Evening, Upper East Siders! So last night we went to Central Park North (a.k.a. 110th Street) for Esquire’s fête to honor Bill Cosby at the mag’s swank bachelor pad. Much as we love us some vintage Dr. Huxtable, last night was all about Gossip Girl and the chance to talk to Jessica Szohr, who plays Vanessa. Yes, that’s right, Dan’s annoying friend who likes to enter his room through the window. Come on, we’re not in Dawson’s Creek here, Vanessa! First and foremost, we have to point out that Jessica Szohr is not as terrible as her character on the show. Last night, she was wearing a very nice simple black sweaterdress and tights and had really red lipstick on. Unless Vanessa gets a job hosting at the Waverly Inn, we know she’s not gonna be rocking a simple black dress anytime soon. Which brings us to our first question. What exactly is Vanessa’s deal? Why does she dress like an extra from a New Kids on the Block video? Thank God we had Jessica to break it down for us!
“In the book, Vanessa was very gothic, always in black, with piercings and when we started the show, they wanted to make her kind of Lower East Side … tight skinny jeans, high-tops, and things like that,” Szohr explained. “I had just moved here so I wasn’t aware of the neighborhoods, so when I was doing homework for my character, I went to the Lower East Side.”
So we already know Vanessa and Dan have been friends since they were 6, she moved to Vermont and returned to Dan’s life via the window of his dad’s Dumbo/Williamsburg loft, and now she’s been elbowed out of his affections by Serena. What next? “I think Vanessa might get a boyfriend and I don’t know for a fact, but I think Dan might say, ‘I don’t want her to be with someone else,’” says Szohr. WHAT? DO NOT TELL US THAT. “I’m taking a little bit of what I read in the books, but the show isn’t totally taken from the books,” she explained.
Man, if Vanessa makes Dan screw up his relationship with Serena next season, those CW writers are going to wish they never came back from the picket lines. —Fiona Byrne