The near-unanimous reaction to hearing that Marquette had received a verbal commitment from Seymour (WI) guard Sandy Cohen was "What, the dad from The O.C.?" As such, it seemed the obvious thing to do would be use The O.C. references when he makes an outstanding play for the Golden Eagles. We spent last summer recapping episodes from the first season of the classic Fox drama in order to mine for gold for when the basketball playing Cohen did something superlative. He had a relatively quiet freshman campaign, but that doesn't curtail our quest for entertainment, both during the season and during the quiet summer months. So we're back again in 2015 with recaps for the 24 episode second season.
Makes sense, right? Ok, hit it, Phantom Planet!
Season 2, Episode 8 - "The Power Of Love"
Directed by Michael Lange
Written by John Stephens
Previously on The O.C.: Ryan and Lindsay are officially dating, but no one wants to tell Kirsten as she figures out whether she's Lindsay's friend or sister. Hey, remember last season when there was a throw away comment about Sandy doing musicals in college? Marissa got drunk before going to her dad's going away party and then made a scene. Seth tried to impress Alex by "stealing" Caleb's Aston Martin, but Alex likes Seth because he's a good guy.
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Ryan pours some corn flakes as the phone rings. It's Seth! It's breakfast time, so why is he calling? Did his bed flip over and he's trapped underneath it upstairs or something? Nope! He has spent the night at Alex's apartment, and since she's pulling a tank top over her bra, I'm guessing that this is supposed to tell us that they totally had sex. Also, since he snuck out, could Ryan cover for him with his parents? Noooooope.
Sandy ties a necktie in the master bedroom, and I suddenly remember that Sandy doesn't actually have a job other than "Caleb's attorney." In any case, Kirsten sneaks up behind him for a squeeze and a kiss. Happy anniversary, Sandy! Ohhhhh, riiiiight, anniversary! Sandy's mad scramble starts, and he allllmost recovers. Right up until he tells Kirsten that he loves her more than he did 19 years ago, except that they've been married for 20 years. OOOOOOOOPS. Well, besides, he's got a super awesome plan for this special anniversary, who said that he doesn't and hey Ryan, Sandy needs reinforcements now so where's Seth? Crap, there goes the "not covering for Seth" plan. Then again, telling the truth might have been a better plan, because Ryan's story of "at school early to work on a history of agriculture in California paper" dies a death and Sandy instantly guesses that Seth snuck out to see Alex.
In the school lounge, Ryan and Seth discuss Ryan's covering and bad lying over coffee, and Zach and Summer join them. Zach asks Seth about the newest issue of Joss Whedon's X-Men comics, and Seth says his problems are three-fold. By my math, based on when this episode aired, Seth is talking about the 7th issue of Astonishing X-Men. Seth is dead to me. Zach goes off to get coffee for himself and Summer, leaving Summer time to make cracks about Seth wearing the same clothes as yesterday. Well, that's because he was busy boning Alex all night long. Summer is so disgusted that she's now too nauseous for the coffee that Zach brings back.
Over at the Nichol house for.... dinner? Can't be breakfast, because the kids are already at school.... Oh well. Marissa needs money, and Julie attempts to use Marissa's need to get her to show up for a fancy time photo shoot for some dumb local magazine. Caleb says "whatever, lol," and just gives her the cash. See, he knows his family is far from perfect so why bother with the photography to lie about it?
After Ryan and Lindsay make plans to see each other that night under the guise of studying, Sandy's at home hanging up the phone "re-confirming" his reservation at the fantabulous Montage Hotel and Resort for the weekend. Kirsten ain't buying that "re-confirming" story, and hey, can they really trust the boys alone by themselves? Sandy's plan: ground them and commit them to not being idiots by threatening them with spending the weekend at Caleb's house.... which means with Julie.
Marissa and Summer study French, but Summer's too distracted by Seth being able to engage in sex with someone else before she did. Seriously. She thought she'd be first. What an odd thing to think. Well, after some blithe reassuring from Marissa, Summer decides that she and Zach are ready for coitus.
Lindsay arrives to study and there's very serious studying time going on. We kick over to the living room in the main house where Sandy wonders what they're accomplishing by trapping the boys in their rooms. Let's have some family time, dammit! Sandy heads up to Seth's room, where Seth already has one leg out a window. This is spectacularly stupid on Seth's part. Meanwhile, Ryan has abandoned his shirt for some smooching with Lindsay just in time for Kirsten to walk into the pool house.
The next morning, Sandy and Kirsten debate whether they can trust the boys, but hey, they made three different kinds of pancakes for breakfast as an apology, so you gotta love that. They try to explain their situations and it goes poorly. The boys accept any and all punishments and Sandy declares that DAMMIT, his anniversary will be celebrated.
Sandy's plan? Go talk to Alex at The Bait Shop. He's not there to scare her away from Seth, though. He's there to make an appeal to her. All he wants is a nice anniversary weekend, and he'd appreciate Alex's help in straightening Seth out so Kirsten doesn't lose it.
Summer finds Zach and informs him of her plan to take things between them to the next level. Zach 100% agrees. He thinks this weekend will be the best time, and he'll inform his parents immediately. Wait, what? Oh, Zach thought she meant that Summer should meet his family. Riiiiight. Probably should have actually said "sex" at some point in there, Summer.
