One Tree Hill Season 9: What Went Wrong?


One Tree Hill is arguably one of the most questionable teen dramas to exist, yet for this it is absolutely fantastic. However, season 9 – the final season – saw One Tree Hill take their ridiculous storylines to a whole new level. The only episode of season 9 that seemed remotely redeemable was the final episode; many fans will argue the show went way beyond its expiration date.

Season 9 was the shortest season for One Tree Hill with only 13 episodes compared to the usual 18-22. But the writers still somehow managed to tackle thousands of utterly ridiculous plotlines. Let’s start with the first one that comes to mind: Nathan Scott (James Lafferty) being kidnapped. Nathan was kidnapped for attempting to sign a Russian basketball player who was someone else’s “property” or was owned by another team. Truthfully, no one really has a clue what this plot was about, but they wanted to kill him. I didn’t realise basketball was such an intense sport that people would kill agents for recruiting players, but you learn something new every day. What makes it an even more laughable storyline was seeing that Dan Scott (Paul Johansson), Chris Keller (Tyler Hilton) and Julian Baker (Austin Nichols) were able to hunt down Nathan’s whereabouts and save him from his kidnappers. Because who needs police when you have a murderer, musician and a filmmaker to solve crimes?

Dan Scott’s redemption arc can also be established as the worst storyline of the entire series. Dan was an evil character who not only neglected his children and shoved his dreams onto them, but also killed his older brother Keith. This was bad enough, but he then tried getting with Keith’s fiancé after he blamed one of his son’s friends, who killed himself, for killing Keith then himself. Dan, throughout the entirety of the show, proved he was a horrible man and no matter what good he did, like saving his grandson, he was not a good person. So having this whole season seem to try and redeem his character was uncomfortable and annoying to watch.

However, no matter how crazy the storylines mention above were, it was not the most outrageous. Instead Clay Evans (Robert Buckley) forgetting his son wins the trophy as the most questionable plotline in all of television. For background information, Clay’s wife Sara died 6 years ago. There never seemed to be any issue with Clay in the earlier seasons until season 9, where he begins sleepwalking and waking up in random areas across Tree Hill. His girlfriend Quinn James (Shantel VanSanten) begs him to go to therapy. In the facility centre where he now stays, he meets a little boy called Logan (Pierce Gagnon), who he has a close connection with only to be told that is his 6-year-old son that he forgot. His brain shut Logan out because his brain did not want to remember him because it reminded him of his wife. There are many plot holes in this storyline, like why didn’t his family tell him? Why was he not in therapy for forgetting a significant part of his life? All in all it seems utterly unrealistic and felt like the writers were in a competition for the most outlandish storyline they could come up with.

As a true One Tree Hill fan I can only say this season was laughable and enjoyable because of how questionable the storylines where. However, a few brain cells were lost in the process of watching all 13 episodes of season 9.

One Tree Hill is available to stream on All 4 in the UK. You can watch a season 9 promo below.


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Editor 2020/21 and a History student with a Britney Spears addiction.

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