Bad News Blair is the 4th episode of the first season and the 4th overall.
|“||Hey, Upper East Siders. There's nothing Gossip Girl likes more than a surprise and we hear Blair Waldorf got a two for one special. Her mom, Eleanor, who just returned from Paris and Serena van der Woodsen, brunch buddies.||”|
— Gossip Girl
Blair is thrilled when her mother, Eleanor, chooses her to be the new face of her clothing line. However, her happiness soon turns to feelings of betrayal and jealousy when Serena moves into the spotlight and she finds herself back in the shadows once again. Meanwhile, Serena and Dan try to go on a date, and Nate and Chuck indulge in a boys weekend to blow off steam after Ivy Week.
Blair dreams herself as Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's. However, she she tries to enter Bendel's, she is told that she can't because she isn't on the list. Through the window, she sees Serena inside and having a grand time. She wakes up and goes downstairs, where she sees Eleanor and Serena eating together while several other people work at organizing samples of Eleanor's line. She sits down with them and Eleanor explains that Bendel's is interested in carrying her line, so she came home from Paris early to perfect her lookbook. Blair is excited for Eleanor until she reaches for a croissant and is encouraged to have the low-fat yogurt instead. She tells her mom that she lost two pounds while she was gone and Eleanor is pleased. Serena sifts through the racks of clothes and tells Eleanor that they look great. She invites her to come back later to get her thoughts on how to style the outfits and Serena mentions that she and Blair have plans for the day. At The Palace, Nate and Chuck hide their valuable belongings in order to prepare for their Lost Weekend party. Once everyone arrives, Chuck explains the rules of the party: there is no outside world that he doesn't show, meaning the guests are to eat and drink what he provides and to practice what he preaches. Along with that, the only girls they're allowed to talk to are the ones Chuck hired. However, both Nate and Chuck are shocked when Carter Baizen arrives at the party. Chuck is displeased with the arrival of Carter but Nate is glad and greets him warmly.
Elsewhere, Blair and Serena go shopping. Blair admits to Serena that Eleanor likes her more, but Serena replies that that can't be true, since Blair is her daughter. Blair excuses herself to go into a store and asks her to wait outside. While she's gone, Serena spots Dan across the street and waves him over. He approaches and says he was dropping Jenny off at his mom's in Hudson before picking up sandwiches for him and Rufus. She reminds him of his offer to get together and not talk but before he can reply, Blair comes back. She asks what he's doing there then leaves to go to Tory Burch. Once she's gone, Dan asks if that's the same girl who told everyone she has a drug problem and Serena explains that that's just who she is and it's their first day hanging out alone together. She goes to catch up with Blair but tells Dan to call her. Back at The Palace, Carter tells Nate how he abandoned his wealthy family to make the world a better place. He mentions that he aided in post Hurricane Katrina clean up, helped rebuild Maccu Picchu, and began filming it all for a documentary. Chuck reminds Carter that he gave them their first joint and took them to their first club, plus invented the Lost Weekend; and there is no way his new life is better than that. Two girls come over to Chuck and he asks Nate and Carter who will be coming with him and the girls. Both Carter and Nate decline and slightly hurt, Chuck leaves the table. Afterwards, Carter invites Nate to come with him to a high stakes poker game, which Nate is tempted by. That night at the Waldorf's, Blair and Serena go through the clothing racks while Eleanor informs Laurel and her photographer that she is unhappy with the models presented to her. To her, none of them represent the luxury lifestyle and realizes the only one who truly would is Blair. Laurel doesn't put the idea down and Serena overhears the conversation. She immediately volunteers Blair to be the new face of Waldorf Designs and everyone agrees to the suggestion, especially Blair; who is thrilled with having her mother's approval.
