Welcome to The OC Musical, Bitch

Ever wonder what it would look like if your fave high schoolers from Newport Beach put all their feelings into song? You won’t have to wait that much longer. It was recently announced that there’s going to be a one-night-only event of The OC in musical format, in Los Angeles in August (of course conveniently when I’m back home in New York). The producers of the show are the same ones who recently did The Unauthorized Musical Parody of Cruel Intentions – you may have heard of it because Sarah Michelle Gellar, Selma Blair and Reese Witherspoon all went together and it was an epic return to 1999.

But now the producers are skipping ahead a few years to 2003, when The OC made its debut and entered the hearts of a new generation, namely, ours. I was a high school senior and this show was meant for people like me. I became obsessed as much as the next teen fan, buying into the mysterious, brooding Ryan Atwood, calling Seth Cohen the perfect nerdy dream man, and (still) having an adverse reaction anytime anyone mentions Tijuana/TJ.

As any The OC fan knows, music was a huge part of the show, which makes perfect sense as to why it’s being made into a musical. So far, the producers have cast school jock Luke, Seth’s mom Kirsten Cohen, and for some reason, show creator Josh Schwartz in some weird meta role, I guess.

For Cruel Intentions, the producers took songs from the late 90s/early 2000s to provide the soundtrack for the musical: e.g. Kathryn teasing stepbrother Sebastian with Xtina’s Genie in a Bottle and a Blaine’s gay sex scene with a BSB/’N Sync medley.

So what can we expect from The OC musical? I am in no way involved with the show at all, so this is just my best guess. If any of these do turn out to be in the show – just remember I am trademarking and copyrighting all of this. Just like Michael Scott declaring bankruptcy.

Act I

California by Phantom Planet

{Josh Schwartz}

There is no song more synonymous with The OC than its theme song, so why not start here? Creator Josh Schwartz went to USC and was also in a fraternity, so he was familiar with rich kids from Southern California. He considered himself an outsider, and got a glimpse at how real teens in Newport Beach lived, and that served as inspiration for The OC. Did you know he was 26 when the show got picked up? When I was 26, I was still binge-watching episodes of The OC. This solo is the beginning of his masterpiece.

Boulevard of Broken Dreams by Green Day

{Ryan Atwood}

In the pilot, Ryan and his brother Trey get caught stealing a car and while Trey lands in jail, Ryan is let go but since he has nowhere to go (since his dad abused him and his mom is an alcoholic with a tendency to just up and leave), his lawyer, the wealthy Sandy Cohen decides to take him in. It’s like this song is Ryan’s pre-Cohen anthem.

Over My Head (Cable Car) by The Fray

{Sandy Cohen/Kirsten Cohen and Jimmy Cooper/ Julie Cooper}

It wasn’t an easy sell for Sandy to convince Kirsten to take Ryan in – he is, after all, a troubled kid from Chino that they don’t know at all come to live in their mansion of a house and lavish lifestyle in Newport. Meanwhile, their next-door neighbors, Julie and Jimmy Cooper (who happens to by Kirsten’s former flame) are heading towards a divorce of their own. Each couple is in over their heads, but only one will ultimately survive.

Wonderwall by Oasis

{Ryan and Marissa}

Ah, the start of a beautiful friendship. When Ryan and Marissa meet for the first time, she’s outside waiting for her BF to pick her up and he’s going to smoke a cigarette, because he’s the bad boy. It’s one of the most iconic scenes from the show, so their meeting has to have its own song. After he says, ‘Whoever you want me to be’ – they separate and cue music.

I’m Shakin by Rooney

{Seth Cohen}

There aren’t many kids like Seth in Chino. He’s nerdy, into video games, super into emo music and confided in a plastic toy horse called Captain Oats. Wouldn’t it be great if the audience is introduced to a solo Seth Cohen singing and dancing alone in his room and Ryan sees him in his natural element for the first time being a total dingus?

