Lost but not forgotten, welcome to ‘Tree Hill’


As we all know, TV shows come and go throughout history.

Some are remembered for their longevity (Friends, Seinfeld, etc.) or their popularity (American Horror Story, Orange is the New Black, etc.), while others are short lived and hardly ever spoken about.

After re-watching on Netflix an early to mid 2000’s TV show that aired on the CW for 9 seasons, I was reminded at just how significant this series was and the impact it now leaves on me today at 20 years old.

Created by Mark Schwahn, One Tree Hill told the story of a set of individuals in high school with different personalities that would later carry a friendship among them filled with romance, basketball, tragedy, and lust well into their mid 20’s.

The first season aired in 2003 and although I didn’t start watching the show until 2006, I still felt no emotional attachment when watching the show. I mean obviously, I was only 12 years old at the time.

Yet I was very intrigued by the plot and how things somehow always went wrong with each character, when in real life most of the inner-circle events could have been prevented.

As I started entering my freshman year of high school I stopped watching TV and therefore never finished the rest of the series past season 5.

Over the past week and weekend, I have “binge-watched” One Tree Hill and have already came across season 6. I’m insane right? Well, not exactly.

The show has finally spoken to me. I finally have an emotional attachment and I’m able to compare certain personalities and situations from the show to my real world experiences from the past three to four years of my life.

Some of you might read this and think “Wow this guy is high or something” or maybe you personally thought the show sucked.

I, however, believe that Schwahn was a genius for creating this series and although nine seasons is a long time, the longevity is not what makes the show a classic in the last decade in my opinion. Nor is it the popularity, the fan base, and the girls on Twitter who vouch for Team Lucas and Team Nathan. The show is a classic for the characters, the events, the plot, and the soundtrack.

Re-visiting the series I was in awe to hear bands such as Fall Out Boy (Pete Wentz also made a cameo in the series), She Wants Revenge, We Are Scientists, and Angels in Airwaves in a variety of episodes. These are bands I listened to frequently on KROQ around 2004 and it sure took me back. The series was rich in gathering a soundtrack that featured bands and songs that spoke to teens and even naming most of the episodes after song titles (ex: “Pictures of You” – The Cure).

Enough about the soundtrack though. The characters were so extraordinary in the series as they went through the ups and downs of high school and life after high school. Relationships were formed, love triangles surfaced, lies were told, and tragedies struck.

Beginning with the opening episode it appeared as Nathan Scott would be main antagonist of the series as he bullies and has no sympathy towards his older half-brother, Lucas Scott. Over the course of the series, you watch the brothers go from rivals and enemies, to brothers and best friends, providing a touching emotion that makes you want to never fight with a sibling and cherish each moment you have with them.

The love in the series makes you either wish you had a girlfriend or that you never had one. Throughout the early seasons you had the love triangle between Lucas, Peyton, and Brooke. Later, it would become Lucas and his internal struggle of admitting his love for Peyton, followed by finally making Peyton his girlfriend, and later going back to not admitting his love for Peyton when their relationship fails.

Yet again though, this is not the point.

Truth is, the series is known for telling the truth. The real truth. Not the imaginary high school you see that makes you think to yourself “Where was this my senior year”?

From the labels and cliques, to the school shooting (started by troubled forgotten friend of Lucas, Jimmy Edwards), and finally the high-school basketball state championship; the show showed it all.

You can’t help but to cringe when witnessing Lucas and Nathan’s father Dan murder his brother Keith (Lucas’ father figure) in cold blood during the school shooting. You can’t help but to feel saddened when Peyton returns to Tree Hill (two years after Lucas proposed to her and she said no) and is turned down by Lucas indirectly when witnessing his proposal to his season 5 girlfriend Lindsey. You can’t help but to feel shocked when Dan actually becomes a hero and a great guy towards the end of the series.

So much drama and emotion was present in the show. So much death and heartbreak was featured in the show. That’s what life really is like in the real world. Not a sugar coated falsification of “And they lived happily ever after.” Nope.

The show depicted real life. The stories of certain individuals who came from different “lanes”. The high school jock, the popular cheerleader, etc. Yet, each one of them come together to form a special friendship among one another that carries well into the final season. It’s not easy, but they do it and it makes you really wonder to yourself what life would be like if you could go back to high school and change a few things or talk to the people you never talked to.

Where are they now? Who are they now?

The series makes you realize the story behind your story. It speaks to you based upon your individual obstacles and circles of people you interact with on a daily basis.

Have you won back that long-lost flame you still care about? Do you have a good relationship with your father? Are you satisfied with what you are currently doing with your life at the moment?

Those are all questions you may ask yourself upon watching this series and you may find your answers in comparing yourself to a certain character in the series.

It’s a beautiful tale. I could go on and on about it but I won’t as I have probably spoiled enough things for you if you have not watched the series before.

Personally though, the actors and actresses do a wonderful job at portraying their characters and although you may only know Chad Michael Murray, the whole cast is brilliant. Not to mention the surprise musical acts featured on the show.

It’s not just about love nor is it just about basketball, even though those are the two most important themes featured within the show.

It’s about the legacy the characters leave behind in Tree Hill and what shapes them to be who they are throughout the entirety of the show.

With that comes the impact you feel when watching the series as suddenly you too are a part of Tree Hill and follow the journey of the teen’s who become adults in a matter of seasons.

So if you have the time or the opportunity, watch this series on Netflix. I guarantee you will be hooked.