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Thursday, December 8, 2011

Blog on Hiatus until the 15th of December- and some ANTM thoughts

Things just got real, schoolwise. So we are going to have to not be watching TV/addicted to the internet for about a week. There will be no need for you guys to come back until December 15th. Go! Live your lives! Take notes for which episodes you would like to have reviewed, and we will do them late/when we get back. Put the requests in the comments, and we will do "better late than never" posts.

America's Next Top Model broke our hearts last night by not picking Allison, but Lisa is a good second choice. We actually really like Lisa and think she deserves to be the "All Star." Allison just should have won her first season, period. Why was Angelea disqualified? The internet is saying that it's because she revealed the competition results on Facebook. Does that mean Angelea originally won? We don't know, but we think that would have been a mistake. Lisa and Allison were our top two. Allison is a strong model and a cool person, but it's an extrovert's world, especially on reality TV. We hope Allison gets some real jobs. Lisa needed this win to continue her career. We don't think Allison does, with those eyes.

Tyra knows nothing. Her ridiculous Pot Ledom, Tookie, and stupid ideas this season proved that. Our favorite never wins and usually gets runner up or top three. The fact that Tyra didn't pick Allison means that Allison is the best.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Glee - Hold Onto Sixteen

In this picture, Artie should totally be saying "TIMMY."

Quinn is cured! By Rachel, of all people. Yes, it was “redeem Rachel week,” which we are all for. But let’s back up. At the beginning of the episode, Quinn went up to Rachel and told her that Shelby and Puck had a root fest. Rachel agreed that Shelby was wrong for doing that, but she countered that Puck was 18 and that Beth loves her mom. If Shelby gets deemed an unfit parent, it will “ruin Beth’s life.” Sweet little point there, Rachel. Quinn seems to listen, but she is resolved to get Beth back and probably get revenge on Shelby for doling out all those harsh truths about life and then acting with no wisdom in her own decisions.

McKinley High is hosting Sectionals this year, but New Directions is still nervous, despite the whole thing happening on their own turf. That’s a decent psychological advantage. Having lost their star, Rachel, the club feels that it needs Sam Evans back. Rachel and Finn go to Kentucky to retrieve him, because his new town actually isn’t that far away from Lima. Sam is working as a male stripper for all the middle-aged ladies who hang at a place called “Stallions.” These are probably the same people who are The Twilight Moms. We weren’t aware that Sam was 18. Although, that’s Kentucky, armpit of America, so they probably don’t care one way or another. Heh. If you’re from Kentucky and you’re offended by that, go get that cousin you married to comfort you. We’ll wait.

Rachel gave Sam a dollar that she got from Finn (way to perpetuate the “Jews are cheap” stereotype, Rachel), and Sam meets them in his dressing room. He says that he made $60 in 15 minutes, which is a lot more than he can make for his family at Dairy Queen. The three then went to Sam’s parents’ VERY NICE, BIG house and talked them into letting Sam go back to Ohio and live with them. Sam’s parents realize that this is what Sam really wants and they let him go. One less mouth to feed? How will they get by without the Stallions income when they clearly spend everything they get on a big house anyway? Oh whatever. These are the times Glee never makes any sense, and we are happy enough to have Sam back, that we will excuse a lot.

Meanwhile, Kurt and Blaine go to their gay little coffee shop and Sebastian shows up to hit on Blaine again. When Blaine leaves their immediate vicinity, Sebastian and Kurt have a little fight where Sebastian makes it clear that he thinks Kurt is unattractive and that he, Sebastian, is after Blaine. As if that wasn’t clear before. It totally was. Kurt counters with, “You smell like Craigslist.” Kurt FTW. Everyone meets back at the rehearsal room and sings Toby Keith’s “Red Solo Cup” with Sam. That was a weird song. It sounded like it came from Kentucky. We’ve decided that it was so bad it was good.

