Throughout its six seasons, Gossip Girl had its fair share of issues. While it was an enjoyable show, there were definitely a few decisions that had fans confused. From the finale’s big reveal (really?) to some of the relationships (ew), these last minute changes made no sense. Then again, some changes are positive and helped make the show good.
It depends on how the fans perceived these changes. Some changes like Chuck’s role in the show, worked out for the better. Fans praised the writers for these changes and enjoyed every minute of them. While other changes, such as the infamous big reveal in the finale, didn’t work out at all. Fans were left confused and wondering why the writers would make such a decision.
In such a long-running show, there are bound to be changes made and some will work and some won’t. Unfortunately for the Gossip Girl writers, many changes did not work out. Fourteen of them, in fact. While there are only 6 changes that we could find that really helped the show. Of course, opinions among fans may differ. Some of your favorite storylines may be found among the changes that hurt the show while some of your least favorite storylines may be found among the changes that saved the show. This list is not meant to speak for everyone. Differences of opinion are ok, and are bound to happen in such a large, dedicated fanbase.
So get ready, and welcome to 14 Last Minute Changes That Hurt Gossip Girl (And 6 That Saved It).
20 Hurt: Dan and Blair’s Relationship
Sorry, Dair fans! But it’s true. Dan and Blair go from hating each other to loving each other with not much buildup in between. And then after all that, they go back to hating each other. Besides the fact that Blair belongs with Chuck and Dan belongs with Serena, this relationship couldn’t be weirder. While the Queen Bee dating the outsider does have a certain appeal, it doesn’t have enough to justify Dan and Blair having a relationship at all.
Apparently, both characters found something worth loving in the other, but many fans didn’t see much worth loving in the relationship at all. It seemed to come out of nowhere and many fans were happy to let it be a distant memory.
19 Saved: Jenny Having Her Own Clothing Line
This is kind of a ‘blink-and-you’ll miss it’ storyline but still a good one. In the finale, Jenny is seen carrying a “J by Waldorf” shopping bag. Which confirms that she is working for and with Blair. This shows a lot of character development on Blair’s part because she is working with someone she once disliked.
This development is great for the audience to see and shows that Blair is truly a three-dimensional character capable of change. Such change could be inspiring to the audience, who could be inspired to reconnect with the Jennys in their own lives. This storyline is also good for Jenny, a character that many fans had difficulty connecting with for quite a while. It not only makes her happier but makes her easier to relate to for fans who have realized or want to realize their dreams.
18 Hurt: Jenny’s Transformation
While this storyline had to happen due to Taylor Momsen’s music career, many fans will likely wish it hadn’t. After the first two seasons, Jenny’s character went in a different, much darker direction. She went from being Dan’s lovable younger sister to being a character many people loved to hate. And that was likely not what the writers were going for.
While some fans may love Jenny, darkness and all, many fans felt that her character changed too much too soon. Perhaps a more gradual approach would have worked for this storyline. Still, you have to empathize with the writers and the actress. They all did their best, and that’s all anyone can do, after all.
17 Hurt: Sidelining Serena and Blair’s Friendship
During season 5, Serena and Blair’s friendship took a back seat for a while. And the fans weren’t happy. After all, their relationship is kind of the heart of the show. (Take that Chair & Dair fans! Just kidding, just kidding.) Though Serena and Blair have had their fair share of fights, they have also been there for each other when times got tough.
So, of course, fans would be unhappy about their friendship being sidelined. Perhaps the writers were just focusing on other storylines at the time, but they should’ve made room for everyone’s favorite best friends. After all, there’s nothing more important than friendship. For Blair and Serena and for the audience. Supportive friendships in media are so powerful and important.
16 Hurt: Serena Losing Importance
Also during season 5, Serena became little more than a plot device. Instead of being the main character and having her own story arc, she became a way of introducing secondary characters. Or a footnote in the story of other main characters, such as Blair, Dan, and Nate.
Poor Serena deserved better! No wonder fans were upset. To see such a vibrant character reduced to simply a plot device is hard. Especially when said character is one of the main characters and usually has more prominence in the story. Fans must wonder what the writers were thinking. Perhaps they were just focusing on other characters, but they shouldn’t have left poor Serena behind. She’s a beloved character and deserves as much focus as the other main characters.
15 Saved: Chuck and Blair’s Relationship
Get ready Chair fans, this one is for you. Chuck and Blair weren’t planned from the start, but the Gossip Girl writers simply had to take advantage of Leighton Meester and Ed Westwick’s sizzling chemistry. And fans don’t blame them. Though the couple had their issues, many, many of them, they were also so deeply romantic that fans couldn’t help but root for them.
