"You're the one that's avoiding, avoider!" remains my favorite line from the last episode and luckily I get to see it again in the previous scenes.
We begin with the nice acoustic guitarness we've come to expect from the OC. I'm assuming I know who this artist is but don't care to look it up. Kirsten makes a brilliant comment about Ryan becoming "an island" while Julie has been named "Hurricane Julie." She has been excluded from Turducken Day because she sent Ryan on a murder mission. Seth calls Summer who is still not listening and appears to be losing it a little bit, dropping her pictures of the Newport crew (which Taylor previously noted are not on the wall) all over the floor. She deletes Seth's message because apparently T-day is less important and heartwarming than Chrismukkah so no one needs to reconcile for what is only a day of thanks and family and all that shit.
Coffee drips very slowly when you wait for it. I discovered that today at work while waiting for my life's blood to finally finish brewing up in the pot. Apparently the Cohens agree with me about the whole waiting for the coffee thing, because the awkwardness in the Cohen house at the moment is brewed up stronger than the coff itself. Kirsten lays it out straight for Ryan and Seth because apparently she has no problems anymore (I still don't remember if she drank any booze last season after being in rehab. Remind me?). She sends Ryan and Seth to shop for the holiday eats. Nothing like a grocery store trip to bring people together - gotta love the bonding that happens when you fight over whether to buy bread based stuffing or not.
"I'm not angry. I just wish he was dead, that's all." - Ryan, about Volchek. Now, that would be funny in another show, but it's not as the OC has lost all humor except for Taylor and Caitlin and a little bit of Summer's environmentalism. Apparently Volchek still doesn't have a cell phone because thugs only use payphones, old school style.
Since the weather never sucks on the beach in the OC in November, Volchek and all the half-naked surfers hang out on the beach when Sandy shows up, again in his badass sunglasses, to pick up yet another blond kid gone bad. Sandy's eyebrows look particularly caterpillarish with the sunglasses on. Jesus is Taylor still hiding out? What happened to her awesome leopard print teddy, it's been replaced by strange flannel pjs. Seth finally realizes that Summer has never called him the entire time she's been in college and now shes panicking and telling her dad she doesn't want to come. She appears to be wearing some kind of iron-on shirt - is that Sarah Jessica Parker or am I making things up. Caitlin has adopted a rat dog with feathers. It's kind of adorable and apparently it's a purse dog. That dog is freaking adorable... It's the sorriest animal specimen I've ever seen. BREAKING NEWS has come into the stupid show for a kid who got abducted. This is sad for the kid and apparently the kidnapper drives a gold Saturn. A gold Saturn - not your usual kidnapping vehicle, huh? Alright moving back, we appear to be in medias res in a fight between Julie and Dr Roberts who really weirds me out and looks like someone... let me think about this... Someone French? Or is it Gabriel Byrne. Not sure. Julie avoids the problem as usual.
Seth and Ryan shop at Whole Foods... or is that my local Vons? It really could be. Apparently in Newport everyone goes shopping for T-day ON T-day. Julie is subtle by getting Ryan to talk to her near the samples, at which point I wonder, is this Costco? It's not, but whatever. They have an oh-so-subtle conversation, so subtle I miss the entire point because I really don't care anymore about what Julie is up to, and Ryan, I mean, Marissa 2, bores me to death.
Kirsten discovers Taylor who has a really cute shirt as usual, and calls her on her shit stealing stuffing (which they apparently don't need to go shopping for. Good to know). Ryan and Julie continue their whole conspiracy because they are BORING. This better be the last Volchek episode. For some reason Ryan is taking all of her shit, which must be some Freudian thing remaining from his Marissa obsession, cause really, people.
Taylor says the words "well-endowed" in front of Kirsten, who seems to think that Taylor's bitchfest of a mother will not care about the fact that her daughter got drunk and married a Frenchman and apparently still likes speaking French very ostentatiously. Taylor continues to have a better head on her shoulder and trying to get out of the bed she made for herself. Why is she still not worried about, oh, not being in college? For that matter why is no one worried about that? Taylor also apparently speaks French fluently because she lapses into it when she is upset, which, I'm sorry, does not happen (except Casey speaks Spanish when she is drunk).
Summer I guess is on her way and still exchanging awkward kisses with Seth, who bought nice roses because he is a good boyfriend despite her never answering any of his phone calls, ever, ever, ever. More awkwardness ensues.
Sandy tells Volchek he's turning him over to the authorities, and Volchek seems to have gotten an even crazier tattoo since the episode last night. He says that Mexico felt like prison anyway, which is very mature of him. He is neither drunk nor in an orange room in the back of a bar, which is highly out of character, and who knows what changed between last week and now. The set for Sandy's office appears to be the same as the set for the Harbor School, further proof that this show is really low budg now. Ryan catches Sandy - OOH, anOTHER betrayal by the Cohens - driving off with his "client" Volchek. Ryan catches people all the time, he always discovers secrets he doesn't need to know. For once I'd like to see someone discover a secret about HIM.