After rehearsal, Quinn met up with Sam and said that she didn’t appreciate him before, and that she wants him back. Yeah, that’s very attractive to a guy, Quinn. Sam is over it. He tells Quinn to enjoy her youth, which came out of nowhere for us, but we quickly got used to it, because that turned out to be the episode’s major theme. Mike Chang and his dad are back! We thought that storyline was a one-time thing, but it keeps coming back. Mike caved and only applied to Stanford for pre-med. Tina is concerned that Mike is giving up his dreams and voices this concern. Mike is really mean back.

Kids reading this: we would like you to know that your parents don’t have to know your major until you graduate and it’s too late. You can minor or double major too. Your parents don’t have access to your grades and generally are NOT THERE to see you doing whatever the hell you want. That’s the beauty of college. Take advantage of it. It’s your life, and college is when you get to do whatever you want. Also, colleges don’t have “pre-law” or “pre-med” majors. Major in whatever you want, get good grades, blow the standardized tests out of the water, and then apply to the graduate school you need to go to.

Sam’s plan to win Sectionals involves swiveling pelvises and air-sexing. Blaine really hates this. We mean really hates it. He goes into a rage and says that he’s “not for sale” and basically calls Sam a gigolo. The two nearly fight, but Finn breaks it up. Blaine is in the gym, punching a bag. He would have looked sexy, but he still has his head all lubed up. Finn tracks Blaine down and Blaine explains that he took up boxing after being bullied at his old school. Then he says, “I started a fight club at Dalton, which, obviously, I can’t talk about.” We loved that line, because we love Fight Club more than most things in life. Finn fixes things by admitting to Blaine that he’s been jealous of Blaine, and that now he just wants to win or something.

Sam finds Mercedes and tells her that he’s coming after her, no matter how big her boyfriend is. Mercedes is clearly charmed. Tina visits Mike’s dad with a video of his son in West Side Story, and she tries to make the dad see reason. Way to overstep, girlfriend who is not part of the family. She ends her plea with, “You know, you’re always talking about honor, Mr. Chang. Help your son honor his gift.” Honor? Who is this? The dad from Mulan? Speaking of which: when are they going to perform "I'll Make a Man Out of You"?

At Sectionals, the Unitards perform first. Sadly, they do not wear Unitards, so we have no idea why they are called The Unitards. That group features Lindsay Pearce and she sang “Buenos Aires” from Evita. She sounds fantastic. It’s a perfect song for her voice, even though it’s not a winning number. The Troubletones are next, with a mash-up of “Survivor” by Destiny’s Child and “I Will Survive.” They do weird arm movements that must count as a dance. New Directions go for Michael Jackson, Janet Jackson, and the Jackson 5, singing “ABC”, “Control”, and “Man in the Mirror.” Those were ok, but not at all winning material, we thought. Mike Chang’s dad shows up to see his son perform.

New Directions win, even though we think they should have gotten third. Mike Chang’s dad caves and tells Mike to do what he wants. Rachel comes back to school. Quinn tells Shelby that she knows about the nasty Puck affair. Shelby complains about being old. Quinn is supposed to cherish her youth and not crave her baby, or something. Rachel tells Quinn that if Quinn rats Shelby out, Quinn will regret it forever. Quinn listens and becomes a nice human again. Quinn gets Rachel and Mr. Schue to agree to let the Troubletones sing one solo number per competition, so the two groups merge again.

They sing “We are Young,” which was sweet enough that we downloaded it. We actually liked all the unity and Quinn/Rachel being friends. The episode had a nice season-one tone. This was definitely a good one. We are glad that the crazy Quinn and Troubletones plotlines are over. This episode loses points for the three lame New Directions songs and "Red Solo Cup". It was relieving to see everyone acting like normal humans and not making insane, mean decisions. We like when the good guys on this show occasionally act like good guys.

Episode grade: B+

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

How I Met Your Mother - Symphony of Illumination

The How I Met Your Mother midseason finale was funny, emotional, and exactly where we wanted to go, plotwise. Leeard would like the world to know that Ted is her soulmate. She honestly thinks she might be The Mother. Even Ern has a newfound love for Ted after his sweet act to cheer up Robin and his voiceover. When Robin cried, it made us teary-er than this show has ever made us. There is something about seeing her break down that gets us.

