The O.C.
The Showdown

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The Showdown

Julie shows up at Kirsten's house in a deliciously trampy sundress that looks fantastic on her. That woman belongs in Las Vegas. Kirsten offers her a drink. "Isn't it a little bit early?" Julie asks. "What do you want to talk about?" Kirsten replies. "Your father," Julie says. Kirsten deems it never too early to drink when talk of her father's sex life is on the table. Too right. She mixes up a vodka and orange juice -- eight parts vodka, half-part orange juice, just the way mama likes it. Julie wants to know if Caleb has said anything to Kirsten, because Julie wants the marriage to work but Caleb acts like she's an alien. Then she chokes on the Smirnoff special she's drinking. "How much vodka did you put in this?" she gasps. Kirsten shrugs. "Normal amount. Little less," she says flatly. Julie twigs that strange things are afoot at the Circle K: "Where's Sandy? Is everything all right? Did something happen, did you fight?" Kirsten denies it, but then sighs and says maybe they did fight; she's not sure any more. "It seems like we've been fighting since September," she says wearily, sitting on a bar stool. Julie freshly earns my love by saying, "Kirsten, I know I'm probably the last person in the world you want to bare your soul to, but it's gotta be better than getting smashed in the middle of the day. What happened?" I would love it so much if these two became unlikely friends. They're both great actresses, and the scenes they've had together where they quasi-bond are among my favorites of the season. Kirsten emptily stares straight ahead into middle distance as she says that first, the boys left, and she and Sandy stopped communicating. "Then, Rebecca Bloom came along and made things worse," Kirsten says, practically choking on the sound of that corpse's name. "And then, Carter," she exhales shakily. Julie observes helpfully that Carter was hot. "Something happened between me and Sandy," Kirsten says thoughtfully. "This wall came between us and Carter just...made me feel less alone. Like Sandy used to. And now he's gone." She drinks as Julie digests this. I wish we'd stuck around to see what advice she gave. She probably just poured Kirsten another drink and gave her Lance's number.

Reed arranges cut-outs of all the Atomic County characters at the store where they're launching The World's Fastest-Published Graphic Novel. What happened to those rewrites? Did they just go away? Seth crapped the whole thing out in, like, two months, and it's published? And his family never had a word to say about it? GRR. When the family talks, the show is better. You can have campy plots and still be true to that core concept of how cool the Cohens are as a unit. Ahem. Anyhoo, Summer stomps into the store and sasses, "I have a question: where's your cut-out? Or have they not made Super Bitch yet?" The look on her face is hilarious -- she is so proud of that burn, so sure it's going to slay Reed, and so oblivious that it's as scorching as a Ritz cracker. "You and your comic have turned those two idiots into complete...idiots!" Summer spits. Well, Seth was already at least halfway there, if not further. Reed doesn't much care. Summer announces that Reed will be sorry once Summer tells them that if either one of them so much as breathes a name beginning with "R," she'll never speak to them again. How does that skinny body support a head with such a heavy, bloated ego? Screw the Vixen stuff -- that's her superpower. Reed astutely decides to woo Summer by telling her that she's missing the big picture: Yes, Seth and Zach are the stars now, but once the book is a hit, it'll be Summer's face that everyone wants to see on magazine covers, because she is Little Miss Vixen. Reed tells her, "You are the Nico of the group," to which Summer replies haughtily that she doesn't get references from before 1990. Which is a funny line from Summer, well-delivered by Rachel Bilson, but that's still a very obscure reference for The O.C. It was probably Fun With Google day at the office. "What do you want, a career in fashion? Movies? This is your launching pad," Reed says, eyes flashing. "Do you really think I'll be able to control them once you have the limelight? It'll be your show!" Summer narrows her eyes and says she's well aware that Reed is manipulating her, but that she likes what she's hearing, so maybe they should keep talking.

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The O.C.

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