Great Expectations

A few words come to mind when describing the Gossip Girls series premier: letdown, mediocre, dry. The show so far has failed to bite as much as the books did. The main reason would probably be the characters.

All the book’s crucial characters are in the show, but some were poorly cast.

Gossip Girl is the story of students at two prestigious high schools in Manhattan, and the drama that follows them. Their every move is being watched and reported by Gossip Girl, an unknown on the inside of everything.

Serena van der Woodsen, who is played by Blake Lively (“Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants,” “Accepted”), returns home after mysteriously going to boarding school. She comes home to find her best friend, Blair Waldorf, is not so friendly, and her brother is in the hospital. Television’s Serena is not the glamorous, model-like beauty she could have been. She is also a little too earthy, without the spark to capture hearts like in the books.

Blair (Leighton Meester) is a spoiled teenage socialite who has everything, including an entourage that used to include Serena. She is reluctant to take Serena back under her wing because of a jealous fear, and in the first episode she finds out that Serena slept with her hunky boyfriend, Nate Archibald (Chase Crawford).

Her TV character was perfect – she was catty, self-absorbed, and jealous, and left you trembling. The only difference is that Blair in the book seems to always be angry and constantly speaking her mind-this one seems a little tamer and less crass.

More important characters are Daniel and Jenny Humphrey. Daniel is cast well, played by the charming Penn Badgley (John Tucker Must Die). He plays an adorable offbeat New Yorker who just tends to sink into the background. He is actually refreshing compared to some of the dry actors. His sister, Jenny (Taylor Momsen) did not fit the character. What made her so unique in the books were her freakishly large breasts and petite size-not to mention that untamed curly hair. This Jenny just does NOT cut it.

For those who are not familiar with the books, they might be interested in where the show goes, but for those who got to taste author Cicely Von Ziegesar at her best, they would probably be kind of let down. However, the show has some potential to be a little more amusing than spider solitaire on a Wednesday night. It is on the CW at 8pm, right after America’s Next Top Model.