Gossip Girl (season 1)

Season of television series

Gossip Girl

Season 1DVD cover art


Blake Lively
Leighton Meester
Penn Badgley
Chace Crawford
Taylor Momsen
Ed Westwick
Jessica Szohr
Kelly Rutherford
Matthew Settle

Country of origin

United States

No. of episodes


Release Original network

The CW

Original release

September 19, 2007 (2007-09-19) –
May 19, 2008 (2008-05-19)

Season chronology

Next →
Season 2 List of episodes

The first season of the American teen drama television series Gossip Girl premiered on The CW on September 19, 2007, and concluded on May 19, 2008, consisting of 18 episodes. Based on the novel series of the same name by Cecily von Ziegesar, the series was developed for television by Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage. It tells the story of Serena van der Woodsen\'s return to Manhattan\'s Upper East Side in New York City following her mysterious disappearance to boarding school in Connecticut, while being watched by gossip website Gossip Girl.

The first 13 episodes of Gossip Girl aired in the United States on Wednesdays at 9:00 p.m. on The CW, a terrestrial television network. With the exception of the 12th episode \"School Lies\", the first 13 episodes aired on the CTV Television Network in Canada one day prior to their US airdate. Following the 100-day writers strike, the remainder of the season aired on Mondays at 8:00 p.m. The season was released on DVD as a five-disc box set under the title of Gossip Girl: The Complete First Season on August 19, 2008, by Warner Home Video. The pilot episode was made available as a free download to registered users of the US iTunes Store prior to its premiere on television. Subsequent episodes became available to purchase following their original airing.

overall No. in
season Title Directed by Written by Original air date U.S. viewers
(millions) 1

1\"Pilot\"Mark PiznarskiTeleplay by : Josh Schwartz & Stephanie SavageSeptember 19, 2007 (2007-09-19)3.50
In the fast pace and opulent world other wise known as the Upper East Side, 16 year old \"it girl\" Serena Van Der Woodsen returns after mysterious vanishing to boarding school for 6 months, and her return is announced from the blog of the all-knowing albeit ultra-secretive Gossip Girl, the only place her friends and other people their age get all the important news about their lives. However, her return is met with a cold reception as not everyone in her life think she has changed, especially her best friend, Blair Waldorf, who Serena and Blair\'s childhood lover, Nate Archibald is keeping a devastating secret from. Meanwhile in Brooklyn, 16 year old Dan Humphrey and his 14 year old sister, Jenny Humphrey begin to explore the affluent world as Dan begins to go out with the reformed \"it\" girl.


2\"The Wild Brunch\"Mark PiznarskiJosh Schwartz & Stephanie SavageSeptember 26, 2007 (2007-09-26)2.48

In the wake of the Kiss on the Lips party, Blair reveals to Serena about what she knows about the night she disappeared. As if it could not get any chillier, Serena decides to take Dan to his Arch-enemy Chuck\'s fundraiser brunch at The Palace, and Jenny seeks advice from Blair, who realizes she may have something to gain by allowing Jenny into her inner circle.

Title reference: The 1969 film The Wild Bunch.


3\"Poison Ivy\"J. Miller TobinFelicia D. HendersonOctober 3, 2007 (2007-10-03)2.75

As the Upper East Side teens from Constance Billard and St. Jude\'s prepare for a much-anticipated visit from the Ivy League representatives, Blair and Chuck uncover a scandalous secret about Serena that may not remain a secret much longer. Dan has his heart and future set on the coveted usher position for the Dartmouth rep, only to be beat out by Nate, who has no interest in the school despite pressure from his controlling father, The Captain. Meanwhile, Jenny bonds with Serena\'s younger brother, Eric, and Rufus must swallow his pride and ask Lily for a favor to help his son, Dan, despite their complicated history.

Title reference: The 1992 film Poison Ivy.


4\"Bad News Blair\"Patrick NorrisJoshua SafranOctober 10, 2007 (2007-10-10)2.80

Blair is thrilled when her mother, Eleanor, chooses her to be the new face of her clothing line. However, Blair\'s happiness soon turns to feelings of betrayal and jealousy when Serena moves into the spotlight and Blair finds herself back in Serena\'s shadow. Meanwhile, Serena and Dan are reminded once again that they come from two very different worlds. Nate and Chuck indulge in a boys\' weekend to blow off steam after Ivy Week, but when an old classmates shows up, it tests Chuck and Nate\'s friendship.

