The Princess Dowry is the 17th episode of the fifth season and 104th episode overall.
They say we should carry our secrets to the grave, but on the Upper East Side, secrets are the one thing you can never bury. Even when we think we know everything about the ones we love, there's always a skeleton in their walk in closet.
- Gossip Girl
Blair thinks Cyrus may have found a potential loophole in her prenup. Chuck and Georgina partner up in a scheme, but it has an unpredictable outcome. Meanwhile, a family crisis brings William van der Woodsen back to the Upper East Side.
Lily goes to a funeral director in the wake of CeCe's passing to figure out the funeral arrangements. The director informs her that CeCe provided detailed instructions for a wake to happen that day. Carol arrives and also learns about the wake. They both head back to the penthouse.
At The Empire, Nate and Lola wake up after a night together. Nate tries to get her to open about her feelings toward her new found family, but Lola isn't interested in talking about it. Serena calls, and asks Nate if he could bring Lola by the VDW penthouse so they could talk about things and get to know each other. Nate agrees to ask but tells her not to expect anything and hangs up. Chuck enters the kitchen in a good mood. Surprised, Nate asks why he's so happy. Chuck explains that he found out that Dan sent Gossip Girl the video of Blair confessing her love at the wedding, and assumes that once Blair finds out, Dan will be out of the picture. Nate is less quick to assume, and reminds Chuck of the contract that she must fulfill. At the Waldorf penthouse, Dan arrives to take Blair to brunch. Blair tells him that Cyrus thinks he found a loophole in the prenup: that since they signed the license in Monaco but married in the United States, they can try to contest it; and the Grimaldi's might be forced to waive the dowry and grant the divorce. She explains further that he still needs to talk to the Grimaldi's legal reps and she should stay home and wait. Meanwhile, Georgina is becoming tired of being Gossip Girl. She tells Philip that she plans to crash CeCe's wake and wants to leave him in charge. She explains that he needs to take interesting tips that get sent in and post them, while she goes with Ivy to the wake. At the VDW building, Chuck finds Serena in the lobby when he arrives, and she tells him about the wake going on upstairs. She tells Chuck that Blair told her Cyrus may have found a loophole, and Chuck realizes that since she'll then be able to go right into Dan's waiting arms. He emails Gossip Girl. Nate proposes stopping at Lily's so she can talk to Serena privately and try to get to know her. Lola hesitantly agrees. At the VDW building, Lily and Serena arrive and Lily confesses that she's not sure she wants to go upstairs. They do, and are surprised to find many guests already there, along with whiskey, stew, a live band, and CeCe's casket. Serena quickly pieces together that it's a traditional Irish wake.
Philip sees the email Chuck sent in, which reads:
It's time you told everyone Dan Humphrey sent in that video on Blair's wedding day. Hopefully by publishing that story all those who were wrongfully accused will be exonerated.
He posts the email in its entirety, and immediately comments start coming in about being able to see Chuck sent it in. Realizing he messed up, Philip starts panicking. At the wake, Lily remarks that she doesn't recognize a single person at the wake. However, she quickly starts to see that many of the people there were people who worked for CeCe. She sees her butcher from East Hampton, her driver, the fireman who saved her life once. At the same time, Ivy approaches and says she was invited by CeCe herself. Lily blames Carol, and Rufus tells her that once the executor of CeCe's estate will be coming soon and things will be resolved. Meanwhile, Nate and Lola arrive and are surprised at the scene. Carol spots Lola and asks for a word. She demands to know why she's there, and Lola explains that she was tricked but that she still isn't interested in making up with Carol. Carol insists that the VDW's are materialistic monsters and she hid Lola from them to protect her. Lola replies that the only person who ever lied to her was Carol. Serena comes over and escorts Lola away. Also, Georgina calls Philip and says that he's lucky that she was in the eye of the hurricane to watch everything play out. She goes over to where Dan is, and asks if he's seen Gossip Girl recently because Phillip released the video. He too sees that Chuck sent in the video. Blair also sees and confronts him about it. She accuses himself of lying, but he defends himself saying the blast wasn't a lie. She turns and sees Dan, who is looking guilty. She goes to leave and Dan walks over to stop her, but not before he leaves his phone on a table. Georgina takes it. He apologizes for everything and says he never meant to hurt her. He explains that he couldn't stand to see her so unhappy with Louis and wanted to save her. Blair decides to forgive him for now, as a fight with Dan was what Chuck wanted. Her royal minder, Estee, arrives. She says she knows everything about Cyrus' plan and asks for a moment with Blair.