Even though Seth has been double grounded, he's off to Alex's apartment after school. If this wasn't a bad idea on face value, Alex's mind is in a twist after getting to meet Sandy, so she kicks Seth out post-haste. She's going to need some time and space to figure things out. I've got some good news for Seth, though: Kirsten has decided that the boys can not stay with Julie Cooper for the weekend. Bad news for Seth and for Sandy: Kirsten also cancelled the reservation at the Montage, and she's still mad at Sandy over the "forgot the anniversary" thing.
The next morning, Sandy corrals the boys for a chat. It's too late for their apologies now that the anniversary weekend has been ruined. Ryan, always the thinker of the pair, asks how they can help. Remember this.
Time for lunch with Zach's family. Zach's Congressman father got stuck in DC on an assault weapons ban bill, but his world traveler sister is here, basically fresh off an airplane, as is Zach's mom. Sister Abbie returns Mom to the conversation they were having before Zach & Summer arrived, which was about Kashmir. Mom tries to steer Abbie away, but Summer insists it continues. Except Summer hears "cashmere" instead of "Kashmir," and starts talking about pashminas and purses. Abbie corrects her, and Summer attempts to downshift to Abbie's tan and asks if the studying abroad Zach was talking about was in St. Bart's because she heard the Four Seasons there is spectacular. Abbie stares at Summer and explains that she has been helping build an irrigation system in southern India. This... this is not good for Summer.
Seth's at The Bait Shop to beg for his job back, as Sandy and Kirsten have made a dent in his allowance. Alex is actually angry at Seth now, and he doesn't even 1) get that she is upset and 2) come close to understanding why she's upset. See, Alex has a lousy dad who apparently never put a lot of effort in to connect with her, whereas Sandy's willing to take new and interesting tactics in order to reach out to Seth to not necessarily keep him in line, but at least keep providing him guideposts and actually have a relationship with him. Seth does get the job, though.
Hey, remember that photo shoot that Julie was setting up? Time for that now, and hey, look, there's Marissa! And she has DJ with her. Julie is NOT okay with this, even though Marissa may have intimated that to him, so DJ's gonna take off because he didn't want to be a problem. Julie tells Marissa she'll deal with DJ, and Julie's method of dealing with him is to point out that Marissa is using him to lash out at Julie and then offering him a check for $5000 to just go away.
Lindsay and Ryan meet up at the piers, where Ryan breaks up with her because it's causing way too many problems with the Cohens. This could not be more terribly timed for Lindsay, as in the last two hours, Kirsten also told her that maybe they should just try to be friends as a result of Kirsten finding out about the Ryan/Lindsay smooching. Bad times, as she's gone from a sister and a boyfriend to now, where she has neither. You can't really blame Ryan here, though.
With the trip to the resort dead in the water, Sandy has a new plan. 1) Dinner at The Arches, a super snazzy fancy place, and 2) because the boys are doorknobs, a couple of local police officers that Sandy is friends with from his time at the public defender's office are at the house to keep Seth and Ryan in line. Solved! Dinner goes well, including both Sandy and Kirsten apologizing for their argument the night before. Well, it goes well right up until the aforementioned police officers show up to tell Sandy that they stepped outside for a moment and the boys disappeared. THERE ARE TWO OF YOU, HOW IS THIS POSSIBLE?
After a brief scene where Marissa shows up to pick up Summer while she studies and thinks Kofi Annan works for United Airlines (*sigh*), Sandy has a hunch as to where Ryan and Seth are, and that's The Bait Shop. I don't know why they'd go to The Bait Shop tonight, as there wasn't any discussion of a concert in this episode. Hey, wait a minute. Remember when Ryan asked how they could HELP Sandy? Escaping from a police guard doesn't sound like HELPING, unlessssss....
SURPRISE ANNIVERSARY PARTY! Well, a surprise for Kirsten, at least. The whole police officers thing was just a work so Ryan and Seth could go set everything up at The Bait Shop without Kirsten worrying about where they were. Well played, Sandy. Time to wrap some things from this episode. While Sandy sings Solomon Burke's Don't Give Up On Me, Zach tells Summer that he likes her because she's different than his family, Julie tells Marissa that she's better off without DJ because he took the money, Ryan and Kirsten talk about Lindsay which leads to Kirsten telling Ryan to go ask Lindsay to dance, and finally, Seth introduces Alex to Kirsten.
We go outside briefly, because that's where Marissa went after talking to Julie. DJ wanders up, partly to tell her that he's not taking the money, but he is breaking up with her because he thinks that Julie's actually right about Marissa using him. As an apology, DJ gives Marissa the check that Julie gave him. Why is this an apology, you ask? Well, Julie didn't actually make it out for $5000. She actually left it blank, and must have left the name line blank, too, so DJ tells Marissa to go shopping on Julie's dime.
We go back inside as all of our main characters link up arm in arm to listen to Sandy sing Lyle Lovett's She's No Lady. Everybody sways back and forth as we fade to black.
Best Sandy Cohen Line/Moment: Officially, this isn't a Sandy line of dialogue. But our goal here is to identify things we can use to cheer for the rising Marquette sophomore, so this works. When Seth is over at Alex's apartment, Alex explains to Seth that she needs time and space after talking to Seth's father. Seth's resigned to his fate, and utters this line: "Sandy Cohen has that effect on people." That. Is. PERFECT. Thanks, O.C.!