Whatever you may think of the Gossip Girl revival coming to HBO Max July 8—once you hear Kristin Bell’s voiceover in the new teaser trailer, the feeling is a bit like coming home.
“Thinking you’re in control of your image, your actions, the narrative,” Bell says, and you can hear her smirk. “But you forgot one thing: I can see you. And before I’m through, I’ll make sure you see me too. XOXO.”
A sensation when it premiered in 2007—actually, when the CW kept re-airing its pre-writers strike episodes during that long winter of no new TV—the series detailing the scandalous world of the Upper East Side’s elite high schoolers became a pop culture touchstone for six increasingly disappointing seasons. But damn if they didn’t leave a mark, one more and more noticeable as the viewers who made it essential watching stepped up into becoming content creators themselves.
Now we’re back on the steps of the Met, x’s and o’s intact, with a whole new crop of characters to root for, root against, and gasp at. If anything, the rise of social media since those days of flip phones has only heightened the potency of the premise: That someone is not always watching, but is sharing every private foible and misstep. In the decade and change since Blair, Serena, Dan, and the rest captured our hearts and made bitchery fun again, we’ve all turned into Gossip Girls. (Hi, Deux Moi!)
So the time is right, and the new take on the series looks to be in keeping with the zeitgeist as well. Executive producer Joshua Safran (an alum of the original series) has promised more LGBTQ+ characters this go-round, along with more BIPOC performers in the cast that includes Emily Alyn Lind, Eli Brown, Whitney Peak, Thomas Doherty, Jordan Alexander, Evan Mock, Zión Moreno, Savannah Lee Smith, and Tavi Gevinson.
Watch the trailer below and tell us—were you once inspired to sell your show pony for cocaine too?