They are everyone’s favorite problematic couple. The type of couple that just can’t survive without each other. The kind of couple that is so romantic it’s unrealistic. The type of couple that can survive even the worst times because they love each other that much. It’s hard not to support such a romantic couple, despite their woe-filled story and how problematic both characters can be, both separately and together.
14 Hurt: Lack Of Scheming From Blair In Season 5
Wow, season 5 was really something. If there’s one thing that’s part of Gossip Girl, it’s Blair’s scheming. So to see that decrease in prominence in season 5 understandably upset many fans. It’s hard to picture Blair as a damsel in distress yet that’s sort of what she was for a while in season 5.
Fans understandably didn’t understand this. Blair schemes, it’s what she does. While it’s good to see character development, it shouldn’t come at the expense of who the character is. Blair’s always had and always should have a bit of an edge to her. And fans just want to see that edge as often as possible. Luckily for fans, everyone’s favorite Queen Bee gets back to scheming eventually.
13 Saved: Chuck Taking A Larger Role In The Show
Chuck fans, this one is for you. Although Chuck in the books was simply an antagonist, Chuck on the show is a much more three-dimensional character. He has his on-again-off-again relationship with Blair and his own struggles to go through as well. It’s hard to imagine Chuck just being a villain but that’s what he was initially meant to be. Thank goodness for Leighton Meester and Ed Westwick’s chemistry and Ed Westwick’s acting talent.
Without those factors, Chuck, as we know him, would be very different. It’s hard to imagine the show without Chuck playing a large part in it. Fortunately, we don’t have to. The writers made Chuck the main character with his own story arc and character development. Though he is a problematic favorite, everyone still loves him. No matter what. And that’s a testament to how good the writing for his character was as well as Ed Westwick’s talent as an actor.
12 Hurt: Blair Making A Deal With God to Save Chuck
If there’s anyone that fans wouldn’t expect to find religion, it’s Blair Waldorf. Prior to this, she was not very religious and would not be expected to do such a thing. So why the writers decided to go this route in the fifth season, we may never know.
One possible reason is to show how much Chuck means to Blair. Yet was this the way to do it? Probably not. Especially when Blair would have no reason to stick to this deal. The always scheming Blair would definitely back out of such a deal, especially if it leaves her forced to marry some random guy after wanting to be with Chuck. It makes no sense. Now, Gossip Girl is known for its nonsensical storylines, yet they’re usually fun and not so angsty. So we’re going to pass on this one.
11 Saved: Eric Being Serena’s Younger Brother
In the books, Eric is not a very prominent character. He is away at college and Serena doesn’t get to see him a lot. Instead, the show made him Serena’s younger brother. According to Gossip Girl writer and producer Stephanie Savage, this switch was to make Serena have a better reason to come home during the Pilot, and it makes sense.
People tend to be protective over their younger siblings. So having a younger brother to take care of is a good reason for Serena to come home. Eric also becomes an important character on the show in his own right, from his coming out story to his support of Jenny, he plays a crucial role in a lot of storylines.
10 Hurt: Lily and Rufus’ Secret Child
Yes, that’s right. Lily van der Woodsen and Rufus Humphrey have a secret love child…named Scott. Who showed up a couple of times in the show and then was never seen again. You’d think that a show like Gossip Girl would relish such a chance to cause drama. Yet apparently not.
Why the writers made the decision they did we may never know. It doesn’t quite make sense to introduce such a dramatic storyline and then drop it. Especially on a show full of drama. Adding Scott to the cast of characters would have added some more drama and some much-needed grounding of the show. Scott could have been the true outsider to offer a reality check to our favorite Manhattan socialites.
9 Saved: Jenny’s Look Changing
Sorry to bring up Jenny again, but whether you love her or hate her, she is one of the main characters. And her look could have been way different, especially at the beginning of the show. In the books, Jenny is a short, but voluptuous girl. In the show, she is still petite but pretty average.
Women everywhere are likely grateful the writers went this route. This way, Jenny got to be a three-dimensional character, not solely defined by her looks. Though her storylines were not always the best, she still got to shine more than she would have if the writers had gone with her book appearance. No hate meant to the author of the books.
8 Hurt: Chuck’s Mother
True Gossip Girl fans, especially Chuck fans, most likely remember this story. Chuck’s mother was not on the scene until the third season when Elizabeth Fisher shows up, claiming to be his mother. Then, a couple of seasons later, Diana Payne does the same. In the end, it turns out that Elizabeth is Chuck’s mother…at least we think so.
All this back and forth likely left many fans confused. Some are probably still wondering which woman is actually Chuck’s mother. We don’t know why the writers did this. It left more questions than answers for many fans. Poor Chuck, too. He deserves to know who his mother is without all this complicated back and forth nonsense.
