Cover Photo: HBO Max

Get ready to meet the new cast of Gossip Girl on those iconic Metropolitan Museum steps on July 8

Last November, the Gossip Girl reboot was announced with casual behind-the-scenes footage of the new cast lounging on the steps of the Metropolitan Museum, the favourite hangout spot of Blair Waldorf and Serena van der Woodsen.

Since then, the show-runners have been frustratingly tight-lipped about the details of the TV series, besides brief introductions of the cast members and cryptic, one-word descriptions of the characters they will be playing. After months of waiting, the official trailer has finally dropped, amassing more than a million views in less than 24 hours. (Scroll to the end to watch the trailer.)

From the characters to the plot lines, we finally get a glimpse into the new-and-improved Upper East Side, with Kristen Bell reprising her role as the voice of Gossip Girl, sounding as sinister as ever. This is what we know so far about the upcoming HBO Max series. 

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Gossip Girl is now on Instagram

It makes complete sense that Gossip Girl has moved on from the flip-phone era onto one of the most influential social media platforms: Instagram. In this new world, Gossip Girl makes a mysterious return after going dark for nine years, threatening to reveal the secrets of the ruling class of Constance Billard. 

And closing the loopholes of the previous series, it would seem that teachers and parents are now fully and refreshingly aware of this "anonymous Instagram account that spies on our students". 

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Meet the ruling class of Constance Billard

The opening scenes of the trailer establish Julien Calloway as the Blair-esque Queen Bee to her exclusive group of high school friends at Constance Billard, including her boyfriend, Obie Bergmann, as well as Max Wolfe, Audrey Hope, Luna La, Aki Menzies and Monet de Haan.

It is revealed that this clique of super rich kids have known one another since childhood. And echoing its predecessor, the drama begins when Calloway welcomes new girl, Zoya Lott into their clique.

 

It is unclear how the character Kate Keller will play into the plot, but many eagle-eyed fans have pointed out that Tavi Gevinson, the actress portraying her, has been spotted filming in clothes very similar to Serena van der Woodsen's preppy style. What secrets does she know and will she be friend or enemy? 

But it would seem that while returning showrunner Josh Schwartz is happy to make references to the earlier series, he is keen for the reboot to forge its own identity, made abundantly clear by the swift removal of Lott's hairband—an iconic Blair accessory—almost as soon as she appears. 

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Diving into influencer culture

We see Jordan Alexander's Julien Calloway hosting IG lives, taking selfies with a ring light and declaring: "I'm not just known, I'm influential!" From the little we know about her character, she appears to be a successful fashion influencer and model.

It is also revealed that Calloway's father is a well-known music producer, explaining the luxurious grand piano casually sitting in Calloway's living room. We can already tell that this is a great set-up for musician cameos in the future.

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"You've gotten so comfortable. Thinking you're in control of your image, your actions, the narrative... But you forgot one thing, I can see you. And before I'm through, I'll make sure you see me too. You know you love me. XOXO, Gossip Girl" 

Are you getting the feeling that Gossip Girl's ominous warning in the teaser trailer was directed at Calloway? 

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Love triangles

An American high school TV show won't be complete without a love triangle—or two—within the group of friends.

We find out that there may be a potential romantic entanglement between new girl Lott and Calloway's squeeze, Obie. “I promised that I’d stay away from any drama," says Lott in the trailer but we all know that's not going to happen.

The trailer also promises a complex, romantic web involving Max Wolfe, Audrey Hope and a pink-haired Aki Menzies. This subplot breaks from the overwhelmingly heteronormative narrative of its predecessor to explore themes of sexuality. 

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Cool fashion galore

Menzies' pink buzz cut deserves another mention because it really captures how Emmy Award-winning costumer for Gossip Girl, Eric Daman, intended to build the super contemporary wardrobe for this new series. He has shared with Vanity Fair that he will be incorporating edgier looks, such as Menzies' tribute to skater culture. Inspired by modern fashion influencers like Bella and Gigi Hadid, we can also expect East Village fashion to come into play, for example, oversized blazers paired with tiny biker shorts and chunky shoes

Outside of their casual wear, the cast will be fitted in a custom-designed Constance Billard varsity jacket, among other preppy uniform pieces. And with Calloway's character working as a fashion model, we know that we will be treated to iconic red carpet and cocktail ensembles in the near future. 

There will also be great accessories—we've already spotted a burgundy Dior Oblique book tote, a Ferragamo Studio bag and a Prada Re-Nylon pouch, among many others. 

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Above The first official trailer of the new Gossip Girl revival
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