Though the Gossip Girl reboot for HBO Max includes an entirely new cast of characters (well, except for those Nelly Yuki and Rebecca Sherman cameos), fans can't help but compare the current Constance Billard and St. Jude students to their CW predecessors.
While Max Wolfe's (Thomas Doherty) likeness to resident party-boy-with-parental-issues Chuck Bass (Ed Westwick) is obvious, and the sister-sister rivalry between Zoya Lott (Whitney Peak) and Julien Calloway (Jordan Alexander) mirrors the way that Blair Waldorf (Leighton Meester) and Serena Van der Woodsen (Blake Lively) were frenemies, some of the similarities have yet to be fully fleshed out.
The main romance the HBO Max series seemingly wants viewers to ship is the one between Zoya and Otto "Obie" Bergmann IV (Elliot Brown). Considering the other options are the teacher-student relationship with Max and Rafa Caparros (Jason Gotay) or the in-a-rut bond between Audrey (Emily Alyn Lind) and Aki (Evan Mock), Zoya and Obie seem like the best bet.
As one of the only viable pairs on the new Gossip Girl, Zoya and Obie have big shoes to fill. Could they be the Dan and Serena of the reboot? Or, are they destined to be one of the cringey, can't-believe-they-ever-dated pairs like Jenny Humphrey (Taylor Momsen) and Nate Archibald (Chace Crawford)?
Zoya and Obie have the potential to be the Dan and Serena of the 'Gossip Girl' reboot.
Despite the fact that Obie is actually still in a long-term relationship with Julien, and her sister is just 14 when the show begins, the two immediately connected on Zoya's first day at Constance Billard. After they shared their first kiss outside of Zoya's apartment, some viewers hoped that the pair would have the potential to be a gender-swapped version of Dan Humphrey and Serena in the reboot.
After all, like Serena, Obie is incredibly wealthy and well-known throughout New York City (though he feels much more guilty about his privilege, and he, therefore, prefers to volunteer his time and money to causes he's passionate about).
Meanwhile, Zoya is an outsider in her new school, just as Dan was in the original Gossip Girl. While Dan's Brooklyn digs were the subject of ridicule in The CW series (which truly dates the show now), Zoya is living in her grandmother's rent-controlled apartment. Like Dan, Zoya doesn't fully fit in with her classmates who are wearing designer labels and who reside in Manhattan penthouses.
Obie initially bonds with Zoya over their shared activism, and the two spend time together giving back before their friendship turns romantic. Like Derena, Zobie gets together quickly.
However, as Season 1 progresses, Obie begins to resent Zoya's growing concern over the Gossip Girl Instagram account. He also doesn't exactly approve of her reconciling her relationship with her influencer sister.
Meanwhile, Zoya is wondering if her beau's activism is performative, and whether the two really have anything in common.
Though viewers are feeling more lukewarm about Zobie than they were earlier on in Season 1, it's important to remember that Dan and Serena were sometimes a controversial pairing as well.
Dan had a tendency to put down Serena's interests, and to question her reasons for remaining friends with Blair (who he, let's not forget, later dated as well). Serena, on the other hand, often didn't want to see situations from her boyfriend's perspective.
Who can also forget that Dan continuously invaded his girlfriend's privacy by posting about her as Gossip Girl?
The two had an oftentimes-frustrating on-and-off relationship before they wed in the series finale, which could be how things play out between Zoya and Obie.
But, the HBO Max 'Gossip Girl' duo might be destined to be more like Nate and Jenny.
While fans of the original Gossip Girl still reflect on Dan and Serena's romance nearly nine years after the show went off the air, most of the romances in the show didn't rise to the same level of attention.
Though many Gossip Girl reboot enthusiasts are looking for the next Dan and Serena or Chuck and Blair, it remains to be seen if one of the current relationships will become that.
Unfortunately, there's every chance that a pairing like Zoya and Obie could crash and burn quickly, like the random coupling of Jenny and Nate in The CW series.
The two characters briefly dated in Seasons 2 and 3 of the first Gossip Girl and though they were able to remain friends, it was always clear that they were a mismatch.
Zoya's character has already been compared to Jenny, who like her older brother, Dan, wasn't born into the Upper East Side wealth of her peers. Obie and Nate's similarities are clear, as both moralistic characters try to set themselves apart from their less well-intentioned prominent family members.
Viewers will have to wait to find out how things will fare in the Zobie relationship — and to see if Gossip Girl can succeed in tearing them apart.
New episodes of Gossip Girl debut on Thursdays at 3 a.m. ET on HBO Max.