 

Dirty Little Secret by All-American Rejects

{Summer and Seth}

I’m kind of jumping around in the timeline here, but let’s assume Seth and Summer skipped their whole ‘Ew! I don’t like Cohen!’ game and they’re just dating on the DL. (SIDENOTE: Rachel Bilson had a scene with Wilson Bethel aka Wade from Hart of Dixie in The OC?!?! BRAND NEW INFORMATION)

Mr. Brightside by The Killers

{Ryan, Marissa, Seth, Summer}

Setting: The Bait Shop. The four kids are watching Seth’s fave band, The Killers, play. This scene is purely of them having fun. No brooding allowed.

Welcome To My Life by Simple Plan

{Oliver Trask and Marissa}

Ugh. Oliver. He meets Marissa in therapy, and they bond because they both have problems, but as Marissa’s going to find out, he has bigger problems than her.

Hallelujah by Leonard Cohen

{Cast}

Remember how good the first season was? And remember how good this ending scene in the finale was? Ryan went back to Chino to take care of his maybe-baby with his ex-girlfriend Theresa, Seth sailed on his catamaran to Catalina (?? which I realize now isn’t as far from The OC as I thought), Summer is sad because Cohen left, Marissa moves in with her mom’s new husband and starts drinking again because Ryan left and the Cohens are left as empty nesters because both their boys are gone. CLIFFHANGER END TO THE ACT.

(END OF ACT)

::Intermission/Bake sale for Harbor School::

Act II

Maybe This Christmas by Ron Sexsmith

{Cast}

We open Act II with Christmukkah, a Cohen family tradition and one I even attempted implementing despite the fact I am not Jewish.

Ocean Avenue by Yellowcard

{Seth and Summer}

Seth and Summer briefly break up and he’s into Anna but then he realizes he’s not really into her and still loves Summer. Because they’re *meant to be*.

Portions for Foxes by Rilo Kiley

{Marissa and Summer}

A song in which the BFFs talk about sexy times with their respective men. Probably setting feminism back a bit, but this isn’t real anyways, so it’s fine.

Sugar, We’re Going Down by Fall Out Boy

{Seth and Ryan}

What’s the early 2000s without Fall Out Boy?

Hide and Seek by Imogen Heap

{Oliver, Marissa, Ryan, Sandy}

Oliver proves to be a psycho and basically locks Marissa in a room while he flails a gun around, as seen in this scene (even though this song is famously in this scene). The standoff comes to a complete halt and, as if stuck in time, they start singing a cappella, because this song will give you chills if done right a cappella.

Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol

{Ryan, Marissa, Seth, Summer}

Ryan and Marissa are rid of crazy Oliver, Seth and Summer are back in love, and everything is right with the world again.

The Sound of Settling by Death Cab for Cutie

{Cast}

Because you need that finale number that will make you want to cheer for the characters AND dance around at the same time. Also, Death Cab, is Seth Cohen’s favorite, duh.

(CURTAIN)

 

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Whatareyoudoinghere: Unexpected Guest Stars of Gilmore Girls

You’re probably either two days into your Gilmore Girls binge, or waiting to launch it til over the weekend. A few symptoms that you need to take a break from Stars Hollow: are you snacking constantly? Running on excessive amounts of coffee? Talking really, really fast? And finally: do you think you see celebrities everywhere you turn? Because it seems like every few episodes in Gilmore Girls, you’re catching either a cameo from an established celeb or a before-they-were-famous guest spot. Here are just a few:

Madeleine Albright (Season 6, Episode 7)

 Look. If you’re trying to get someone on board with Gilmore Girls, just try the following phrase: “dream sequence with Madeleine Albright.” I’ve seen the episode, but still don’t quite understand why or how this happened.

Christiane Amanpour (Season 7, Episode 22)

Amanpour was Rory’s hero throughout college, so it was only fitting that the journalist herself had a guest spot on the finale. After all, Rory’s dream was to be Amanpour, whereas my college dream was simply to someday be a person with a job. And I did it – so hold fast to your dreams, kiddos.

Paul Anka (Season 6, Episode 18)

To be fair, there were a few Paul Ankas on Gilmore Girls (again, reasons you should be watching this show if you haven’t seen it already. Or even if you have). While Paul Anka The Dog had more frequent appearances, Paul Anka The Human showed up in – you guessed it! – a dream sequence. Why didn’t we think it was weird that season 6 was chock full of plus-aged celebs starring in the Lorelai’s dreams?

