January 12, 2012
The End Is Nigh...Again
I have, for all intents and purposes, bid farewell to One Tree Hill more times than I can count. Some of those times were because I was sure the network would not renew the show for another season. Some of those times were because the network had already expressed its intent to cancel the show. Some of those times were because I lost interest in the show (I actually did quit watching for 1/2 a season several years ago but then had to start again because...well, just because). Most of those times, the show aired an episode that could function perfectly as a series finale so in addition to my acceptance of its inevitable end, I was given adequate closure.
I spent the entirety of last season ready and even anxious for that to be the last. Not because my affection for the show or the characters had abated, but because it was just time. The residents of Tree Hill go through some shit and it's because I like them so much that I think they've suffered enough. After 9 years of car accidents, heart attacks, weddings, babies, kidnappings, murders, and hairstyles I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy, these people deserve to live out the rest of their days in boredom and peace. And it felt like the show agreed because for the most part, last season was a whole lot of not much that culminated in happy endings for all. Then the network announced it was renewed for one final, shortened season and I was like "I mean, I guess that's nice for them but, I'm out."
Who was I kidding? I have been here for 8 years already, I'm certainly not going to jump ship with 13 episodes to go. So back I came last night for the premiere of the 9th and final season and was left with mixed emotions.
What I liked about the episode:
I'm really glad Chris Keller is back because he's a very entertaining character who has always added something fun and enjoyably awful (yes, that's a thing, and if you watch this show you should totally get it) to the show. And while I didn't have these feelings in any of his previous appearances on the show, last night I was a bit overcome by how hot Chris Keller got. Tyler Hilton can get it, y'all!
The people I love most on the show were all there and most of them had something worthwhile to do. I'm disappointed that Nathan's role will be smaller this season but some James Lafferty is better than none at all so I'll roll with it. Brooke and Haley are busy being moms and running the newly reopened cafe and they have great husbands and cute babies so extra helpings of yay for all of those things. Victoria is back and as crazily fun to have around as ever and while I hate Dan more than words, he really is an integral part of the show and absolutely needs to be around this season. Plus, Dan being homeless and having to stay in Naley's guest room is so deliciously wrong it gives me a case of the snickers.
The set up of something that's clearly terrible at the opening of the episode is appropriately melodramatic and insane for One Tree Hill, even if it does seem to fly in the face of my wish that all of the denizens of The Hill end the series happy, healthy and living perfect, boring lives for the rest of eternity. (But for real, if Nathan is under that sheet in the morgue, I will kill someone.)
What I didn't like about the episode:
You guys, I do not care about Chase and Alex. I barely cared about them in previous seasons when their storylines were entwined with those of Haley, Nathan, Mouth, Brooke and Julian but when their storyline is only about them? No. Remember last year when Chase had an entire arc that was just about him and Chuck? CHUCK? Why is this happening? Last night Alex had one useful role to play - that of allowing Chris Keller to flaunt his Chris Kellerness - but spent, like, 10 full minutes of screen time wiggling her barely-clad butt in my face while Chase was like "bar manager, sex life, underpants, lip-purse." Nathan made phone calls from an airport and he was 3000 times more interesting then everything Alex and Chase did. Plus even with all of his clothes on, he was a million times hotter than they could every hope to be.
Quinn and Clay. I feel guilty about this because there was a time I genuinely liked these characters and thought their stories were worthwhile, but that time has passed and now I just zone out when they're on the screen and have thoughts like "how is that loose-ass, low-cut top not falling right off of her" and "what happened to Robert Buckley and has anyone put out an APB on his neck?" Even with their presence in the opening montage of sadness, despair and bad things, I still can't manage to give a rip what's going on in their lives.
My heart will not break if Millie remains MIA but that Chase, Alex, Clay and Quinn all got screen time while Mouth was completely absent is unacceptable. Obviously Skills is gone (Antwon Tanner's legal troubles and all) but Mouth? He's one of the core group! WTF, Schwahn?
Not enough Jamie. Jackson Brundage is C-U-T-E and Jamie adds a lot to the show. He's dependably great in scenes with literally everyone else in the cast so why did he only get 30 seconds of screen time last night? More Jamei, less Alex's panties, guys. Come on.
I'm in this thing to the bitter end of course, but I'm hoping the bitter end has a whole lot less Chase and a whole lot more of...well, pretty much everyone else. Except Chuck.