It can be said that Nate Archibald from Gossip Girl is a man of many shades. He’s not the best secret-keeper in Upper East Side but he can be a tremendous ally and wingman if he chooses to put his personal agendas aside. Nate has been a singularly good support system to Chuck, Dan, and Serena and has been by their side as they struggled and has also had their backs when they were being trolled or attacked.
But Nate has his share of flaws, he wasn’t always Mr. Good Guy, sometimes he was the stereotypical ‘Nice’ guy who’s charming and may come off as helpful and chivalrous but is actually self-serving and devious. Here’s a list of moments when Nate has been both, genuinely good and fake ‘nice.’
10 ‘Nice’: He Cheated On Blair And Did Not Come Clean
Most Gossip Girls fans tend to forget how Nate was when the show started out. Not only did he cheat on Blair with Serena but kept mum about it and continued dating Blair after Serena disappeared. Interestingly, Nate has often lectured his friends about their behavior and has warned them against cheating on their respective partners, when he himself wasn’t always so commitment-friendly, and he dealt with some of his breaks up in a really skeevy way.
Fans have also noted that if Nate wasn’t rich and did not have his connections, he would have to do some serious self-introspection but because of his privileges, people around him tend to forgive his past foibles too easily.
9 Good: Never Sent In A Tip To Gossip Girl
This definitively proves that though he could be quite manipulative, Nate was perhaps one of the kindest Upper East Siders and didn’t wish harm on anyone unless he had been attacked personally. Throughout the series, Nate never once sent in a tip to Gossip Girl to create drama for someone.
In fact, though he regularly checked Gossip Girl’s blasts to keep up with what’s happening around him, he was acutely aware of how intensely the platform affected his friends, and he would never add to their problems because he’s just not wired like Chuck or Blair.
8 ‘Nice’: Shamelessly Used His Clout To Make The Spectator A Hit
It was amazing how Nate could look at any drama unfolding in his friends’ lives and think of benefitting his newspaper The Spectator from it. Like when Blair and Chuck got into a car crash and all their friends are riddled with anxiety and want to design a plan to take Gossip Girl down, Nate selfishly chimes in that they should use The Spectator to do it because of course, gaining more readers was all he cared about.
It has to be said that The Spectator wasn’t very original at all, which is why it had to piggy-back on Gossip Girl’s format and then eventually on Dan’s serialized fiction. But Nate used every opportunity he got to make money for his newspaper and quite thoughtlessly so.
7 Good: Tried To Protect Serena’s Feelings
The last two seasons really proved that Nate had changed a lot and was genuinely trying to make amends by helping his friends. When he sees that Serena is considering getting back together with Dan he immediately warns her. At this point, Dan was quite an eyesore for Upper East siders because he had just released his expose on New York’s elite, and hadn’t spared his friends either.
Nate tries to appeal to Serena’s logical side to make her see how toxic Dan could be, and though Dan had no ulterior motives, Nate was in the right for trying to warn Serena especially since he has known her since they were kids and Serena gets quite carried away when she’s feeling vulnerable.
6 ‘Nice’: Supported Chuck’s Evil Plans
Nate had been a constant ally to Chuck and their bond grew more powerful after Nate moved in with him. It’s important to note that Nate was the only one who could call out Chuck on his behavior because he was just as rich and they had been friends for a long time and Chuck never listened to anyone who he didn’t consider to be his equal.
Nate had a lot of power in his hands to warn people about Chuck’s conspiracies, or to at least protest against his devious plans because he was the only friend Chuck had. But he simply pretended to not look when Chuck humiliated Blair or made the lives of his friends difficult.
5 Good: Wasn’t Petty About Serena And Dan
By Season 4, Nate learned to forgive and forget and also steps up when he sees his friends making the same mistake he did. He always had a soft spot for Serena but he was also very good friends with Dan who was also in love with Serena. But Nate had never let things marinate between them or get weird because he wanted both of them in his life.
Nate knew Serena was attracted to her professor Colin but was leading Dan on, which is something Serena had done before. Nate was quick to warn Dan about what she’s doing because he knew how hopelessly in love Dan was with Serena. Even when Dan realized what Serena had done, Nate was there beside him for moral support.
4 ‘Nice’: Switches Loyalties Pretty Easily
Nate was aghast at the idea of Dan making the big bucks by dishing the dirty laundry about his friends’ lives and was quite rightfully livid at Dan for his expose of the Upper East Siders.
But in Season 6 as he loses his grandfather’s backing and is left to run the struggling newspaper The Spectator. Nate turns to Dan and requests him to publish serialized chapters of his expose on The Spectator so that the newspaper finds a steady readership since Dan’s work was already getting a lot of attention.
3 Good: When He Genuinely Looked Out For Jenny
A lot has been said about Nate’s relationship with Jenny but it’s important to note that Nate has always been protective of her because she was Dan’s sister and he even tried to keep an eye out for her when her family wasn’t around.
Like when Jenny told her she quite Eleanor’s label and wanted to start her own line, Nate didn’t fake enthusiasm but instead gave her a reality check. Moreover, when he sensed that Jenny may be in trouble or her friends are a bad influence on her, he actually followed where she was and rescued him from a rather weird, sketchy situation.
2 ‘Nice’: Dated A 17-year-old
Most fans hoped that Nate would break up with Sage after he finds out that she was underage, but he doesn’t do that which is quite baffling considering he’s very aware of how inappropriate this was and even blasted Sage for lying to him about her age.
But his decision to keep dating her, even though her father clearly had issues with this, and to take her to the Cotillion to parade their relationship around was quite problematic, if not shocking. Plus, he hadn’t even known her for that long, so why couldn’t he just take a break from their relationship and resume it once she was of legal age at least?
1 Good: When He Came Up With A Genuinely Good Idea To Take Down Gossip Girl
Many fans overlook the fact that Nate was the only one who had a totally win-win strategy to end Gossip Girl for good. He basically takes Jonathan’s help and is able to get into Gossip Girl’s system so he gets his hands on all the tips that have been sent to Gossip Girl ever. His plan was to release this to let people know that Gossip Girl isn’t as confidential and secure as it was made out to be.
Granted his motives were driven by his need to drive readers towards The Spectator but he shared his idea with Serena, who was the only friend he trusted and had been victimized by Gossip Girl.
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