The next day, Kati, Is, and Serena come over to the Waldorf's. They all practice their model poses until Serena receives a call from Dan, which Blair intercepts. When Serena gets her phone back, Dan invites her to go to a movie with him that night and she accepts. They make plans to meet at seven and hang up. At Rufus' art gallery, he meets a woman named Bex Simon, who is very impressed with one of Alison's pieces. She explains that she's a buyer and didn't think she would find such a beautiful piece so she wants to put it on hold. Rufus agrees to hold it for her and when she asks what time he closes, he replies that he'll stay open. Meanwhile, Nate, Chuck, and their guests, including Carter, arrive at an outdoor basketball court. Chuck and Carter exchange insults and Carter decides to leave. Before he goes, Nate tells him to text him the address of the card game later. Elsewhere, Blair begins test shots for the line. However, the photographer isn't pleased with the outcome, as Blair is rigid and prim. He complains to Laurel, saying she needs to loosen up and have fun. Serena overhears and tells Blair that she should let go a little. They practice poses together, which the photographer is able to capture. During this, Serena's phone rings and Dan is on the other end, wondering where she is. She tells Blair she has to go, but Blair tells her to stay; reminding her that it's important to her mother. Serena debates this, then tells Dan that she can't make it because she's at a photoshoot with Blair. She promises to call him later and they hang up. Back at the gallery, Bex comes back and says her client wants to buy the piece. He writes her an invoice and she asks if he would want to celebrate with a drink. He declines, saying the artist is his wife, despite them living far apart. She gives him her card for if the trains ever stop running and leaves. Elsewhere, Chuck brings everyone to a pub. However, Nate is not in the party mood and tells Chuck he isn't going inside. He explains that Carter was right in saying that money keeps them numb to the real world and real people, but Chuck argues that people in the real world want to be them. He asks Nate what he really wants, because he talks a lot about what he doesn't want; and Nate answers that it isn't what they're doing before walking away. He finds the address Carter sent him and heads that way.
At the loft, Dan vents to Rufus about how much he dislikes Blair and it says a lot about Serena that she is her best friend. Rufus says that he dated a girl like Serena once and girls like her, despite their baggage, are usually worth it. At the Waldorf's, Eleanor tucks Blair into bed and tells her how beautiful she is. She tells her to sleep well and that they'll go to the shoot together. Back at the loft, Dan receives a call from Serena. She invites him to come to the photoshoot with her the next day, where he will have her full attention since she will be on the sidelines. He reminds himself to to jump in with both feet and decides to go. Back at the Waldorf's, Laurel and the photographer come over. They show Eleanor the test shots, and say that Blair gives off the wrong vibe for the line; as she looks unapproachable, controlled, and perfect. Eleanor looks them over and the photographer points out that the girl they need is Serena, who is warm, fun, and perfect for the line. Laurel reminds her that it is her choice, and Eleanor continues to look over the photos. The next morning, Blair gets out of bed and goes downstairs to find her mother about to leave. Eleanor tells her that the photographer felt they needed to go in a different direction so they hired someone else. Disappointed, Blair doesn't fight the change and Eleanor promises that they'll go out to dinner after the shoot. Once she's gone, Blair calls Serena and leaves her a message with the bad news. She suggests that they crash the shoot anyway to see who her replacement is. At the art gallery, Lily angrily arrives and confronts Rufus about selling her one of Alison's pieces. He realizes she was Bex's client and is surprised. Lily says that Alison would not want her painting in her home since she despises her, and Rufus replies that that's not true. Lily informs him that Alison told her that herself and she definitely meant it. She advises him to take the painting back since him selling it to her or even talking to her will push Alison further away. She goes to leave, telling him to call Bex to set up a refund. On her way out, Rufus asks what she thought of it and Lily answers that she thought it was extraordinary. At The Palace, Chuck goes to retrieve his valuable belongings after everyone is gone but finds his prized baseball and expensive watch are gone. He immediately texts Nate, wondering where he is. At the card game, Nate replies to the text with his location and says he'll call later. Afterwards, Carter tells him phones aren't allowed and he puts it away. He goes to leave, but Carter encourages him to stay because things are about to get interesting.