(On a side note, who actually watches Prison Break?)
Taylor teaches Kirsten how to cook, because apparently she still doesn't know despite being Ms. Stepford. And she hasn't slapped Taylor yet, God knows why. Ryan is pissed and wondering where Sandy went, blah blah, this vendetta thing needs to end now. He also seems to have adopted some scruff. Is Taylor wearing a poorly placed brown belt over a black top. That confuses me to no end. Summer seems to be slightly receptive to Seth's overtures but is keeping him to a 5-no, 10-minute romp in the bedroom.
Julie doesn't know how to cook a turkey, so Dr Roberts is finally catching on to her whole fraudulent thing and her denial about going to the Cohens. Ryan tries to see Julie but has to get through the Iron Curtain of Dr Roberts first, who is understandably suspicious about this 18 year old kid trying to have an urgent conversation with his batty wife. He didn't seem to care until Caitlin caught him tooling around with his ex wife, so his time here is predictably short. Dr Roberts claims he was "excited about his life with this woman" but that didn't stop him from hiding out down at the pier with the Stepmonster. Ryan is turned away at the door, so that's better than expected for this scene.
Kirsten goes to confront Taylor's mom while she acts like good ol' Julie and flips out about not having the right color candles. She is apparently a sports agent, which explains everything since I've seen Jerry Maguire. Mrs. Townsend continues to be a huge bitch, and I still don't care really, and Kirsten does a truly terrible job of fluffing Mrs Townsend to accept her daughter's ridiculous marriage.
Summer does yoga now, and they talk about Seth's tattoo. She is kind of cuter now that I remember, but appears to not be feeling the making out vibe as she notices a cartoon of Marissa on the wall. COME ON JUST FORGET ABOUT HER ALREADY. Summer channels her rage about Marissa into rage about homeless people and drags Seth off to feed the homeless, which explains all those previews showing homeless people in the Cohens' house.
"Who knew, out of all you kids, she would turn out to be the young Sandy Cohen?" Ooh, I can just see it... Summer goes to a top tier law school (she has the arguing skills) and becomes a public defender or some other kind of public service lawyer. She'd probably be rather sassy in a suit - I can really see the future of the OC (except for the whole bad ratings thing). There are still some details in this show that I can really get behind.
Sandy tries to explain to Ryan how he isn't defending Volchek, just negotiating terms of his surrender, and Ryan storms off in the car they continue to provide him. He continues to be annoying. MOVE ON ALREADY. All your viewers have.
One of Volchek's old buddies still hangs out at the beach, because you know all the asshole badass guys surf religiously in the middle of the afternoon in November. Ryan wears the worst sunglasses ever, which is a really bad problem with this show. This Heather girl, who I vaguely remember (was she Johnny's girlfriend? No. I can't remember last season at all, because it really sucked that much), tries to stick up a little for Volchek and Ryan doesn't care. She continues to look far too clean-cut to run with that crowd and I think her top is from Target. Ryan still won't let it go, because he has to drive this plot point into the ground, and while Sandy looks for him, we have a really excellent 1950s style car driving scene (you know, moving the wheel back and forth w/o turning the car, all that jazz). Sandy looks steely-eyed and Kirsten stays home in the kitchen. Taylor returns to criticize the mashed potatoes and speak more bad French. Kirsten says "You can stay here?" and Taylor says "Forever?" because you know the Cohens really just need more messed up kids around. Taylor looks horrified about the lack of pecan pie, while Seth and Summer bring over a bunch of homeless people. Taylor goes to teach the bums how to wash themselves and Seth shows them Battlestar Gallactica, another hipster namedrop. Kiki stays in the kitchen, where she belongs, dammit.
Julie realizes that Volcheck doesn't need to be dead to be out of her hair, and Caitlin appears to be wearing suspenders. Or overalls. Not entirely sure. She goes to look for the dog who I want to come back on the screen to distract me from how I cannot figure out who Dr Roberts looks like. Julie wants to baste the turkey. Ryan looks for Volchek at the infamous inn where Julie boned Luke, and Sandy shows up with more bad glasses to catch him before he continues to be annoying.
In a nice back-and-forth scene, Julie and Dr Roberts avoid talking while Summer avoids talking to Ryan. Caitlin continues to hang with that freaking awesome dog, which looks like a bunny of some kind, and stomps off to go to the Cohens for Thanksgiving. Wise choice, my friend. I can't wait for Caitlin to be a bigger character. Again, big moment between Seth/Summer and Dr/Julie while they realize both Summer and Julie need to get over their shit. Dr Roberts, by the way, says he never slept with the Stepmonster, he just needed someone to talk to. Julie drives off telling him to get out of the (his) house, and Summer ditches Seth at his house, leaving him to stay with all the homeless people she dragged home to work out her own emotional shit.
