I love Laurel. She’s so ridiculously normal on a show full of insane. Vegging on a couch in a t-shirt and sweats, trying to recover from a miserable break-up? That sounds downright … teenager-y. How crazy is that?

The only thing not normal about her is her shiny, shiny, shiny hair. Mine would be up in a disheveled ponytail by now.

 

Unfortunately, Laurel makes a terrible miscalculation when dressing for the party. Apparently someone told her it was a theme party, so she decided to go as pregnant Elvira.

I respect that she is following the rule about staying covered up if you’re showing a lot of cleavage (Serena could learn a thing or two), but the whole dress is so shapeless and ill-fitting that it’s not as if she’s wearing a particularly scandalous neckling. I mean, yes, obviously it should be a scandalous neckline, but she has not properly hoisted her parts into place, so instead she just looks kind of like she’s swimming in this dress.

 

The worst part is that this is the dress Justin’s date wore:

So much cuter! So much more sparkly. Laurel, I know you don’t want to dress up and you want to hang out at home eating popcorn and watching Kourtney and Kim Take New York, but when you’re going to run into your ex, you have to step up your game a little. It will make you happy, it will make him unhappy (which will, in turn, make you happier), and it will get you the attention of any stray men in the room.

 

At least the night isn’t a total bust for Laurel, though. After all, she gets to sing with Jude Law.

Playing a random charity event in Arizona … how far the mighty have fallen.

 

After a stunningly insane confession from Justin (he thinks Dr. Mercer killed his mother), Laurel’s not afraid to ugly cry. Have to give the actress credit for that one.

Poor Laurel. Isn’t this always how it goes? Just when you think your ex is about to apologize, he admits that your meet-cute was part of his elaborate plan to get revenge (!!!) on your dad.

 

If only Laurel’s mom weren’t so clueless, maybe she could help. Unfortunately, Kristen is sweet but not so bright. Case in point: the only time she wears a flattering magenta when she’s going to the tennis court.

That jacket is coming off the minute she steps onto the court. Why can’t she wear a color half as flattering for her day to day activities?

 

Kristen opts for this poorly tailored green dress when it comes to socialwear. It’s not bad, it’s just nothing new. She’s a more mundane Lily van der Woodsen when it comes to switching it up, wardrobe-wise.

I’d be worried about insulting her, but let’s be honest: if she can’t tell that Sutton’s acting all kinds of sketchy, she’s not going to notice my insulting her. She’s too busy looking slightly confused and concerned.

 

Let’s all feel sorry for Wee Little Lollipop Mads. The poor girl is so wee, she has to wear blouses much to large for her frame. Worse, the only way she can cinch this top is with a weird zip-up bondage belt. Her life is tough enough without having to sit through class in that belt.

 

Mads opts for an amazing bodycon dress. Apparently, now that Eduardo’s bowed out, Mads no longer has to dress like a ballerina constantly. I loved this dress on her instantly – the royal purple is so flattering on her.

 

The neckline, however, makes this dress one of my favorites ever on this show. The asymmetry is brilliant, the sheer panelling works … in a dress like this, it’s hard to believe that lame Ryan is the only guy after her.

Unless, of course, all the other guys are afraid of her dad, in which case, I totally get it.

 

So, who is this mysterious new Ryan after our Wee Little Lollipop’s heart? This charmer:

I am not a fan. He’s better dressed for school than he is the auction. He put a tiger shark in a pool, which seems like a mean thing to do to the shark. He’s a bad boy because he is, no doubt, deeply wounded in some way. Don’t care, he’s not good enough for our Mads.

 

I mean, come on – does Robert Pattinson know this guy stole his hair?

Mads, any guy who looks this artfully dishevelled is trouble. And I hate the loosened tie – why bother wearing a tie if you’re not going to wear it right? I know, you’re just trying to look like a rebel and show how apathetic you are, but the fact that you put this much effort into looking casual means you care way, way too much. Either way, who wants to bet that he’s secretly Eduardo’s second cousin and he’s trying to get revenge (!!!) on Alec?

 

Rebecca just can’t quite reach that sartorial high point of her first apperance. She’s looking good in this red cowl-neck dress, but it’s still not quite right on her. The color is fantastic, but the cut just isn’t that flattering.

 

However, it’s a whole lot better than what she opted to wear to the auction. This dress is so ridiculously Ladies Who Lunch, I can’t even deal with it. It ages her 20 years.

The hair and tiny structured purse aren’t helping matters, but the real problems come from the drab olive color and the dowdy lace overlays. If it were shorter or cut differently, she might make it work. As it stands now, I can’t believe that wardrobe managed to make Charisma Carpenter look like a society matron.

 

This episode has been completely free of Gratuituous Male Shirtlessness. Fortunately, Thayer broke out some guns in an attempt at bringing the episode’s sexy back.

Thank you, Thayer. You’re a great American.