The O.C.
The Last Waltz

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The Vast Schmaltz

Ryan comes home, where Sandy says he just spoke to Ryan's new tutor, who has a "great résumé" and is also invisible, given that we won't be seeing her in this episode. Apparently, she tutored Stallone's kids, which isn't exactly a ringing endorsement. Ryan asks if he can go to public school instead and spare the Cohens the expense of a celebrity tutor. Sandy's no idiot, and he figures out pretty quickly that Ryan's motivation is to be with Marissa. Needless to say, he's not thrilled. Most of the ensuing conversation takes place in shots over the speaker's shoulder where you can clearly see that the words don't match up with what the actors are saying, so nice coverage there, crew. It's distractingly bad. Sandy dubs that Ryan needs to focus on himself and his SATs, and that none of that will happen in public school with Marissa. One tough subject down, one more to go for Sandy as he moves over to Kirsten, who says she's going to try to conquer her fear of cooking as recommended by Dr. Woody. She's also planting an herb garden, because this will somehow help her to achieve that goal. Maybe Kirsten-grown herbs are less likely to turn against her or something. Sandy says that he shares Kirsten's fear of Kirsten's cooking, so this is something they can get over together. But first, they'll share a shower and get over each other.

Julie has a visitor! Her excitement fades when the visitor reveals that the mansion and its contents are going to be repossessed in the next forty-eight hours. "I'm sorry," the messenger says. He doesn't sound very sorry, though.

Back at public school, where the guitar riffs are hardcore to for atmospheric purposes, a girl puts up some posters announcing an upcoming school dance as the bell rings and kids empty out into the halls. One of the kids is Marissa, who is immediately jostled by the Queen of the Black Shirt Brigade. It's pretty cool of the teachers to show their solidarity with the students by dressing like them and all, but -- oh, wait, I'm sorry. Queenie is supposed to be a high-school student even though she looks like she's on the wrong side of thirty. They live rough in public school, though, so maybe that's why. Queenie accuses Marissa of walking into her, and Marissa patiently responds that she's new and got lost and she's sorry. Politeness don't fly in the P-blik SKOOL hood, though, and Queenie says she'll "let" Marissa pass if Marissa tells her she's better than Queenie. I think Queenie's got the intimidation/dominance bully ritual backwards. Maybe she's dyslexic. How sad for her that the underfunded public education system doesn't have the resources to give her the individual attention she needs to overcome this condition. She'll be ordering people to tell her they're better than she is for the rest of her life. Marissa is confused as to what Queenie wants from her. After all, didn't she do the lesbian thing just last season? Surely the ratings don't need another girl-girl action boost so soon! Another girl notices the non-fracas and steps in. She asks "Heather" (of COURSE Queenie's name is Heather) to leave the new student welcoming to her, and Heather backs down like a wuss. Marissa thanks New Friend for the help and wonders what Heather's problem with her is. New Friend thinks it might have something to do with Marissa's designer bag, shoes, and Chanel necklace, because even kids who can barely afford the wares at the local mall are up-to-date on the latest high-end boutiques. Also, Marissa? Wearing a Chanel logo as a necklace is freaking lame. New Friend introduces herself as Casey and officially welcomes Marissa to Newport Union. Marissa says that Casey is the first "nice person" she's met today, which should really endear her to the rest of the student body. "I'm not even that nice," Casey says, and leaves as the bell rings. The halls are empty except for Marissa, who has no idea where her next class is. Just hop over the barbed wire fence, take a right at the rusty shed, walk through the sewer pipe, and you're there. It's all right there on the mimeographed map, Marissa.

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The O.C.

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