The episode started off with Robin talking to her future children, telling them about their father, who she says is Barney. This is significant. And awesome. Robin was telling the kids Barney’s reaction when she revealed her pregnancy news. He made bad jokes and got punched a couple of times. Robin told Barney that she was a week late, that she was never late, and that she and Kevin had not yet engaged in the nasty.

We loved Barney’s initial reaction. He was excited and ready to have a baby. That is, until he sees one of his old drinking buddies as a miserable family man. Insane Dwayne (now “Sane Dwayne”) has four kids, drinks but doesn’t visit bars, and is shushed by his wife in public. Barney and Robin go to the doctor, where they find out that Robin isn’t pregnant and do a funny celebration dance. Very cute, but probably stolen off of Maury. Later, Robin receives another call from her doctor and is informed that she can’t have children. At all. Ever.

Robin never wanted kids, but she realized that she had always relied on the possibility that she could if she changed her mind. Robin becomes visibly depressed, but doesn’t want to tell her friends why. Good friends that they are, they notice. They try to figure it out, not fully buying Robin’s “I discovered I am too tall to be on Canada’s Olympic pole-vaulting team” story. As Robin wanders the winter streets, she reveals that the children her voiceover addresses are fictional. We literally gasped. Fooled us, show.

She gets back to her apartment to find a Christmas light show set to “Highway to Hell,” crafted by Ted, whose job it is to always cheer his friend up. Too sweet. The weird, lamer B-plot involved Marshall decorating his house in Long Island but getting trapped on the roof by a neighbor boy who wants a free house to party in. What a waste of Jason Segal, and what a bratty, child porn-making bratface. Overall though, we really enjoyed this episode. We are glad Robin isn’t having a baby. Now we wish she would gain her weight back and grow her hair out again. Her face is still looking haggard. She needs that extra 15 pounds.

Episode grade: B+

Gossip Girl - Riding in Town Cars with Boys

The Gossip Girl midseason finale sort of repeated old storylines. There has been a cliffhanger where we wonder if Chuck is dead before. The show would get major points if they actually killed him off, because it would shock us. We truly doubt that he will die. But will physical therapy, being in critical condition, and Blair’s grief over (inevitably) losing her baby push him back to the dark side? The car accident’s main purpose, we believe, is to end Blair’s pregnancy, because a pregnant Blair just doesn’t jive with the show’s glamour vibe.

The show dangled Dan’s baby in front of us, and just when we started to think it was cute, the show took baby Milo away. We think watching Chuck and Blair become parents would be adorable and entertaining. They are the endgame, and it’s getting tiresome watching them break up and get back together, only to break up again. With just the two of them in bliss, things get boring, as we saw in season three. They had an unhealthy relationship too, and it was still boring. If the show threw in the wrench of a baby, it might bring the couple the storylines they need for the show to sustain this relationship.

Let’s go back to the beginning real quick. Charlie has a debut party, but she can’t enjoy the planning process because Max is still in town, calling Charlie and trying to get someone in the press to publish his story about how she’s not who she claims to be. Nate turns him down. Tripp returns, upset that Grandpa Vanderbilt has chosen Nate as “the future of the family,” which is totally creepy. Get out, Nate! Get out! Tripp meets up with Max and they plot together. Then Max leaves town.

The paparazzi are consumed with tracking down Blair and confirming the status of her relationship with Louis. Blair can’t wear her engagement ring, because pregnancy blew her fingers up like a balloon. If the paparazzi see her without her ring, they will assume the worst! So Blair goes to Dan’s apartment to hide out. Dan has prepared to confess his love to Blair to get his feelings out and get closure, but he realizes this is selfish. Serena, who has started having feelings for Dan again, yells at Dan for even considering adding himself into Blair’s mix, when Blair’s choices are already difficult.