Since it's now dark in the show, we can assume that it's at least 5pm and all other families have already eaten their tryptophan, but Sandy is busy carpooling with Ryan to go hang with Volchek. It's a brilliant idea to put two muscled, angry kids in a hotel room with broken beer bottles. Ryan punches V in the face (must be all the cagefighting), bust the bottle, and pushes him to the floor, trying to make Volchek feel the pain that Ryan won't let himself feel (oh yes, thank you, that was brilliant analysis on my part). Meanwhile, Sandy sits outside well aware that his adopted son has some serious anger management issues. Another example of brilliant hands-off parenting by Sandy Cohen.
Apparently Sandy has engineered some strange situation where Volchek and Ryan can hang out in the hotel with cops, lawyers, etc outside. They have to work it out. Hug it out, bitch. Ryan confronts his inner pain while Volchek says, "I think about that night every day." Very good, Volchek, you have a shred of human emotion. Your acting is brilliant as well, and your muscle tee totally not the kind of thing that would get your ass kicked every day. He confesses that "it all just got out of control," and Ryan asks, "It as all an accident?" Uh, yes? Volchek says "If you want to finish this, I'm not going to fight back," and Ryan says, "I'm not doing you any favors. You have to live with what you did." That is a very Princess Bride kind of moment. "To the pain," right? Volchek walks out to turn himself in and Ryan has apparently learned his lesson. The fact that he was on a mission to kill doesn't get him arrested, but Volchek gets cuffed and heads out. He still has a creepy angry look on his face but presumably this is the end of that plotline, and I am so grateful.
Summer returns to a beautifully decorated table with no food and just Julie, sitting there like the mom in American Beauty, totally on the verge of snapping. The two mourners bond over Marissa. So moving, really, I swear.
Seth wants to talk to Summer but Taylor, voice of wisdom, stops him. Caitlin still has that feathery dog. The bums are still around, and they managed to extend that table by a whole lot. They must have a lot of table leaves. Taylor's lesson in hygiene hasn't done anything. The bum calls Sandy "crazy eyebrow man." Apparently the feather dog belongs to one of the bums. That baby dog is the cutest thing ever. It's so ugly it's cute. Caitlin has apparently named it Julie, which would be excellent except that the dog goes back to the bum and will not be a permanent, Paul-Anka-on-Gilmore-Girls-type pet character. Disappointing. It went so well with Caitlin's absurd outfits.
Taylor quotes the Bible and then says she is no longer religious, and Caitlin says she is awesome and a total freakshow. This is the first time these two characters have really faced off and I can see the chemistry building. Both of them have been added as permanents on the show, so this could go somewhere good.
Summer is again going back to Brown without sexing it with Cohen or really talking to him at all. She says she'll call him when she gets her head screwed on. Her dad seems to be there for her, randomly. He says Seth has grown on him, probably thanks to their sandwich-and-golf sessions during the summer of Julie being insane. Dr Roberts, in another tidy OC plot wrap-up getting rid of an unwanted guest star, wants to move to Seattle to be a plastic surgeon at Seattle Grace - HA, way to reference the show that is KICKING YOUR ASS IN THE RATINGS. If he's gonna be in plastic surgery, that means he's gonna be hanging with Dr McSteamy. Summer seems to be unfazed about her dad moving to another state, which, I know from friends who had that happen to them in college, actually sucks a lot, because you go home to no friends. And apparently he is still talking to the stepmonster, and has broken up with Julie, all in the past like 2 minutes. Summer is willing to stay to hang with her dad but not Cohen, I guess, and they go to Chili's. If only they reference the Office here it would be awesome. I don't think there is a Chili's in any airport in Orange County.
Julie shows up at the Cohens and again needs to be taken in by them because she is essentially always losing families at the worst time. She apologizes. Julie kicks ass sometimes. Now we move into an Alexi Murdoch song. Heartwarming, as usual. Julie wants to talk to Ryan and people finally realize that's really weird of her given her history with young men that date her daughter.
"Tell me about her," Julie says, really reaching bottom now, because as far as I know all Ryan can say is that Marissa was a total headcase. He remembers the first time he saw her - or, at least, he remembers her outfit. He remembers that she was "really hot." VERY deep, Ryan. Your IQ seems to have been damaged by the cage fighting. I feel so much better about all of this now that I know Marissa will always be remembered for her hot bod.
Next week on the OC, Seth walks in on Che playing guitar in the nude. That's not me making a joke. That just IS a joke. Not in the good way.