In Serena's room, she tells Blair that Cyrus' plan will never work. She proposes a new plan and says they can help each other. She says she always wanted to be with Louis, but couldn't due to her commoner position, and when Blair came along and became a PR disaster, her chance to be with Louis is now. Blair admits that she just wants Louis to be happy and tells Estee to make the call to the Grimaldi's. In the main room, Serena thanks Lola for coming over and assures her Nate had no idea. She tries to tell her that the Rhodes' main focus is family, not money, but her point backfires as they walk into a fight between Lily and Carol over material items. Lola says she has no interest in their world and goes to leave, but not before she's stopped by Ivy. Georgina confronts the two girls, and explains that money on the UES is never the real story. She hints that they need to find an outsider who isn't afraid of them, someone like William van der Woodsen, who arrives at that moment. Georgina explains to William that Charlie is really Lola, and not Ivy. Annoyed, Serena pulls her father away. Georgina then explains to Ivy and Lola that Dr. VDW has known Lily and Carol since high school and more than likely has a scandalous secret or two to share about them. Nate comes over, ready to leave, but Lola says she isn't leaving until she gets to the bottom of why Carol really hid her for her whole life. In Serena's room, Estee hangs up with Louis. She tells Blair that Louis agreed, and she needs to get back to Monaco so she can attend a press conference where Louis will tell everyone Blair was only ever after his title. She also says the royal family's publicist will build Estee up, but Sophie and the family will only grant the divorce if Blair agrees to a permanent gag order on her time with Louis. That includes posts on Page Six and Gossip Girl. Blair agrees. Outside, Georgina overhears the conversation. She goes over to Chuck, who is confident that once Blair thinks things over, she will become angry at Dan. He also says that despite what she and Cyrus think, there's no way she's getting out of her marriage any time soon. Georgina reveals to him that her royal minder just brokered a deal which includes getting Blair out her marriage just now. Chuck, interested in her story, asks what she had in mind. Georgina says they can use Gossip Girl's latest mess up to their advantage, and shows him Dan's stolen phone.
Meanwhile, Lily tells Carol that she's going to have her searched for stolen items, and then asks her to leave. William comes over and announces that he is the executor of CeCe's estate. He tells them to sort their issues out and walks away. Lola approaches him and says she just recently found out she's a member of the family but is interrupted by Carol, who tells her not to talk to William. At the same time, Dorota arrives and asks Blair why she hasn't been answering her phone. Blair replies that she's at a wake and Dorota worriedly tells her that Cyrus has been trying to reach her. Blair explains that she took care of the annulment herself and Cyrus doesn't need to worry. Surprised at her statement, Dorota then asks Blair why the Grimaldi's called Cyrus demanding for all the dowry money now. Confused, Blair tells Dorota about the gag order. In response, Dorota says that maybe Sophie saw Gossip Girl and shows Blair the pic of her and Dan kissing (taken by Georgina in Crazy, Cupid, Love). At the bottom, Blair sees that it was sent in by Dan. Upstairs, William begins to read CeCe's will to Lily, Carol, Serena, and Ivy. Before he can really get started, Serena asks him to tell Ivy to leave, and Lily and Carol are in agreement. William says that CeCe invited her to be there and they need to respect her wishes. Downstairs, Georgina returns Dan's phone to him and he sees the blast of the kiss. Dan gets upset, saying Blair's going to really believe he sent the picture in and that will ruin the Waldorf family's life. Unfazed, Georgina tells him Blair is coming right now and walks away. Blair is noticeably angry, and Dan reveals Georgina is Gossip Girl. Blair doesn't believe him until Georgina says it's half true, that she became GG after the site was abandoned. During this conversation, Chuck comes by and asks Dan what it feels like to lose the person you love due to a setup. Desperate, Blair asks Estee if there's any way for the deal with the Grimaldi's to be salvaged. Estee reveals that there never was a deal and that it was made up with help from Georgina. She leaves.
Chuck and Dan argue, and Dan tells Chuck that he succeeded in bankrupting the Waldorf family because the dowry was so high. Chuck says Dan left him no choice because he only lost Blair due to Dan setting him up and that makes him the villain. Blair comes over and asks what's going on. Chuck says that ever since the car accident, Dan has been trying to keep them apart so he can have her to himself. Dan admits that Chuck is absolutely right and walks away. Upstairs, William reveals that the majority of CeCe's estate has been left to Ivy Dickens, not Charlie Rhodes. Outraged, Lily and Carol say she's never going to get away with it and threaten to call the police. Ivy swears that all she did was help CeCe and be someone she could talk to, and that she loved her. A frustrated Lola leaves. Ivy says she never lied to CeCe and Lily tells her to prove it. Ivy replies that in the will, she named Ivy, not Charlie as the recipient. She tells them that CeCe knew all of their secrets and maybe that's why she left her everything. Downstairs, Chuck tells Blair that Dan was causing all their problems and now they can finally be together. Blair replies that she loves him and always will, but she isn't in love with him anymore. She leaves. In the lobby, Serena apologizes to Lola for what went on upstairs. Lola says that the only person she feels sorry for is Ivy, after seeing how she was criminalized by the VDW's. She says she has no interest in being a part of their family and leaves with Nate. In the penthouse, William and Carol talk. Carol tells him to fix the will because she didn't get the money she was expecting and if he doesn't, she'll find another way to get it. William is unamused until Carol reveals that he is Lola's father, and she was conceived during their affair while he was still married to Lily. Georgina overhears the conversation and takes a mental note.