Meanwhile, Serena plots to bring Louis to Blair so that she (Serena) can have a shot at Dan. Dan decides to help Chuck and Blair reconcile, so he brings them both to a secret room at Charlie’s party. Chuck tells Blair that he will love her child as much as he loves Blair. For about a half an hour, Chuck and Blair are happy. Even though we knew there would be a twist to ruin everything, we took that small second to scream "FINALLY" and be satisfied. We love them so much. Serena is impressed with Dan’s selflessness, but Dan is too hung up on Blair and busy reflecting on the meaning of his life or something to notice Serena’s puppy-dog eyes.

We would like to congratulate the show for allowing Serena to do something selfish AND for allowing her to realize that she needs to be with Dan. The Dan/Serena relationship was one of the healthiest ever to grace our televisions, and we would like to see them as endgame. We will also settle for Nate and Serena, but we think that’s the poorer choice. Serena just isn’t in love with Nate enough. In our wildest dreams, they would bring Jenny back and Nate would end up with her. But we know THAT isn’t going to happen. That little brat, Taylor Momsen, burned all those bridges. She’s a better singer than an actress anyway.

Sidenote: We’d also like to mention Lily’s sweet moment where she tells Chuck that she will love him unconditionally and that if scotch and partying aren’t enough to comfort him, Lily will be there. That moment made us forgive Lily for sending an innocent man to prison and failing to get properly punished for it. Lily has grown up. Her marriage with Rufus is stable, she is with Rufus in the first place, and she is finally acting like a real mother.

But back to the main plot. Charlie worries that Max is going to spill her secret to one of the reporters at the party, so she ruins her own party by tipping off Gossip Girl to the fact that Chuck and Blair are there, together. The paparazzi swarm, no one cares about Charlie anymore, and Chair have to run for it. They don’t want Louis to find out that his engagement is off through paparazzi pictures. They decide to go find Louis and tell him that the wedding is off in person. Three motorcycles chase them with cameras and their driver can’t handle it. We watch as art imitates life, and Chuck and Blair end up in a car accident.

At the hospital, Nate, Serena, Charlie, Rufus, and Lily tensely await news of Chuck and Blair’s fate. Blair wakes up, but Chuck… Lily couldn’t finish her sentence. She just cried. It’s a coma or critical condition or something. Uncle Jack hears about Chuck’s accident and calls Diana Payne, and they agree to meet in New York City as soon as possible. We guess we will find out what that is about. Charlie blames herself for the accident and realizes that she doesn’t want to fool these people anymore. She almost comes clean to Rufus, but she is interrupted. Instead, she just decides to leave New York. She calls Carol and tells her that she is done pretending to be family.

We know that Charlie/Ivy will be back very soon, and we are a little happier about that than we would normally be. Her conscience and willingness to give up the sweet life humanized her and made her more sympathetic to us. We are ready to see where she fits onto this show as an honest person. Also, her dress was fabulous in this episode, as was Serena’s. Blair’s? Not so much. So it’s bye bye to the show until January 16th. Hopefully all of the Diana/Nate/Uncle Jack/real Charlie mysteries pan out in the coming year.

Episode grade: B+

Monday, December 5, 2011

Homeland - Representative Brody

Carrie’s lead that she got from the Imam’s wife led her to a Saudi diplomat, Al Zahrani. This guy is a both in debt and a secret gay. The CIA got bathhouse photos and this is major leverage against a respected Muslim man. Carrie and Saul then experienced opposition from the State Department, which didn’t want to violate a diplomatic immunity agreement with Saudi Arabia. David Estes told Carrie and Saul to interrogate Zahrani anyway, and he wants Carrie to do the actual interrogating. Saul tells Carrie, “Eviscerate the mother***er.” We find this to be a bad-ass phrase.

The vice president visits Brody and asks him to run for Congress. When Brody tells Jessica that the VP came over, her first reaction was, “But the house is a mess!” Haha. Brody doesn’t even really have to think about it. He really wants to do it, however Jessica does not. She has good reasons: the media will dig and find out about their affairs. That’s what happened to Herman Cain recently. And pretty much every other politician who ever had an affair. The family just started getting along again and if he took this offer, Brody would not be able to spend enough time with them.

