According to this week’s episode of One Tree Hill, the only thing people use the internet for these days is porn and complaining. I think I’ll skip over the porn but boy, Tree Hill, do I have some complaints. Chiefly – how many different television shows and movies were you planning on ripping off this week, anyway? (Or do you call it an "homage" to help you sleep at night?) Seriously, we had shades of The Breakfast Club, Dawson’s Creek (who were actually ripping off Career Opportunities themselves), Magnolia and numerous others I am sure I am forgetting. I know there are no original ideas, but could you at least try not to be so darn blatant with the borrowing next time?

(Warning: plagiarized spoilers below!)

The episode started out very promising with various high school scenes that cleverly turn out to be scenes from Mia’s new music video. I was wondering why Haley was wearing such a short skirt and spiked heels to work because I know no teachers at my high school dressed like that. It soon takes a turn for the worse when we realize Mouth is doing this week’s VO duties and the entire episode will be framed around his first assignment as an on-air personality at the television station. His coverage of Tree Hill’s first basketball game with Lucas and Skills as a coach quickly becomes all about Mouth and his relationship with school shooter Jimmy Edwards. His piece in the end obviously has nothing to do with the game he was supposed to be covering and turns into a human interest piece about the personalities of our characters instead. If this piece actually ends up airing, I’m calling shenanigans. This story has no focus, and local sports reports would get a minute package, tops. No way it clocks in that short.

Also promising is the return of basketball to the show, and cute cute CUTE Jamie’s interactions with Quentin and the rest of the Ravens in the locker room before the game. Just when we think we’re gearing up for some fun hoops action set to a rock soundtrack, though, the show completely switches focus to the girls. Who (in)conveniently get themselves locked in the school library. With no phone line or cell service. Goody, we’ve never seen this plot before! The ladies, who include Brooke, Haley, Peyton, Lindsey and Mia, spend the hour alternately being completely cruel to each other and having an all-out girl love fest. Peyton and Lindsey finally let their fangs come out completely and call each other, alternately, a "fat ass," a "bulimic bitch," and "man face." It’s petty and not nearly as fun as it should be. These ladies could learn a thing or two about how to be entertainingly bitchy from Ms. Brooke Davis.

Despite the tired nature of the plot, a few interesting things are revealed while the ladies are locked in. First, Brooke confesses to Peyton that she thinks Lindsey’s engagement ring was originally Peyton’s. I had accepted this as fact without thinking, but in a moment of contrition Peyton reveals it wasn’t ever truly hers at all, but the ring Keith gave to Karen. Big awwwwwwww, you guys. Even a cold-hearted girl like me is powerless before such sweet sentimentality. Second, when the girls order pizza online in hope the delivery boy will let them out the delivery boy shows up and it is none other than Tim! Of course, Dim Tim allows the door to close behind him and he is trapped with them again. Dim Tim turns out to be not so dim when he fixes the door (but only after hanging with them in there for a good long while) and says he only stayed with them because no one hangs out anymore. Also, Dim Tim has a son named Nathan. Aw, Dim Tim. Your unrequited love for Nathan is duly noted and remembered. Here’s hoping you show back up again down the road for some much-needed comic relief. Finally, the major revelation is that Lindsey and Peyton aren’t that different, what with all of the dead parents and such. When Peyton (rudely, crudely, mercilessly) mocks Lindsey about her perfect life, Lindsey tearily reveals her father’s heartbreaking battle with cancer. Lindsey is finally getting some layers. I just wish her layers weren’t so similar to Peyton’s.

Then there was a weird Magnolia-like sequence where all of the characters sang along to one of Mia’s songs while montaging. Dear One Tree Hill, you are not Paul Thomas Anderson. Please don’t do that again. And don’t get any ideas about borrowing the frog thing. Thank you.

Finally, the show returns to the basketball…but the basketball is over! Am I the only one here who misses the basketball as the backbone of the show? Sigh. Nathan admits to Lucas that he kissed Carrie and says that despite Carrie quitting earlier that day, he still needs to tell Haley. I agree, Nathan. Now do it before that nanny boils your bunnies. In the end, the camera scrolls up and we learn that Tree Hill won the game, a game they were not supposed to win.  Now, wouldn’t it have been fun to see how they won the game? I suppose hearing girls call each other demeaning names was far more important.

What did you guys think? Was Peyton’s behavior towards Lindsey justified, or just cruel? How cute is Jamie with his little Ravens jersey? And was anyone else disappointed we didn’t get to see Lucas, Skills and Nathan coach the team at all?

Posted by:Carrie Raisler