Adam Brody (Season 3, Episodes 3 onwards)

I could be wrong, but it seems like the same actors are on all of our Whatareyoudoinghere features – like all of these folks were making the network/cable rounds in the early 2000s, just waiting for their lives to start. Adam Brody, Jane Lynch, Jon Hamm… you get the gist. Before he stole our hearts as Seth Cohen, Brody stole Lane Kim’s heart as Dave Rygalski. He was in her band until he had to go off to college…. in California.

Sherilyn Fenn (Season 3 Episode 21, and Seasons 6 and 7)

 Here’s where Gilmore Girls goes all Law And Order. Fenn appeared in three seasons of Gilmore Girls, playing two different characters. In Season 3, she guested as Sasha, Jimmy Mariano’s girlfriend. And a few seasons later, she was Anna Nardini, Luke’s baby mama. Last year I was trying to get into Twin Peaks and I realized I knew Audrey Horne from somewhere. But where? Well, it’s not surprising that it was hard to pin down, since she was two different characters and all.

Max Greenfield (Season 4, Episode 4)

Pre-Schmidt, this New Girl star was filling up the Douchebag Jar as Lucas, a drunk friend at Dean’s bachelor party.

Jon Hamm (Season 3, Episode 5)

Appearing as a pre-Don Draper Don Draper-type, Hamm played Peyton Sanders, a flash-in-the-pan love interest of Lorelai. This was over a decade ago, so it shouldn’t be shocking that Hamm was so baby-faced here, right?

Victoria Justice (Season 4, Episode 3)

If you need further proof that the teen sensations of today are really, depressingly young, look no further than Victoria Justice’s guest spot on Gilmore Girls. We’re still trying to cope with the fact that this show started literally half our lives ago, but we can’t deny it when we look at tiny baby Victoria acting opposite Melissa McCarthy. This girl is DRINKING AGE now, everybody. Sunrise, sunset.

Carole King (Season 2, Episode 20; Season 5, Episode 18; Season 6, Episode 10)

Granted, King is technically in every episode of Gilmore Girls. But it went beyond the theme song – she had an acting role as Sophie, owner of Stars Hollow’s (only?) music store.

Traci Lords (Season 4, Episode 5)

If you were watching Lords as interior designer Natalie Zimmerman, and thinking “wait, I know her from somewhere”: Porn. You know her from porn. So I hope you didn’t cop to that one out loud.

Jane Lynch (Season 1, Episode 10)

Is there one of these lists that Jane Lynch hasn’t made? Lynch made a brief appearance as a nurse when Richard landed in the hospital with Heart Attack Numero Uno.

Seth MacFarlane (Season 2, Episode 21)

You’d be forgiven for not recognizing MacFarlane’s face, since he’s usually a disembodied voice on bro-ish Fox cartoons. However, he also appeared as Lorelai’s classmate on her graduation day. Fun fact: Family Guy’s Alex Borstein also appeared in this episode (shame Rory missed it). For keen listeners, Seth also provides the voice of Bob Merriam (the lawyer who calls Lorelai on her answering machine) in season 3, episode 11, I Solemnly Swear.

Norman Mailer (Season 5, Episode 6)

This may have been a brief guest role, but Gilmore Girls viewers are unlikely to forget Mailer’s cameo as himself… because they must have said “Norman Mailer” 500 times in that episode. When you think about it, running an inn/restaurant is the smartest way to shoehorn in cameo appearances that otherwise wouldn’t make sense. Well, that and dream sequences, but that was more of a season 6 thing.

Chad Michael Murray (Season 1)

Like many hearthrobs of the 90s and early 2000s, Murray is an actor so nice, they named him thrice. I really do always forget that Gilmore Girls began as long ago as it did, but Murray’s turn as assy Chiltonhead Tristan DuGray (hello, made-up-sounding typical rich boy name!) predated his turn on One Tree Hill by a few years, and was even a year before he appeared on Dawson’s Creek.

