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001.jpgFull name: Serena Celia Van der Woodsen
Nicknames: S, Queen S, Princess, “It Girl”
Birthplace: Manhattan, New York City, NY
Date of birth: July 14, 1991
Occupation: High school student (at Constance; graduated), College student (at Columbia; ambiguous), Publicist (former), Personal assistant (former), Columnist (at The New York Spectator; former), Socialite and philanthropist , Gossip Girl (former)
Relatives: William van der Woodsen (father), Lily van der Woodsen (mother), Eric van der Woodsen (brother), CeCe and Rick Rhodes (maternal grandparents), Carol Rhodes (maternal aunt)

Biography

Serena Celia Van der Woodsen is a main character of Gossip Girl. Daughter of William van der Woodsen and Lily van der Woodsen, she is regarded as the “IT Girl” of the Upper East Side. She is best friends with Blair Waldorf and also has a close friendship with Nate Archibald and Chuck Bass. Unlike Blair, who is considered to be the show’s antiheroine, Serena is considered more to be a traditional heroine. Her motives are rarely selfish and her negative actions are often times generally motivated by a lack of foresight rather than real malice. She’s often seen to be friendly and will befriend anyone, such as when she talked to an out of place Dan at the party where they first met.

Unlike Blair, Serena is also trusting, which sometimes doesn’t work in her favor. Due to watching her mother’s many failed marriages, Serena has issues with truly committing to a man and understanding what real love is, but that seemed to disappear when she married Dan. Serena is often noted to be irresponsible, especially when it comes to being places on time or completing tasks as told. As opposed to Blair, who tends to date men with status, Serena doesn’t seem to have a type (such as Aaron Rose in season two or Steven Spence in season six).

Characterization

People compares her character with Josh Schwartz’s original it-girl creation, Marissa Cooper, stating that Serena “seems to have it all, but in addition to a party girl reputation, dark family secrets and a disregard for high society, Serena one-ups the sulky Coop with a history of BFF betrayal.” Jason Gay of Rolling Stone describes Serena as “the bad girl gone good(ish) who serves as Gossip Girl’s wobbly moral compass.” He added praise while describing her early strained relationship with Blair, stating, “Lively’s Serena is a former queen bee who mysteriously disappeared from campus, only to return and find her spiteful ex-best friend, Blair (Meester), in charge.” With regards to her character’s direction in the show, actress Blake Lively commented on her character’s adventurous storylines during an interview with NYLON saying “I feel ridiculous at times with her, because I’m, you know, killing someone or marrying someone, but I look like me. I’m like, ‘Oh, this is absurd.’ ” Vogue magazine considers Lively’s upbringing to be advantageous to her character background and finds her “dazzling and worldly and optimistic”. Her mother, a former model from Georgia would dress her differently and her differing fashion choices drew the attention of her classmates from the L.A. private school she enrolled in. “It was the only school where people were just downright mean to me,” Lively stated. “They would make fun of my clothes because I dressed differently than the other kids.”

Facts

  • She spent a summer in Italy where her love of Vespas originated.
  • She wanted to take a year off school to teach English in South Asia.
  • She’s been taking birth control pills since she was 15 years old.
  • She dated the captain of the swim team at the end of freshman year.
  • She was the first person to be on Gossip Girl.
  • When she was a little girl, she loved the banana splits at Serendipity.
  • She hasn’t eaten bread since she was in middle school.
  • During her sophomore year of high school, she skipped more classes than she attended.
  • When she was 12, she did a print ad for Gap.

Source / Credit: Gossip Girl Wiki, Gossip Girl Wikipedia