7 Saved: Nate’s Lack Of A Love Life
Poor Nate. Throughout the show, he’s had many girlfriends and sometimes they got in the way of other areas of his life. According to Gossip Girl producer/writer Stephanie Savage, Nate is single but not ready to mingle at the end of the finale, which takes place five years after the events of the rest of the show.
Instead, he’s focusing on work and is very successful. He is editor-in-chief of The Spectator and is doing quite well for himself. He is also planning on running for mayor. We may never know if he succeeds in winning the race or if he finds the love of his life. However, knowing what a good guy Nate is–for the most part–we think both are strong possibilities.
6 Hurt: Serena’s Long Lost Cousin…Who Isn’t Her Cousin
Serena’s cousin Charlotte Rhodes comes back into her life after a long absence. What Serena doesn’t know is that her cousin Charlotte is not who she appears to be. She’s actually an actress named Ivy Dickens, who is being paid to pretend to be Charlotte…by Charlotte’s own mother.
If this isn’t confusing enough, the actual Charlotte Rhodes eventually appears but is calling herself Lola. She ends up signing over her part of her inheritance to Ivy, who promises to use it to bring down the van der Woodsens. It’s easy enough to believe that someone hadn’t seen their cousin in a while. But to be fooled for so long by an imposter? That’s harder to believe. Shouldn’t there be some kind of instinct that can spot fakers? Especially people pretending to be family.
5 Hurt: Nate and Jenny’s Relationship
Sorry, Nate and Jenny fans. Though they were cute at times, in the end, Jenny just got in between Serena and Nate. Love triangles are always awkward, and rarely do they add anything good to a show. Usually they just leave one character as the odd one out and in this case, it’s Jenny.
Poor Jenny deserves better, and so does Nate. He’s better off focusing on his career and so is Jenny. Though perhaps that means they’ll find their way back to each other. You never know. And we may never know if they would have worked out. Yet their relationship as it was didn’t add much to the show, especially in season three, when Jenny was the odd one out.
4 Hurt: Nate’s Implausible Career Jump
It’s hard not to be happy for Nate. He definitely deserves it. Yet his rise to Editor-in-Chief so quickly is hard for many fans to believe. An editor, maybe. But Editor-in-Chief is a job with a lot of responsibility. The responsibility that many fans think Nate would not really be ready for.
Even with the five year time jump before the end of the finale. And it’s hard not to agree with those fans. Though Nate deserves good things, they should make a bit more sense. It’s not easy to make it in New York City, after all. And although Nate’s money might open some doors for him, it probably wouldn’t eliminate every barrier to success.
3 Hurt: Blair Not Going to Yale
Though it makes sense for plot reasons to keep Blair in her native New York, it’s hard to imagine Blair giving up on her dream school…ever. She’s Blair Waldorf, after all. She doesn’t really do giving up. So it would’ve been great to see her keep trying to get into Yale, even if she still failed. The
best would have been if she had gotten in but was somehow prevented from going. That would make more sense for Blair and would be the recipe for some delicious drama. She seems to be smart enough to get into Yale, and she’s definitely determined enough. It’s hard to believe that she wouldn’t keep going, keep trying, no matter what obstacles she had to face.
2 Hurt: Bart Bass Passes Away, But Not Really
Chuck’s dad Bart certainly had a few tricks up his sleeve. He seemed to have passed away in season two, but is later seen perfectly fine in season five. Though faking one’s own passing is possible in the media, especially for someone like Bart, it still seems somewhat unrealistic.
Especially since his passing was so vital to the plot at the time. Did the writers just change their minds in season five? Or was bringing back Bart the plan all along? It’s hard to know, but the former seems much more likely than the latter. Especially since the writers waited so long to bring him back. If he had come back in season three or even season four, it would have been more realistic than what happened.
1 Hurt: Dan Is Gossip Girl
This is probably the biggest change, and the most controversial. Apparently, Eric and Nate were both candidates for Gossip Girl until the writers made it Dan. The reasoning is, supposedly, that Dan is a writer and therefore could write in different styles. While that does make some kind of sense, it’s still hard for many fans to believe that Dan is really Gossip Girl. There are just so many times in the show when it doesn’t make sense for it to be Dan.
The only explanation is that it was a change that the writers eventually made to the script near the end of the show. Perhaps, seeing the fan reaction, the writers may wish they had stuck with Eric or Nate, though perhaps not. Perhaps the fact that people are freaking out over it being Dan shows that the writers have done their job well and created a surprising plot twist.
Any surprising changes we missed in Gossip Girl? Let us know in the comments!