Season 3 Refresher: Dan Humphrey

The countdown to new episodes of Gossip Girl is ON. Season 3 continues on Monday March 8th. If you’re anything like me (before my re-watch), you might not remember what the heck has happened so far. So here’s the first in a week’s worth of refresher posts — character by character, one a day until the premiere. We begin with Not-So-Lonely Boy . . .

Dan Humphrey: Season 3 So Far

Dan forces a smile over breakfast at VDW

“Reversals of Fortune”: After summering in the Hamptons, Dan returns to NYC with “rich people problems” and is “seduced by wealth” — according to Vanessa. He’s got the nice wallet, the chauffeured car, polo matches to attend to, and an ex-girlfriend now stepsister who claims Carter Baizen is stalking her. Dan tries to help Serena by turning to Blair for assistance, but both are left in the dark as to what’s actually up with S. Vanessa’s pissed-off advice to Dan at the polo match: at least be yourself in this richie-pants world. (Not her exact words.)

No headbands in college.

“The Freshmen”: Waking up all aloney in the Humphrey Loft, Dan heads to NYU, the right place for him according to Serena. S turns out to be right, as people take to Dan like never before. And why wouldn’t they? He’s buff and handsome and a writer and self-effacing. After deciding college is a place for fresh starts for everyone — former villains included — Dan comes to Georgina’s rescue at her rager, and ends up fooling around with her. What the what!

“The Lost Boy”: Dan gets caught on his Walk of Shame out of Georgina’s room (after 1st being caught by B), and Serena advises D to make sure he & “zero to crazy” Georgie are on the same page. G pretends not to mind when Dan cools things off with her, and proves useful in helping Dan figure out that Scott’s real last name is Rossom & he’s the dude who sent D a fan letter. At the auction, D finds out that Scott is his “half-brother’s brother.” Uh-huh.

“Dan de Fleurette”: D’s pop culture cluelessness comes in handy at a hot dog stand where he fails to recognize superstar actress Olivia Burke. She’s nothing more than a cute NYU student to Dan (and much to Nate’s amusement). “Kate” is “refreshingly normal” but at her movie premiere, Dan realizes that “Kate” is actually the movie star everyone’s talking about. Not looking for another crazy, in the spotlight relationship, Dan nevertheless agrees when Olivia asks him out. She’s Hilary Duff! How could Lonely Boy resist?

“Rufus Getting Married”: Dan works on his IM flirting skills while Olivia is in Japan, and Georgina returns to NYU to discover that D’s moved on. She blackmails Vanessa to try and get Dan to dump O, which — with some input from Jenny & Eric — Dan interprets as Vanessa being in love with him. Vanessa tells the truth about who Scott is, and D fakes affection for Georgina to stop her from spilling the beans and ruining Rufus and Lily’s wedding. Don’t eff with an effer, Dan: Georgina sees through the ruse and reveals Scott’s love-child identity.

“Enough About Eve”: Dan invites Olivia to the freshman dinner to meet his parents. (That now means Rufus and Lily. Alison who?) Olivia is jazzed to meet them, but Vanessa meddles in an effort to secure her spot as the freshmen speaker, making Dan and Olivia insecure about the meet-the-parents moment. Turns out OK in the end despite an unfortunate Herve Leger dress on Olivia and some “special chicken” that Dan burns.

“How to Succeed in Bassness”: Nate brings over the Endless Knights DVDs (he’s a closet fan), and Dan freaks out watching the sex scene between Olivia and her former boyfriend, Patrick Roberts. (“He made you levitate.”) Serena asks Olivia to fake-date Patrick by appearing with him at the movie premiere for Fleur. Dan ain’t too happy about that. By the end of the night, D and O are out as a couple, thanks to Serena and her PR wiles. And then Dan and Olivia totally do it. (No levitation.)

“The Grandfather, Part II”: Olivia doesn’t want Dan to see her appearance on Jimmy Fallon, since she told an embarrassing story about him. (Yawn.) So they play Scrabble with Jenny, Rufus, and Lily. When Dan eventually sees the bit, he isn’t upset; he’s just sorry he forgot it was their one month anniversary. (Aw.) They have sweet cuddly times. This relationship is going so well! What could possibly complicate it??

“They Shoot Humphreys, Don’t They?”: Dan wants Olivia to remember why she came to college as she’s being lured away by her “team” to film Endless Knights 4. He and Vanessa show Olivia a good time. And then they show her an even better time. If you know what I mean. (I mean they have that infamous threesome.) A LONG awaited moment in this episode: since season 1 when Vanessa entered the picture in “The Handmaiden’s Tale” there’s been smooching potential between Dan and Vanessa, and just so much history, and we finally got to see them together.

You and me could end a bad romance. Woah-oh-oh-oh....

“Last Days of Discostick”: Dan the Man quickly finds out he should have talked to Nate (or Blair) before the OM3: the third person’s supposed to be a stranger. Tension builds between the three as they rehearse a Snow White/Lady Gaga play for the Tisch cabaret. (Dan’s thinking about applying to the school’s playwriting program.) The threesome fall-out ends with Olivia leaving and pointing out, on her way out, that D’s got serious feelings for Vanessa. And Dan’s pretty darn sure Olivia’s right.

“Treasure of Serena Madre”: Thanksgiving! Dan wonders if he loves Vanessa and — lo and behold — she shows up at the Humphrey Loft to hang out during Thanksgiving. So he stares at her with his “new face.” V’s mom, Gabriella, benefits from Dan’s love for holiday concord, making up with her daughter, and she discovers that Dan is totally in love with Vanessa. She wisely asks him to keep his feelings to himself unless he’s sure he wants to be with Vanessa. Another heartbreak could end their very valuable friendship. Realizing this moment isn’t their moment, he sends V and Gabriella off to meet her crush, Paul Hoffman.

"That was not really the reaction I was hoping for."

“The Debarted”: Nate, in all his wisdom, tells Dan that he either needs to have a moment of extreme emotional vulnerability with Vanessa or he needs to move on . . . with Willa, the theater student who’s into Dan. Dan goes with Option B but can’t follow through with the random make-out session. News of Serena’s accident takes him to the hospital with Blair and Vanessa where Dan tells Vanessa that he loves her. Awkwardness. She diplomatically brushes it off, and Dan heads back to the Humphrey loft by himself, a lonely boy once again.

Is this Dan’s moment to be with Vanessa? From the promo it looks like we’ll at least be getting a little D&V action. Romance aside, it seems like Dan has kinda ditched his family this season. Sure, he shows up at the major events but we’ve only seen him chat with Jenny, like, twice. He seems to have handed over the duties of brother to Eric. And while I love the Nate Advises Dan in Matters of Love & Lust moments, it seems like Dan is always getting advice from Nate but never being there for him when he needs a pal. It’s always Chuck who supports Nate. Wonder if we’ll get any Dan the Good Guy in the back half of season 3.

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4 thoughts on “Season 3 Refresher: Dan Humphrey

  1. this is a good one! thanks! don’t forget that in Season 2, Dan reached out for Nate when his family had problems and Dan was the only one there for him. Dan and Serena FTW!

  2. thanks Gem! That part in season two that you mention is what reminded me how Nate and Dan’s friendship is different now than it once was — it started with Dan helping Nate, but now it’s Nate helping Dan. I wonder if Dan will end up helping Nate, or Jenny (cause I think she’ll need it!) by the end of the season?

  3. of course Dan will help Nate. since Nate isn’t having problems right now so there is no need. but Dan and Serena should be together. Nate could be as gay as he can lol

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