A quick heads up: if you’ve not seen the original series of Gossip Girl, then you might want to stop reading on for spoilers.
Joshua Safran, a writer on the original show and who is heading up the forthcoming revival, has revealed which character was originally supposed to be the person behind the blog detailing the scandalous lives of Manhattan’s elite – the biggest plot twist of the iconic teen drama.
According to Safran – who worked as a writer and producer on the 2007 original – although Dan Humphrey (played by Penn Badgely) was ultimately unveiled as the elusive blogger voiced by Kristen Bell, his character wasn’t originally intended to be Gossip Girl.
Speaking to The Daily Beast, Safran said: “I wanted it to be Nate, and it actually makes much more sense when it’s Nate – even when it doesn’t make sense. I mean, it would have been great to never reveal it.”
He added: “It was Nate until the day I left. We all came to the conclusion that it might be Nate by the end of S4, and we spent S5 teeing it up. If you watch it, there are many clues to it being Nate.“
”But I also think weirdly, in noir fashion, it’s great that we dropped a red herring. But it wasn’t as organic as Dan. With Dan, it makes sense because he wanted to find a way in; but with Nate, it was because he’d never sent anything in to Gossip Girl, and if it had been Nate, it was based on this idea that he’d felt so guilty for sleeping with Serena that he had to create an alter ego to bring us all to it.”
The news has divided the show’s fans, with some saying that Nate (played by Chace Crawford) makes sense, while others disagree, with one Twitter user arguing that “Nate didn't have the brains to pull off Gossip Girl. Dan made sense.” Another writes: “Now we all know damn well that Nathaniel Fitzwilliam Archibald would not know how to not ”reply all” to emails, let alone code and encrypt a whole website.”
This year’s much-anticipated iteration will introduce fans to a fresh set of Upper East Siders. It’s set to debut on HBO Max in the US on July 8, and will come to the UK via iPlayer later in the year. Revisit Dazed’s interview with the new cast here, and watch the official trailer below. XOXO, Nate Archibald.