November 24, 2004
The O.C.: Your 'Not Guilty' Pleasure

001gallagher.jpgGod, it's so weird being home for Thanksgiving: sleeping in that narrow little bed, feeling like you have to ask permission to go for a drive like you're a teenager even though you're twenty-nine.

It's even weirder now that you're divorced. Everyone's being all cool and polite about it, which makes it a little easier to be here alone for the first time since high school. Your "funny" uncle hasn't made a single joke about wanting the money for that fondue set he got you and your ex from Crate & Barrel, and even your usually snide little sister hugged you a little longer and asked, "How are you, sis?"

Sure, your mom cut out an article from The Times 'Style' section on "starter marriages" (never mind that the article was printed before your wedding hit the skids last winter in Aspen—has mom been saving it all this time?), and she keeps offering you herbal tea and wanting to talk. You can tolerate it, especially since she paid for your ticket home.

But there's one hour Thursday night when they all better steer clear of you: 8 PM EST, when The O.C. airs.

If any of those fuckers even tries to talk to you during The O.C., you're going to explode in a screaming fit, thrashing about and destroying your father's fancy new stereo and reducing your mother's precious Hummels to dust. For real: no jury in the land would convict a 29 year-old divorcée for killing her entire family on Thanksgiving night if they knew that all she wanted to do was watch The O.C.

Shit. Now you'll need a good lawyer. Not one of those awful public defenders with dandruff and a baggy, hand-me-down Brooks Brothers suit. (Can't you get it tailored—it only costs like forty bucks?) You'll need one of those slick ones who do pro bono work, especially for still pretty women accused of crimes of passion. Maybe he'll even be sexy like Peter Gallagher on The O.C.

After a long, public trial, dutifully covered in People and on CNN ("Whoa, is that Dominick Dunne in the audience of my murder trial?"), you'd be acquitted when your motive is fully explained: Not guilty by reason of O.C.

It'll be hard to put the trial behind you (and, you know, the death of your whole family, including your "funny" uncle), but you've always been remarkably strong. You pride yourself on having only cried at work once—that goddamn toner got all over your skirt, it wasn't your fault—and even when your ex was playing all those sadistic mind games, you never once threw it in his face that you knew it would be a bad idea to marry a Jew. (Situational anti-Semitism: so weak.)

Yes, you are a strong, independent woman, and now that your murder trial is behind you, you will fulfill your destiny by finding a nice man and bearing his children. But there's something you need to do first: you need to go to the video store and buy the DVDs of the last two seasons of The O.C., since you sort of lost track of the show while you were in jail. Today is the first day of the rest of your life, and The O.C. is there for you, unlike those dead jerks in your family. Now, who does a woman have to kill around here to get some service at this fucking Blockbuster?

Actually, I've never seen The O.C.: I'm sure it's pretty good.

The O.C. airs at 8PM EST on FOX

Earlier: Obligatory Pop Culture Entry to Prove We Haven't Become Humorless Prigs; O.C.D.; The O.C.: Your One and Only Friend.

Posted in a OC-centric, Shallow fashion.

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