Absent: Taylor Momsen as Jenny Humphrey.

Title reference: The 1976 film The Bad News Bears.


5\"Dare Devil\"Jamie BabbitLenn K. RosenfeldOctober 17, 2007 (2007-10-17)2.41

Dan makes elaborate plans to impress Serena on their first official date. The same night, Jenny is invited to the infamous Blair Waldorf sleepover and finds herself in a high-stakes game of \"truth or dare\". Meanwhile, when Lily discovers that Eric is missing from his treatment center, she finds herself seeking help from an unexpected source.

Absent: Ed Westwick as Chuck Bass and Chace Crawford as Nate Archibald.

Title reference: The 2003 film Daredevil.


6\"The Handmaiden\'s Tale\"Norman BuckleyJessica QuellerOctober 24, 2007 (2007-10-24)2.54

Dan is torn between two girls as an old childhood friend, Vanessa returns to town with a confession and Serena as the two decode who they are. At the infamous masked ball, Blair sends Nate on a scavenger hunt, but Nate makes a shocking confession to a disguised Jenny who uses it as ammunition against Blair. Finally, Lily asks Rufus to accompany her to an Eleanor Waldorf event in order to make Bart Bass jealous.

Note: This is Jessica Szohr\'s first appearance as Vanessa Abrams.

Title reference: The 1985 book The Handmaid\'s Tale.


7\"Victor, Victrola\"Tony WharmbyK.J. SteinbergNovember 7, 2007 (2007-11-07)2.52

After surviving the on-again/off-again nature of their new relationship, Serena and Dan admit their true feeling to each other, and consider taking their new relationship to the next level. Chuck contemplates investing in a burlesque club in the hopes of making his hard-to-please father, Bart, proud of him. Nate and the Captain comes to blows regarding the Captain\'s apparent drug problem. Jenny discovers a secret her father, Rufus, and mother, Alison, have been keeping from her After learning about what Nate said, Blair commits the ultimate act of betrayal.

Title reference: The 1982 film Victor Victoria.


8\"Seventeen Candles\"Lee Shallat-ChemelTeleplay by : Joshua Safran & Felicia D. Henderson
Story by : Felicia D. HendersonNovember 14, 2007 (2007-11-14)2.95

Devastated by the current state of her relationship with Nate and still dealing with the guilt from her recent indiscretion, Blair puts on a happy face for her 17th birthday party and attempts to hide the truth from her friends. Hoping to ease the tension between Serena and Vanessa, Dan takes Vanessa to Blair\'s party so the girls can have some bonding time, but this only ends up making Serena more uncomfortable. Jenny brings her mother (Susan Misner) home for a surprise visit, but Rufus may not be ready to forgive and forget. Nate\'s parents (Sam Robards and Francie Swift) ask him to make a huge sacrifice in an effort to salvage his father\'s business as he faces charges of embezzlement and fraud.

Title reference: The 1984 film Sixteen Candles.


9\"Blair Waldorf Must Pie!\"Mark PiznarskiTeleplay by : Jessica Queller & K.J. Steinberg
Story by : Lenn K. RosenfeldNovember 28, 2007 (2007-11-28)2.93

After voluntarily dropping out of the annual Waldorf Thanksgiving, Serena and her family decide to head over to Brooklyn to spend it with the Humphrey, unaware of the torrid history between Rufus, Alison and Lily. Meanwhile, Blair\'s emotions spiral out of control when she learns that her father is not coming home for Thanksgiving, which starts up Blair\'s \"issue\" Nate spends the holiday with his mom and dad, but their awkward dinner quickly goes from bad to worse.

Absent: Ed Westwick as Chuck Bass.

Title reference: The 2006 film John Tucker Must Die.


10\"Hi, Society\"Patrick NorrisJoshua SafranDecember 5, 2007 (2007-12-05)2.44

Serena\'s plan on not attending the annual Cotillion Ball is sidetracked when her grandmother CeCe persuades her to attend. Dan and Cece begin to clash due to her history with Lily and Rufus. Nate sees Blair\'s new buoyant attitude and entrusts Chuck to find out the reason. Chuck spreads a rumor about a certain alum that Nate has bad blood with is considering taking Blair\'s already taken virginity. Meanwhile, Jenny attends the ball despite it being on the same night as Alison\'s art gallery opening.