We aren’t sure how Jessica knows about Brody’s affair with Carrie. Either he told her or Jessica figured it out when Carrie came to visit early that one morning. Brody calls Carrie and asks to meet with her, because he wants to talk her into keeping her mouth shut when he runs for office. Carrie misinterprets the message and starts preparing for the “date.” Poor Carrie!

Upon Brody’s arrival, Carrie figures out that Brody’s intentions are less than romantic. The bright side? We get to see Claire Danes’s excellent crying skills. Brody also goes to Mike and convinces him to talk to Jessica. Jessica is weirded out by this, but in the end she tells Brody that he can run for Congress, as long as she never loses him again. He promises that won’t happen, and they smooch. The next day, Brody dresses up in uniform and publically announces his candidacy. Carrie, you should totally rat.

During the interrogation of Zahrani, Carrie comes through by threatening to have his daughter deported back to Saudi Arabia to “get fat and wear a burqua for the rest of her miserable life.” Zahrani has been enjoying Western culture and the opportunities it affords his children, so he admits that he is an information source for Nazir. He agrees to set up a meeting with Tom Walker in Farragut Square. But things in the square don’t go as planned. Walker doesn’t show up.

Instead, a homeless guy was sent by Walker with a package that turns out to be a bomb. BOOM. The blast blows Carrie back and kills several citizens, including Zahrani. Carrie lives, naturally, but spends some time in the hospital. This convinces Saul that there is a mole in the agency, because there is no other way Walker would have been prepared. Of course there is a mole. Anyone previously involved with 24 can’t make a season without at least one mole. The mole is totally Saul!

This episode had a good ending and we liked the surprise violence on an otherwise talky and moody show. But this episode wasn't as interesting as previous entries and a lot of the mystery is gone. Also, the first half of the episode was a little slow. This could have been 30 minutes, not 47. Now it's all about catching a mole and a terrorist, which is a lot like what 24 was based on. And we've already seen that show. We need more Carrie and Brody face-offs. Maybe an affair relapse is in order?

Episode grade: B

Once Upon a Time - The Shepherd

Prince Charming/David Nolan takes center stage after his release from the hospital. Henry informs us that the curse isn’t working on him yet. Because of his amnesia, he can’t remember his Enchanted Forest life, but the false Storybrooke memories aren’t there either. Emma’s appearance blocks them for the time being. Can he lose his amnesia and figure out who he is before Regina’s curse can sink in? No. Because it’s this show, and they aren’t giving us the happy endings anytime soon. One of us is bummed by this tradition (as is a commenter) and the other of us is fine with it. As long as good wins out EVENTUALLY, and it will, it's fine.

Regina and Kathryn bond at David’s homecoming party. Kathryn states that she is Regina’s friend, whether Regina likes it or not. As ominous as this is, we were a little happy. Regina needs a friend. We know we are supposed to feel bad for her a little bit. It’s going to be harder after this episode though. David ditches his homecoming party to find Mary Margaret. Mary Margaret gives us one of the best lines of the episode when David says, “Don’t tell me this is one-sided.” She says, “You’re married. It should be no-sided.” Ha. Mary Margaret can’t deny her feelings though, so she asks Emma for advice. Emma says that if you think something you want is wrong, it probably is. That's great advice.

The next day, David leaves Kathryn and tells Mary Margaret to make her decision. Swoon. We wouldn’t have been able to resist. He tells Mary Margaret to meet him at the toll bridge at eight at night if she wants to be with him. Emma tells Mary Margaret that David is fair game now, because he made a clear choice by leaving Kathryn. Umm, what happened to our family show? The ratings have been good partially because parents are watching it with their kids. It is a moral quandary. Is “clear choice” the highest law? Would it have been right for David and Mary Margaret to be together if things progressed as they expected?

