In lieu of photo recaps, we’re doing this new mini-column that we like to call Gossip Girl Countdown in which we answer all the cliffhangers the show has yet to get to. Also, if you’ve never read or watched Shutter Island do not read this article. Also, go read Shutter Island just because it’s freakin’ great. Also, who am I kidding, you’re just gonna watch the movie. Also, you’re probably going to do neither, so proceed…
Last we saw Charlie Rhodes was… OH SHIT NEVER. All we’ve ever gotten about Charlie Rhodes was Ivy Dickens pretending to be her for a few episodes before the bomb dropped that she was a fraud. Since then a few tidbits have surfaced… she lives in Miami, she has a mom, her name is Charlotte, stuff like that.
The last time she was mentioned, Carol said “If they find out what happened to the real Charlie Rhodes…” which gets us thinking: what did happen to the real Charlie Rhodes? Well, we don’t know for sure, but here are a few theories we think are on the right track:
Charlie Rhodes doesn’t exist… and everyone’s just going with it
Think about it. Have you ever seen Charlie? Nope. And what you can’t prove by seeing, doesn’t truly exist — ghosts, Santa, and Charlie Effing Rhodes.
When did we ever hear about Charlie Rhodes before the end of season 4? Never. Sure, there was mention about Aunt Carol and her place down in Miami (what what!) but Charlotte Rhodes was absolutely never mentioned! Everyone just decided she existed out of nowhere! I don’t blame them; those guys in Gossip Girl world go through so much, they’ve just learned to roll with it.
But that’s just Dan’s meeting with her. Upon closer inspection of Serena’s first encounter with Cousin Charlie, you’ll see what I’m talking about.
See, Serena is just as puzzled as the audience is about this new revelation, the supposed Cousin Charlie. Not even Serena van der Woodsen knows who this person is; just look at her face if you need confirmation. But she realizes she needs to just go along with it because this is Gossip world. So just as quickly as she’s confused about who the hell Charlotte Rhodes is… she puts her game face on:
Aunt Carol knew she could pull this off since everyone in the UES goes along with plot points, so she concocted a plan to fabricate the existence of her daughter Charlotte in hopes that the entire family would believe she’s an actual person and rob them blind of her supposed inheritance. She hired an actress named Ivy Dickens to portray this non-person. It was the perfect plan!
That is until Ivy’s past came back to haunt her — Max. But that’s neither here nor there.
Why would CeCe Rhodes claim she remembers being there for Charlotte’s birth? Well, that poor woman is so senile and hopped up on medication…
So what did Carol mean by “what happened to the real Charlie Rhodes”? I believe she was referencing her nonexistence. That’s what truly happened to her: that she never happened.
Ivy Dickens is Charlie Rhodes
Aunt Carol supposedly found Ivy Dickens at some community theater — but what if that wasn’t Ivy Dickens, what if that was the real Charlie Rhodes?
Ivy lied to the van der Woodsens, to protect her cover, by saying her mom Carol used to make her pretend to be Ivy since she hated the Rhodes name so much. Well, what if little Charlotte Rhodes, an aspiring actress, took her second identity a little too far? What if Charlie Rhodes, for all intents and purposes, became Ivy Dickens?
It explains everything: she has a past with Max as Ivy because she couldn’t identify who she was after pretending to be Ivy for so long. Max thinks Ivy lived in a trailer park because she had to come up with a rich backstory for her other personality. Aunt Carol told her that the Rhodes wouldn’t forgive her if they knew what happened the the real Charlie — that she developed dissociative identity disorder (DID). We haven’t seen “the real” Charlie at all… except we have since she’s Ivy! CeCe expressed so vehemently that she witnessed her birth because it was actually her birth!
Carol saw an opportunity to rob the Rhodes family blind by getting Ivy to play the role of a lifetime, which she was so often used to do in real life since that’s basically how she lives now, unaware that she’s actually Charlie. So Carol thought if she doesn’t help treat her disorder, she can rob all the Rhodes women blind — including her own daughter by making her believe she wasn’t entitled to the inheritance and keeping it all for herself!
Kaylee DeFer is a fantastic actress, but she may need to brush up on her Leo DiCaprio.
Or perhaps her best Sally Field circa Sybil. Speaking of which, DID is more often treated with therapy than medication, which explains why Georgina so acutely figured out that Ivy/Charlie was never truly on her meds.
And it also explains a little something else…
Charlie Rhodes is Gossip Girl
Who else have we never seen in the flesh? Gossip Girl. So by the idiotic property of awesome, it stands to reason that Charlie Rhodes is the UES blogger that dishes dirt behind her cloak of anonymity.
Anonymous until now, that is.
Ivy Dickens may have been the world’s worst journalist, but she can learn a thing or two from her counterpart about how to protect your sources (until that little incident) and keep an audience coming back for more. Carol had been living in Miami, demeaning the Rhodes name for years to her daughter Charlie when finally, before she started high school, the pair decided to go to New York City and fight them the UES way.
The first Gossip Girl blast was Serena van der Woodsen during freshman year, was it not? Sounds like Carol is making her daughter execute a personal vendetta she has against her own family. But the gossip wasn’t enough — Carol wanted more!
That’s when she decided that hiring Ivy to be her daughter and rob the Rhodes of Charlie’s inheritance was just the thing.
That’s why if the Rhodes ever found out what happened to the real Charlie, they would never forgive her since she’s basically been badmouthing them and making their lives hell for the past seven years or so. Unforgivable!
And it also explains why Gossip Girl has probably yet to “find out” about Charlie: she doesn’t want to ruin her cover. Charlie Rhodes has been hiding in plain sight with her family for years, and they don’t even know it. What will happen when they do?
What do you think happened to the real Charlie? And what other cliffhangers would you like answered?