The Middle

Posted by: The Dantichrist on January 20th, 2010

Filed under: Essays and Thoughts

We decided we’d each put together a mid-season report card for One Tree Hill, which has now aired 13 episodes of its seventh season. We originally planned on getting this posted before 7.13 – Weeks Go By Like Days aired, but, well… that did not happen. Better late than never, though.

Best Episode

7.12 – Some Roads Lead to Nowhere
“Some Roads Lead Nowhere” is my pick for favorite episode so far. I don’t think this season has had a KILLER episode (yet?), but this is the one that was all-around most entertaining to me.
– I really enjoyed seeing Nathan, Haley, and Jamie as a family — and even though they were dealing with some big changes, it wasn’t all gloom and doom like the first part of the season. The good news of Nathan being a Bobcat again and then watching the family leave together on Haley’s tour made me very happy.
– This episode is by far the most entertaining Clay and Quinn have been. Quinn’s “audition” was hilarious and endearing and these two have done enough moping so it was nice to see Clay be proactive.
– Dan leaving Rachel with nothing was excellent. She’s awful. I think Dan has changed but I’ll never completely trust the Dantichrist.
– Skills had a nice send-off, especially considering why the actor left. I think Mouth will be back. (Is it just me or is Mouth really creepy looking this year? He’s always kind of creepy but he’s kicked it up a notch lately.)
– Julian continues to be kind of a douche about the Alex situation. I don’t think he has a romantic interest in Alex, but his need to “save her” taking priority over his relationship with Brooke is just weird. I don’t think it’s healthy for her to work with him anymore, and I wish he would see that. I feel bad for Brooke. And who the hell is this new guy? Didn’t see that coming.

7.08 – I Just Died In Your Arms Tonight
The first seven episodes of this season have been pretty heavy, don’t you agree? Dealing with Renee wasn’t easy on Nathan and Haley and what better way to unwind than a girls’ night in and a camping trip with your son? The audience, I think, also needed a reprieve. One Tree Hill excels when it’s funny and this has got to be one of the funniest episodes to date. The camping trip allowed for some nice moments between Nathan and Jamie, as well as Julian and Jamie. Also, Julian and Nathan finally got to spend some time together and become friends. Don’t overthink the fist bump. The funnier parts of the episode, however, belong to the ladies. How perfect were Sophia Bush and Bethany Joy Galeotti as their characters were high on Taylor’s special brownies? And is the Lollipop Guild a trade union?

Weakest Episode

7.03 – Hold My Hand as I’m Lowered
I haven’t strongly disliked any episodes this season, but in the earlier part of the season a lot of the stories felt repetitive and drawn out (namely getting to know Clay and Quinn and their emo pasts). There were several contenders but my pick goes to “Hold My Hand as I’m Lowered” because, well, it wasn’t very interesting or particularly fun to watch. The “Skills and Jamie catch a dragon in the bathroom” scenes were just dumb. Everyone is uncomfortable and upset about the Renee situation. Haley’s hair looks bad. I did enjoy the flashbacks about Dan and Rachel.

7.02 – What Are You Willing to Lose
I honestly don’t think anything horribly bad has happened this season, there have been no episodes that have me scratching my head and wondering what the point was. My problem with this episode is that I felt like nothing much happened. Aside from learning that Dan had married Rachel and the introduction of Alex, what happened? The best thing about this episode was Haley’s impersonations of Lucas and Peyton.

Most Entertaining Plot Line

I have enjoyed watching Millie self-destruct. I’m surprised I’m not picking a Hathan or Dan plotline — I do prefer them as characters, and they have had more entertaining moments — but Millie’s ridiculous coke-snorting model storyline starting with the fashion show episode has been the most entertaining plotline for me.

Call it a match made in the fiery depths of hell. You know it’s bad when Dan Scott comes out looking like the good guy. At times it was hard to tell whether or not his feelings for her were genuine. At times it was hard to tell whether or not her feelings for him were genuine. By the end, though, I think we can agree that Rachel loved the money and the power and that perhaps Dan Scott might be the one most changed at this point. I actually enjoyed watching every single minute of their marriage and am actually sad to see it’s come to an end. And it was worth waiting nine episodes to hear Jamie call Rachel “grandma”. I’d been hoping for that since we found out that Rachel and Dan were married.