The moral grey areas were sidestepped when David bumps into Regina. This sends him to Mr. Gold’s shop where he sees a windmill replica that once belonged to his Storybrooke self. This triggers the curse and David remembers loving and choosing Kathryn. He goes to Mary Margaret and says that while he has feelings for her and doesn’t know whether he loves Kathryn anymore, he has to honor his choice. He says it’s the right thing to do. Mary Margaret replies that the right thing to do would not involve leading her on in the first place. Word. So Kathryn is not really David’s wife, because all of his memories of her are fake and planted by the curse. He didn’t marry Kathryn and she didn’t marry him, although she thinks he did. There is no choice to honor, but our heroes don’t know that.

Mary Margaret goes to the diner to cry. Dr. Whale shows up to buy her a drink and be debonair and whatnot. Mary Margaret gives Dr. Whale another chance. This was probably smart of Mary Margaret, because it seems that Dr. Whale is the only available man in town. Even Sheriff Graham is taken…by Regina. Emma catches him sneaking out of Regina’s house and Emma is ticked. It’s pretty clear that Emma wanted Graham for herself. Understandable. All-in-all, sad goings-on in Storybrooke. Curvygirl will not be pleased.

In the fairytale world, we found out Prince Charming’s backstory, and it was interesting. It turns out the king and queen couldn’t bear children. Rumpelstiltskin made a deal with a farmer (to save the struggling farm) and took one of the farmer’s twin boys and gave it to the royal family. King George raised his fake prince, and the boy grew up to be a dragon slayer. The other twin grew up with his parents on the farm and his dad passed away after a few years, from guilt, apparently. The grown up prince dueled a brute and killed him to prove to King Midas, who was visiting King George’s kingdom, that he could kill a dragon ravaging Midas’s kingdom. In return, King Midas would save King George’s kingdom from financial ruin.

Yes, we did say King Midas. He isn’t really a fairy tale character, now is he? How do we feel about the inclusion of any kind of mythical character in this show? We’re not sure yet. It could provide an opportunity for more interesting characters and lesser-known stories. The prince seemed to kill the brute, saying, “Next time make sure I’m really dead.” Which makes no sense, because there would be no next time. BUT the brute wasn’t really dead and stabbed the prince in the back when Midas wasn’t looking. Take your own advice, prince dude. We were not sad that fake prince died, because, clearly, he was stupid.

King George (who is Alan Dale from LOST, Ugly Betty, and more) freaks out, because his deal with Midas includes a live son slaying the dragon. King George sends for Rumpelstiltskin, who is unable to speak without raising and moving his creepy hands most of the time. This actor might be having a little too much fun with the character. Rumpelstiltskin reveals that there is an identical twin somewhere on a poor farm that he can go fetch. Rumpelstiltskin goes to the other twin, who is a shepherd as well as a farmer, and persuades him to take the prince’s place. The farm is still failing, so the shepherd takes the job on. Also, he wants to save the kingdom as well, because he’s nice. From shepherd to royalty. It's all very "King David."

The shepherd (who is the real prince/David/guy who falls in love with Snow White, duh) goes with the king’s men to slay the dragon. The king’s men are told to kill the dragon themselves, because the new prince is untrained (and needs to stay alive). The prince is supposed to be the one to bring the dragon’s head to Midas. This doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to us. If one of King George’s men slays the dragon, that should fulfill the deal, right? Because the shepherd turns out to be as brave as his dead brother and quite a bit smarter, he actually kills the dragon. With a sword and not a slingshot.

Midas is impressed and offers his daughter’s hand in marriage. She is the fairy-world version of Kathryn, and her name there is Abigail. She’s a way bigger jerk when she was raised as a princess. In Storybrooke, Kathryn is nice. Maybe. So far. The shepherd wants to marry for love and choose his own bride, but King George threatens the shepherd's mother. The shepherd agrees to the marriage and goes to say goodbye to his mother for the last time. We would have been sad, but that mom is a monster who gave away one of her children for money. So…yeah…we weren’t sad. Farm Momma gave the shepherd a ring and told him true love would always follow it.