Nick Offerman (Season 4, Episode 7 and Season 6, Episode 4)

Although Offerman is capable of playing more than just shades of Ron Swanson, how perfect is it that his Gilmore role was Beau Belleville, big brother to resident farmer Jackson?

Danny Pudi (Season 6, Episode 13 & 14; Season 7, Episode 6 & 7)

From Yale to community college? Well, yes. Pudi was Raj, Rory’s associate on the paper.

Krysten Ritter (Season 7, Episodes 4 Onwards)

After Veronica Mars, before Don’t Trust The B–, Ritter played Lucy, Rory’s acting major pal at Yale. It’s nice the performing arts community accepted Rory after the whole, you know, ballet debacle.

Danny Strong

Danny Strong is finally getting his due, but for years he was “that little guy on that show.” Like actress/vampire Bianca Lawson, Strong started off playing a teen on Saved By The Bell: The New Class, and then played a teen on Buffy The Vampire Slayer, and eventually landed on The CW/WB. By the time he was on Gilmore Girls playing Paris’s boyfriend Doyle, Strong had finally aged up to “college student” on TV – but in real life, he was 33 years old. Would it be weird to write him asking for his diet/sleep/exercise routine so that people stop calling me “ma’am” at 28?

*2016 Update: NBD, but he co-created a little show called Empire. Or as Amy Sherman-Palladino said about him at the ATX Television Festival, “I love that Danny, between The Butler and (Empire) has become the voice of Black America. It’s the weirdest… finally they found somebody to speak for them!”

Rami Malek (Season 4, Episode 11)

*2016 Update: Rami, as Andy, was a huge advocate of Assistant Pastor Eric when he was one of Lane’s Seventh Day Adventist classmates, but now he’s busy being a hacker and winning Emmys thanks to Mr. Robot.

Nasim Pedrad (Season 6, Episode 16)

*2016 Update: I had no idea Nasim was on GG until like, a year, ago. Her scene was super short and because I’ve watched all these episodes so many times, I tend to not pay attention as much to details. Anyways, she quickly waited on a v drunk Rory after a dramatic fight with Logan. At the time, Nasim only had two other credits to her name. Now she has five seasons of SNL under her belt, which is not too shabby at all.

Abigail Spencer Pedrad (Season 6, Episode 16)

*2016 Update: In that very same episode, Abigail Spencer, that woman you’ve seen in multiple things but can never remember what (Formerly Rectify, currently Timeless), played Megan, one of the bridesmaids that stir shit up during Logan’s sister’s wedding.

Masi Oka (Season 2, Episode 4)

*2016 Update: Did Masi Oka use his Heroes time-travel skills to appear in this ep with Alexis? He played a Harvard student who got in a nerdy debate with Rory after she snuck into a class. Lo and behold, he ended up sharing the screen with another GG alum, Milo Ventimiglia, in Heroes a few years later.

Class of ’04: Celebrity Superlatives

Wasssuupppp?! This week we’re reflecting back to 2004 – aka the year Molly & I graduated high school. It’s been exactly 10 years this month ::insert quarter-life crisis freakout here::  since we received our diplomas and officially became “adults”, and while it seems like it happened just yesterday, it equally feels like lifetimes ago. All this week we’re looking back at pop culture, fashion, and all things early 2000s, but also fast forwarding a decade and reflecting on our 2004 selves with our 2014 selves. We’re putting it all out there, folks.

Today, I’m kicking it off with one of my personal extracurricular activities in high school: Yearbook. I know, hard to believe right? ‘But Traci, you’re so cool and hip, it’s hard to imagine you were in something so academic and somewhat nerdy like the Yearbook Club!’ You’re right, reader. Not only was I in choir and did theatre, I ALSO was part of putting the yearbook together.

In the spirit of my infinite coolness, here are some superlatives from a faux celebrity yearbook for the stars who took over Hollywood between 2000 and 2004 when we were impressionable teens and TRL ruled the world. Put on your sparkly flare jeans and let’s get started!

