The first two episodes are out and so many thoughts are going through my mind with this reboot. Are those things positive or negative? Read up to know more.
The New Formula
It’s been almost ten years since the original Gossip Girl’s based on Cecily Von Ziegesar’s books wrapped on the CW. Now, it’s taken a life on its own on HBO Max. Once again, this show follow Manhattan’s Elite in Constance Billard/St-Jude’s. Everything is set to fit this new era: Gossip Girl used to be a blog, now it’s an instagram account, because, who else but me blog again. The cast is more diverse not just in race, but in sexual orientation.
Also, based on what has been on SKAM for example, and the fact that Gossip Girl is on Instagram, the main characters all have their own instagram page that follows their endeavors on the show. This whole new formula is set to actually work as a new show and, I believed in it so hard. But sadly… This is not where I’m going with this oh-so boring blog.
The first thing that bothered me in that show is the one thing that makes a show: the storyline. See, the first episodes which sets the awakening of the asleep Gossip Girl after nine years. Remember, a few years ago, we discovered that Dan Humphrey (Penn Bagdley) was the one who launched Gossip Girl, using it to call out the Elite to whom he felt invisible to… (yeah, it never made sense but I don’t want to digress here).
This time, Constance Billiard/St-Jude is ruled by the overprivileged and shallow students that are awfully two dimensional and set in their privileges. The teacher are basically bullied by them and, as showed on the pilot, they can also be fired if they don’t comply.
So, to solve this issue, a teacher by the name of Kate Keller, assisted by fellow teachers, decided to recreate a Gossip Girl so that those kids can feel like they’re not above everything. At this point, we enter the worst storyline ever, because as you guest it, Gossip Girl is now an Instagram account used by teachers to bully teenagers. It goes so far that, still in the pilot, a teacher is found taking pictures of his very underage students changing and Kate, posted it on IG. You guessed it, this show is based on adults acting like idiots.
At first, I thought my issue was the acting but now, I’m convinced it’s just the script. I don’t know if it’s the fact that it’s going to be a short season (10 episodes) and they have to many ideas. But I feel nothing is building up, we’re just throwing stuff in our faces at this point. Example: One second Obie loves Julien, he meets Zoya and the next he does is dump her after a petty drama that doesn’t concern him one bit and then he .. dates her. This whole happen in two episodes. It takes a lot of skills to pull off acting stuff like that. It just doesn’t work…
The character building
(I could change my mind on this)
Ok, I’ll give it another chance but I find it disappointing that so far, Luna and Monet are the most one dimensional characters. They are meanies that spend their time scheming, they only live for Julien’s image and not hers. They serve to be just assistants to Julien’s storyline when clearly they seem to be resourceful, talented and intelligent young women. I hope that the rest of the season reserve some character building for them because… in 2021, this can’t be a thing.
When I saw that the characters would have actual instagram account, I got excited. Mainly cause I was huge fan of SKAM, and thought that that was a great way to humanize the characters, bring the show to live to another level. However, this tool ask for commitments. As community manager, I know that to feed a social with content is a full time job and requires hard work. This has yet to be seen on the socials of those accounts. They post after the show is aired, at random. The accounts barely interact with each other. It’s so dry that I’m like… what is the point?
So far, very disappointing show. I of course still intend to watch every single one episodes to form my last opinion. The show airs every Thursday on HBO max (US), France and Belgium will probably have it on OCS (FR) and BeTV (Be).