The O.C. is my favorite television show of all time, but I’m sure everybody can agree there were some pretty craptastic episodes. I sat through it every week, during the good times, and during the shit times. Since the show has been over for three years, there are many episodes that I really have not re-watched since they originally aired. The Season 1 and 2 episodes I mainly don’t re-watch aren’t really because I don’t like them, I just regarded them as filler when they aired so I never have had the desire to re-watch them. And in the case of the Season 1 episodes, I just got a bit tired of Oliver and Teresa. With Season 2 I thought there was a stretch in the middle where it got a little stale. I will note that I did re-watch The Father Knows Best recently, and it was as boring as I remember it being. The Season 3 and 4 episodes I do not re-watch are a completely different situation though, I just don’t like the episodes period. Here is my O.C. episode shitlist, by season of the episodes I don’t re-watch.
Season 1: The Links, The Rivals, The Truth, The Telenovela
Season 2: The Ex-Factor, The Accomplice, The Second Chance, The Lonely Hearts Club, The Father Knows Best
Season 3: The Perfect Storm, The Disconnect, The Chrismukkah Bar Mitz-Vahkkah, The Heavy Lifting, The Road Warrior, The Journey, The Undertow, The Secrets and Lies, The Day After Tomorrow, The Dawn Patrol, The Man of the Year, The Graduates
Season 4: The Sleeping Beauty, The Earth Girls Are Easy, The My Two Dads, The French Connection, The Dream Lover
Here’s the ultimate bottom of the barrel, my top five worst O.C. episodes. I can’t really get too much in detail because I honestly haven’t watched these episodes since they originally aired.
5. The Dream Lover- This was just brutal and the epitome of my problem with Season 4. During Seasons 1 and 2 The O.C. had a perfect mix of drama and humor, Season 3 was then far too dark and Season 4 was far too cheesy and “comedic.” They tried way too hard to be funny and it wasn’t funny to me. The real comedy of The O.C. were the tongue in cheek jokes and ironic/self referential lines from Seasons 1 and 2. It still shocks me that in some interviews Josh Schwartz has called Season 4 better than Season 2, some fans have too. I really don’t get it. So onto the episode some more I think in this episode Seth and Ryan go on a spiritual journey or some shit. Honestly the only thing I remember was Seth seeing an otter in the pool. I think Che thought he was gay for Seth or something too. It was stupid, as bummed as I was about the cancellation news at the time, when I saw this episode I knew they were out of ideas. In order for the show to actually have been able to gone on for Season 5 they would have either needed to find some bullshit way to make Marissa alive, or just totally Dallas Season 4 and pretend it never happened.
4. The French Connection- Terrible episode. If they wanted to do more stupid love triangles why couldn’t they have just kept Marissa around? To me the Ryan/Taylor romance came off as forced, I know there’s a cult online group online who like it but the viewer ratings for Season 4 speak for themselves. I was a fan of Taylor during Season 3 when she was a villain and annoyance to the group, but in Season 4 this phony “new” core four felt really fake and stupid. This episode was probably the worst of the Ryan/Taylor crap. So basically from what I remember Taylor’s ex-french husband came back and wrote some erotic novel that has a sex story about Taylor. I remember the name Peaches being used a lot in the episode, I’m not sure if it was a nickname for Taylor or the name of the book or some kinky sex act but it was all stupid. I think there was something on a page number or something. Basically Ryan’s pissed or something and you think he’s running onto the set of Taylor on some TV show but he isn’t. I don’t know. This episode sucked though. I really couldn’t believe this was the same show that I had been watching since 2003. I think the problem with The O.C. is the show just aged too fast and got away from what made the first two years work. They should have stuck to the winning formula.