Best TV Host

Carson Daly

If there’s one show that will define our generation, it’s TRL. I rush home every weekday and obviously vote non-stop for BSB to be number one on the countdown. True story: I was the TRL fan of the week in 2002 and Carson showed my picture on TV AND he said my name!!! So maybe I’m a little biased, because we’re best friends, but whatevs.

Best Dressed

Paris Hilton

 Guys, this Paris Hilton girl is apparently a big deal and she has this weird show with her best friend Nicole Richie that’s like about them going to different parts of America and having different jobs even though they’re both uber rich. But I can’t help but notice Paris’ style. It’s so edgy and hip! I’m probably never going to wear anything like this, but I bet a lot of other girls will soon enough!

Most Likely to Succeed

Beyonce of Destiny’s Child

Through a whole bunch of lineup changes, DC3 finally settled with Beyonce, Kelly and Michelle, but the two longest members of the group, Beyonce and Michelle have always stood out. Okay, maybe just Beyonce. There’s just something about her that makes you want to see more. If she does solo stuff in the future, she’s definitely one to watch out for!

Biggest Prankster

Ashton Kutcher

The guy from That 70s Show has his own TV show about pranking celebrities, so basically nobody else deserves this title but Ashton. I mean, he got away with punking Justin Timberlake – that’s epic enough.

Best Couple

Britney and Justin

Speaking of Justin, I’m still not over the fact this perfect couple broke up in 2002, so let’s just pretend they’re still together, okay?

Favorite Celeb Couple On & Off-Screen

Adam Brody & Rachel Bilson

If Seth and Summer isn’t your favorite couple just turn around right now. The geeky loner guy gets the popular girl? That never happens. AND IN REAL LIFE TOO?! Stop it. (PS that pic is from a Halloween party where Adam was an astronaut and Rachel was a martian (?) and they’re with The OC creator Josh Schwartz & Summer Cohen’s mom, played by Melinda Clarke. I mean…)

Best Hair

Chris Kirkpatrick

Obviously.

Class Clown

Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy is totally hilarious on Saturday Night Live. Even though he’s leaving the show (which will never be the same without him) I know he’s gonna be a huge movie star. He even has a movie coming out with Queen Latifah that’s supposed to be really funny!

Most Athletic

Apolo Anton Ohno

Molly & I are probably a little too obsessed with America’s golden boy. Literally golden boy because he’s physically incapable of not winning gold medals at the Olympics. Also he’s so dreamy. Who knew short track speed skating could be so exhilarating (not me. didn’t even know it was a sport)?!?

Most Attractive

Heath Ledger

With The Patriot and A Knight’s Tale, Heath and his flowing hair are the stuff dreams are made of. And to top it all off – he’s Australian!!! That means he says things like G’Day and Vegemite!!! I’m not even going to admit how many posters I have of him on my wall…

Most Changed

Lindsay Lohan

lilo pt to mg

From Parent Trap to Mean Girls, I can’t believe Lindsay Lohan has grown up so much! It’s also hard to believe we’re the same age. But remember how cute she was in The Parent Trap and now she’s hanging out with Tina Fey and Lacey Chabert from Party of Five (still one of my fave shows). Hopefully this is a rollercoaster that only goes up for Linds!

Bleth & More Fictional Couples Who Should Marry IRL

It happened, y’all. Two of the most beloved characters in millennial TV history are getting married IRL!

If you haven’t heard yet, Blair Waldorf and Seth Cohen (Bleth) are engaged!!!

Okay, so it’s actually Leighton Meester and Adam Brody. Two things came to my mind upon hearing this: 1) UGH now Seth and Summer will NEVER be together. 2) Blair and Seth. Weird.

It did not occur to me until a good minute later that these folks are not their fictional characters, because I am too engrossed in the lives of TV characters instead of my own real life. (It’s fine, I’m not the only one. The internet is stuck in the land of Newport & the Upper East Side too).

Anyways, while the idea of Queen B and lovable geek Seth getting together seems almost impossible that it could actually be true love, it got me thinking – what other characters from 90s/00s TV shows would actually be really compatible? Here are a few I came up with. Agree? Disagree? Want to add more to the list? Let us know!