Title reference: The 1956 film High Society.


11\"Roman Holiday\"Michael FieldsJessica QuellerDecember 19, 2007 (2007-12-19)1.81

When Blair\'s father, Harold, comes home for the holidays with an unexpected guest—his boyfriend, Roman (William Abadie). Blair hatches a plan to get rid of Roman for good. Jenny and Vanessa help Serena plan the best Christmas surprise ever for Dan, who may have a surprise of his own in mind for Serena. Rufus refuses to remain the understanding husband any longer after Alison\'s former lover calls the house.

Absent: Ed Westwick as Chuck Bass and Chace Crawford as Nate Archibald.

Title reference: The 1953 film Roman Holiday.


12\"School Lies\"Tony WharmbyLenn K. RosenfeldJanuary 2, 2008 (2008-01-02)2.19

A casual break in for a night swim leads to every student in the junior class\'s getting expelled after one student gets seriously injured, and Dan and Serena\'s realationship begins to rift as he is not ready to take the fall and risk his future. Vanessa is working on a documentary project about private schools and accidentally captures Blair and Chuck discussing their affair. Lily contemplates telling Rufus how she really feels about him.

Absent: Taylor Momsen as Jenny Humphrey.

Title reference: The 1992 film School Ties.


13\"The Thin Line Between Chuck and Nate\"Norman BuckleyFelicia D. HendersonJanuary 9, 2008 (2008-01-09)2.27

Gossip Girl takes pleasure in reporting that Serena van der Woodsen was spotted buying pregnancy tests. but of course, the teens of the Upper East Side prove yet again there is always more than meets the eye, and this time is no exception.

Title reference: The 1996 film A Thin Line Between Love and Hate.


14\"The Blair Bitch Project\"J. Miller TobinK.J. SteinbergApril 21, 2008 (2008-04-21)2.50

Having been recently dethroned as \"Queen Bee\", Blair hesitantly returns to school with the support of her only friend, Serena. Meanwhile, Serena struggles to adjust to her new living arrangements with her future step-brother, Chuck, while receiving disturbing packages from an unknown sender. Jenny needs something to wear to her birthday party and her drive to be popular hits an all-new time high when she does something illegal to fit in with her new Upper East Side friends.

Note: From this episode on, Szohr (Vanessa) is added to the main cast and is credited in the opening titles.

Title reference: The 1999 film The Blair Witch Project.


15\"Desperately Seeking Serena\"Michael FieldsFelicia D. HendersonApril 28, 2008 (2008-04-28)2.53

Serena\'s new image is turned upside down when her former partner in all things bad, Georgina Sparks (Michelle Trachtenberg), returns to Manhattan to stir up trouble and bring back the old Serena, and it leads to lies and secrets between Dan and Serena. Nate finds romance with the last person he was expecting to connect with, Vanessa. Jenny meets a sophomore, Asher Hornsby, who just might be her ticket to permanent popularity. Finally, Blair hatches a secret plan to sabotage her biggest rival, Nelly Yuki (Yin Chang).

Title reference: The 1985 film Desperately Seeking Susan.


16\"All About My Brother\"Janice CookePaul SciarrottaMay 5, 2008 (2008-05-05)2.12

Georgina blackmails Serena with a secret that could take away her future and her possibly her freedom. Blair and Jenny escalate their \"popularity war\" by spreading scandalous rumors about each other through Gossip Girl. Dan witnesses Jenny\'s new boyfriend, Asher, cheating with someone of the same sex. Rufus goes to Lily for advice on how to handle Jenny\'s recent out-of-character behavior.

Absent: Ed Westwick as Chuck Bass and Chace Crawford as Nate Archibald.

Title reference: The 1999 film All About My Mother.


