1. The parents had drama and the kids had drama, so there was something to watch for everyone. In fact, age was really just a number in The OC. Everyone dated. Everyone slept together. Everyone was someone’s parent. And it didn’t matter how old anyone was! All ages were treated equally. Except when Julie Cooper was fucking Luke. That was weird. And also when Julie Cooper became Kirsten’s step mom (shoutout to Caleb). That was also weird. But whatever.
…Meanwhile, everyone knew, Julie. THE WHOLE TIME.
2. The show celebrated all sorts of sexualities. Luke’s two gay dads? Marissa’s stint as a lesbian? Sexuality wasn’t a thing on The OC. It really taught us snotty teenagers to be ourselves and accept others for who they were. I would also go as far to say The OC started some sort of revolution, but maybe that’s just me.
3. It taught us to love nerdy (half) Jewish guys over athletic water polo playing hotties. Does he like comic books? Does he have severe social anxiety? Does he have a plastic action figure from his childhood that has a name and also still lives in his bedroom? Is he kinda funny? Does he like bagels? Yes? Well, congratulations my friend, you’ve scored a winner.
4. It paved the way for some of our OTHER favorite shows. Including Laguna Beach, The Hills, The Real Housewives (which started in Orange County, duh), etc. The OC gave way for America’s obsession with rich people from Southern California.
5. I’m pretty sure it also paved the way for trendy workouts. Kirsten’s yogalates class? Everyone wanted in. And now, barre and yogalates are the norm.
6. Sandy’s eyebrows were on fleek. They were on fleek before fleek was on fleek. Sidenote: I still have no idea what on fleek means.
7. It touched on important matters, like Marissa’s alcohol problem. Like J-Kwon said, teen drinking is very bad. Unless you have a fake ID tho. Watch the evolution of Marissa’s alcoholism here:
8. It even taught us that alcoholism isn’t just a problem for teens — it’s also a problem for adults! Remember when Kirsten had to go to rehab?
9. It paved the way for our obsession with Hollister. There, you could find shirts that had “Newport Beach” plastered across the chest while surrounded by palm trees in a very dark environment where Yellowcard usually played. Going into Hollister was like taking a day trip to Orange County, California.
10. It featured lots of great songs that we downloaded on Limewire after each show. I saw Seth Cohen listening to Death Cab For Cutie so I listened to Death Cab For Cutie, too!
Additional shout outs to: The Killers, Modest Mouse, Imogen Heap, and Rooney. Lol, Rooney. Remember when Oliver took the crew to the Rooney concert?
11. It gave us Summer Roberts.
12. We learned the definition of #RelationshipGoals from Seth and Summer. No relationship will ever top the one that Seth Cohen and Summer Roberts had. Even though she wouldn’t acknowledge him in public at first. And Seth for some reason chose Anna over her that one time. And then Summer dated Zach who was kind of hot, but also a total buzz kill. And then Summer left Seth to go to Brown and become a hippie. But in the end she came home and they got married because that’s what true love is. LOVE IS SETH AND SUMMER. SETH AND SUMMER ARE LOVE.
13. It taught us to never, EVER trust anyone named Oliver Trask.
14. It brought us hope that when things end and we are sad, we WILL move on and be happy again. When Ryan carried lifeless Marissa away from the burning car and let her die in arms I balled my eyes out for maybe two months straight. In fact, I am tearing up right now as I think about this scene because I am writing about it. Fuck.
Long Live The OC.