At the location of the shoot, Blair is shocked to discover that the girl they replaced her with is Serena. She calls out to Blair, wondering what took her so long. When Blair goes to leave, Serena wonders why she's mad. Blair accuses her of trying to steal the spotlight from her again, but Serena says she was told they were doing it together and she was just running late. Blair asks if she thought it was odd how her name wasn't on the call sheet or in hair and makeup. Serena asks why she would try and steal something she helped her do, but Blair retorts that it's because it's in her nature to take things from her. Blair continues to leave but runs into Dan, not knowing he overheard the whole conversation. Serena goes back upstairs and tells Eleanor she quits. Dan follows her up but is asked by Eleanor who he is and what he's doing there. He admits he doesn't know and goes back downstairs, where he finds Serena taking off Eleanor's clothes and putting her own back on. He tells her he overheard her conversation but she only asks him to hand her her jeans. Confused, he says he thought she wanted to be on the sidelines to hang out with him; and she explains that Eleanor tricked her into coming because she didn't want Blair, her best friend, around. She asks Dan to leave so she can finish getting cleaned up and leave. He does, and finds Blair sitting alone in the stairwell and sits down next to her. He admits that his mother left their family but Rufus and Jenny don't see it that way yet; and he knows because she supposedly left for the summer to do art, but it's no longer summer. He continues that for a long time now, he's wanted to tell Alison to either come home or leave for good, but hasn't yet. Blair asks why and he answers that he doesn't really know but he should because then she will at least know how he feels.
At the card game, Nate loses yet another hand. He tells Carter that he can't afford to keep playing but Carter encourages him to take a risk. He agrees to keep playing, and the other guys ask if he's really good for the money. Carter says he is, since he's an Archibald. Nate loses another $10,000 and admits it might take awhile to get the money. Carter doesn't take him seriously and tells him to make it happen. Nate notices the guys exchange a look and realizes Carter was in on the game the whole time and played him. Nate tries to fight them but they stop when Chuck enters. Carter asks what he's doing there and Nate explains that he was set up. Chuck tells him that he can keep the ball and watch without calling the cops if his guys let Nate go. Carter mulls it over, then tells them to let Nate go. Back at The Palace, Nate logs into his bank account to transfer some money to Chuck to pay him back and hopes his dad won't notice. Chuck says he doesn't have to give him anything, as it was worth every penny to get rid of Carter. However, Nate is shocked to discover his account is empty; especially since last month there was almost $200,000. He calls Tom, his financial guy, and asks why his trust fund is zeroed out. Tom says that the account was drained weeks ago by Howard, who claimed to have discussed it with him. Back at the shoot, Blair goes to confront Eleanor. She asks if she really chose Serena over her, and Eleanor doesn't deny it. She admits that she would never forgive herself if her company had lost the Bendel's deal because of Blair, and Blair replies that she hopes she never does anyway. Upstairs, Dan finds Serena getting ready to go. He apologizes for judging her and she apologizes for giving him a reason to. She suggests he ask her out again and he jokingly suggests she show up if he does. They agree to go out on Friday at 8:00 and Blair also comes out. She tells Dan that she can agree to his terms so long as he changes his hair and shirt. She and Serena make up, and Serena admits she should have known something was up and apologizes for ever pushing her. Blair thanks her for pushing her, since the day ended up being important because she learned a lot. They agree they day should have been more fun, and decide to make it so. Downstairs, they steal Eleanor's clothes and go out around town wearing them while taking photos of themselves together.
