BY JAMIE SCHWARZ
Cecily Von Ziegesar’s praised Gossip Girl book series will be taking the television world by storm when it airs on September 26, 2007 on The CW. The first book in the series of 11 that sparked the T.V show was published in 2002 and the 12th will be released in October.
The books highlight the lives of New York City’s elite upper class teens that go to exclusive private schools and lack an understanding of the value of a dollar. They have no trouble finding time on the side to party like there is no tomorrow and the T.V show will bring those decadent lives to the screen.
The creators, Josh Schwartz (the OC) and Stephanie Savage, are confident that the show will make the grade, but others are not so keen on the idea. Some fans are worried that the precious books might lose their magic once they reach T.V, although many are optimistic.
“I am really looking forward to [the show] because it will be interesting to see how the show is derived from the books,” High school senior Casey Goldstein said.
The main character of the series appears to be Serena van der Woodsen who will be played by Blake Lively. Lively has also been cast in The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants as well as Accepted and is known for her stunning style and debonair looks. Her character Serena has just returned from a boarding school expulsion and is trying to fit her way back into the tight knit social structure of New York’s exclusive upper class. Numerous catty encounters with her ex-best friend Blair, as well as pressure from her gold-digging high society mother, leave Serena trapped and looking for more from her complicated life.
Serena stumbles upon Dan Humphrey, the unpopular and artsy working class boy, and they begin a rather twisted relationship. Dan is played by Penn Badgley who can be recognized from John Tucker Must Die, The Bedford Diaries, The Young and the Restless, and What I Like About You. If his voice sounds vaguely familiar, it’s because it is featured in Mario Tennis 64. Dan is an oddly romantic poet who has a tendency to shy away from the glitz and glam of Upper East Side life, but he can’t seem to refrain from admiring Serena.
One girl that can resist Serena’s charm with no problem at all is Blair Waldorf, played by Leighton Meester. Meester has played roles in 24, House, Veronica Mars, and Entourage. Blair is a princess that has become accustomed to aquiring everything that she wants, including the love of her life Nathaniel Archibald, and does not react well to falling short of perfection. She strives in school to be the best and has been working for an acceptance to Yale since she began elementary school. Blair’s obsessive personality puts a significant strain on her relationship with Nate which leads to various petty drama.
In all honesty, who can blame Nate for having an infatuation with Serena while Blair strangles him with $400 cashmere sweaters and 24 text messages a day? Nate is played by Chace Crawford, who actually attended Pepperdine University for the advertising or communication program until midway through his second year when his mother encouraged him to pursue acting. His handsome face was featured in The Covenant and Loaded, but being cast as Nate is a direct compliment to his great looks. Nathaniel Archibald is a heart-throbbing opulent prep school bad boy that wishes more than anything that he could drop out of school to sail the world. His friendship with Serena and Blair is similar to a roller coaster which has been going on their entire lives. Nate’s inability to commit, along with his clear addiction to marijuana, has the tendency to irritate the girls.
While remaining anonymous, Gossip Girl posts all of the activities of these decadent teens on a public blog that is updated 24/7. The clique lives life with no restraints, which always provides Gossip Girl with a story to tell. The enthralling drama that occurs as the result of the mixture of these personalities has to be made known to the world. The New York Times has listed the series as a bestseller and fans tend to agree.
“The books are purely addictive and you find yourself reading a book from start to finish in only one thrilling sitting,” said Gossip Girl reader Dana Solomon.
Be sure to turn on The CW on Wednesday nights at 9 p.m in the fall and you will be in for a treat. As if debuting in America weren’t enough, the show will also air in Canada and Australia. Some may feel as though they are too old to be watching such a deliciously catty show, but the characters will draw almost any viewer in and refuse to let them go.
Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars)-Gossip Girl narrator
Taylor Momsen (How The Grinch Stole Christmas and Spy Kids 2)-Jenny Humphrey
Ed Westwick-Chuck Bass
Nicole Fiscella-Isabel Coates
Nan Zhang-Kati Farkas.