Warning: Spoilers ahead. Get ready, Upper East Siders, because Gossip Girl is back and she has a whole new identity!
Prior to the show’s Thursday, July 8, premiere, fans were promised a major “twist” from creator Joshua Safran during the show’s new iteration. And he definitely delivered, especially when revealing the identity of the secret blogger during the first episode.
“My hope is that we make it to airing and people don’t know,” Joshua explained to Cosmopolitan in April. “I would love to see that conversation happen in the context of people having seen it as opposed to talking about something they haven’t seen.”
Of course, the showrunner is talking about the fact that Gossip Girl — now an Instagram account — is run by the teachers of Constance Billard and St. Jude prep schools other than an unlikely student. In the original series, which ran on the CW from 2007 until 2012, Dan Humphrey (played by Penn Badgley) was revealed as Gossip Girl in the show’s finale.
Headed by new character Kate Keller (played by Tavi Gevinson), the new reign of Gossip Girl definitely takes cues from the original series. Even going so far as to look back at her old blogs, giving viewers a nod to the revival’s parent series with a reference to Chuck Bass (played by Ed Westwick), Serena van der Woodsen (played by Blake Lively) and Blair Waldorf (played by Leighton Meester).
“Coming up with the idea of knowing who Gossip Girl was from the top — and having it be a teacher — was the thing that excited me the most, because it’s doing the show in a new way instead of just retreading,” Joshua told The Daily Beast in an interview published on Thursday. “When you hear ‘teachers’ you think older, more stodgy, more matronly — all these things that are actually unrealistic to teachers, and you’re like, no, in reality, private school teachers’ median age is 31.”
After making the decision of who would be Gossip Girl, Joshua started planning who would play the role. The executive producer explained to the publication what made Tavi the perfect choice.
“Tavi has this ability to make you really still like her even when you see her doing these bad things,” he told The Daily Beast. “It’s fascinating to me because with Dan Humphrey, he did all these bad things too, but we never saw them. If you retconned it and put in all the sequences of Dan being Gossip Girl and showed him sending posts of his girlfriend while she was sleeping next to him, you’d think this guy was more dangerous than [Penn’s latest role] Joe in You.”
As the show continues to air on HBO Max — new episodes premiere every Thursday through August 12 — fans will watch as Tavi’s Kate wages a war against Upper East Sides elites played by Whitney Peak, Eli Brown, Jordan Alexander, Emily Alyn Lind, Evan Mock, Savannah Smith, Zión Moreno and Thomas Doherty. You know you love her, xoxo!
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