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October 13, 2015

What has happened to The O.C.?

by Anna Johns, posted Dec 5th 2006 10:24AM
the ocOver the weekend, the Wall Street Journal wrote an article pondering the demise of The O.C. It lost 26% of its audience when season two started up. Then 15% more disappeared (myself included) for season three. And, now in season four, The O.C. lost a whopping 39% of its crucial, age 18-49 viewers from last season. It's in so much trouble that the network has even launched an online effort to save the show. (Or gauge viewer interest)


The article includes a very frank interview with The O.C. creator, Josh Schwartz, who admits some mistakes. He says, opening up the series during season two to include storylines for the parents was too much to juggle. When it started to get stale, he killed off Caleb Nichol. Smart move, he says. But, he wonders whether it was such a hot idea to kill off Marissa Cooper's character at the end of last season.

The show also lost a collaborator at the network when entertainment president Gail Berman resigned. Berman, Schwartz says, was closely involved in storylines because she had a history of success with teen soaps. Berman's replacement collaborated, too, but not in a good way. Peter Liguori demanded that Schwartz add a new, celebrity character. Thus was born the uber-boring storyline with Jeri Ryan.

And finally, The O.C.'s current place on the Thursday night schedule is not helping, either. It's up against Grey's Anatomy, CSI, Scrubs, and 30 Rock.

I stopped watching The O.C. shortly after the premiere of season three. I felt like the writers hastily wrapped up a major cliffhanger from the season two finale where Marissa shot Ryan's brother. After that, I had a hard time believing the characters were in high school and I hated the clunky, unbelievable storyline of Kristen's alcoholism. Maybe it was the influence of Liguori who ruined the show because, in my opinion, it got bad when he came on board.

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Let me start off by saying I am a huge fan of the o.c. if not the number one. As each season came around I would get more and more excited....each year the episodes kept getting better and better. Then came the biggest shocker ever. Marissa Cooper's death. I was a little upset when they didn't even show her funeral on the first episode of season four. It probablly was a huge mistake for killing Mischa Barton off the show. Despite all the problems she had on the show, she was everyone's favorite O.C. Chick. I am very sad to see the show go, but who knows maybe the other actors and actresses can move on and continue their careers, for the all will be greatly missed! California here we come...California here we go!

January 09 2007 at 9:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I love the O.C. Its my favorite show. i have seen every episode sice the begining, the first season was excellent, the story lines were great, everything was awsome. the second season was ok. i didnt like it as much, but it wasnt horrible by any stretch of the imagination. Season three was awsome. the con artists, the fact that julie was poor for a while, the way seth and summers relationship was, the way taylor tried to ruin their lives, and then sandy bluffed the dean into thinking he had pictures of him and taylor. When seth smoked pot, that was hillarious! the story line with johnny and volchok, the third season was awsome. I think the fourth season is back to the way it was in the begining. they have really intersesting story lines developing, i think it is great.

December 07 2006 at 12:49 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

My opinions are basically the polar opposite of popular opinion, so I'm going to post them for the sake of diversity:

Five Reasons I Stopped Loving the O.C.:
1. The sex -- the constant, crazed, rabbit-esque sex -- drives me up the metaphorical wall. These people are incapable of keeping their clothes on. And that's fine, I guess, but why do I have to watch every single instance of it? Call me stupid and naive, but I really thought the show would get better about that once it had established characters and didn't need racy scenes to make people tune in.

2. I liked Oliver. It was an interesting storyline. You know where I dove off the boat the first time? When Seth and Summer, otherwise my favorite couple, had that embarrassing losing-their-virginity storyline. Ew. I felt physically ill trying to sit through that.

3. I like happy. I like consistent. I would rather watch my happy couples take half-hour walks through the park while birdwatching than slowly fall out of love and ultimately break up and choose a new partner just for the sake of conflict. So, Teresa. DJ. Trey. Lindsey. Alex. These are all names I hate with a fiery passion. I refused to watch season two for one simple reason: my two favorite couples had broken up. And while Seth/Summer was at least a tolerable breakup, that whole teen pregnancy storyline was ridiculous, and led to the introduction of the aforementioned characters.

