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The Morality of Gen-Z Ruined the Gossip Girl Reboot

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

By Samantha Keating

Good morning Upper East Siders, let’s talk about the Gossip Girl reboot. News of the reboot first came in 2019 and, while no one knew the details, there was a high level of excitement from dedicated viewers. Binge watching the lives of Manhattan’s elite was a rite of passage for many, as we all simultaneously lived through the rich teens that ruled Manhattan. Gossip Girl was arguably so loved because of the portrayal of what growing up with money does to children. The contradiction between Dan’s loft in Brooklyn and the Waldorf’s million dollar penthouse, created such beautiful and intriguing plot lines, especially since all the characters came from “old money.” None of their parents worked particularly hard to rise to the top, it was just how things always were (with the exception of Rufus of course). Perhaps that’s why the reboot was such an enormous let down; the characters have too much of a conscience while still being extremely entitled.

Viewers of Gossip Girl always knew what to expect when watching; they grew fond of Blair and Serena’s constant feuding until they inevitably became best friends again the following episode. They adored watching the ups and downs of Blair and Chuck and the excitement that came with guessing which odd coupling would soon appear. The reboot however leaves little to the imagination. (Spoilers ahead!) Gossip girl is announced in the first episode, a bold choice that did not leave many impressed. Knowing who gossip girl is immediately removes half the fun out of guessing, and choosing the teachers as gossip girl was not the smartest decision. I understand the attempt to improve the morale of the student body as well as better the attitudes of the students, but half the time I find myself wondering more about the legality of the situation than the reason for them to do so. There is no suspense and the teachers being gossip girl have led to them becoming horrible people. Not only does Ms.Keller take advantage of Zola confiding in her and expose her secrets, but they also get a colleague fired for their own protection. A colleague who was already struggling as her husband had previously been laid off. 

The writers were far too focused on modernizing the plot to the target audience of Gen-Z  that they lost the original intent of the show. There is so much talk of social media and posting photos, it is almost agonizing seeing how hard they work to make their instagram perfect. While it does show how much of social media is flawed and fake, it isn’t exactly relatable being that these teens have an entire team focused on perfecting their image. It’s clear many of the parents on the show worked hard to get to where they are and obviously tried to raise them right as they clearly know what’s right and wrong, yet they still chose themselves every single time. Julien, the main character is constantly praised by the other characters for “bettering herself”, yet all she did was give an impromptu speech on bullying after humiliating her sister on her birthday. She gives her sister horrible advice and clearly tries to sabotage her relationship multiple times. Yet she still fools the boy into believing she is a new and changed woman. I don’t know if I’d be able to stand having to hear one more pathetic apology from Julien after doing something truly unforgivable.

Overall, the Gossip Girl reboot would probably be much better if it was shown completely on its own, distinct from the original. Since it’s not though, join me in holding onto hope for some unpredictable plot lines and maybe even a guest appearance from Queen B herself.

Samantha Keating

Manhattan '24

Sophomore at Manhattan College studying elementary and special education with an English concentration!
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