We open with Seth and Ryan peering out over the pier as Seth suggests possible baby names. He lands on "Thor," because it's a strong name and "no one's gonna mess with Thor." But somehow I think if Seth's name were Thor, he'd have gotten messed with even more. Ryan, clearly not yet into the name-picking, unenthusiastically thanks him, and Seth moves on to proposing "Seth" for the baby: "Although at Camp Takaho, I was often referred to as a girl, so I guess it works either way." Ryan plaintively asks Seth to stop with the name game, and Seth -- always the wordsmith -- apologizes that the discussion is "premature." He proposes that Theresa might not even be pregnant because of the possibility that Ryan "shoot[s] blanks." That doesn't make Ryan feel any better. Seth agrees not to "kid," and then stumbles on the "unfortunate choice of word." He stops himself before further beLABORing the point because there's nothing funny about Ryan's predicament, PERIOD, and no one should have the MISTAKEn CONCEPTION that there is. Ryan narrates that they don't even know if the kid is Ryan's: why is no one paying more attention to that fact? In short, he's willing to sacrifice his entire new life to help Theresa based entirely on the assumption that the baby might be his? Seth insists that they don't even know if there is a kid: "How much faith can you put in a pee swab?" Ryan tells him not to say "swab." So far on The O.C., characters have been advised not to say the words "swab," "pee," "pool house," "underpants," and some other words that I'm having a hard time tracking down. But the point is: they use that line a lot. Seth is amazed that Ryan Atwood made a joke, albeit a thoroughly worn-out one. Ryan responds that he's got to keep his sense of humor, a sentiment with which Seth commiserates, since he's spent so much time stuffed in a locker with his shoes full of the water polo team's urine. He jokes that having Ryan around has made him soft; with no one picking on him, Seth's had no need for the "Seth Cohen retaliatory zinger." Maybe if Ryan stuck around just a little longer, Seth would also have no need for the "Seth Cohen talks about himself in the third person" tendency. Theresa emerges from the clinic, looking unhappy. For some reason, this causes Ryan to look hopeful. Ryan should know by now that he was not meant to look hopeful.
Episode Report CardJoanna: A | 446 USERS: C+
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