4. However, I loved Johnny. I LOVED the first half of season 3, the one everyone else hated. Mostly because there was no sex (discounting Taylor, because we didn't have to see it, or the nasty beach montage). There were con artist storylines, and blackmailing plots, and a new gang of friends I actually liked. All of these things were interesting to me. I'm still deeply bitter about Johnny's death, and it is where I jumped ship for the second time. I came back to season 4 because everyone told me how great it was, but really, while I like Seth/Summer, 80% of my amusement is derived from ranting about everything I dislike.

5. My problems with season 4 are...Taylor, who needs so much therapy it's not even funny anymore, and Kaitlin/the Ward twins/everything they're trying to do with "the new crowd" at Harbor. I'd rather spend half the season following activism storylines with Summer at Brown than go back to OC High with Marissa's sister.

I used to believe that the characters were capable of redemption, live in eternal hope that next year would be the year, but now I've given up. Too many partners, too much alcohol, too many drugs. Now I just want the show to die quietly with whatever dignity it has left.

December 05 2006 at 10:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
The Mighty

Anna, have you been watching Season 4? IMO, it's the best work The O.C has ever done, so far the 5 episodes are up there with the start of season 1.

December 05 2006 at 7:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Is this the I hate Marissa blog?Yeah,she was depressing!Yeah,she was boring!But was her death really necessary?I don't think so.I haven't watched the new season's episodes and honestly I don't think I will.Ryan and Taylor?OMG

December 05 2006 at 6:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I watched this show up until "My Name Is Earl" and "The Office" moved to Thursday nights. FOX is crazy for putting "The O.C." up against CBS' and NBC's Thursday night line-ups.

That aside it's been obvious Josh Schwartz has been phoning it in the last two years. My guess is he probably was focusing on that O.C. spinoff (Athens) FOX had him develop but never put into production.

Killing of Caleb Nichol was a bad idea. Every show needs a villian to drive the plot. Caleb could have been The O.C. version of J.R. Ewing. Julie Cooper could have been The O.C.'s version of Alexis Carrington. I think back to that episode when Julie put those sleeping pills in Caleb's drink and handed it to him. He said something nice to her so she stopped him from taking the drink and dumped it.

Just imagine had she killed him, inherited all his money and stock in his company. Then at the end of the season she gets arrested...Cliffhanger.

Missed opportunities:

- Julie's affair with Luke.

- Ryan father not being Sandy or Caleb.

- Trey not being killed by Marissa.

- Kristen not having an affair with Jimmy while she was drinking and ending up pregnant.

The O.C. doesn't push the envelope. And that is why this will probably be it's last season while shows like "Dallas", "Knots Landing", even "Beverly Hills 90210" will have lasted longer then "The O.C." will.

December 05 2006 at 5:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I think people exaggerated a bit on the previous posts. All shows have ups and downs. Yes, the last two seasons have been hard to follow, but honestly, every now and then there were some very good episodes. This latest season is like watching season 1 all over again. The characters have evolved, and I love how they are making Ryan fall for Taylor, they are an unlikely couple and thats what makes it interesting. This season is only 16 episodes long so I'm sure Schwartz will make the most of them. The timeslot for the show is also not a good one, I mean, Grey's Anatomy is beating CSI left and right and CSI is getting 19-20mil viewers on average, with Grey's getting more than that, so thats already 40mil viewers on two shows, the OC just cant compete. It has to be moved to another night or else it will really die.

December 05 2006 at 4:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

We all agreed Season 1 was the best. I think Fox really gave the show a slap to the face on Season 3. Now its really struggling to get ratings, facing off Grey's and CSI:. The OC is really compared to great Aaron Spelling shows like 90210 and Melrose Place which both became really successful shows. The casting is waste if you cancel because the actors have brought out alot of potiential to the show and they really enjoy what they do.

December 05 2006 at 3:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Seaon 1 was great and then the balloon broke.

December 05 2006 at 3:18 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

this show dug its own grave during season 3. it sucks that its going to be canceled but atleast it did something to deserve it (unlike arrested development which was robbed!).

December 05 2006 at 3:05 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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