Thursday, April 06, 2006

How Did 'The O.C.' Become O.K. Again?

I'm a little confused. I just got done watching tonight's new episode of "The O.C." and I was amazed that I actually laughed a little felt a tiny bit of emotion for some characters I thought I'd stopped caring about nearly a season ago.

Nobody's really watching the show these days and the only buzz "The O.C." has had in the past few months has involved rumors that Mischa Barton wants out and a really bizarre AP story that tried convincing us that somebody named "Sandy Cohen" was interviewing creator Josh Schwartz. Heck, even I've been DVRing episodes and skipping through whole subplots -- Sandy's real estate ethical quandaries? Bye. Anything involving Johnny? Bye. -- to mostly see what was happening with Seth and Summer. But I watched tonight's episode and enjoyed it.

What Did I Like?

1)The strange alternate dimension they all live in where college acceptance letters arrive on a set schedule on a set day, allowing a high school to have a bonfire where everybody can wear the sweatshirt of their college of choice within a day of their acceptance. No choosing, no wait listing, nothing. That's decisive.

2)Taylor Townsend as comic relief. They thought about making the character evil and nefarious and they may go in that direction again, but the correct choice was making her into the OC's version of Paris Gellar. She's able to pop up for two or three absurd lines of dialogue and then she can go away. The plot doesn't need to revolve around her, but if she shows up to explain the Kama Sutra or just to pick up delivery, that's just fine.

3)The realization that the main characters don't know anybody else at their high school. In the first season, there was this illusion that Summer and Marissa were popular. We've eliminated that. The characters can go to a bonfire and look around and see only strangers. The shot of Ryan going up to talk to some random guy in a UCLA sweatshirt was hilarious. I wanted him to look and Ryan and go, "You're the guy who punches people. Have we met?"

4)Marissa's insane. You've just gotta enjoy the ride. In the last shot of last week's episode, Marissa was snorting coke for the very first time. By the end of this week's episode, she's back to being the good girl en route to Berkeley. OK. Fine. I've been fast-forwarding through Marissa's downward spiral plot for weeks, but maybe I can watch again?

5)Some of these guys are really good actors. OK. Mostly Adam Brody and Rachel Bilson are really good and Ben McKenzie isn't bad. But the scenes this week between Seth and Summer were on the verge of heartbreaking. Not quite heartbreaking, but close.

6)Nobody tried to convince me that the President was an evil mastermind after dedicating halves of two seasons to trying to convince me that he was a waffling moron. Sorry "24." That may go down as one of the lamest twists ever. Seriously, is this season going to end with Jack shooting the President of the United States in the head? Because that'd be ballsy. Otherwise, it's just another "Where do we go from here?" twist.

7)I was happy with this exchange:
SUMMER: Remember when the boys made us watch that movie about the gay guys on the mountain?
MARISSA: Lord of the Rings.
SUMMER: Yeah. And you remember that Gollum guy, how he got evil and more evil the closer he got to that fire-y thing? That's kinda how Seth is about Brown.

8)Bye Nikki Reed. I actually liked her character except that she didn't really have a character. She was there to be a viable and understanding woman to facilitate the Ryan/Marissa breakup. But the roller-coaster ride with Sadie and Ryan in this particular episode was just as bad as any Ryan/Marissa roller-coaster.



  1. I especially like that none of the four seem to have applied to more than one school, and I'm really sorry I missed the episode where the guy from Berkeley said Marissa should apply, because that would have been some high comedy.

    Yes, Brody and Bilson are very good actors, and one of the few real-life couples who are still interesting together when the cameras roll (see also Brangelina), but the "Seth lies about Brown again" plot was so stupid that I couldn't really care about the pain of that scene.

    I also like how, after weeks and weeks of telling Ryan he needed to be with Sadie, Sandy and Kirsten immediately did a 180, and Sandy the son of a Bronx socialist tried to bribe Ryan into dumping her.

  2. Yes! I somehow forgot about that first part. Surely Seth had a safety school. Rick Porter and I were discussing the other day that "The O.C." would have been best served ditching Marissa, sending Seth and Summer to Brown and then having Ryan casually say, "I didn't want to mention it to anybody, but I applied to Rhode Island School of Design and got in!" Then Sandy can come in and say, "I don't know if you knew this, but your Great Auntie Cohen lived in Newport, Rhode Island and had a nice house there and she just died."

    The Cohens and Ryan and Summer and Seth can all relocate. They can call it "The R.I."

    It would be great TV.

    Not-so-great TV?

  3. Well, if they all wind up at Berkeley like I'm assuming (that is, if there's an actual fourth season), what are they going to call it? The BA? (for Bay Area)

  4. I thought that, too, but the Berkeley envelope was Ryan's; he opened it a minute or two later.

    Dan is convinced they'll wind up at some fictional Orange County-based college, ala 90210. I suspect he's right.

  5. California University, Newport. Go Condors.

    Or it could be California University Newport-Temecula.

    That might make for unfortunate anagramed hats that would sell very well to frat boys.

  6. The oc become ok again Because it's season 4 is the Great season.There are millions of Fan of this Show.In the Beginning of the show the Rating was very poor.The season ended with an extreme tragedy. The death of Marissa Cooper-Nichol.I have seen all the Seasons of this Show.If anybody wants to watch the oc episodes check the Link.