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21 April 2009

Redemption Songs

Gossip Girl has been on hiatus so many times this season that it feels as though it's been going on forever--and not in a good way. I've never really understood the American concept known as "sweeps" (nor have I tried) but I thought they only happened once per season, around Christmas and New Year so I'm not sure why GG has had so many breaks this season. Possibly because the writers are so exhausted from having to write increasingly preposterous plots. This week, amusingly, B's misdemeanours were so naughty and (especially) complex that poor old N had to count them out on his fingers while he was yelling at her. N isn't the brightest spark on the Upper East Side (despite apparently getting into Yale (thanks to grandaddy) and to Columbia (all by his lonesome)) but I appreciated the recap. 

As GG is created by Josh Schwartz, there must be episodes celebrating a range of Jewish quirks and holidays (cf. a whole load of episodes from The O.C.). B's stepfather, played by Vizzini from The Princess Bride, who I'm sure was only married off to B's mom to ensure there was a Jewish character in the show. Last night's episode involved the world's worst attempt at a Passover Seder and a whole bundle of redemption for pretty much all of the characters for at least some of their diverse sins (until next time, anyway).

I do lose patience with the show sometimes, although Schwartz's in-jokes and meta do keep me watching. As does the music. The show one of my only sources of new music, outside Radio Paradise, and although overall, the music from The O.C. is more to my taste, there is the occasional gem on GG, which I really like. This week, Runaway by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs was the stand-out track for me. I thought I already had some of their earlier choons but I think I confused them with the Shout Out Louds (Monsieur Exquisite is--or was--a big fan of both bands). Karen O's voice on this track is gorgeous and haunting (reminiscent of Saint Etienne's cover of Only Love Can Break Your Heart with a bit of Feist thrown in). I'd say one great song is a pretty good result from an investment of 45 minutes of my time while watching GG. Certainly better than listening to (eek!) commercial radio for 45 minutes (or even 45 days).


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