The Upper-East Side of NYC. A place where Blair and Chuck are constantly on and off. A place where Serena chooses between Dan, Nate and a host of others, whilst her ‘mom’ Lily battles through parenthood and her own personal issues.
Amongst all the drama, the intertwining storylines and everyone sleeping with everyone is a soundtrack that fits perfectly: every mic-drop moment succinctly captured; every romantic moment decorated beautifully – that, or it’s terribly funny.
We’ve gone through and chosen our favourites:
5. The Fratellis – ‘Tell Me a Lie’. Season 2, Episode 2.
“I’m done reading my magazine and I know that you like *long, ridiculous hand touch* the music reviews.”
Who knew that a British noughties rock band, the handover of a magazine on a coach journey, and a tray of chocolate strawberries could be such an aphrodisiac? Serena hands her magazine over to Dan, they lock hands and then eyes in an intimate, classic corny teen girl moment. What follows is nothing short of cringy.
Serena seductively munches her way through a box of chocolate strawberries, offering Dan one in the process. She licks her lips, staring deep into Dan’s eyes now, the night before still lingering in their thoughts. Then, up for a quick toilet break – what everyone thinks is the prelude to a sexy moment – Serena heads to the back of the bus. But oh, what’s this? Well I never, as The Fratellis sing “awhhhhhhh” Serena is thrown onto Dan’s lap, landing in the perfect straddle position – it would be raunchy if it wasn’t so funny. An awkward interchange is the precursor to Serena dragging Dan into the bus loo – not so sexy when you consider that they always stink of shit.
4. Bloc Party – ‘Signs’. Season 2, Episode 13.
The British rock infiltration continues… Bloc Party are perfect for a transition: from Rufus packing up his guitar to Chuck staring into a fire after his Dad’s funeral. But, most importantly, they’re perfect backing track for the marriage of Cyrus to Blair’s mum– or should I say ‘mom’.
It’s a happy song for a happy occasion, but it still feels somewhat sad. The scene finishes with Blair being pulled away from the occasion to comfort Chuck, who sits distraught on her bed. This is an oddly sweet moment where my first instinct isn’t to laugh at the insincerity. Bloc Party was a good choice.
3. Sonic Youth – ‘Starpower’. Season 3, Episode 5.
“Well, it took 20 years but we finally made it.”
The biggest WTF moment of the whole show. Bloody Sonic Youth are tuning up in the background of Rufus and Lily’s wedding; out of all of the coups of celebrity guests and performances, this is the biggest and weirdest yet. The star-crossed lovers – both divorcees – finally wedded. Who better to sing them into their new nuptials than Sonic Youth? It’s not quite ‘oh yeah, we’ve booked a wedding band’, it’s more ‘oh yeah, we managed to get one of the most iconic bands in American rock’n’roll history’.
Whilst love blossoms in one place, hearts are broken in another. Serena finds out she doesn’t like the man Carter really is and is left stranded during the wedding dance. Just next to her is Nate, also alone. Just to remind you, Sonic Youth are there – in case you had forgotten or, like me, have entered a sort of trance. As Gossip Girl says: “The best songs are the ones that bring you back to when you first heard them.” A poignant message for these young and broken hearts.
2. Lady Gaga – ‘Bad Romance’. Season 3, Episode 10.
“They used to play cards together, who do you think Poker Face is about?”
Yet again, Gossip Girls includes a totally unrelated celebrity appearance and tries to link it into the story. Brilliant. A brief synopsis: four ladders and four dancers hold a dress – that’s about a mile long – in a bid to impress her new fellow students, whilstBlair organises a private performance from none other than Lady Gaga.
Queue about 20 people walking into a room behind Blair. A door at the back swings open to give entrance to a pouting Lady Gaga who looks like she’s got a bad tummy from the Chinese she had the night before. Gaga then goes full Gaga mode and delivers an unbelievably extravagant performance, almost like a video shoot, while Blair explains that she and Gaga are basically best pals – of course, they are, just like the others are bezzies with Sonic Youth…
As Gaga robotically makes her way across the stage, Olivia announces to Dan – post threesome with Vanessa – that she is leaving. Admittedly, I’m not quite sure Gaga doing her thing really fits this scene, but nonetheless, it always makes you feel a bit giddy when you see a celebrity guest in a TV show – even if it is this outrageous.
1. Florence and The Machine– ‘Cosmic Love’. Season 4, Episode 14.
“Brooklyn’s the one who’s guilty, by association.”
Drama. As always, everything is falling apart. Dan betrays Serena by calling her boyfriend Ben’s parole officer, even though Eric punched Damian, not Ben (stick with it). Raina has found out about Chuck’s lies. And, Rufus and Dan’s father-son relationship is strained even more. Worst of all, Blair has a bloody gift bag crisis and seeks the help of her ex, Nate.
Hang on, is that? No, it can’t be. Oh wait… yes, it actually is. Florence is there. And The Machine. I’m not sure how or why this happens. Wouldn’t you have loved to be in the room though when the GG producers asked Florence about appearing in this episode? Anyway, soundtracking this entire scene is Florence and The Machine, harp and all, tinkering along as the chaos around them gradually unfolds. All the different storylines from earlier are weaving in and out, kept from falling apart by ‘Cosmic Love’ – literally.
This is the best and most random guest appearance of the 6 Seasons, it’s so Gossip Girl. I didn’t think I could lose myself anymore in this show.
Listen to the Gossip Girl Soundtrack HERE. Get the latest edition of our print magazine featuring cover star Soccer Mommy, grammy-nominated Black Pumas, Alfie Templeman and more HERE.