3. The Graduates- I know many fans will hate me for this but I think you can really judge how far the show had gone downhill by watching the first three season finales in a row like I did the day the final episode aired in 2007. The vibe of the show just feels dead before the opening, just dark and dull. The Seth burning down the office storyline was lame, Volchok was a lame villain, etc. And then to top it all off at the end The O.C. committed suicide by killing off their lead female, Marissa. The show had lost its way because of too much darkness and too much death, and the writers’ solution to lighten up the show was to kill one of the most beloved characters on the show? That is why Season 4’s light tone came off as so phony to me, after maybe 3 episodes the show immediately moved into a lighter tone and completely forgot about Marissa. Yes, I know Josh will say they spent the stupid Chrismukk-huh episode in honoring her, but that episode was basically the writers trying to rationalize her death by saying BUT RYAN GAVE HER 3 MORE YEARS! What they fail to realize is, this is a fictional show! You just shouldn’t have killed her off, that’s why you lost half your audience instantly after “The Graduates” aired. Sorry for the long rant.
2. The Heavy Lifting- After Johnny finally croaked I thought things would finally go back to normal and we’d get a solid second half of the season, but then his cousin Sadie showed up to help further kill the show. Johnny’s funeral and everything was melodramatic too.
1. The Road Warrior- Ryan and Marissa breaking up over the phone? Kiss my ass. Also Sadie and Ryan’s strip poker and their immediate romance just felt stupid after all the Johnny bullshit. I think the Seth lying stupid storyline its low with this episode too.
On August 5, 2003 The O.C. debuted and changed teen drama forever. To commemorate the anniversary I guess I’ll post my story about finding out about the show and watching the pilot.
I remember hearing about the show in July 2003 since I live in Orange County, California (about 5-10 minutes outside of Newport) so I was interested in seeing what a show based on where I live would be like. I also was an 11 year old kid who did nothing but watch crappy FOX shows. I literally watched every show on FOX in the early 2000’s from Boston Public to Ally McBeal to Greg the Bunny to Titus to Temptation Island to Joe Millionaire, you name it.
Anyways so on August 5th I sat down to watch this show without knowing any of the actors that well going in, outside of Mischa Barton who I vaguely remembered from that lesbian movie she did. I was immediately captivated and addicted to the show, it was the greatest hour of television I had ever seen. Many teen dramas today fail to nail character chemistry, but I immediately found myself loving the Ryan/Seth friendship, the Ryan/Marissa romance, and Seth/Summer romance. For some shows the couples and friendships just don’t click but it all did on The O.C. I immediately became addicted to the message boards and it seemed like overnight the show was just a sensation. I also used to frequent The Pool House blog a lot, anybody remember that? I actually remember the night the second episode aired I was on my way home from a baseball game on a school bus with my summer camp, and everybody was huddled around my hand held TV trying to watch “The Model Home.” It also seemed like during this time period they replayed the new episodes at least 2 or 3 times per week.
I also remember people going CRAZY when Marissa overdosed in Tijuana before the month break. I mean everybody knew she would survive but there was still just so much suspense. Should have kept her alive in 2006 too Schwartz!
There was also an O.C. marathon on FX after the summer episodes and I remember me and my buddies just sitting there all day and watching this marathon.
Anyways, enough about my early O.C. experience. Anybody else who watched the show from day one or at least around that time period have a story to share? Leave it in the comments section!
Over the years Josh Schwartz has created classic characters like Ryan Atwood, Seth Cohen, Chuck Bartowski, John Casey, Chuck Bass, and many others (Yes I know Chuck Bass is from the Gossip Girl books but he was changed drastically for the TV series) but he has also had his fair share of dud characters on his shows. Here is my list:
10. Emmet from Chuck (2008-2010)
Chuck has probably had the least amount of annoying recurring/guest characters out of all of Josh Schwartz’s shows, and I know putting Emmet on this list may be unpopular, but to me the character was way too cheesy and over the top. Josh”s humor is at its best when it is tongue in cheek, and to me the Emmet character was just annoying. Tony Hale was great on Arrested Development, but this character just didn’t work for me.
