale is to Blair and how deserving Blair is to be accepted there. Blair says she has just told the dean the same thing about Serena. Aw. Serena lovingly takes Blair’s hand and asks Blair to wait for her. I think Blair would have waited forever for Serena in that moment.
When Serena returns, the dean calls, offering her an early admission spot. Blair unfortunately will be placed in the pool with all the other candidates. Blair encourages Serena to accept the offer, but Serena’s back to being all about her feelings for Blair’s feelings, and they stand and stare at each other. (OK, who screamed at Serena, “Kiss her!”? Heh.) Finally, Serena reaches for Blair and pulls her close, then kisses her. On top of her head? Which was wearing a hat? Ugh. It was almost perfect!
Oh, yeah, meanwhile back in NYC, Jenny’s trying to convince Rufus to allow her to be home-schooled so she can follow her designer dream. He finally relents when he sees Lily (who looked gorgeous, BTW) wearing a really hot dress that Jenny designed for Serena. So all that lying and deception really paid off for Jenny. Great.
So, was this one of the best Gossip Girl‘s ever? Are Serena and Blair truly back to being friends? Will either attend Yale? Does the actual storyline even matter anymore now that there was a killer fight and some adorable coziness afterward?