Best New Character

This is a tough one because I don’t LOVE any of them (but I don’t dislike any of them either). I’ll go with Alex because I’ve enjoyed her the most so far, but my interest has dropped since she became less funny, fell in love with Julian, and tried to kill herself. Clay and Quinn are such similar characters so wrapped up in each other’s stories that it’s hard to choose one over the other, but Quinn is really growing on me.

Nope. Not Clay Evans and not Quinn James. I’m going with Alex. I’ll admit, she was hard to swallow at first but I think they’ve done a fantastic job of fleshing her out, making her likable and letting us really get to know her. Her feelings for Julian are misplaced but she’s an interesting character and she does have a good heart. She’s also funny, and therefore entertaining to watch. I think she links her sobriety with Julian and obviously that relationship will be tested. But her concern for Millicent’s growing addiction is nice. I look forward to seeing where her recovery goes.

Favorite Shirtless Nathan Moment

Julie: Um, all of them? I will go with his shirtless man pain moment from 7.06 – Deep Ocean Vast Sea.

Morgan: Thankfully, there have been a lot of shirtless Nathan moments this season to pick from. Mine comes from the opening of the 6th episode. Nathan is shooting a commercial, for some reason completely naked under his towel. As he finds out his endorsement deals are being cancelled because of the Renee ordeal, the towel is removed and he is left naked. The look on his face is priceless.

Most Pretentious Episode Title

7.10 – You Are a Runner and I Am My Father’s Son

7.10 – You Are a Runner and I Am My Father’s Son

Biggest Disappointment

The Renee storyline, and in a larger sense the overall depressing tone of the first seven episodes of the season. I loved Dan’s twisted Renee expose, but it was kind of anti-climactic considering how long they dragged it out. I don’t think it was a bad choice for a storyline, but I wish it had been shorter and that there had been less teasing of Haley not trusting Nathan.

I suppose it had to happen at some point. Haley James Scott went through six seasons, 130 episodes, of having good hair. Even if it wasn’t great, it wasn’t awful. It always looked nice. But this season, with the re-emergence of her music career, we saw a new look for Tutor Girl. Wild, red-ish hair. It didn’t work, especially not with her complexion. Thankfully, it seems to be getting better.

Best Musical Moment:

This season has had a lot of good music! I really loved the use of “Blue Skies” by Noah and the Whale used over the intro to “Some Roads Lead Nowhere” (with very little dialogue, to great effect).

“Brooklyn” by Wakey!Wakey! used in Some Roads Lead to Nowhere. Yes, it’s recent but I also thought the song worked our really well for what was going on and even better, it was performed by Grubbs (actually Michael Grubbs of the band Wakey!Wakey!). The song was used in the first promo for the episode and I recall thinking it sounded like a symphony and made for a very nice promo. Hearing it in its entirety and with lyrics, I thought it suited the ending/beginning feeling that the close of that episode had.

Predictions For the Rest of the Season

I think Brooke and Julian will reconcile by the end of the season, and possibly be engaged.
I wouldn’t be surprised if Rachel does something to get back at Dan. However, I don’t think we’ll be seeing much more of her, so maybe it will be something she’s already done and he’ll discover it.
Millie is going to be begging for a lot of forgiveness.
Nathan and Haley will be adorable.

You know what? I don’t know. But I think Brooke and Julian are headed for a lot of heartache. Millicent is certainly headed toward rock bottom.

Lingering Questions

Who is that new guy working for Brooke?
Where is Dan going and what is he up to? How genuine is he about redemption?
What will happen with Mouth and Millie? How much lower can Millie go?
Will Victoria ever find a lover?

Where are Lucas, Peyton and Sawyer exactly? I’d love to know that. How far will Millie fall? Will Victoria ever find a lover?

Wishes For the Rest of the Season

More interaction of the main characters we’ve known for years, like Brooke and Haley scenes.
For Haley to have better hair. PLEASE.
An epic CAR ACCIDENT! The show is due for a good one. Every time someone is in a car, I wait for it.
A spark of the old Dantichrist. Perhaps he can use his powers of manipulation for less evil purposes.
Brooke to be happy.

More Victoria, please. And I’d like for Mouth to get a job and keep it and stop quitting whenever something happens that he doesn’t like. He’s the worst employee ever.

*This entry is named after a song by One Tree Hill favorites Jimmy Eat World.