9. D.J. from The O.C. (2004)
As Season 2 of The O.C. began Josh decided to incorporate some new characters into the show. For the most part it worked, Alex, Zach, and Lindsay brought a new vibe to the show and had great chemistry with the core characters. Then there was DJ. DJ wasn’t really that dislikable, he was just, there. We never really found out anything without him, he was basically an archetypal character. The yard guy who frequently had his shirt off, a plot device for Marissa to piss off Julie. Did we ever even find out what DJ. stood for? He left after only a handful of episodes, and his character was so dull he managed to turn Marissa into a lesbian.
8. Teresa from The O.C. (2003-2006)
Teresa was introduced in Season 1 as one of Ryan’s past love interests. After the Oliver storyline, she became somewhat of a regular for the rest of the season. Teresa was simply dull always seemed depressed, she came off as just a plot device to keep Ryan and Marissa apart. Oliver was this too, but at least he was evil and it was actually interesting.
7. Damien from Gossip Girl (2009-2010)
Damien was Jenny’s creepy looking drug dealing love interest in Season 3. The whole storyline came off as contrived and Damien just wasn’t terribly interesting.
6. Kevin Volchok from The O.C. (2005-2006)
During the first half of Season 3 Volchok appeared in a couple episodes as some beach bum asshole who Ryan punched. He then randomly reappeared later in the season to begin a relationship with Marissa, and then in the finale he hit Ryan and Marissa’s car leading to Marissa’s death. Volchok was a boring villain. Luke, Julie, Caleb, Oliver, and Trey were all unique villains, you loved to hate them. Volchok was not entertaining, I did not want to see him on my television. Also why couldn’t Oliver be the one to off Marissa if Josh was so dead set on it?
5. Aaron Rose from Gossip Girl (2008)
Aaron Rose is one of the many love interests Serena has had on Gossip Girl. Like most of them, he was about as entertaining as watching paint dry. Aaron was an artist I think, and he and Serena broke up after a few episodes. I started to fast forward most of his scenes when watching on DVR so that’s honestly all I remember.
4. Rebecca Bloom from The O.C. (2005)
She sucked. Nuff said.
3. Vanessa from Gossip Girl (2007-Present)
Basically the Teresa of Gossip Girl, except Vanessa is a full time cast member and even more annoying. She also had the worst relationship in television history with Dan Humphrey.
2. Sadie from The O.C. (2006)
Oh Sadie, the self proclaimed “brunette beauty.” The actress who portrayed her, Nikki Reed, felt above The O.C. and claimed she only did it because her agency pressured her to. She began dating Ryan late in Season 3. At this point there had been enough wrenches thrown in the Ryan/Marissa relationship, they either should have been single or together after all that had happened.
1. Johnny Harper from The O.C. (2005-2006)
The man, the myth, the legend. Johnny Harper. The character that Josh Schwartz thought fans would fall in love with and would divide fans between Johnny/Marissa and Ryan/Marissa. Johnny and another annoying character Chilli were introduced when Marissa started going to public school. Johnny immediately fell for Marissa but just like with Oliver, Marissa didn’t notice. Johnny was a surfer, he wasn’t a dick, he was just always depressed and self centered. Johnny was infamously killed off on The Cliffhanger, when he literally fell off a cliff to his death. Many fans saw this as The O.C.’s jumping the shark and getting far too melodramatic.
So who are your least favorites?
According to DigitalSpy.com, Rachel Bilson says she misses The O.C.
She said: “I do miss Summer terribly. The O.C. was the most phenomenal time. I saw Mischa [Barton] at Cannes, but I honestly miss everyone from the show.”
The actress also admitted that she was lucky to find fame after growing up, saying: “I do fall out of cars, but not because I am drunk but because I am clumsy. I think the girls who come to fame younger fall into all that partying, but I did it before I became famous.
“I mean I was 21 when The O.C. started, Mischa was 16. I can’t imagine dealing with that kind of success at that age. My life may have been very different if I had started out that young.”
Come on Josh, get the gang back together and call up The CW!