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Gossip Girl: How the Reboot Avoided the Infamous Dan Humphrey Problem

Parker Published On Fri Jul 09 2021   Modified On Fri Jul 09 2021
Gossip Girl: How the Reboot Avoided the Infamous Dan Humphrey Problem

Gossip Girl Reboot Avoided Dan Humphrey's Decision, Which Plagued The Original Series.

When the original Gossip Girl stopped, the twist that always rankled fans was the decision to reveal Dan Humphrey as the titular blogger. It has been a sticking point for viewers ever since the six-season show ended in 2012.

When the Gossip Girl alum Joshua Safran, a writer, and executive producer on the original series, got the chance to helm a reboot, he set about thinking of a way to right this eternal wrong. However, his solution was to establish who the Gossip Girl was in the first episode.

Gossip Girl Reboot Avoided Dan Humphrey's decision, which plagued the original series.

Gossip Girl reboot avoided the Infamous Dan Humphrey Problem
Photo Source: Vanity Fair

However, the debut of the Gossip Girl reboot quickly revealed that Gossip Girl is not one of the students. Instead, it was a handful of the teachers at Constance Billboard School. The plan hatched when one of the teachers brings up the old Gossip Girl blog, and they rush to a computer, read the old posts, and marvel at the voice gossip held within.

The new teacher Kate played by Tavi Gevinson, exclaims that the posts were like a lost Edith Wharton novel. However, Kate and the other three teachers decide to band together and relaunch the blog after a short debate about the icky ethics.

Moreover, this concept was plotted by Safran years ago, pitching it to the original show creators Josh Schwartz and Stephaine Savage as a way into the reboot. Joshua, who grew up on the Upper East Side and went to a fancy, Gossip Girl–esque private school himself, was inspired by friends of his who taught in those same kinds of schools. 

Plus, it was also an excellent way to avoid the Dan Humphrey decision, which plagued the original series. By casting everything before the big reveal into question. Safran admits in interviews that it wasn't the right choice to make Dan Gossip Girl, and he is aware of fan irritation over the alternative.

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In the plot for a reboot, teachers haggle on how to revive the blog. They try to use Twitter but quickly rule it out. Lin-Manuel Miranda, one of the teachers muses in the Gossip Girl, brainstorm that Twitter is a vast chat room for meme sharing and conspiracy theorists. So, if they want to get attention, they need to focus only on Instagram. They launched an Instagram account and started to plot a way to pit the popular kids against one another by dividing and conquering one post at a time after Kate takes charge.

Safran says of the ethical dilemma, that's something they didn't watch Dan go through. However, the audience never got to see Dan struggle with the idea of how he threw his friends, family, and even himself under the bus by posting Gossip Girl items.

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