- Blake Lively as Serena van der Woodsen
- Leighton Meester as Blair Waldorf
- Penn Badgley as Dan Humphrey
- Chace Crawford as Nate Archibald
- Ed Westwick as Chuck Bass
- Taylor Momsen as Jenny Humphrey (Credit only, as she does not appear in the episode)
- Kelly Rutherford as Lily van der Woodsen
- Matthew Settle as Rufus Humphrey
- Margaret Colin as Eleanor Waldorf
- Sebastian Stan as Carter Baizen
- Nan Zhang as Kati Farkas
- Nicole Fiscella as Isabel Coates
- Jill Flint as Bex
- Michelle Hurd as Laurel
- Peter O'Brien as Photographer
- Moon River (From Breakfast at Tiffany's) by Henry Mancini
- Make It Bounce (Featured in Gossip Girl) by Invisible Men
- The Focus by X5 (feat. Mr. Tang)
- Tambourine by Eve
- Candy Store by Miss Eighty6
- Till The Sun Comes Up by Miss Eighty6
- Until You Can't (Featured in Gossip Girl) by Alana D
- Bizet's Carmen - Habanera by St. Mark's Philharmonic Orchestra
- Bounce Back by Early Earl (feat. Miss Eighty6)
- Beautiful Girls by Sean Kingston
Blair: That was disgusting. The BOH should shut them down.
Serena: The bathroom?
Blair: No, the people. It's called "Nolita" not "No Showers." (to Dan) What are you doing here? Do I smell pork? And... cheese?
Carter: Once you turn away from money, you see it doesn't buy you freedom, it pays for your prison.
Carter: Maybe if your daddy bought you a basketball team instead of a hotel, you'd have some skill.
Chuck: This is the Lost Weekend for juniors, not senior citizens. Go jump into a volcano.
Chuck (to Nate): Seriously, Carter Baizen sucks.
Dan (on Serena): Well, uh, she's best friends with this girl, Blair Waldorf, who is basically everything I hate about the Upper East Side distilled into one 95 pound, doe-eyed, bon-mot tossing, label-whoring package of girly evil.
Rufus: No one's that bad.
Dan: She is. I would barely be exaggerating if I told you Medusa wants her withering glare back.
Rufus: Well, if theres anything I've learned, it's that usually there's something beneath the surface with people like that that make them act the way they do.
Dan: What, the OJ in her mimosa was from concentrate, not fresh squeezed? And what does this say about Serena... that this is her best friend?
Rufus: I dated a girl like Serena once. Actually, a lot like Serena. And girls like that are challenging, it's true. They're complicated, and enigmatic... and usually worth it. And the only way you'll know for sure is to jump in with both feet.
Dan: What happened with you?
Rufus: I swam for awhile. Until I drowned.
Dan: Oh... well uh, thanks, that's a great story, Dad.
Serena: Look, Blair, I encouraged you to do this. Why would I try to steal something from you that I pushed you to do?
Blair: BECAUSE YOU TAKE EVERYTHING FROM ME! NATE, MY MOM-
Blair: You can't even help it! It's who you are.
Blair: Normally I wouldn't be this close to you without a tetanus shot.
Dan: My, uh, my mom kinda left us a couple months ago. Only my dad and sister... don't really see that. Because she told us she had to go away for the summer to, um, follow her dream of being an artist. But it's not summer anymore and she's still up there, and it's all she seems to care about right now. Every time I go to see her, I tell myself, this time I'm gonna tell her what I think. This time, I'm gonna look her in the eye and say "either come home or leave for good." And so there I was, just the other day, I was sitting across the table from her, looking her straight in the eye... and I didn't say anything.
Blair: Why not?
Dan: Uh... I don't know. But I wish I had. Because even if it didn't change anything, at least she'd know how I felt.
Blair: Did you choose Serena over me? You could have picked a stranger, you didn't have to choose my best friend. Did you think I wouldn't find out?
Eleanor: I was going to tell you tonight at dinner. There was no right decision. There wasn't any time! I know you can understand all this. It was mishandled, the whole thing, from top to bottom.
Blair: You actually want me to agree with you.
Eleanor: Bendel's will legitimize this company. It will take everything to the next level. You know how hard I have worked for that. You've always been my biggest supporter, my biggest fan-
Blair: I'm your daughter.
Eleanor: And as my daughter I knew that you would forgive me. In time. But if my company had lost this deal because of you... I'd never forgive myself.
Blair: I hope you never do.
- The episode title is based off the movie The Bad News Bears.
- This is the first episode featuring Margaret Colin as Eleanor Waldorf.
- This episode also marks the first appearance of Carter Baizen.