One Tree Hill
became a fan favorite early in its run on the CW network, as a charming soap revolving around comely North Carolina high schoolers. The series' finale, its ninth season, demonstrates how great writing and acting helped the show grow past its high school roots and focus on the young-adult dramas and heartaches of its popular cast. The ninth season focuses on fans' favorite characters, including Brooke (Sophia Bush, who also deftly directed the season finale) and husband Julian (Austin Nichols), now parents to twin babies. One of the series' most heart-wrenching storylines involves a sleep-deprived Julian unwittingly putting one of his sons in harm's way--and his inability to forgive himself. Also stellar are Bethany Joy Lenz (who is growing into a lovely young woman, channeling Diane Lane in looks and mannerisms) as Haley and James Lafferty as her husband, Nathan. One of this season's storylines involves a ghost from Nathan's past resurfacing--and a dangerous twist that Nathan stumbles into on what should have been a routine business trip. (Small gripe about this thread: Why do generic TV bad guys have those vague Eastern European accents?) Chad Michael Murray reappears as Nathan's brother, Lucas, during this emotional time. Millie (Lisa Goldstein) and Mouth (Lee Norris) have navigated love and TV success, and Quinn (Shantel VanSanten) and Clay (Robert Buckley) face Clay's unnerving medical condition, and also find what it means to be, and make, a family. Fans of One Tree Hill
will love the warm-hearted conclusion to the series, in which virtually all the characters are set onto paths that should serve them well into the future. The boxed set includes lots of extras, including a salute to One Tree Hill
fans, a panel discussion with the cast, a featurette on the whole series, and a commentary on the finale. It's a fitting sendoff for one of TV's most beloved series. --A.T. Hurley
Brand New, sealed,One Tree Hill Season 9.