17\"Woman on the Verge\"Tony WharmbyJoshua SafranMay 12, 2008 (2008-05-12)2.71

Following her confession, Serena begins to unravel and fall back into old habits. Angry with how Serena has been lately, Dan has been growing closer with \"Sarah\", but Vanessa is onto her. Rufus is thrilled when his band is invited to perform at a Rolling Stone-sponsored concert, but Lily is the last person on earth he expects to see at the performance, especially since her wedding rehearsal dinner is the same night.

Absent: Taylor Momsen as Jenny Humphrey.

Title reference: The 1988 film Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown.


18\"Much \'I Do\' About Nothing\"Norman BuckleyJosh Schwartz & Stephanie SavageMay 19, 2008 (2008-05-19)3.00

With her best friend\'s life and reputation on the line, Blair decides to take matters into her own hands in dealing with the manipulative and evil Georgina Sparks. With Rufus never far from her thoughts, Lily prepares for her wedding day which is destined to be the Upper East Side\'s social event of the year. Serena finally confesses to Dan, but Dan thinks it\'s too little, too late. As Nate begins to think his family\'s troubles were behind them, he is in for a rude awakening. Chuck and Blair finally confess their long held feelings for each other.

Heiress and model Lydia Hearst guest stars in the episode as Amelia, Lily\'s interior decorator.

Title reference: William Shakespeare\'s play Much Ado About Nothing, also a 1993 film, Much Ado About Nothing.


The initial season had nine major roles receive star billing. Blake Lively portrayed initial protagonist Serena van der Woodsen, a former it girl of the Upper East Side, who returns from a mysterious stay at a boarding school in Connecticut, with Kelly Rutherford playing her mother Lily, a multiple-divorced socialite. Leighton Meester played Queen Bee, and the show\'s eventual protagonist, Blair Waldorf, who is less than happy to see her best friend return. Penn Badgley acted as middle-class outsider Dan Humphrey, with Matthew Settle playing his father Rufus, former rock star turned art dealer, and Taylor Momsen portraying his sister, Jenny, a freshman looking to fit in with the elite crowd at Constance Billiard. Chace Crawford portrayed Blair\'s boyfriend Nate Archibald, who has a thing for Serena. Ed Westwick played a womanizing player and \'bad boy\' Chuck Bass. Originally only a guest star, Jessica Szohr starred as Dan\'s childhood best friend, Vanessa Abrams. Szohr gained a contract to the main cast list in the fourteenth episode.

Kristen Bell voiced \"Gossip Girl\", whose gossip commentary blog is widely visited by the youths of the Upper East Side social scene. Numerous supporting characters were given expansive and recurring appearances in the progressive storyline, including Connor Paolo who portrayed Serena\'s brother, Eric van der Woodsen, who had been placed into a rehab center following a suicide attempt. Margaret Colin acted as Blair\'s mother, Eleanor Waldorf, a fashion designer. Colin took over from Florencia Lozano who played the role in the pilot episode. Michelle Trachtenberg acts as Georgina Sparks, a girl from Serena\'s past who returns after escaping rehab in Utah. Sam Robards and Francie Swift portrayed Nate\'s parents Howard and Anne Archibald. Nicole Fiscella and Nan Zhang acted as Blair\'s loyal sidekicks Isabel Coates and Kati Farkas. Zhang left the series to study neuroscience at Johns Hopkins University with Serena explaining that Kati and her family had moved to Israel. Kati was replaced with the character of Nelly Yuki played by Yin Chang. Zhang would return to the show in season 4. Other members of Blair\'s clique include Amanda Setton as Penelope Shafai, Dreama Walker as Hazel Williams and Emma Demar as Elise Wells.

Other guest stars in recurring roles include Zuzanna Szadkowski as Blair\'s maid Dorota Kishlovsky, Robert John Burke as Chuck\'s father and billionaire Bart Bass, Susie Misner as Rufus\' estranged wife Alison Humphrey and John Shea as Blair\'s father Harold Waldorf, with William Abadie as his partner Roman.


The season was produced by Warner Bros. Television, Alloy Entertainment and College Hill Pictures. The executive producers were creators Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage with Bob Levy and Leslie Morgenstein. K.J. Steinberg and Felicia D. Henderson served as co-executive producers. Producers include Joe Lazarov and Jessica Queller. The season was produced by Amy Kaufman. Jonathan C. Brody served as co-producer with Joshua Safran as consulting producer.