At the Waldorf penthouse, Georgina goes to see a depressed Blair. She tells Blair that she's started collecting favors because people would be coming after her when they find out she was Gossip Girl. She claims to have a way that she can get Blair her divorce and make sure the Waldorf's don't have to pay the Grimaldi's a thing, so long as Blair is indebted to her. Hesitantly, Blair decides to accept the deal. At the VDW's, Lily talks with Chuck. He pays his respects about CeCe and he sadly tells her that Blair walked away from him and he feels like she's changing. Lily tells him that Jack was the one who donated the blood to save Chuck's life, and Chuck is surprised to hear it. Outside, Nate is trying hard to cheer Lola up, and she assures him he's the only good thing in her life. She then receives a phone call from William, who says that he's always available for her if she needs to talk. At Georgina's home, she wraps up the Gossip Girl laptop and tells Philip that she's headed to Monaco. She gives him the box and asks him to send it. Back at the VDW's, Lily is ready for peace and quiet. Ivy, who is still there, tells Rufus and Lily that she is now the legal owner of the apartment and can therefore, force them to leave. Rufus and Lily temporarily go to the loft to stay. At the Waldorf penthouse, Serena lays on her bed. Dorota comes in and tells Serena it was a beautiful wake, and that she shouldn't be sad because something new is always on the way. It's then shown that the box with the laptop is being shipped to Serena. In Brooklyn, Blair goes to see Dan at the loft. She tells him that she told Chuck that he no longer has her heart anymore, as it lies with someone else. The two kiss.
- 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
- Kaylee DeFer as Ivy Dickens
- Kelly Rutherford as Lily van der Woodsen
- Matthew Settle as Rufus Humphrey
- William Baldwin as William van der Woodsen
- Zuzanna Szadkowski as Dorota Kishlovsky
- Michelle Trachtenberg as Georgina Sparks
- Sheila Kelley as Carol Rhodes
- Ella Rae Peck as Lola Rhodes
- Nick Cornish as Philip Becker
- We Own The Sky by M83
- New York City by Among Savages
- Paradisco by Charlotte Gainsbourg
- Sally MacLennan by The Pouges
- New York, NY 10009 by Black 47
- Dreams by The Cranberries
- Strangers by Wye Oak
- Izzy's Irish Rose by Black 47
- Boat to Boafin by Joanie Madden
- The Cat's Meow by Joanie Madden
Nate: The entire van der Woodsen clan on a good day can be pretty overwhelming.
Georgina: Look at me. I'm exhausted, I'm aggravated, I have no social life to speak of. I feel like a stay at home mom.
Georgina: When everyone at a party hates you, who better to bring than someone they hate even more?
Lily: I'm just not entirely sure I'm ready for the Mayflower Mausoleum in Mother's honor that obviously awaits us upstairs.
Lola (explaining why she's at the wake to Carol): This morning while I was in the shower at Nate's, Serena, the cousin I just found out about, tricked me into coming to the wake of the grandmother I never knew existed, at the house of the family that you hid from me my entire life. Does that sum it up?
Chuck (to Dan): How does it feel to be set up and lose the person you love for something you didn't do?
Blair: Oh my god, I was just bitch slapped by Bridget Jones.
Chuck: I brought to light the real villain and let me give you a hint: it's not me.
Dan: You bankrupted the Waldorf family, that's what paying this dowry is going to do to them.
Chuck: It was that much? No. You left me no choice. It would be one thing losing Blair because she doesn't want to be with me but I only lost her because of something you did. Were you ever really my friend or was it all just an act so you could keep me in check until you got what you wanted?
Dan: Chuck, that is not how any of it happened and you know it.
Chuck: You framed me. And in my book, that makes you the bad guy, not me.
Lily (to Carol): At least I didn't embezzle my own daughter's trust fund so I could go shopping at Lulu Lemon.
Ivy (to Lily and Carol):Your mother knew all of my secrets and she knew all of yours too. Maybe that's why she left me everything.
Blair (to Chuck): And I love you. I always will. But that doesn't mean I'm in love with you. At least not right now, not the way you need me to be, not the way you deserve. I'm sorry.
Carol: If you can't find a way to make this right, I'm going to be forced to resort to other ways to get my money.
William: Like getting a real job?
- The episode title is based off the movie The Princess Diaries.
- This episode is Ed Westwick's 100th episode on the series, thanks to 4 absences in the show's first season.
- Wallace Shawn, who plays Cyrus Rose is mentioned but he doesn't appear.