Will someone please explain to me what's going on on the O.C?.

First of all, if you rate the first season a 10, then you have to rate this season about a 4. Last year salvaged a 7 only because there was superhott lesbianism, a cute new Red Head for Ryan, and Ki-Ki super drunk for half a season.

This year, what do we have so far? Ryan has upgraded to a drama-free hot chick (well, supposedly, but there's still time for PLENTY of drama ... after all, Ryan's still got a child and she's got that Ex-boyfriend she recently left). Seth smoked reefer for about five minutes; they REALLY needed to drag that out longer for its comedic effect alone. You've got Kirsten getting potentially stalked by the hot chick from Star Wars ... err Trek (I always get those nerd series mixed up); but that just turned out to be some plot to exploit rich people of their rich money. You've got prolonged fallout from "The Shooting" with Ryan and Marissa; and you've got Sandy wasting his fucking TIME with this damned Newport Group and this damned hospital. I've never seen such a waste of fucking talent as this season's storyline for Sandy Cohen!

All in all, this season has been dud-city. The only redeeming qualities were when Taylor Townsend was insane (wrapped up a little too neatly and swept under the rug a little too perfectly, don't you think?); Trey's babealicious girlfriend/ex-girlfriend was in a bikini; and now with Marissa getting all coked up and liquored up for our viewing entertainment. Now, we just need a potent rival for Julie Cooper-Nichol-Summer's-Dad to compete with (possibly for Summer's Dad's affection); we need Summer to get back to her hoity-toity stuck up roots a lil' bit; we need more skin from both Marissa and Ryan's new girl; we need Seth never lacking in the J department; we need Sandy to start surfing again; we need Luke back full time to raise the douche quota; we need Taylor to start plotting with her imaginary friends the eventual takeover of all of Newport; we need Kirsten in a lesbian three-way with any two Newpsies; and we need a little box in the corner with Caitlin Cooper masturbating with a cucumber for the entire hour, including commercials.

Here's the deal with this show. Every season, there's always a mid-season lull portion. Either it's boring, or it's TOO outlandish, or it's so contrived, you know they're just setting you up for the big Ryan-Marissa reunion, or the big Seth-Saves-The-Day-Again-With-The-Help-Of-His-Friends-And-that-Infernal-Mutt-Scooby-Doo, or the big "I'm going to walk into Newport and start fucking shit up for a while, but eventually I'm going to go down because nothing will ever get in the way of things always returning back to some normal level before once again going off on another wild tangent." Alas, this season it seemed to correlate with the reemergence of Caitlin Cooper. She came to town, sort of stopping the momentum the show'd been building through the first third of the season. Then, Johnny died, thereby causing a complete story-shift into this new alternate world where Marissa slips back into her bad habits (and even finds some worse ones) and Ryan's with another brunette he has no business being with and will eventually leave for his one true love: Marissa. As much as I want that 15 year old body beside me, Caitlin was just bad news for this season, and now we're stuck with what we've got, which is mediocre viewing at best.

However, like every damned season, they come up with a way to hook you back in at the end! Ryan moves out, Seth runs away on a boat. Kirsten goes to rehab, Ryan's brother gets shot by Marissa. It's always some-damned-thing. This year, I think it's pretty obvious what's going to happen. If Ryan's ex and his child don't make a reunion by the last episode, then that kid better have been still-born, because they're dragging that story out for about as long as I've ever seen. It's like they're just biding their time, keeping their secret weapon in their back pocket until they finally run out of juice. Other than that, who knows? Everything's so damned contrived on this show, I half expect to see Emperor Palpatine from Star Wars come out and have Sandy fitted with a Darth Vader costume.

One thing's for certain: If I never see Chili again, it'll be too damned soon

Bring Back Luke!!!