Gossip Girl fans might be shocked to learn Jessica Szohr hasn’t seen many episodes. Of course, she knows what happens in the teen drama, which first aired on The CW in 2007. Thanks to the XOXO podcast, Szohr gets to relive all the memories and share behind-the-scenes secrets with fans. Showbiz Cheat Sheet caught up with Szohr via Zoom, where she shared her experience working on the Gossip Girl podcast with us.
‘Gossip Girl’ podcast is a mix of rewatches and cast interviews
Szohr didn’t want to do a typical rewatch podcast. “I wanted to do a walk down memory lane and do some rewatches,” she told Showbiz. “We wanted to take the fans on a ride of rewatching and breaking down some of the episodes, but also give people the details of how the show was put together, [including how it got] picked up and the rights to the books.” Szohr added: “I thought, ‘Let’s give everyone a little bit … why it became a hit and how.’”
The opportunity to do a Gossip Girl podcast came to Szohr as she was finishing up the third season of The Orville. She just had a baby with her husband, ice hockey player Brad Richardson, who was picked up by the Calgary Flames. Her desire to go with him to Canada, be a mom, and “not be on sets and traveling” also influenced her decision to do the show.
Jessica Szohr is working her way through The CW series thanks to ‘XOXO’
The podcast is allowing Szohr to reminisce about her time working on Gossip Girl. On top of that, it’s giving her the chance to watch the series in it’s entirety for the first time. “[The best part has been] taking a walk down memory lane and reminiscing and getting all these like vibes and feelings of everything … and to be honest, watching the show because I hadn’t seen it,” she told us. Before XOXO, Szohr had only seen a few episodes of Gossip Girl.
“[For example,] season two — I had not seen any of [those episodes],” Szohr elaborated. Seeing the show for the first time is allowing Szohr to see how things came to life. She read the scripts before but never saw them come together on the screen.
Jessica Szohr says some ‘Gossip Girl’ plot points ‘wouldn’t fly’ on TV today
Another fun aspect of the XOXO podcast has been analyzing the series from a mother’s perspective. “I’m a mom and we’re all on different chapters of our lives,” she said. “[Gossip Girl is] really fun to watch now because I’m like, ‘Oh, I can’t believe Serena did this,’ or ‘I can’t believe Blair did this.’”
She added: “There’s some stuff that would not fly [today] … like you can’t put Nair in someone’s martini and have their hair fall out at a bar. Like, that’s some crazy s***, Chuck Bass.”
As Szohr said, Gossip Girl was shot in a “totally different time” when there wasn’t a light shone on bullying. “That wasn’t all around our show then,” she said. Regardless, fans of the series are enjoying the ride XOXO takes them on.
Listen to new episodes of the Gossip Girl podcast weekly.
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