Season 3 Refresher: Rufus and Lily

It’s Rufly time! If you missed the earlier refresher posts: read Dan, Vanessa, Nate, and Serena‘s season so far; Blair, Jenny, and Chuck are coming in the few short days between now and the return of Gossip Girl!

“Reversals of Fortune”: Rufus finds himself the sole caregiver to four (five?) children now as Lily is with her mother, whose cancer has returned. Trying to parent Serena turns out to be a bit tricky as he finds out about her paparazzi summer, and then she lies to him and steals a horse at the polo match leaving Rufus to clean up after her. He uses their emergency stash of money to pay off the photographers. Scott (his son!) chats with him at the polo match, claiming to be a big Lincoln Hawk fan.

“The Freshmen”: With Lily still away, Rufus is the one-man “I’m proud of you” machine, wishing Serena and Dan good luck on their first days at college. When Serena doesn’t go, he tries to pressure her into attending Brown. And in typical Serena style, she gets him where it hurts: “You’re more afraid of my mother than I am.” Ouch. And also: true. Rufus tries again with Serena and manages to deliver one of his trademark cool-dad heart-to-hearts.

“The Lost Boy”: Rufus gives Scott guitar lessons. At the auction, Scott tells him that he is Andrew’s brother, and Rufus is very moved. Later Rufus expands his horizons beyond waffles and makes crepes.

“Dan de Fleurette”: Both Rufus and Serena are surprised when Lily arrives home a day early. Lily is determined to get Serena to Brown. Rufus brings Lil to Serena’s movie premiere to help S prove to her mother that she’s serious about deferring college. Serena asks for help with the KC-Ursula dilemma, and Lily expresses her skepticism that anyone would hire an unqualified person except to take advantage of her celebrity and connections. (Right and right again.) After Serena loses the job, Lily is convinced she’ll go to Brown but instead Serena moves out. And Lily? She blames Rufus.

“Rufus Getting Married”: Rufus is sleeping on the couch; Lily is giving him icy glares. A cold war is on, but when Serena catches Lily looking at her Klaus wedding album and muttering that Rufus “doesn’t get it,” she plots to get the two of them to talk (with the aid of the other VDW-Humphrey kids). At the “Parent Trap” lunch, Rufly starts reminiscing about Sonic Youth but it quickly turns into a fight about compromising and Rufus fitting into Lily’s rich world. Realizing they are being doofuses, Rufus shows up at the VDW and Lily shows up at the loft — and they decide to get married the very next day: “Let’s leap.” Lily writes crappy vows and she thinks that means something. She backs out of the wedding at the last minute — or she starts to before Scott interrupts ready for his big “I’m Your Son” moment. Lily fires a nice bitchy “this is a private conversation” at him, and he takes off. Georgina and the Gang appear and she spills the truth about Scott. R and L chase after him, abandoning their wedding and ending up in Chinatown, having a tearful lovey moment at the bus stop. In a ceremony officiated by Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth, Rufus and Lily finally get married at the loft. Scott heads back to Boston.

“Enough About Eve”: Rufus packs up more stuff to move out of the loft and into the VDW. Rufus and Lily play city-parents to Vanessa and the differences between them and her real parents stand out when Gabriela comes to visit for the freshmen speech. At that event, R and L meet Olivia who thinks they’re prejudiced against movie stars and she acts like a total ditz. Lily witnesses Blair’s mini-destruction and asks her, Wouldn’t Chuck have willingly done whatever it was you needed him to? “Without trust, you’re lost,” says Lily.

“How to Succeed in Bassness”: It’s Halloween! And Rufus is seriously into it, making KISS jack-o-lanterns, buying tons of candy from Dylan’s, and donning a Ramones costume. Lily tries to get Jenny to throw out some of her old clothes to make room for her UES wardrobe. Like she’s indulging a favorite child, Lily gets Vanya to round up some Trick or Treaters to make Rufus happy. Of course, Rufus notices that the Lady Gaga kid was also the Taylor Swift and wises up to Lily’s sweet plan. Lily talks to Jenny about the Eric-yogurt incident and makes her be nice to him.

“The Grandfather, Part II”: Jenny is sick, Dan and Olivia come over, Rufus and Lily play Scrabble for five hours.

“They Shoot Humphreys, Don’t They”: Lily is organizing cotillion again and tries to get Jenny some extra help with her dance moves after pulling some strings to have her included at all. Rufus and Lily attend cotillion and are mystified by Jenny’s escort situation. At the end of the night, Lily stops at her desk to sign some papers for Bass Industries and discovers Dr. van der Woodsen’s letter to Serena.

“Last Days of Disco Stick”: Lily tries to find a date for Jenny to some socialite event and spies an opportunity when Damien arrives with Chuck. Rufus wonders what the heck gonorrhea of the throat is.

“Treasure of the Serena Madre”: Rufus is in planning mode for his traditional big Thanksgiving meal but Lily wants to order in and Rufus instantly caves, pretending that’s what he wants too. He and Eric speak to Cece and she decides to surprise Lily by attending the dinner. Then Lily runs into Maureen and invites her and Tripp. It just turned into a Big Dinner. (Yay!) When Lily sees her mother, she starts drinking. Cece reveals that her cancer went into remission in August, but Lily didn’t return until October. Rufus trusts Lily and knows there’s some explanation. When Lily finds out about Serena’s affair with Tripp, she wants her to walk away or else she’s unwelcome at the VDW. Instead of telling the truth about her extended absence to Rufus, Lily tells him that she and Cece were getting along so well and bonding for the first time, so she stayed. Rufus accepts that. Cece warns Lily that “some secrets can’t stay hidden.” She’s right: minutes later Serena finds the letter from Dr. VDW, telling her mother she has no right to judge her. Lily quickly stashes the letter in her jacket pocket, mistaking Maureen’s coat for her own. Oh noes!

“The Debarted”: Lily is frantically looking for the missing letter and being distant with Rufus. She asks him to attend the co-op meeting and makes a snarky remark about him having nothing but free time before quickly covering for it — she loves that he is only a family man now. Rufus heads to the co-op board meeting where a woman considers him a trophy husband and knew he’d show up sooner or later since he clearly doesn’t have a job. Blair asks Lily to help her get through to Chuck; Lily’s forgotten that today is the anniversary of Bart’s death. L asks Chuck to come with her to Bart’s grave, telling him that it’s not easier to be alone, that people need each other. A phone call from Serena interrupts with news that Maureen has the letter. Lily resolves to tell Rufus, making peace with Serena and apologizing for the contents of the letter. But just as she’s about to tell Rufus (who’s making bolognese), the call comes in about Serena’s accident and she doesn’t. (She also pretends her earlier bitchiness was because of the BB death anniversary. Classy.) Maureen shows up at the VDW and hands Rufus the letter, saying she doesn’t want him to go through the same thing she is. Rufus turns to the oversharing co-op lady (whose name, according to imdb, is Holland Kemble). Serena finds out that Lily hasn’t told Rufus and urges her to. But it’s too late!

Trouble ahead for Rufus and Lily — you’d think Lily had learned the no-secrets lesson following the whole love child extravaganza but that woman loves her secrets. Despite Maureen calling Lily a “cheating whore” I hold out hope that she did not sleep with Dr. van der Woodsen when they were in his hotel room together. The mysterious first husband’s return will no doubt shake up Rufus and Lily even more. I would like to see Rufus get a little bit of his independence back — write some songs, go on tour, do something other than waiting for Lily to pay attention to you. It is not working.

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