Yet in the middle of all this narrative squalor, something magical happened. The writers teamed the two characters who had been most at loggerheads with one another—Dan and Blair—to save Serena at the end of the revenge arc. With Serena saved their partnership could have ended, but we were then graced with the two of them discovering that despite all their bickering, they actually had a great deal in common.
The two characters brought out new dimensions in one another and many viewers agreed that neither was as good apart from their interactions with the other. Dan has always been the show’s moral center, even when doing less than ideal things. As viewers we first entered the world of the Upper East Side along with Dan at the beginning of Season One. But despite his alleged intelligence, Dan has always been, unless there were damsels in distress needing saving, a bit of a prig and dull, to boot.
Much the same has been true of Blair. Also smart as a whip, her character, instead of relying on her quite considerable natural gifts, instead relies on schemes and plots, treating others as inconvenient obstacles to her progress in life. Instead of the writers pairing her character with equally intelligent guys, she has settled for an on-and-off but perpetually degrading relationship with the bad boy Chuck. She is of necessity perpetually “dumbed down” to Chuck’s level. Even not running after the Evil One, she lurches after whatever lord or duke or prince comes along. She is simultaneously written as hugely literate and intelligent, a passionate lover of classic movies, but her taste in men labels her as superficial and insubstantial.” —popmatters, TV Highpoints and Lowpoints 2010-2011 (via bluebaby1219)