Jenny Oliver
To continue with the Gossip Girl/The OC crossover, I present to you Jenny Humphrey and Oliver Trask. Jenny was a good girl gone bad, while Oliver was just a nutjob gone cray cray. Put them together and you have a big ball of insanity, which is probably not condusive to you know, living a normal life, but at least they would be happy together?

lisa carlton
When you think about it, these two could have actually gotten together. Lisa lived in the Pacific Palisades on Saved by the Bell while Carlton lived (with the Fresh Prince) in Bel-Air. It’s only like a “20 minute” commute, so it’s totes easy for Lisa to pick up Carlton and the two (read: just Lisa) can go shopping on his credit card. Not to mention, she would have a BFF in his sister Hillary.

ruthie ben
I’m going to pretend that Ruthie is still 8 years old on 7th Heaven and Ben is 6 on Friends, because I can’t handle the fact that Grown up Ruthie is posing half naked in magazines and Ben has split into twins and one of them works in a restaurant. These two were both troublemakers at some point in their respective series so while Ben avoids hanging out with Sting’s son, he can just casually date/hold hands with Ruthie and everything will be okay.

jonathan erik
Alright, before you leave a nasty comment, I realize that Jonathan Bower from Who’s the Boss was never actually gay on the show. It was the ’80s/90s, they couldn’t do that. On the other hand, Danny Pinaturo, the actor, actually is gay, so lets pretend new came out later in life and started dating Eric Van der Woodsen from Gossip Girl. Eric, since he grew up in the age where coming out isn’t as big of a deal as it used to be, has had his fair share of bfs, so he could teach Jonathan a little something about being ‘out’. In public.

kimmy neal
Ah Gibbler. The annoying sometimes charming BFF/neighbor to the Tanner family on Full House. She’s the type of person that would only get on with someone that’s just as weird and freaky as her. Enter Neal Schweiber from Freaks and Geeks. If you’re not familiar (what’s wrong with you? Watch that shit now), Neal is part of the Geek section of Freaks and Geeks. He thinks he’s a ladies man but, let’s face it. He’s not. Except with Gibbler.

jessie randy
There’s an episode of Saved by the Bell called Cut Day (is it disgusting I didn’t even have to look that up?) where Jessie finds a love connection with Graham – a boy she’s NEVER met or seen before in this high school where we see the same students over and over again – after they bond over protesting the delivery of styrofoam cups to the cafeteria and chaining themselves to lockers. Meanwhile, over on Home Improvement, Randy Taylor was kind of the odd man out in the family, as he cared more about environmental and civil rights and even became a vegetarian, much to the chagrin of Tim the Toolman Taylor. JTT decided to leave the show to go to college IRL, so the writers shipped Randy off to Costa Rica with his girlfriend in an attempt to save the rainforest. Basically, these two belong together in Colorado living a crunchy granola vegan lifestyle or for Americorps in – where else – Costa Rica.

kate dickKate Sanders was the bitchy, popular girl on Lizzie McGuire and Dick Casablancas, well Dick lived up to his first name. I realize that maybe there’s a slight age difference here, but theoretically, Kate and Dick would be a match made in heaven. And provide plenty of fodder for Veronica Mars’ flawless snark.

cher joeyLest we forget, Clueless was so popular that it spawned a TV show. Even though it only lasted for three seasons, Cher was still Cher and swimming in the middle of a bunch of Monets in Beverly Hills. Joey may have been a dumb jock on Blossom, but all he really needs is someone who is like him but smarter, and Cher can totally fit that role for him.

ren parisOkay, okay. These two aren’t lesbians. But bear with me for a second. Ren Stevens was a Type A overachiever on Even Stevens. Paris Geller was a Type A overachiever on Gilmore Girls. The ultimate power couple? And just think about it – these two could EASILY be lesbians. Like if one day they returned and it was revealed they’ve switched teams and gone all Piper Chapman over the past couple of years, I wouldn’t be surprised.

bliss feenyHonestly, I don’t know why no one ever thought of this before. Two teachers from beloved teen sitcoms, each providing life lessons for their students/adopted kids? Goood Morning, Mrs. Feeny.