I started watching season 3 of “The OC” during my staycation last week, and I wasn’t surprised when I barreled right through it. I thought season 2 was good, but season 3 was just throwing drama left and right, and you know, I am HERE FOR IT.
Before I go any further, here is the description of season 3 from Amazon.com:
Senior year. Prom. Graduation. College visits. Old friends. New problems. And plenty of Korean popstars. Ryan’s savior complex becomes a recipe for disaster. Seth and Summer’s relationship hits the rocks thanks to Seth’s compulsion to edit the truth. As Kirsten attempts to put her life back together, Sandy assumes leadership of the Newport Group and finds himself the heir-apparent to Caleb Nichol’s legacy of scandal. Marissa spirals out of control after little sis Kaitlin – a Julie Cooper in the making – returns home to stir the pot. And speaking of Julie Cooper, she’s cast out of her Palace – into the slums of the OC.
Please note that the following DOES contain spoilers – I’m assuming I’m the only person who is watching “The OC” for the first time.
Season 2 left off with Marissa just having shot Trey, so season 3 picks up right there. To my shock, Trey was still alive, but obviously in the hospital. There is much controversy over Marissa’s actions and the community questions (and wishes) that Ryan was to blame instead.
Marissa and Ryan get kicked out of Harbor, and its public school for her and Ryan gets a tutor for homeschooling. At her new school, Marissa meets a group of new friends, and you can probably guess what happens next…
The new group of friends has their own trouble, and Marissa gets dragged in, love triangle, and all. Eventually, the group starts to fade away, and the remaining friend dies in an accident. Because of course, right?
Over the course of the season, Marissa and Ryan breakup and get back together, as do Seth and Summer. But the other focus remains on getting Marissa admitted back to Harbor (Ryan gets back in) and applying to college.
College visits brings back a few skeletons – Seth runs into Anna on the Brown campus, and Kirsten sees Teresa at the airport… with a baby that looks a lot like Ryan. Dun, dun, dunnnnn.
In the background of all this, Marissa’s dad disappears after proposing to her mom Julie Cooper, and there is no fortune to be had. This leaves Marissa to live with Summer, and Julie moved into the trailer park, complete with pork rinds and chewing tobacco (!).
In the end, Ryan is still up to his old ways – fighting everyone in sight, and getting involved with Marissa’s ex in stealing a car, which sends Ryan and Marissa into a terrible, flaming car crash in the last few minutes of the season finale.
The season closes with an unclear outcome (of course) – is Marissa alive (I’m thinking yes because we have one more season to go)? Will Ryan go to college? Is Teresa’s baby his?
We will soon see!
That’s right, I have NEVER watched a single episode of “The OC” – until now. Of course, I’d heard it was a good show, but it premiered in 2003, when I was strictly watching “Laguna Beach”.
After discovering that my library has NO copies of “The OC” on DVD, I asked for season 1 for Christmas, got it (thanks, mom!), and starting watching it pretty much immediately. Before I dive into my thoughts, here’s the official description from Amazon.com:
When Ryan Atwood, a tough, guarded, fiercely intelligent 16-year-old plunges headlong into the wealthy, privileged community of Newport Beach, he soon discovers that the ruling families of Orange County are every bit as territorial as the tough crowd with which he ran on the streets of Chino. For Sandy Cohen, the idealistic public defender who takes Ryan in; his wife Kirsten, the linchpin of O.C. society; their awkward adolescent son, Seth; and the beautiful troubled girl next door, Marissa Copper – Ryan’s presence will forever change their lives.
Ok, let’s get into this! And yes, there’s about to be loads of spoilers, because I’m assuming I’m the only person who hadn’t seen this show (I’m always late to the game). The season starts with us meeting Ryan in an interesting way – he’s attempting to steal a car with his brother, they mess it up and end up with the cops.
I was shocked – this is what all the hooplah was about? Some loser trying to steal cars? Ugh. But of course, Sandy Cohen, that public defender with a heart of gold, comes to Ryan’s rescue and offers to take him in (duh, there’s room in the pool house) temporarily.
Of course, a kid like Ryan isn’t immediately going to straighten up at the sight of Spanish-tiled roofs and granite countertops, so his presence in the neighborhood does not go unnoticed. He’s new, rough-around-the-edges, and he can’t seem to go anywhere without punching someone.
But alas, he catches the eyes of the girl next door, Marissa (Mischa Barton), and we’re given the romantic side of all the drama. Of course, Marissa’s not without her problems – cut to her drinking an endless bottle of room-temperature vodka.
As the season goes on (there are 27 episodes in season one), drama unfolds with all of the characters, including Marissa and her family, and the Cohens’ extended family members. Each episode ends on a cliffhanger, which explains why I watched a majority of it within a week, and then kept putting off the final three episodes because I wasn’t ready for it to be over.
Honestly, I didn’t grow up watching shows like this. I wasn’t allowed to watch “90210”, and have only seen a few episodes of “Dawson’s Creek”. “The OC” falls in-line with shows like this, the teen-soap type.
It’s good; not too cheesy, and I like the characters. The one that really won me over was Seth (Adam Brody), who is Sandy’s son, and he quickly befriends Ryan upon arrival. Seth is a nerd and despite his family’s name, he hasn’t been able to make many friends or get a girlfriend, well, ever. But once Ryan shows up and throws Seth into the cool scene, Seth is getting all the attention and I got a big kick watching his personality unfold.
For the record, I wanted so badly for Seth to end up with Anna, and was sad to see her go back to Philly. Summer is funny, but her character got stale for me.
Before I forget, let’s discuss Teresa, Ryan’s ex from Chino. I am not a big fan of her, and when she wound up pregnant in the second-to-last episode of the season I was about to scream! She toys with the idea of getting an abortion, but says she just HAS to have this baby (No, girl, you don’t! Your body, your choice!) because, cable TV.
So, the season ends with us not knowing exactly WHO the father is (cue Maury) and Ryan heading back with her to Chino to help her out. NNAAAAOOOOOO! Obviously, I haven’t watched season two yet (please, no spoilers), but I do not think she will end up having the baby and getting a paternity test. I am mostly thinking she will have a miscarriage and/or her and Ryan will get into a fight, sending him back to Orange County at the start of season two. We’ll see.
Probably my favorite two things about this show are 1. the nostalgia, and 2. the theme song. “The OC” is packed with things of my teenage life – silver flip phones, all things Hollister, and the stereotypical California lifestyle. Having said that, the show seemed rather low-budget to me now, but I’m sure if I’d have watched it in 2003, I would have thought it was very glamorous.
And then there’s the theme song, which is highly important (the theme to “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” is another favorite) and I would be lying if I said I didn’t belt out “CALI-FOR-NNIIIAAAAAAA” every single episode I watched. The soundtrack was also key, and brought me back to lots of bands I listened to in college.
So, there you have it! I haven’t started season two yet, but I promise you, I will! I’d love to hear if you watched this show, and why you liked it, or didn’t like it. In the meantime… “Californiiiiaaaaaaa, here we cooommme!”