The Good

This show is the best kind of guilty pleasure.

The Bad

Some of the plots of this show are a little hokey.

The O.C.: The Complete Third Season is filled with all the twists and turns that we have come to expect from soap operas. Whether characters like Ryan are trying to do the right thing, or Seth and Summer are trying to make their relationship work, or Marissa plays right into the hands of her little sister Kaitlin, The O.C.: The Complete Third Season turned things up a notch and for the most part it seems like it worked. This 7 disc set is packed with 25 episodes that see our characters do their best to embody human beings, all while maintaining the sense of pop culture cool that got them to where they are currently.

To be honest, I had always held this show at arm's length because I am from Orange County. These characters are having an experience that I can probably relate to 2% of. Yet, there was something about this third season that kept me watching. Marissa gets expelled, Summer gets fed up with Seth, Seth's not wearing a college sweatshirt at the bonfire party. All of this keeps spiraling and spiraling, up and down, with parents not behaving any better than the children they are raising. The O.C. might not have it's head in reality, but it manages to create a reality all it's own that is infectious.

Features

What's In A Name?

An illuminating segment that breaks down certain characters names and where they came from. Essentially, if you are friends with any of the creative people on this show, chances are they will have used your name somewhere in one of the episodes. The coolest part is that the real people get to talk about what it was like having their names immortalized in The O.C..

The Party Favor

This is billed as a "From Script to Screen" segment and as it focuses on the main character's prom (yes, somehow these adults are still in high school), all of the hot cast talks about how they didn't go to theirs, or if they went they were nerds while they were there. We are given an inside look at the writers room and up close access to how a story is broken, how ideas are found, and the logistics of pulling off the Pirate-themed prom. I found it interesting how old some of the people in charge were on this show. I guess if you want something done right, you need people who actually have experience, huh?

Making Of The Subways Video

Pass the Remote

Two hip producers from this show provide us with a scene specific commentary in which they also appear on a video track within the scenes they are musing over. We get to hear their thoughts as they watch these segments, they talk about the overall themes of the episodes, how they brought the somewhat disparate stories together, and again how the ideas for this season kept coming to them.

Gags and Goofs

After a superfluous role call, we see the characters laugh their way through scenes, blow lines and all other manner of jackassary. While I thought this got old pretty quick, I am sure that the diehard fans are going to love seeing their favorite characters in a more human way.

Video

Widescreen Version presented in a "Letterbox" format preserving the "scope" aspect ratio of it's original exhibition. Enhanced for Widescreen TVs. Aside from the milquetoasty music and scene compositions therein, this show has a cutting edge look that most TV shows don't employ (or this show caused them to employ). While again, there is really nothing about this show that shows the real Orange County, I guess maybe this show could be looked at for how the creators think Orange County is. In that regard, we can't fault their imaginations.

Audio

Dolby Digital - English Surround Dolby Stereo. Aside from the characters seemingly trying to one up each another with quick barbs, this show had audio that didn't really catch my attention. I could have done without some of the music just because it all sounds like stuff that was underground about 15 years ago, but from a purely auditory standpoint the sound is tops.

Package

The entire cast seems dressed for their prom on this front cover. There is also a silver tint all around this box that gives it that little something extra. The back features some images from the show, a Special Features listing, a description of what The O.C.: The Complete Third Season is about, a cast list and system specs. All 7 discs unfurl out of this slipcase in one piece of packaging with some great pictures of this cast. Each disc is in it's own tray and there is a booklet listing out the episodes and containing (yes) more pictures. All in all, I am a fan of digipacks and I found this packaging to be somewhat too bulky for it's own good.

Final Word

Has there ever been a show on TV that had this many good looking people in it's cast? From Kelly Rowan, to Mischa Barton, to Melinda Clark, to Rachel Bilson, I found this show almost hard to watch because every few seconds you're getting another gorgeous looking woman walking across the screen. Now, I have seen and reviewed this show before, but there was something about this third season that stood out. It's as if the creators had decided to eschew reality all together and just take these characters in whatever outrageous direction they felt they should be taken in. As I mentioned above, for the most part this worked because this show seemed to retain a large chunk of it's audience. There is something to be said for embracing all that is wrong with the world, and I guess when it's on TV and not in your own life, that's probably where it belongs.

The O.C.: The Complete Third Season is a pop culture "messterpiece."

The O.C. was released .