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Penn Badgley says romance with Blake Lively 'saved' him from drugs and alcohol

Penn Badgley says romance with Blake Lively 'saved' him from drugs and alcohol

He dated his Gossip Girl co-star in the 2000s

You star Penn Badgley has taken a look back on his Gossip Girl years, and admitted that his romance with co-star Blake Lively 'saved' him.

The Joe Goldberg (or should we say Jonathan Moore now?) actor is now happily married to Domino Kirke, with whom he shares one child.

He is also stepfather to Kirke's 12-year-old son from a previous relationship.

And his old flame Lively, who he dated between 2007 and 2010, is married to actor Ryan Reynolds, with rumours suggesting she has now given birth to their fourth child.

But before they had their respective families, Badgley says it was the A Simple Favour star who prevented him from descending into alcohol and drug abuse.

Blake Lively and Penn Badgley in 2009.
REUTERS/Alamy Stock Photo

“To be honest, I never struggled with substance,” Badgley told Variety.

“Blake didn’t drink, and I think our relationship in some ways saved me from forcing myself to go down that road.”

As his days as Dan Humphrey have been long over, Badgley is finally able to observe those five years of his life with a much-welcome lucidity.

“There’s two ways I see them,” he said.

'Fun and fast-paced' may be the first way he’d use to describe his Gossip Girl era, but that incredibly successful period also concealed a 'dark undercurrent that would bottom out in my late 20s'.

In some ways, Badgley has had to tap into that obscure side to play psychopathic killer Joe on Netflix’s hit You, the fourth season of which has just debuted on the streaming service. (Spoilers ahead if you haven’t watched the first five new episodes just yet.)

Part one of this fourth chapter, which premiered on 9 February, gives us a brand new Joe, following his supposedly deadly showdown with wife Love Quinn (The Haunting of Hill House’s Victoria Pedretti).

Badgley as Joe - or Jonathan, as we should say - in You.

The killer has now moved across the pond to track down his latest obsession Marienne Bellamy (Chilling Adventures of Sabrina’s Tati Gabrielle), but gets offered a second chance at life under the alias of Jonathan Moore, a college professor teaching in London.

There, Joe gets involved with a wealthy group of socialites and falls for art gallery director Kate Galvin (Charlotte Ritchie). Determined to walk the line and stay away from murder, the former killer is at a loss when another killer starts slaying his new pals and attempts to pin the deaths on him.

You has got fans used to twists and turns throughout its four seasons, but it seems we’re in for a jaw-dropping comeback when Part Two premieres on 9 March.

A trailer for the second half of the season also seems to confirm Love may be not as dead as we thought.

In the clip, she appears ready to square things with Joe after he, you know, set fire to their house and left her to die in season three.

It isn’t clear whether Love is real or just a figment of Joe’s imagination at present, but the trailer definitely has us interested in finding out.

You season four part one is streaming on Netflix now.

Part two will premiere on 9 March.

Words: Stefania Sarrubba

Featured Image Credit: pennbadgley/Instagram/LANDMARK MEDIA/Alamy Stock Photo

Topics: Celebrity, Gossip Girl, Penn Badgley, Blake Lively