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'The O.C.' nostalgia recap: The 4 most atomic moments in 'The Brothers Grim'

Season 2 | Episode 17 | “The Brothers Grim” | Aired Mar 24, 2005

We’ve said goodbye to Rebecca, Lindsay, and Alex. We thought we said goodbye to Zach. But now we’re giving him a warm welcome back to The O.C., and keep the welcome wagon trotting for the older and questionably wiser Atwood troublemaker—Ryan’s brother Trey (Logan Marshall-Green).

If by the end of “The Brothers Grim” (a title that is as much foreshadowing as it is a cheeky reference to those Chino boys), you still don’t know where The O.C. is going with the final third of season 2, there’s no sugar coating it. There’s nothing else to say than: Buckle up. You are in for one wild, explosive Ferris wheel ride.

In this atomic county (copyright Seth Cohen), someone is always keeping a secret while also throwing a party or getting out of jail and contemplating some light shoplifting. You know, the usual. Here are the four most atomic moments in “The Brothers Grim.”

Warner Bros. TV/CW Seed/screengrab

Warner Bros. TV/CW Seed/screengrab

1. Trey Atwood ambles back into Newport.

Welcome back, Trey! Everyone’s questioning whether they’re stoked to see you. Ryan’s older brother gets sprung from jail and finds himself in Sandy Cohen’s good graces. What is it with Sandy and wanting to give the Atwood boys the benefit of the doubt? Despite Ryan’s hesitation, he feels guilty and agrees to let Trey crash at the Cohen compound.

Ryan and Marissa accompany Trey to the mall to spend the cash Sandy handed him for clothes and necessities. After paying, the store manager asks to see the contents of his bag, as Trey had been eyeing a watch, but Trey doesn’t take to the accusation well and trashes the store. Ryan later doubts Trey when he finds the watch under a pile of clothes, leading Trey to bolt and pull up real, tangible receipts. Marissa and Ryan schlep to Chino to bring back Trey, but it’s not without getting into a bar fight over, you guessed it, the honor of one Marissa Cooper. The old gang is back together… for now. Watch yourself, Coop.

Warner Bros. TV/CW Seed/screengrab

Warner Bros. TV/CW Seed/screengrab

2. Kirsten has the hots for Carter.

Knowing that Kirsten develops a drinking problem (apologies on the decade-old spoiler if you’re new here), the signs are all over this episode. Carter makes a comment about downing a bottle a night with Kirsten at the office, and during the increasingly tense Newport Living launch party, she beelines for the chardonnay faster than Seth for the anime booths at Comic-Con.

And perhaps her heavier drinking, or just amped-up anxiety, stems from her brief marital woes and her crush on Carter. Listen, who wouldn’t have a crush on him? But having Julie Cooper catch onto it in a millisecond and exploit her undercover crush isn’t anything anyone needs. Ever. Kirsten tries to keep Carter at arm’s length (in spite of Julie’s thumbs up) with Sandy so near. He picks up on her coldness and admits that he likes her. The Cohens can’t catch a break that doesn’t threaten a break up.

Warner Bros. TV/CW Seed/screengrab

Warner Bros. TV/CW Seed/screengrab

3. Zach returns from Italy with a secret.

Zach speeds into school on a Vespa (no joke) with news. He tells Seth in confidence that during his long Italian getaway, he met Francesca, his new long-distance girlfriend. Unsurprisingly, it doesn’t take long for Seth to relay the information to Summer, who doesn’t take but a minute to spiral that he moved on so quickly. As everyone spirals for basically nothing, Zach admits that he fabricated Francesca because he was heartbroken over Summer. Summer apologizes to Zach, Seth apologizes to Summer, and some semblance of peace is restored within their weird little side group.

4. Julie’s got 99 problems and her porn past is currently 1-99.

Finally, Julie turns to Caleb to put out her porn extortion fire when the flames get too intense. She holds a “state of the union” with her husband, and, ever the public relations mastermind, Caleb agrees to pay Lance without a second thought. He marches into Lance’s lair looking like a Bond villain with the cash and two bodyguards. Long story short, Caleb leaves with the cash, Julie’s video, and a possibly dead (?) extortionist. Although we should never count murder out of Caleb’s capabilities, his plan still didn’t work. Lance infiltrates the magazine launch party under the guise of a cater waiter and plays the video in place of Julie’s presentation. Checkmate.

Episode Mixtape:

  • “Call Me” by Arthur Yoria
  • “I Only Want You” by Eagles of Death Metal
  • “New Innocent Tyro Allegory” by Havergal
  • “Beat Up Blue (Lucid Version)” by Justin Catalino
  • “Saturday Night” by Kaiser Chiefs
  • “Reason Is Treason” by Kasabian
  • “Artists Are Boring” by The Kingdom Flying Club
  • “Too Much Love” by LCD Soundsystem
  • “Like You Like An Arsonist” by Paris, Texas

All four seasons of The O.C. are available to stream on CW Seed and Hulu Plus.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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