The staff writers were Schwartz, Savage, Henderson, Safran, Lenn K. Rosenfeld, Queller, Steinberg and Paul Sciarrotta. The regular directors throughout the season were Mark Piznarski, J. Miller Tobin, Patrick Norris, Norman Buckley, Tony Wharmby and Michael Fields.


Due to the show\'s pedigree as an adaptation of The New York Times bestselling novel series, the show was considered to be one of the more anticipated new shows of the 2007–2008 television season. An August 2007 survey by OTX, a global media research and consulting firm, placed the show on the list of top ten new shows that viewers were aware of. The pilot episode of the season gained 3.50 million viewers on its original airing, having previously been available as a free download on the American iTunes store. As the season progressed, ratings dropped with 2.48 million viewers tuning into the second episode. The eleventh episode marked a season low with only 1.81 million viewers tuning into watch the episode. The show was moved from Wednesdays at 9:00 p.m. to its new timeslot Mondays at 8:00 p.m following the end on the 2007–2008 Writers Guild of America strike where the final five episodes of the season were aired. Ratings increased for the season finale, with 3.00 million viewers tuning into the episode. Gossip Girl\'s digital video recorder ratings were high, increasing the show\'s profitability and the show had also been in the top five of iTunes sales.

Author Cecily von Ziegesar has expressed support for the show, noting that all of her major plot points were present in the pilot. The second episode in which the characters are shown to be attending a brunch gained some approval from New York magazine, stating that \"there\'s no such thing as \'lunch\' on the weekends\", \"that kids actually do venture outside of their neighborhoods\" (since The New York Palace Hotel is in Midtown Manhattan), and \"saying you live in Williamsburg makes much more sense... for real-estate emotional conflict\", as well as the fact Rihanna is played \"in every situation.\" Gossip Girl was designated the \"Best. Show. Ever.\" in April 2008 by New York magazine. Other positive reviews came from publications Variety and the Boston Globe. John Maynard of The Washington Post felt that creator Josh Schwartz \"turns it up a notch\" from his former series The O.C., and cited Dan (Penn Badgley) as a standout character. Tim Goodman of the San Francisco Chronicle praised the show for its use of \"Gossip Girl\"\'s blog as a new media element noting \"there\'s a chance to tell a story where the Greek chorus essentially has a blog.\"

The show has come under criticism for containing scenes too risqué for its teen audience. The Parents Television Council (PTC) has shown particular criticism of the series, especially with its \"OMFG\" ad campaign used towards the end of the season in April 2008. It also named the episode \"Victor, Victrola\" the worst television program of the week in which the episode originally was broadcast. The Parents Council\'s negative comments include it being \"the most-watched show among girls 12-17 and glamorizes casual sex and drug use among teens. storylines have featured a would-be teen rapist, threesome among teens, and teenage girls having sex with adults.\" Scott D. Pierce of the Deseret Morning News noted that the show is milder than a lot of what\'s shown on MTV, but still warned parents of several scenes in the pilot. He said it includes \"among other things, a teenage girl climbing on top of a boy and removing his clothes; drunken teens having sex; teens smoking pot; teens drinking in bars, in a limo and at a party; a teen boy getting amorous with a girl who fights him off; and that same teen boy essentially attempting to rape a freshman girl who is supposed to be, what, 14?\".

The series has also been criticized for having less-than believable storylines, and has been described as a guilty pleasure rather than an hour\'s worth of must-watch television.

DVD release

The DVD release of season one was released by Warner Home Video in the United States on August 19, 2008, after it had completed broadcast on television. As well as every episode from the season, the DVD release features bonus material including a downloadable audiobook, deleted scenes, and behind-the-scenes featurettes.

Gossip Girl: The Complete First Season

Set details

Special features

18 episodes
5-disc set
1.78:1 aspect ratio
English (Dolby Surround 5.1)
Subtitles: English, French, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Portuguese, Thai

Additional Scenes
Gag reel
The Pierces Music Videos
Downloadable audiobook of the original best-selling novel read by Christina Ricci
The Beginning, XOXO: Conception to Execution
Gossip Girl Couture
A Gossip Girl Wedding

Release dates

 United States


 United Kingdom


August 19, 2008

August 18, 2008

April 15, 2009


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