Remember when Blake Lively played the ever-elusive, heart-crushing, town-skipping Upper East-Sider Serena van der Woodsen on Gossip Girl? Remember when Serena went away to boarding school after she hooked up with her BFF Blair’s boyfriend Nate and ruined everything? Remember when she came back and Blair found out and it was basically war? But remember also when Serena was the one person who saved Blair’s crumbling heart after Chuck Bass had its way with it time and time again? Of course you do. Because Gossip Girl was (probably) a huge part of your life in the 2000s, and you (probably) miss it, and you (definitely) miss Serena’s wild ways.

We miss Serena, too. Which is why we’re bringing you Blake Lively’s original audition tape, where she proved to us, nay, the world, that she was born to play that sultry-voiced, lithe blonde with a tumultuous past. She was meant to play Serena van der Woodsen — and we couldn’t imagine another actress taking on the role.

In the video, you get to see a young Blake Lively embody Serena for one of the very first times, and it’s simultaneously adorable and super impressive. Take a look for yourself:

Before Gossip Girl, Lively starred in The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, Accepted, Simon Says, and Sandman —but it’s (probably) safe to say that her role in Gossip Girl really showed the world what the actress was capable of (aka, a LOT). Right now, Lively is working on a Woody Allen film to be released in 2016, and a movie called All I See is You. So, basically, crushing it.

And in case you’re wondering (I know you are), all of Gossip Girl is available to binge-watch stream on Netflix. *winky face*

(Image via YouTube)