The shepherd and Abigail set off to Midas’ kingdom where Snow White was ready to ambush them. And that’s how it all happened, we guess. We are miffed that, once again, we don’t know the prince’s fairytale name. James is a fake name. And we’re not calling anyone Prince Charming anymore. We’re annoyed that the Midas deal didn’t totally make sense. Why did it have to be a replacement prince? For the kingdom’s morale? Some sort of exposition was needed there. But, overall, we liked the prince's twisty backstory.

Episode grade: B

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Gossip Girl - Rhodes to Perdition

Proving that we listen to commenters and we take requests, we took a study break long enough to write about the last Gossip Girl episode. We’ll probably go ahead and throw in this Monday’s finale too, because Gossip Girl finales are usually eventful.

Less eventful was this penultimate episode. It dealt with Charlie a lot. This show is trying to make her a little sympathetic, because she wants a family and had no dad or something.

But it’s really hard to forgive the fact that she is stealing and tricking everyone. Plus, what kind of psycho wants someone else’s family. And what kind of psycho wants THE RHODES-HUMPHREYS, one the worst, most dysfunctional families on TV.

So it’s hard to care about all the Charlie stuff. We don’t think she is going to be a permanent fixture on the show and we don’t care about her. It all seems like a distraction or a waste of time. It was more interesting to see Blair trying to figure out the secret of Chuck’s newfound mental and emotional help. When Blair finds out that Chuck started making real progress when he dropped the ring off at Harry Winston, Blair assumes that she was the reason for Chuck’s darkness, rather than the other way around.

Because he's awesome now, and he won't torture Blair just for the sake of it anymore. Chuck makes it clear that she is wrong. Then Chuck commiserates with Nate over how he has become the man for Blair just in time for her to marry someone else. He says he can’t imagine a time when he won’t love her. This was so beautiful. Our hearts grew three sizes that day….

Dan goes on Twitter pretending to be a random fan of his book. A Dan lover. Pathetic. Of course Dan is his own number one fan. He's alienated the other contender for that title: his dad. Dan goes online to do this in response to a Twitter hater who turns out to be his agent, Alessandra, trying to get him talked about. It works when Katy Perry retweets their online feud.

One of Nate’s reporters finds out that Tripp’s deceitful wife, Maureen, is cheating on him. Nate figures out that she is faking an affair in order to win Tripp sympathy and bolster his career. Nate finds a classy way to address this on his news site but keep everyone anonymous at the same time. We like Nate, but having him be classy AND run a gossip site doesn't really make sense. What gossip can he print and still be classy? Is he going to just be a regular news site? There aren't really a lack of news publications in New York City.

CeCe (oh, hey, another person who don’t care about at all) came to town with cancer again (the only way to keep this woman interesting). Ivy finds out and gains CeCe’s trust by keeping the cancer a secret. She uses all the new trust to run Max out of town and get the whole family to back her against him and believe her crazy stories. Serena now believes that Max was just using her to get to Charlie, and she is all grateful to Charlie for trying to protect her.

Blahblahblah. We hate Charlie, CeCe, and Aunt Carol, although we do want to know what really went down with the real cousin Charlie. And CeCe is looking good lately. What a pretty older woman. We also love CeCe's insistence on calling Charlie "Charlotte." But why does CeCe get to have a nickname? Should she go by Cecilia, since she is so traditional she can't use "Charlie"?

We have high hopes for the finale. Once again, watching Chuck heal is just as fascinating as watching him get hurt and be a bad boy. We love when TV characters experience growth. That was one of the things we loved about Sex and the City, for example. The four girls started out a maniac, a shallow one-night-stand addict, a workaholic, and a woman who was only interested in living out romantic, perfect fantasies rather than finding a real person. If you’ve seen that show, you know how drastically those women changed and it was a very deliberate journey for each of them, crafted carefully by the writers.

We really want Gossip Girl to do something like that with all of its characters. These kids need to grow up. Having Nate classily running a business and Chuck facing his demons is a great start. Now what about whiny/self-righteous Dan, naïve/victim Serena, and jealous/shallow Blair? Let the journeys progress, even if yoga masters must be included.

Episode grade: B-