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October 7, 2015

The OC: The Avengers (season premiere)

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Nov 2nd 2006 10:03PM

To help deal with the loss of Marissa, Ryan has taken up cage-fighting.

(S04E01) The OC is back with a vengeance... big time. After what I think most considered to be a lackluster third season, I think both die-hard and casual fans are going to be impressed with what this show still has to offer. We pick up five months after the death of Marissa Cooper and everyone, especially Julie and Ryan, has had to adjust their lives in the wake of her passing. Corny as it sounds, nothing is going to be the same.

Ryan no longer lives at home. He's taken up residence in the back room at the what may be the dirtiest bar in the world, but as Seth puts it "the utility closet is the new pool house." Ryan works at the bar as much as he can and avoids seeing the Cohens whenever possible. He spends his nights cage-fighting for prize money (which he never accepts) and he routinely gets his ass handed to him. It's sad to see him in this state. He clearly isn't doing well without Marissa and apparently getting punched repeatedly is getting him through it. I loved the opening sequence though. When Sandy came to visit and Ryan ducked out before Sandy came in? The whole scene was set to a cover of "Running Up That Hill" by Placebo and it really set the tone for the whole episode. It was a nice start to the season.

Elsewhere in Newport, Seth is passing time by working at a comic book shop called Centurion Comics. He's still going to RISD but I think he probably has to wait until the second semester since he applied so late in the game. He seems pretty much the same, but quieter -- like at the beginning of the series. He's much more reserved, though still a source for humorous one-liners.

It's clear Seth misses Summer and she seems to have pretty much put him out of her life. She's reinvented herself at Brown as this hippie-chick who supports any cause that comes her way. This new style for her... I'm not sure that I buy it. She's pretty much the anti-Summer now. Designer clothes have been replaced with thick sweaters that look like afghans and she no longer cares about what her hair looks like. I'll be interested to see how much longer she goes with this because she certainly isn't doing it to impress her tree-hugging cohort Che (Chris Pratt).

Not much to say about Kaitlin and Taylor, the new full cast-members. Kaitlin now attends Harbor and in her free-time she blackmails Dr. Roberts into buying her expensive clothes because Kaitlin busted the good doctor with, wait for it... The Stepmonster! She exists. Now if only we could see her face next time. This shouldn't come as much of a surprise though. Julie has never had good luck with marriage and now that she's drugged up all the time, it makes sense the Dr. R would be looking for companionship elsewhere.

There's even less to say about Taylor. She's back in Newport when everyone thought she was supposed to be in Paris. I don't dislike her character, but I get the impression that whatever her story is... it'll just be filler. That's not to say it won't be good. I just don't see how it could possibly relate to what's going on with everyone else.

The best scene of the episode was near the end though. Summer flew home to help Seth (I hate that it's awkward between them) deal with Ryan and what they came up with was really... well, sweet. Seth drew an entire comic book about Ryan and how he helped Seth, Sandy, and Kirsten better their lives. Ryan made the difference and they want him to come home. It worked (pool house is just as he left it) but before Seth could properly thank Summer, she took off for Rhode Island on a red-eye flight. Again, I hate that it's all weird between those two.

Despite everyone's good intentions, Ryan still falls prey to Julie's schemes. She hired a private investigator. He found Volchok and Julie gave all the info to Ryan. He's gonna go after him because in his own words, "I just realized... I have to do this." Volchok is responsible for Marissa's death. Avenging that is all that matters to Julie and Ryan. If Ryan finds him? Well we all saw what he did to that big guy in his final cage match. I like where this is going though. It's a serious conflict and The OC lacked that during last season. The hunt for Volchok is on.

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December 29 2006 at 5:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

the o.c is absolutely amazing and i miss marissa so much

November 05 2006 at 6:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Andrew Pulrang

I also enjoyed the season premire. However, I found the whole comic book to convince Ryan thing completely implausible. Given Ryan's frame of mind, I strongly doubt he'd be convinced by this rather syrupy presentation. In fact, I liked Sandy's comment afterwards, that it didn't work so much on him ... because he's not a sentimental as the others. He's more tough-minded, especially in regard to Ryan ... tough love, if you will. That's the strongest reason for Ryan's respect for Sandy. The others are all a bit strange and sentimental to him (if lovable), but Sandy's no fool, and Ryan respects that more than anything else.

November 05 2006 at 4:11 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'll tell you what, I thought Ryan was dark and bothered, Seth was kind of lonely, Summer doesn't seem to think Seth is alive... I'm getting nostalgia of season 1, anybody else??? And Marissa is still a major character in the show, she dictates every plot and story line in this new season, the more these characters evolve and let go or choose not to, in their own ways, I do believe as soon as Ryan moves on, so will the rest. This season is gonna be awesome, I have a feeling if it stays on Wednesday night, we will see more than 16 episodes, and the show will return to past glory. But Hospital dramas are back in a big way and Grey's can not be competed with right now. I'm psyched to see Taylor evolve as a main character, much like Summer did in the beginning of Season 1, as an insignificant filler story turned major player. Even with the banter of the show being cancelled, I have an optimistic view of this season, not starting with the other new shows really hurt because everyone already got in the Greys groove on thursdays, but I tivo'd Greys and still haven't watched it yet, I'm hardcore OC, and it's probably the warmest drama on tv right now, it has the family element that most other dramas do not have currently, so we'll see, and you can really tell Schwartz is on the ball early this year, the show will be very interesting this year.

November 04 2006 at 11:48 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
wheel see

man a 2.2 that is abysmal...

why doesnt fox move it to 8PM and just get rid of Happy Hour(in fact wasn't it canceled?) and Everybody Loves Raymond's Bro...er, Til Death...

pitting it against Grey's takes a big chunk out of the core OC audience...I feel like Monday after Prison Break or Tuesday at 8 would be a much better slot for it...

November 04 2006 at 8:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Nick James

The OC is fucked ratings wise.. it's up against both Grey's Anatomy and The OC... I think FOX is really going to try to reach out through MySpace in order to secure viwers for the show... which is a shame, because I was incredibly surprised with the quality of this episode. It pissed all over anything in the third season.

Here's hoping it lasts...

November 04 2006 at 7:52 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The episode was atrociously bad. It was boring, implausible and completely devoid of any sense of real emotion. I've seen the first four episodes of the season, and aside from Seth's run-in with Steve-O and maybe one or two other scenes, the first three suck.

It really picks up for the fourth episode (displays the new "comedic" take on the show), but the fact that the premiere did a...wait for it...2.2 rating means that it might not even get there.

November 03 2006 at 1:42 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

i thought it was pretty meh.

the writers still have a lot of work to get back in my good graces, not to say i wont take it off the dvr.

November 03 2006 at 10:29 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

My favorite part of the episode:

Seth: "Are you seriously asking if there's a comic book based on the X-Men movie?"

*Little girl then runs out of the comic store crying*

November 03 2006 at 9:06 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Josh Schartz you are a genius! The OC is back into form.

November 03 2006 at 7:38 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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