Monday, December 19, 2011

Gossip Girl - A Study

So I just started watching Gossip Girl.  (I know I'm a little late to the party, which I'm sure no one from Constance would allow...)  People either love or hate Gossip Girl, and I can totally see why.  At the superficial level, it's like ugh, why are we watching a bunch of spoiled melodramatic people and their rich people problems?  Yes, I can totes understand and that's probably why I didn't start watching it til now.  (Why did I start watching?  I don't really remember).  But I just finished season 1 and I am enthralled; I really can't get enough.  I think, as writers, there's actually a LOT of things we can learn from GG.  (This is purely from the TV show -- the book is actually quite different).

1) DIALOGUE - The dialogue is amazing; the writers really did a great job with it.  It's teenage without being over the top.  Everything seems true to the characters and flows naturally.  I find the only character who kinda gets a little cliche sometimes is Jenny.  She is super melodramatic (too much in my taste) and then has these ridiculous quips.  I guess because she's supposed to be 14, that they wanted to make her more angsty than the others, and I don't know if it translated as well as the others.

2) PLOT - The plots are ridiculous!  They do the old adage "make it worse" perfectly.  Just when you though something was awful, something even worse happens; they add another plot twist or another character to mess everything up (*cough* Georgina).  It keeps you on the edge of your seat and every episode keeps you wanting to watch more.  And boy do I wanna watch more.  (I've only finished the 1st season, but that's what I've seen so far).

3) CHARACTERS - ohemgee are they flawed.  Everyone has a flaw they have to work through which makes the characters feel like real people.  You can believe that people in that society would act that way and have those problems.  No one person is completely bad or completely good; everyone has different facets of their personality.  Plus SECRETS EVERYWHERE.  Secrets are part of what makes characters and shows intriguing. You're just wondering when that secret is going to get out and mess everything up for the characters or when a secret is going to be revealed to the audience; it makes you want to watch more.

So there you have it.  Everything you need for a great story.

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