Jenny Humphrey: Gone, But Not Forgotten
I remember when we first met, Little J, back in Season 1. You knew little about eyeliner back then and your innocence, along with your Brooklyn Pride, was still intact. I think we all knew before you did that your first love, Asher Hornsby, would turn out to be as gay as your best friend, but that didn’t make it sting any less when Blair outed him at the gala.
I admired your bravery when you skipped school to start your own fashion line, and for buying vintage clothes that you tailored to look exactly like Marc Jacobs. That passionate kiss you shared with Nate made my heart melt, even moreso than the fire in which your friend Agnes burned all your dresses after you exploited her generosity to start your own business. I liked even more that you really thought you could start your own business as a 15-year-old. The world could use more of that pretty, reckless disillusionment
Of course you were the obvious choice for Queen Bee in the wake of Blair’s graduation. Like me, Blair saw something special in you, and groomed you for the role, despite the countless times you’d go on to stab her in the back.
Your fight for egalitarianism at Constance was a noble one, albeit one you lost as quickly as your dignity. It was remarkable that you fought your way to power as Queen Bee despite being a virgin and having virtually zero friends. I was proud to see you almost completely dissolve your identity as an only-slightly rich kid from Brooklyn when you threw away your sewing machine and your grunge-chic homemade jeans, slathered on the eyeliner and made a new look out of Versace black.
I stood by you when you got caught up in Damien Dalgaard’s international drug ring and began selling Lily’s “headache pills” (which turned out to be cancer medication, NBD) to his customers, cleverly sewing them into jacket paillettes for delivery. When he pushed you to sleep with him, you resisted, even though he was a Belgian ambassador! My heart went out to you when you were drugged and left to be taken advantage of in a bar, but thank God Nate was there to rescue you. It’s perfectly reasonable that you fell immediately back in love with him, it’s just too bad that all your friends had already claimed his as their own.
I hated Rufus for grounding you when he found out those drugs you sold Damien’s clients were giving women yeast infections. When your whole family fell apart as a result of your efforts to sabotage everyone you know, I related to your feelings of loneliness, and nostalgia for your past. “When I lived in Brooklyn, I may have had to ride the subway to school, and make my own clothes, but at least our family was happy”. Who else on the show dared to confront such profound and painful truths?
I know everyone thinks it was terrible of you to send that picture of your brother and Serena in bed together to Gossip Girl, but Blair really took it too far when she told you that “No one loves you except your daddy.” The only logical thing to do after undergoing humiliation like that was obviously to lose your virginity to her boyfriend, which you promptly did in your vulnerable state. But, being the martyr that you are, you’ve left New York and are suffering for your sins by living with your mother in a town called Hudson, a cruel fate for a former Queen Bee. Rumor has it you are not coming back and, that far out of Gossip Girl Country, it’s unlikely that you’ll ever be spotted again.
Where will we be without you, Jenny Humphrey? You transported Brooklyn grunge to the Upper East Side; you stood up to the Queen Bee when everyone else cowered in fear; you held fast to your ever-changing identity. You revolutionized style at Constance, embarked on unfathomable entreprenurial endeavors, followed your heart in the face of cetain disaster. You taught us that it’s better to be hated than ignored, as long as you look just like everyone else while you’re doing it.
Rest assured, Little J, that your legacy will live on in the hearts and minds of the GG colony long after your reign as Queen Bee.
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