Anything Other Than Me: One Tree Hill Rewatch: Season 8: Episodes 17-22

OK, we’re at the end of season 8! AT LONG LAST. Only thirteen episodes to go before I move into the next phase of things here. (To drop a hint it may involve a family of witches…)

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Episode 17: “The Smoker You Drink, The Player You Get”

OK, so Haley is testing everyone’s baby preparedness. It’s hilarious the first few times and then it just gets old. Although Clay and Nathan hearing about the test and thus not paying attention when Haley actually goes into labor was pretty funny.

Meanwhile, everyone is obsessed with toaster strudel. Or something. It was a weird runner. Brooke gets to know Chloe, her and Julian’s baby’s biological mother a little bit and something comes very clearly into focus.

Nathan gets an A on a test and Kellerman asks him to stop representing Ian. He decides to dig his heels in and he and Clay get Ian to sign a contract that includes a morality clause.

Guys, Ian is very obviously the father of Chloe’s baby and the reason why Kellerman doesn’t want him around Nathan is that he’s happy Chloe is giving the baby up, and he doesn’t want them to change their minds, because Nathan and Haley make young parenthood look so awesome.

Also, Chase and Chuck bond some more, and Millie does a story about street signs, almost gets fired but then doesn’t. Or something.

Episode 18: “Quiet Little Voices”

Lydia is being born and everyone is reflecting on the past. My theory about Ian as the father of Chloe’s baby was way off, but, she wound up not giving to Brooke and Julian, because the father really was just some dude.

Serious missed opportunity for some convergence there.

Anyway, I enjoyed watching this episode since large swaths of it were made up of clips from season one, and I really, really miss season 1.

Anyway, Lydia is born, everyone tells Jamie how great Haley is and Brooke and Julian don’t get Chloe’s baby.

And that’s the episode.

Episode 19: “Where Not To Look For Freedom”

Nathan found a bottle of bourbon in Kellerman’s car, which is the same car that crashed into Brooke and Jamie. He and Julian decide to confront Kellerman about it, and he winds up taking responsibility and quitting his job. Of course this turns out to be premature because Detective Nathan eventually puts together that it was Ian who crashed the car, not his father.

Quinn is running Tric and Red Bedroom while Haley is out on maternity leave. She books Owen and The Moon and Alex opens for them and kicks all of the asses. She and Chase flirt some more and I’m totally trying to be open to them getting back together. Who am I kidding I love them together.

Clothes Over Bros offers Brooke a job in New York as Vice President. She decides, after consulting with Victoria and talking it over with Julian that this would be a good move for her. She’s having trouble dealing with losing the baby, and it would be a clean start so she decides to take the job.

Oh and someone is building a bunch of condos on the river court. Millie is going to do a story on it.

Episode 20: “The Man Who Sailed Around His Soul”

So, with the new found knowledge that it was Ian not August who was in the car accident, Nathan agonizes over what to do next. He even considers talking to Dan. He does talk to August and learns that he’s sober, so you know, whoops? Anyway, Nathan, Clay and Julian confront Ian, who is basically a sociopath, and completely remorseless. They wind up shoving him into the river for reasons, and that relationship ends. Also, Professor Kellerman goes away on a boat, and Nathan does not talk to Dan.

In the most contrived plot in the history One Tree Hill, Chase asks Alex to pee in a cup for a drug test so that he can join the Air Force. (He accidentally smoked pot with Kid Cudi, so he can’t pass the test.) The results come back and whoever’s pee it was is pregnant! Turns out it’s Brooke’s! Brooke is pregnant! YAY! She also decides to stay in Tree Hill, because she doesn’t want to raise a kid in New York.

In Quinn needs to do a thing I guess. (I feel bad, she’s a useless character…) she’s getting ready to go to Puerto Rico to shoot some supermodels, so she works out a bunch and gets a silly spray tan.

The episode is framed around Jamie’s first baseball game, at which he recites “Casey At The Bat” in his head and then hits a home run. It’s very nice.

Episode 21: “Flightless Bird, American Mouth”

So, I don’t quite understand how there’s one more episode after this, but, you know whatever. Quinn, Brooke, Alex and Lauren (hey! Lauren!) all go to Puerto Rico for Quinn’s photo shoot. They party a lot, especially Lauren, who has to be put to bed early. This is exactly like almost all of my friends who are elementary school teachers. Meanwhile, Alex continues to cover for Brooke, as they go out for sushi and drink a lot of alcohol. Things that Brooke can’t do because she’s pregnant.

The guys go to camp out by the river court and find an endangered bird that might save it from being turned into condos. They find a nest and also, Chuck drives a bulldozer after throwing a fit when Chase tells him that he’s moving away to join the air force.

Haley and Brooke decide to re open Karen’s Cafe, which is incredibly sweet and nice and I guess gives them a way to actually stay together and being connected story wise, which they just haven’t been lately.

Episode 22: “This is My House, This is My House”

OK, I see the point of another episode. This is yet another perfectly serviceable series finale if they hadn’t gotten those extra 13 episodes. We see everyone’s lives tracked over the course of a year. Brooke and Julian have twins, Haley and Brooke get Karen’s Cafe working again. Chase and Alex drift apart and come back together. Jamie learns how to be there for Madison. Quinn and Clay talk about their future together. (I kind of love that they’re not married, this show is very happily ever after minded and that they just kind of are is pretty special. But they are otherwise useless…)  Mouth and Millie have a morning show.

The twins are born, Nathan goes to see Dan and gives him a picture of Lydia and the ball from Jamie’s first hit.

I think there’s nothing better though than the wrap around narration of Jamie talking about how Tree Hill is a magic place and he was born in a magic time. My heart, it can’t take it.

Overall Analysis Of This Arc

I liked this stretch more than any other in the post Lucas and Peyton era. There was a lot of heart and love injected and the cast was actually interacting beyond their typically assigned units. In general I’m not into how comedic this season was though. It was one thing when the show was incidentally funny, but this is more, like, trying to be funny, and it’s never been as good at that as it’s mirror twin The OC, so it all just lands kind of flat.

And Quinn and Clay really don’t have much to do and that makes it very hard to invest in them.

Overall Analysis of This Season

This season is tough man. It’s unbalanced, it’s not great but in the end it pulls itself together. I am definitely ready to finish up the show though. I’ve decided on 3 more weeks for the remaining 13 episodes. Two blocks of 5, then 3, a sum up of the arc, season, and what this project has meant to me.

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